We're constantly covering all the important new openings in and around Boston, but every now and then it helps to have a refresher course. (And you might need help answering that all-important question: "Where should we eat tonight?") Here's a roundup of the most notable recent openings and some handy links to our more in-depth looks. The restaurants are listed with the newest openings at the top of the slide show — and we'll continue to update this list periodically as additional eateries are unveiled.
A former South Boston foundry houses this massive, multifaceted operation serving wide-ranging New American cuisine in a 350-seat space that includes an annexed cafe with espresso bar, open for breakfast, and a lofty brick dining room with a 100-ft. reclaimed-wood bar and two built-in food trucks offering a separate global street eats–inspired menu. Ascend a catwalk to the rooftop patio, where a repurposed Airstream doles out cocktails and raw-bar bites.
- South Boston
Must-Order: Multiple menus are available at this massive foundry-turned-restaurant, including the main dining room's array of New American and distinct "global street eats" selections from the food trucks that are built into the restaurant. From the latter, try the Korean BBQ spareribs ($6) with scallion, sesame and kimchi.
Insider Tip: Don't miss the roof deck upstairs, where an Airstream doles out raw-bar bites and cocktails.
From the Five Horses Tavern team comes this handsome, racetrack-themed Southie hangout featuring such elevated American pub grub as pizzas, inventive hot dogs and Boston “spuckies,” or submarine sandwiches. The centerpiece of the warm, tavernlike space is a bar topped with hundreds of shiny pennies, pouring 100 whiskeys as well as craft beers from 40 rotating taps.
- South Boston
Must-Order: It's not easy to find deep-dish-style pizzas in Boston, but Worden Hall has 'em — including the margherita ($20) with tomato sauce, basil and mozzarella from Vermont's Maplebrook Farms.
Insider Tip: This is a sibling spot to Five Horses Tavern, and shares its affinity for brown-liquor lists. Hence the bar's librarylike ladder that is used to reach bottles from the 100-variety-plus whiskey selection. (Want a full look around? Head here.)
The ultra-luxe, sophisticated sushi destination O Ya spawns this colorful, flair-filled izakaya with kicky graffiti-covered walls and kitschy retro decor (hello, Hello Kitty) that befits its poolside location in Fenway's rock 'n' roll–inspired Verb Hotel. The casual, moderately priced Japanese tavern-style menu (think deep-fried hot dogs with eel sauce) pairs well with thirst-slaking beverages such as Asian craft beers and quirky frozen cocktails.
Must-Order: This funky izakaya from the team behind high-end sushi palace O Ya bills itself as the first place in America to find keg sake. Try the Bushido and pair it with okonomiyaki ($8) with smoky bacon, shiitake, yam, truffle Kewpie mayo and "Hojoko honkytonky sauce." Want more sake-plate pairings? Here's our full feature.
Insider Tip: The kitschy decor includes a working tabletop arcade console loaded with vintage games — and no quarters are required. So grab a seat, some chopsticks and a joystick too.
The team behind The Gallows have turned the South End space that once housed Hamersley's Bistro into this Pan-Asian gastropub, serving unique shareable plates that cull inspiration from Chinese and Southeast Asian cuisines, plus creative tipples. The digs also stray from convention, with a big brick patio, a birch wood and white brick–lined dining room boasting treelike ceiling sculptures and reptile-print upholstery, and a raw bar facing an open kitchen.
- South End
Must-Order: This Pan-Asian newcomer to the South End inhabits the space that formerly housed Hamersley's Bistro. That late restaurant was famous for its refined roast chicken, but Banyan's style requires something more irreverent. Hence the awesome fried chicken ($27) which is topped with dried lime chimichurri and seasoned with Japanese furikake, and accompanied by a potato salad made with Kewpie mayo.
Insider Tip: Thirsty? Banyan has the first Kirin beer slushie machine in Boston. Drink up.
Spice, seafood and stamps of Afro-Caribbean influence figure into the Lowcountry cuisine, the rustic cooking of the coastal Deep South, at this Fairsted Kitchen sibling in Jamaica Plain, serving dishes like pan-roasted catfish, chicken and dumplings and fried green tomatoes. The welcoming digs suggest an antebellum Carolina manse reimagined for the hipster set, with a pineapple wallpaper–adorned dining room and hopping bar, plus a patio for alfresco dining.
- Southern American
- Jamaica Plain
Must-Order: The Jamaica Plain newbie serves Lowcountry Southern cuisine — and one plate made our picks for the 20 Must-Eat Dishes of Fall. That would be the smoked turkey stew ($9) simmered with okra, tomatoes, field veggies and heat-seeking spices.
Insider Tip: The bar is a cordial-only scene, but you wouldn't notice it from the way that so-dubbed "beverage shaman" Alex Homan gets creative with his cocktails. We're especially partial to the "Jekyll and Cyde" (Amontillado sherry, smoked peach, cider and bitters) and the "Seersucker Fizz" (Pimm’s, apricot, Punt e Mes, lemon and egg white).
The Seaport's Fan Pier scores this swank hot spot for globally inspired cocktails and a flavor-forward menu of Greek and Eastern Mediterranean meze developed by consulting chef and Hellenic cuisine expert Diane Kochilas. The stylish waterfront eatery features an 80-seat patio with its own distinct tiki cocktail offerings, and an interior with a big, three-sided bar, a ceiling of suspended wine crates, a copper chef's table and woods reclaimed from late local legend Anthony's Pier 4.
- Seaport District
Must-Order: There are a lot of super-flavorful meze at this Greek-focused hot spot in the Seaport, but we're especially in love with the piperia gemisti ($10), a roasted red pepper stuffed with tyrokafteri, a creamy feta cheese dip. Delish.
Insider Tip: Perhaps because it comes from the same team behind Theater District nightclub Bijou, it tends to draw a young, pretty crowd of professionals, especially on the outdoor patio with its separate bar and distinctly tiki-focused cocktail menu.
This highly anticipated sibling to Bergamot Inman Square (hence the name) focuses on eclectic small, shareable plates ranging from cavatelli with chicken sausage to N'Awlins BBQ shrimp toast. The handsome interior of dark, distressed wood nods to a French-focused wine program incorporating crates and bottle bottoms in its decor and light fixtures, while two bars, including a marble charcuterie counter facing the open kitchen, complete the appealing package.
Must-Order: The ultra-creative housemade charcuterie, which includes creations like Creole calf-liver mousse with turbinado sugar; whole Kabanos Polish sausage with marinated red onions and spicy brown mustard; and grilled morcilla, Spanish blood sausage, with fried plantain, fried egg and chimichurri.
Insider Tip: Wine director Kai Gagnon offers an impressive program that focuses on the Loire Valley.
Former Neptune Oyster wunderkind Michael Serpa launches his own Back Bay seafooder, offering distinctly Mediterranean entrees, plus a selection of ceviche and bivalves, washed down with carafes from a whites-focused wine list or Ernest Hemingway–inspired cocktails made with small-batch spirits. The cozy, unpretentious space of brick walls and bright art fits only about 30 seats, though an expansive three-season patio is slated to open soon.
- Back Bay
Must-Order: Scallop ceviche treated with a fairly traditional citrus marinade, chile and cilantro; billi bi, a flavorful mussel soup with egg yolk and leeks; and a fantastic flash-seared hamachi with sweet corn salad and whipped avocado.
Insider Tip: It's tough to tell from the main dining room, but there's a small patio in the rear of the restaurant — heated, for four-season dining.
Named for a contingent of Colonial-era patriots and protestors, and run by a motley crew of high-end-restaurant and pop-up vets, this rustic-chic East Cambridge eatery emphasizes "East Coast Revival" cookery, its hand-pottered small plates piled with locally sourced shellfish, veggies and meats. The bar serves grower-produced wines, domestic beers and ciders, and a rum- and brandy-focused cocktail list, while a small cafe annex offers coffee and light bites starting at 8 AM.
Must-Order: The Cambridge newcomer turns the Yankee vibe up to 11 with this lobster braised with hickory nuts and mead. It's one of 7 Different Ways to Eat Lobster right now.
Insider Tip: Even the dinnerware is made with dedicated care. Each piece was handcrafted by one of Loyal Nine's owners.
Pints runneth over thanks to the 30 craft drafts on tap at this Charlestown destination for suds, cider, cocktails and wood-fired cookery, including elevated takes on rustic-style American pizzas and small plates, all brushed by live fire. It's all housed in simple, stripped-down digs full of granite, exposed brick and rough-hewn woods, with a roll-up garage door leading to a 25-seat outdoor patio.
Must-Order: The wood-fired pizzas constitute about half the menu, but don't miss some stellar small plates like the oven-roasted meatballs ($12).
Insider Tip: Keep an eye out for the cool wall panels made of wine corks that the owners hand-affixed. They were collected from loads of industry friends, each one a reminder of nights imbibing at spots like Neptune Oyster, Toro and more.