Jon Taffer in Town to Visit His Restaurant, Sees Area as Strong Market

Charlie BreitroseJon Taffer meets patrons at Taffer’s Tavern in Watertown. TV host turned restaurateur Jon Taffer recently stopped by the eatery in Watertown that bears his name: Taffer’s Tavern. Just five months after opening, the restaurant in Arsenal Yards has been doing well, as is the Boston area, he said. The host of Paramount Network’s Bar Rescue has fond memories of the Boston area, having run a nightclub and bar convention from an office in Newton. “I have always loved this city.

Arsenal Yards Welcoming More Than a Dozen Food, Fitness & Beauty Offerings

Arsenal Yards, the thriving new neighborhood in Watertown’s historic East End from Boylston Properties and Wilder, is thrilled to kick off 2023 by welcoming several highly-anticipated dining, shopping, and fitness venues opening over the coming months, beginning this winter and spring. Adding to the neighborhood’s already bursting roster of popular restaurants, retailers, fitness, service, and entertainment offerings, the exciting openings coming soon include service offerings like Bond Vet, Arsenal Modern Dentistry, GNC, and KinderCare, beauty and wellness venues James Joseph Salon, Restore Hyper Wellness, Prenuvo, and Skin Laundry, fitness studios F45 Training, Rumble, and [solidcore], and dining options TEN ONE TEA HOUSE, Chip City, and Butterbird. “After a successful year of numerous openings, bustling community events, and significant growth milestones, we could not be more thrilled to kick off 2023 strong with even more exciting new additions to the neighborhood,” said Tom Wilder, principal of Wilder. “These new openings at Arsenal Yards expand upon the vibrancy and diversity that make our community so special – a place where our visitors, workers, and residents can experience what they enjoy most. We look forward to giving these new tenants the warmest of welcomes and continue to celebrate what truly makes Arsenal Yards greater Boston’s most vibrant new neighborhood.”

A sampling of upcoming openings at Arsenal Yards this winter and spring includes:

Bond Vet Opens With 365-Day Urgent Care for Pets 

Bond Vet, the female-led primary and urgent veterinary care service, recently opened its fifth Boston-area location at Arsenal Yards, offering full-service treatment for pets in a friendly and compassionate setting.

Efforts to Start Local Food Co-op Reaches Key Milestone

The Charles River Food Co-op surpassed the 500 member mark recently, and continues to work toward opening somewhere in or around Watertown. Progress has been encouraging for Nick Quaranto, president of the Co-op’s board of directors. “I haven’t seen other co-ops get to 500 as fast as we have, so I think we are really onto something,” Quaranto said. “People really understand what we are tying to do, which is great. but we are going to need more.”

Kura Sushi Offering Tetris Inspired Sushi Boxes & Prizes

The following announcement was provided by Kura Sushi:

Kura Sushi USA, Inc., a leading technology-enabled Japanese restaurant concept serving authentic Japanese cuisine through an engaging revolving sushi service model, is thrilled to announce its newest Bikkura Pon collaboration with one of the most popular electronic games of all time, Tetris®. Joining forces once again with the Tetris brand after a highly successful collaboration in late 2021, The Tetris Company and Kura Sushi USA are proud to unveil the reimagined “Tetris™ x Kura Sushi Bikkura Pon Series 2 Collaboration” featuring all new prizes and brightly colored Tetris-inspired sushi boxes. Available exclusively at Kura Revolving Sushi Bar U.S. restaurants, including at Arsenal Yards in Watertown, through December 31, 2022, the Tetris x Kura Sushi Bikkura Pon prize collection includes a lanyard, temporary tattoos and can badges. The unique collectibles are dispensed from the Bikkura Pon Prize System, an integral part of Kura Sushi USA’s interactive and tech-driven dining experience. The system is comprised of a prize machine, touch panel and plate disposal slot located at every table in the restaurant.

LETTER: Missing Russo’s, Striving to Create Food Co-op

It’s been one year since Russo’s announced they were closing. Over 365 days have passed with our community lacking one of Boston Metro West’s best sources for produce, baked goods, and plants. As I stood in the checkout line on their last day — laden with too much cheese and veggies — my mind raced, thinking of the 200 people who would be without jobs soon, wondering why Watertown needed yet another lab facility for a biotech company instead of a market. My kids would no longer be able to prowl through the Christmas trees stacked up outside each December. My wife would need to find a replacement for the especially spicy maror (horseradish) that would make us tear up at Passover.

Longtime Owner of Meat Spot Retiring, Passing on Business

Charle BreitroseDick Ucuz, who has owned The Meat Spot for 32 years, will be retiring soon. He has sold the business and the new owners will keep the deli and butcher shop going. For more that three decades, Dick Ucuz has served up sandwiches, cut fresh meat, and provided other edible delights from The Meat Spot. This week is one of his last at the business that has been in Watertown Square for more than a century. Fans of The Meat Spot can be comforted that the business has been sold to new owners who will continue to serve the same favorites.

Watertown Restaurant Serving Special Menu Items for Indigenous Food Week

The following information was provided by the Pigsgusset Initiative:

On Monday, Oct 10, 2022, Indigenous Peoples Day will be celebrated for the first time in Watertown with speakers, theatrical performances, cultural presentations, Indigenous artisans and musicians plus information tables. The celebration will take place at First Parish of Watertown located at 35 Church St. from 2-5 p.m. and is supported by a generous grant from the Watertown Community Foundation to Pigsgusset Initiative, a working group of Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice, and the Environment. As part of Indigenous Peoples Day, Pigsgusset Initiative is partnering with Branch Line restaurant in Watertown where Chef Ivan Conill is collaborating with award-winning Wampanoag Chef Sherry Pocknett around the preparation of Wampanoag dishes that will be featured on Branch Line’s menu from Friday, Sept. 30 until Monday, Oct.

Apple Pie Contest Returns to Faire on the Square After Hiatus

The following information was provided by the Faire on the Square organizers:

The Faire on the Square was founded by local Watertown resident Mike Donham back in 1999. A committee of about 12 volunteers was formed, one member of who was Joyce Munger. It was her idea to include an apple pie contest, she handled all aspects of the contest, including being the MC. The contest grew over the years, it was very successful with locals trying to outdo each other for bragging rights, not to mention prizes. At the first wrap-up meeting, it was discussed whether another type of pie, such as pumpkin should be included but that was met with a clear NO!