NEWS DISHES: Makalu offers beer, wine

restaurant logorestaurant logoDishing up some Arlington restaurant-related news morsels: 

Customers who dine at Arlington’s Makalu restaurant, 352A Mass. Ave., can now enjoy beer and wine with their Nepali and Indian cuisine, as unanimously approved by the Select Board on Aug. 22.

Owner Roshan Dangol said, “We bought a place that had a beer-and-wine license, and we want the same thing for our customers.”

All employees will be trained in the serving of beer and wine, added Dangol.

Board Chair Len Diggins, a customer, said, “The food is really good.” Sabzi, a Persian restaurant, was previously at the site.

 Butternut Bakehouse ‘secret’ revealed

Aug. 17: Globe food writer Kara Baskin, who lives in Arlington, shares a secret — about the warm aromas of Butternut Bakehouse, at 787 Mass. Ave.

Owner Suzana Samad, a native of Malaysia, is a former baker for No. 9 Park, Rialto and UpStairs on the Square. She sells morning buns, honey-glazed biscuits, croissants and galettes with no frills. She aims to open a second shop soon in Belmont.

Read more here >>

Summer Sushi advances

May 2022: Hot weather is on the way, and we’ll soon have a new venue to enjoy refreshing Japanese food—sushi, sashimi, maki, salads, teriyaki specialties and more.

Summer Sushi, 474 Mass. Ave., where USushi used to be, will serve lunch and dinner. Hours are Monday through Thursday and Sunday noon to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday noon to 10 p.m. The restaurant has seating for 18 patrons.

“It’s nice to see a new retailer going into that block; it’s been a difficult block for Arlington,” said board member Steve DeCourcey.

Board member John Hurd said, “This restaurant is a block from my office, and I love sushi. I look forward to the grand opening.”

Sabzi in East Arlington closes

Feb. 14: Sabzi, the Mass. Ave. restaurant in East Arlington featuring Persian fare, has shut down.

Marc Hurwitz, who published Boston Restaurant Talk), reported the closing. A Facebook post from Sabzi said, “The size of our little restaurant just could not adequately sustain itself given the many pandemic hurdles and the ongoing staffing shortages. It has been a true privilege to serve this community. We have made many good friends and will forever treasure this experience.”

Sabzi first opened a bit more than 10 years ago, taking over the space that had been home to Prose. The restaurant served a variety of kababs along with yogurt and cucumber dip, noodle soup, sauteed eggplant and baklava.

Thai Moon, closed by fire, seeks new location

Jan. 23: Thai Moon, closed by fire last April, does not plan to reopen at 663 Mass. Ave. after reporting it had reached no agreement with its landlord.

The Thai restaurant, which sustained an estimated $500,000 in damage and drew more than $20,000 in donations, announced in a Facebook post the failure to reach agreement, YourArlington partner Patch reported.

After spending seven months developing a construction plan and applying for a permit, ownership said Jan. 20 that negotiations broke down and that it was seeking a new location in Arlington.

Toraya reopens where Retro Burger was before 

Jan. 10:Toraya, a popular sushi spot across from Arlington High that closed in 2020, has reopened just down Mass. Ave., YourArlington Patch has reported.

Toraya moved into the former Retro Burger location after the latter closed in late 2020. Retro Burger owner Bill Maund said at the time he “passed papers” to the owners of Toraya, which lost its lease earlier that year when its landlord demolished the building for a mixed-use structure, now under construction.

Toraya is now open, bringing back its sushi and other Japanese staples, Boston Restaurant Talk reported. Its new address is 795 Mass. Ave.

Twyrl closing; owners cite supply-chain issue

Nov. 23, 2021: Twyrl in Broadway Plaza, known for its pasta dishes, is closely permanently Dec. 16.

Owners Anka and Chris write on the restaurant’s website: “We have struggled with this prospect for many months and have decided not to renew our lease.”

Their statement cites a “multitude of factors … none more challenging than the breakdown of the supply chain. This has caused the cost of goods and services to soar, making the prospect of committing to a long-term lease far too great a risk in the face of future economic uncertainty and instability.”

Twyrl, at 315 Broadway, first opened in the summer of 2017, after Select Board license approval, offering customizable pasta dishes in which customers choose their types of pasta, sauce, and toppings, while also serving salads, meatballs, spinach and artichoke dip and cheesecake, Boston Restaurant Talk reported.

Scutra is for sale

Posted Sept. 17: Scutra — the small, sophisticated restaurant tucked between an insurance company, a liquor store and the bikeway — is for sale.

The business, not the building, which opened in 2002, is offered at $249,999.

A Multiple Listing Service entry reports the reason for the sale is retirement. Scutra is owned and currently operating by Cesidia Baugniet and Chef Didier Baugniet, who has more than 35 years’ experience.

Contact Steve Antonucci, with RE/MAX in Newton at Steve at or 617-908-7712.

Del’s is open in Brattle Square 

Posted Aug. 24: Del’s Lemonade was expected to open in the first week in July in Arlington’s Brattle Square, but window installation has delayed that — until Tuesday, Aug. 24.

Paul Piatelli, president of Del’s Lemonade Boston, told YourArlington on July 7 about the delay. He has updated that, with the opening expected Aug. 24, and has occurred. The thirst-quenching drink made famous in Rhode Island is a take-out-only location. 

The business aimed to join others at Mass. Ave. and Brattle Street in mid-June, but construction and permitting delays push back the opening. 

Goodbye to NYAJ Arlington

Posted March 31: “It’s said that all things come to an end, and unfortunately that holds true for our Arlington restaurant, which we are sad to announce has closed,” Peter D’Amelio, chairman and CEO of Not Your Average Joe’s, said in an email Tuesday, April 20.

“We have truly enjoyed being part of the fabric of the Arlington Community, and we will miss all the great moments and friendships we’ve shared for years. And while this chapter may have come to a close, we invite you to join us at our Watertown location, where you can expect the same delicious dishes and warm hospitality you’ve come to know and love.”

That location is 55 Main St.

The news about the closing was reported last weekend on the Arlington email list by a former employee.

Asian fusion, pizza to share ex-Great Wok

Posted March 29: The former Great Wok space in Arlington Heights plans to be the site for shared restaurants — Ginger Exchange, an Asian-fusion restaurant with locations in Boston and Watertown — and Master Pies Artisan Pizza.

YourArlington partner Patch reported the plan for 1181 Mass. Ave., citing the original source, Boston Restaurant Talk. Signs for both restaurants are currently hanging in the storefront.

Mediterranean restaurant coming to East Arlington

Posted March 11: As the pandemic reaches its one-year anniversary, and dining patrons are still encouraged to order take-out, Arlington will soon have an additional option.

Fattoush Restaurant, a take-out-only establishment, will offer Mediterranean and vegan-style food. Catering services are also available at 142 Mass. Ave., East Arlington. Fattoush will be open daily, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The license application includes an expected menu >>

Owner Karam T. Touma, who received license approval from the Select Board on Monday, March 8, was an assistant chef at Bô Café, Norwell. He aims to open in the spring.

Common Ground seeks new tenant

Posted Dec. 24: For Common Ground Bar and Grill, it appears to be the end of the line. The Broadway Plaza pub has a “for lease” sign out front, Boston Restaurant Talk reported, and a source told the blog that it would not be reopening.

Common Ground closed during the initial round of pandemic restrictions, and nothing has been posted on its Facebook group since March. The restaurant is also listed as “permanently closed” on Google.

Common Ground owner Bob O’Guin Jr. died in April 2019, and the original Allston location closed later that year. The Arlington restaurant, which opened in 2013, was active into last spring, Patch reported.

Kendall Square Za ‘pausing’; town location remains open

Posted Dec. 17: The owner of Za in East Arlington is directing specialty-pizza customers here after deciding to close temporarily its Cambridge restaurant.

In a Facebook post from Steve Kurland of Za, Marc Hurwitz of Boston Restaurant Talk reported the “pause” at the Kendall Square location. Its final day is Dec. 23.

Kurland, also behind Evoo in Kendall Square, thanks the city and the Kendall Square Association and Cambridge Local First. He wrote: “Please consider using our Arlington location for takeout and delivery and, if you are looking for ways to help us or other restaurants, please continue to patronize all of us in any way you can and to back programs that will aid in small business recovery.”

The town location is 138 Mass. Ave. 

Town’s take-out choices touted

Posted Dec. 14: Didn’t many of us long know that Arlington’s “take-out options are as great as the scenic views”?

Now restaurant-obsessed Marc Hurwitz has let a wider public know.

In his Dec. 11 Eat New England column at NECN, Hurwitz writes: “If takeout is what you opt to do and you find a decent enough day to sit outside, one of the best communities in the Greater Boston area to do both is Arlington.”

Check out the places he chooses to highlight >>

Toraya to head to Retro Burger site

 Posted Oct. 30: The Japanese restaurant Toraya, formerly at 890 Mass. Ave., plans to move up the street, to 795 Mass. Ave.

Bill Maund, owner of Retro Burger, announced on the Arlington List Facebook group on Friday, Oct. 30, the sale and closing of his restaurant and an agreement with the Muraki Corp.

The 20-seat restaurant has been at 795 since May 2013. Toraya, which opened in 1999, closed earlier this year after it lost its lease to make way for a mixed-use project across from Arlington High School.

Japanese grocery-deli heading to Heights

Posted Oct. 21: Maruichi Japanese Food & Deli, which has locations in Brookline, Connecticut and New York, plans to open in the former Prime butcher shop at 1398 Mass. Ave.

Ali Carter, town economic-development coordinator, confirmed that news with the landlord . The shop’s Facebook site says the opening may be in December or January. The store sells Japanese meats, bento boxes, ramen, sushi, bubble tea and more, according to Boston Restaurant Talk, which first reported the news.

Prime, Your Trusted Butcher, closed in January after opening in October 2014.

La Hacienda Pizza sold at Sons of Italy

Posted Sept. 22: In 2016, La Hacienda, an old-school Somerville dining and drinking spot that was known for its pizza, closed for good. Marc Hurwitz at Boston Restaurant Talk reports that its pizza lives on in Arlington.

According to the Friends and fans of La Hacienda Restaurant Facebook group page, La Hacienda’s pizza is being sold at the Sons of Italy lodge on Prentiss Road, available to go Fridays from 4 to 8 p.m. Louis DiCecca, who had been co-owner of the Somerville restaurant and bar, says all may buy the pizza at the Arlington chapter of the century-old fraternal organization.

Last Tango in town was June 28

Updated June 23: After 18 years, Tango has announced on its Facebook site that Sunday, June 28, will be its last day in business.

“To our friends, customers, and those who have become like family, please know that we have cherished every birthday, anniversary, wedding, and all those special occasions you chose to spend with us. From the many batches of Chimichurri, to the double kisses on the cheek from Armando, to the cocktails poured by Gabriel, we have enjoyed every moment, and it has been our true honor to have served you.

“These last few months have been difficult in so many ways. But our hearts were filled by the outpouring of support from our customers, and the dedication and perseverance of our staff.

“When my parents, Ricardo and Nancy Mermet, started this business they never could have dreamed of what it would become. This place became their identity, and 10 years ago when I came on board it became my identity too. My family and I couldn’t be more proud of what my father built here, and I know its spirit will live on long after we close our doors. So while we say goodbye for now, I hope one day we might be able to bring it all to life again.

“Until then, I hope you think of us every time you pop open a bottle of Malbec, cut into a juicy steak, or see that distinctive dance… the Tango.”

E. Arlington Deli changes hands, not menu

Updated May 20: Anthony’s East Side Deli has been sold, and the Italian menu is remaining the same.

Boston Restaurant Talk reported the sale, quoting a Facebook post in which owner Anthony Masci says: “After 7 years of serving the community it’s time that I retire and enjoy my family ….

“The new owner, Sonny, is glad to take over and serve you with the same service.”

On April 27, the Select Board approved, 4-0, a food-vendor license for applicant Sarbjit Saini, who said he had businesses in Belmont and Lexington. They served Indian food, but Masci wrote on Facebook May 19 that the menu will remain the same.

Anthony’s East Side Deli, 159 Mass. Ave., opened in 2013, with the spot offering soups, salads, sandwiches, pizza, pasta and offerings for large groups, parties, functions, and events.

Toraya closes as 22-apartment project planned for block

Posted May 3: A two-decade favorite for sushi has closed because it lost its lease, though it hopes to reopen in another space, Boston Restaurant Talk reports. 

“Our landlord has let us know that they are planning to demolish the building,” Toraya’s website says. “We didn’t want to close,” but were told its lease would end April 30. The note says Toraya plans to open in a new location.

Toraya opened in 1999, offering a mix of sushi and Japanese entrees, at 890 Mass. Ave., across from Arlington High School.

The closing comes as the town Redevelopment Board has scheduled a hearing for Monday, May 18, to consider a plan for 22 apartments in a proposed mix-use building to occupy the block at 882-892 Mass. Ave.  Also closing at the end of May is Thana Thai Kitchen, which opened in 2015, taking over the space where Lady Siam had been.

In addition to Toraya, demolishing that block means displacing the restaurant Thana Thai and ACMi’s Studio B, a cable-TV studio used by AHS students.

Rangla Punjab in Center opens

Updated Feb. 15:  The closed Singh Saab in the Center is reopening as Rangla Punjab.

The 444 Mass. Ave. Indian restaurant was to be named Mini Punjab more than 18 months ago, but the owner of the long-established Punjab, at 485 Mass. Ave. expressed concern at in a 2018 letter to the Select Board, a discussion that continued in December about the similarity of the names. Despite the concern, the owners of 444 Mass. Ave. retained Punjab in its name.

Rangla Punjab received its food and alcohol licenses Wednesday, Feb. 12, the Select Board’s office said, and was open Feb. 15. See photos on Facebook >>

Singh Saab first opened in Arlington Center in the summer of 2017, replacing another restaurant with “Punjab” in its name, Punjabi Tadka.

Shanghai Village reopens as Taipei-Tokyo; menu added

Posted Oct. 11: An owner of an Arlington Center restaurant damaged in a in May 2018 appeared before the Select Board on Aug. 12, seeking to reopen as Taipei-Tokyo, according to its application.

A license was granted that night, but owner Andy Lian was mum about when it would open. As of Thursday, Oct. 10, it was, YourArlington confirmed.

The menu is now listed on its website. The number to call is 781-646-6897.  Lian was also the owner of Shanghai Village, which opened in 1982.

On Aug. 19 a resident posted a photo on Facebook showing the new name. 

Arlington Economic Development Coordinator Ali Carter confirmed Aug. 7 that Shanghai Village is expected to reopen.

The Mass. Ave. restaurant was damaged in a two-alarm fire in May 2018.

Opening for Home Taste in Heights

Posted August 2018: A Chinese restaurant in Watertown is expanding to Arlington, moving into the space where La Posada, a Mexican dining spot had been until late last year, Boston Restaurant Talk is reporting.

Boston Globe, Aug. 16: Review of new business

Marc Hurwitz’s blog reports that the new location of Home Taste, at 1312 Mass. Ave., is expected to open Wednesday, Aug. 8. Earlier, he posted a photo of a sign on its door saying, “Coming soon! Open 8/01/18.”

Based on the menu at the location on Mt. Auburn Street in Watertown Square, which opened in September 2015, expect to see hand-pulled noodles, handmade dumplings, Chinese “burgers,” mala pots and spicy Szechuan dishes.

La Posada closed last December after it was in business for a bit less than eight years.

The sources for these items are varied.

Have a tip about Arlington restaurants? Let us know

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These news announcements were updated Saturday, Sept, 3, 2022. .