Fields West, a laid-back restaurant and bar, opens in Allston

Restaurants

The neighborhood regains a previously shuttered social space with an artistic flair.

Beef sliders at Fields West.
Beef sliders at Fields West. Handout

Fields West, a restaurant, bar, and arts space opening Aug. 5 in Allston, takes its name from a painting: “Fields West of Boston” by Cambridge-based artist Washington Allston, which he painted when the neighborhood was still bucolic farmland. (It is widely thought that the painter, who died in 1843, is the neighborhood’s namesake.)

But it’s Allston’s more recent urban history of music clubs, casual eateries, and bar life that informs Field West’s vibe.

“It is a bar, a restaurant, an art gallery, and a social space,” general manager Dennis Dobbins told Boston.com. “It’s a community space.”

The building, which dates to 1940, most recently housed Glenville Stops, a popular craft beer-centric bar, which closed in 2021. The newly revamped interior pairs reclaimed brick walls with an original timbered ceiling and Brazilian cherry hardwood flooring through a “railroad” style layout, which includes the 90-seat main restaurant plus bar space, an open kitchen, and a smaller room, which is still part of the restaurant.

“I heard it used to be a convenience store and was added to the restaurant at some point,” Dobbs said. “We will have some board games for people who want to relax and play a game after dinner, or with drinks.”

Then there is the live events room. For the opening, getting the visual art side going was a priority.

“We’ve concentrated on building out the art gallery with local artists. The art is for sale too,” he said of the collection, which is curated by Edward Boches, a Boston-based documentarian and street photographer. “We’ll have comedy nights and private events in the performance room. We’ll have music at some point; that is to come.”

Dobbs, who has lived in Allston since 2008 and worked at local spots like Deep Ellum and Lone Star Taco Bar, has worked as a talent booker, and is a musician, so he is also well versed in the live performances, too.

Newly-hired chef Matt Hartung, a Pittsburgh native, is launching with a menu of small, shareable plates like sliders, both meat and vegetarian, beer-battered cauliflower nuggets with a spicy samba aioli, and cacio e pepe tater tots, and a trio of entrees.

“The vegetarian soba noodles is really good,” said Dobbs. “It’s warming and healthy.”

Fried Calamari at Fields West.
Fried calamari at Fields West. – Handout

Beers are mostly from smaller local breweries, with 90% of those from New England; wines focus on lesser known regions, such as Oregon. Fields West also offers several non-alcoholic wine and beer options, and fresh fruit mocktails like a strawberry mojito, a raspberry-rosemary lime rickey, and a blueberry sangria — the latter made with non-alcoholic wines.

One thing there won’t be right now is spirits. “We hope to add cordials soon,” Dobbs said.

As much as he is excited to have doors open, so, too, are locals: “The whole community seems eager to see what we’re doing,” he said. “People knock on the door and on the window and want a look.

As far as its namesake painting, Dobbs said no one has seen it in decades, if not centuries.

“It’s this lost work of art,” he said. “Fields West of Boston could be sitting in someone’s attic. We just don’t know.”

Fields West, located at 87 Glenville Ave., Allston, is open Thurs. to Sun. from 5 p.m.to 1 a.m.

Originally posted 2023-07-31 12:09:59.


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