Restaurant News & Notes
Chef Paul Wahlberg's new restaurant, Alma Nove, , is slated to open mid- to late-April at the Hingham Shipyard on Route 3A. Rumors about its demise were, in fact, only a change of plans: a first location at the shipyard fell through and a second was found. Which may end up being a good thing since the new location sounds great -- right on the water, behind the new Patriot Cinemas complex.
The building, which has an octagonal cupola on top, will have 119 seats inside and 20-25 on the waterfront patio. Building permits for fitting out the interior were filed last week, so Wahlberg's hoping that work can begin sometime late this month or early February.
The Alma in Alma Nove is Wahlberg's mother's name, and Nove the Italian word for the number of children she had: nine. Three were girls and six were boys – including Paul's movie star brother, Mark.
When I asked Paul if he minded people bringing up his famous brother (which happened frequently when their resemblance was easy to spot in Bridgeman's open kitchen, where Paul was the chef for nearly eight years) he answered immediately:
"No. I couldn't be prouder," he said, adding that he's worked as Mark's personal chef on three movies over the years, including "The Lovely Bones," which opened this month.
Alma Nove is being designed by Boston-based designer Stephen Souza and will have a large bar, stonework, millwork, a wood-fired oven, and a regular, not open, kitchen. Wahlberg describes the restaurant as Italian with Mediterranean influences – Greek, Spanish, Portuguese, French.
Among the other restaurants rumored to be opening at the Shipyard are Boston Beer Works, Pizzapalooza (signs are up, but there's no activity inside), and Panera. No info on any of them yet.
Jay Cole's new pizza place, Riva Pizzeria in Scituate's Gannett Corner, is up and running. I haven't been yet, but I'm looking forward to it. According to Cole, his restaurant (Riva's on Front Street) and the new pizzeria feed each other, so to speak.
Some of the restaurant's signature dishes have been turned into pizzas (like the braised short ribs with parmesan and herb scented goat cheese pizza) and the pizzeria makes rolls that are served at the restaurant. The rolls are also available for purchase by the general public.
With Riva's former Chef Brett Williams having moved to Bia Bistro in Cohasset in the fall, Brian Lauzon has taken over as Riva's head chef after three years as its sous chef. The menu of the pizzeria, which also offers salads and slices, can be found at www.rivarestaurant.net
A family run restaurant should be opening in the Walsh Building in Scituate Harbor sometime this spring. Oro is the brainchild of Scituate High School graduate Robin King. After earning a degree at New Hampshire College Culinary Institute and working in restaurants and/or cheffing in Colorado, California, and Boston, King has come home to open his first place. King's father, Robert, will manage front of house while King cooks.
And, lastly: Restaurants come and restaurants go, but few come and go as quickly as Littlenecks Bar & Grill in Weymouth. The 200-seat restaurant opened in October and closed on New Years' eve after the Board of Selectmen failed to renew its food and liquor licenses due to unanswered questions about its ownership and investor status. I haven't been able to get much information on what happened, but even the website has disappeared (they often linger in cyberspacelessness for ages.)
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