Newton Restaurant Round Up: Openings, Closings and Transitions
Twice a year, Patch covers openings, closings and transitions at Newton restaurants. This time around, we have an unprecedented number of changes to share with you as the past six months have seen a great many shifts in the Newton dining scene.
Terry O’Reilly Irish Pub (Newton Centre) – The most recent addition to the bustling Newton Centre “restaurant row,” Terry O’Reilly’s is an Irish pub with a twist. They also offer some Middle Eastern fare from Sabra, co-owner Elie Saroufim’s restaurant that formerly occupied this location. A full story on Terry O’Reilly’s will be upcoming on Newton Patch.
Farmstead Table (Newton Centre) – Chef Chad Burns and his pastry chef wife, Sharon, bring a true farm-to-table dining experience to Union Street. With an emphasis on the freshest ingredients prepared to highlight their unique flavors, the menu will be changing frequently. Earlier this week, Farmstead Table started serving lunch.
Brewer’s Coalition (Newtonville)- Building on the success of his two John Brewer’s locations, owner Bill Honeycutt opened this “neighborhood brew pub” in mid August. The unique design of the space means that diners can enjoy not just their meals and drinks but the company of adjacent patrons as well. Note that Brewer’s Coalition is now serving lunch as well.
Jonathan’s Bar and Grille (Newton Highlands) – In the few short months since it opened, Jonathan’s menu has already seen many changes. They are now serving a weekend brunch, as well. Permitting for their patio space is still pending, but parking remains easy and plentiful.
George Howell Coffee (Newtonville) – When coffee legend George Howell bought Taste from Nik Krankl, he left things pretty much as they were…briefly. Last time we updated you on Newton restaurants, Taste was in transition. But, the popular locale reopened in early February and is showcasing a new range of specialty coffee drinks and teas, as well as sandwiches, paninis and crepes. They also have a variety of baked goods from top-rated local bakeries.
Skipjacks (Newton Highlands)
Bertucci’s (Chestnut Hill)
Le’s (Chestnut Hill)
Sabra (Newton Centre)
Pizzapalooza (Newton Highlands)
Rosie’s Bakery (Chestnut Hill) – For the first time since it opened, Rosie’s underwent a major renovation. While the decor still reflects owner Judy Rosenberg’s warm and whimsical style, the seating is streamlined and the counters and cases more accessible and visible, all to make going off your diet even easier.
New England Soup Factory (Newton Highlands) – When Pizzapalooza went out of business, NE Soup Factory owner Marjorie Druker swept in and bought up this space that is adjacent to the Newton location of her two-restaurant chain. While the new space is still under construction, Druker told Patch that she plans to serve “fresh and funky” food, including rotisserie chicken.
Lumière (West Newton)- After the popular dining destination renovated its semi-private dining room two years ago, the space saw a number of special events including a Passover Seder and a dinner with renowned cookbook author Joan Nathan. Now the restaurant is hosting monthly “supper clubs,” including an upcoming “Breakfast for Dinner” meal. Chef/owner Michael Leviton told Newton Patch that he “loves the family style service that it allows us to do.” Lumière will also be continuing its popular prix fixe menu that was initially created in response to Restaurant Week.
Max and Leo’s Artisan Pizza (Newton Corner)- As owner/chef Max Candidus told Patch in an earlier interview, he and his brother always wanted more space for their restaurant. Now that they have the approval of the Board of Aldermen, Max and Leo’s will be expanding into the space next door that was formerly occupied by a paint store. More seating will be available (37 seats total), and there will be more room in the front to wait for take-out orders.
O’Hara’s (Newton Highlands) – The neighborhood watering hole underwent a modest renovation this summer when they replaced the old ceiling and added new TVs at the bar, a new A/C system and a new coat of paint. Now they are going to be expanding into the former Bead and Pearl location next door. Check back with Patch for more details as they develop.
Jake’s Falafel Corner (Newton Centre) – After his popular spot within Sandwich Works closed last month, Jake Shahrooz patiently waited to get the i’s dotted and the t’s crossed on the lease for his new, stand-alone location. As Patch reported earlier this week, that location will be at 740A Beacon Street, the former home of CJ’s Pizza & Deli. Shahrooz will still be serving his innovative falafel sandwiches and Middle Eastern plates, but he will also be adding full dinner menu items at this sit-down location that plans to have a soft opening this Monday September 10.
McDonald’s (Newton Highlands) – This is not your parents’ “Mickey D’s.” The Needham Street location of the famous fast food chain now looks more like a mid-range café. The parking lot was also redone to allow for better traffic flow and access to Needham Street.
Rox Diner (Newtonville)- When they opened last November, owners John Fortin and Paul Louderback intended to have the restaurant seat 61 diners. Various bureaucratic issues initially reduced this number to 38, but now Fortin and Louderback have gotten the okay from the Board of Aldermen to reconfigure the seating as originally conceived. This will be welcome news to the crowds waiting outside for brunch on the weekends!
Christina’s (Newton Highlands)- The status of this upscale but homey Greek restaurant is still unknown. While in April a real estate listing showed that Christna’s was for sale, owner Christina Patsios refuted these claims and told Newton Patch that she wasn’t yet positive she was going to sell. In July, the restaurant posted a sign stating that Christina’s would be closed through mid-August for vacation. However, as of this writing, they have yet to reopen.
Waban Kitchen (Waban) – In October, Jeffrey Fournier of 51 Lincoln is planning to open a new farm-to-table restaurant in the space formerly occupied by Kouzina. Potential menu items are currently being “auditioned” at 51 Lincoln so stop by there to give your input. Chef de cuisine Jakob White will be moving from Fournier’s Newton Highlands restaurant to this new rustic Waban eatery.
Sycamore (Newton Centre) – In the former location of John Dewar & Co. at 755 Beacon Street, Ten Tables chef and co-owner David Punch plans to open a new restaurant as soon as next month. According to the Zagat blog, the new location will be called Sycamore after the street on which Punch lives in Watertown. Zagat blog also reports that the restaurant will serve “seasonally inspired, New American dishes culled from Spanish, French and Italian influences” that will be prepared by Punch and former Craigie on Main sous chef Lydia Reichert.