Not that the Hub needs to burnish its world-class culinary reputation, but two recent openings—or one debut, and one re-opening, to be precise—recently boosted the city’s scene by introducing chefs with international reputations to Boston. As America’s most Irish locale, perhaps it’s no surprise that lauded, County Donegal-born executive chef/co-owner Aidan McGee (pictured) recently unveiled The Dubliner in Downtown Boston, right across from City Hall Plaza. Authentically Irish with a modern edge, this much-anticipated eatery features familiar dishes like fish and chips, shepherd’s pie and Irish stew as well as such unexpected-yet-welcome dishes as Maine lobster on Irish soda bread, Dublin Bay prawns tempura, herb-crusted cod and the fried chicken BLT on a brioche bun. Expect perfectly poured pints of Guinness as well, along with—at a future date—live music, a seeming nod to the previous tenant, the late, lamented Kinsale.
Over on the waterfront, meanwhile, two chefs imported from sunny Italy are on hand to feed hungry diners at the newly refurbished Pasta Beach. This acclaimed Rowes Wharf establishment, which shuttered in 2019 due to a fire, has happily been resurrected to once again serve handmade pasta dishes a well as introduce pinsa—an airy, Roman-style pizza—to Beantown. Redecorated inside and out to reflect a complementary mix of the best of vintage and contemporary vibes, Pasta Beach also boasts al fresco spaces on two sides, all the better for enjoying the gorgeous view of Boston Harbor while sipping Italian beer, wine and refreshing cocktails from the expansive, zinc-topped bar.