Renowned Chef Mario Batali opens a new restaurant on Fan Pier.
Babbo Pizzeria e Enoteca Opens on Fan Pier
Winter Caprese salad at Babbo Pizzeria e Enoteca.
Twenty-five restaurants, three Italian markets, 10 cookbooks—Mario Batali is a culinary force. His empire includes New York City’s Eataly and Los Angeles’s Osteria Mozza, and now Batali has finally arrived in Boston, opening Babbo Pizzeria e Enoteca on Fan Pier. Modeled after his acclaimed Otto restaurants in New York and Las Vegas, the new restaurant—whose design pays homage to Boston’s old warehouses—has three Carrera marble bars: a traditional wine and spirits bar, an antipasto bar for quick bites, and a bar offering Batali’s mouthwatering pizzas. Expect flavor-rich dishes like spaghetti alla carbonara and pizzas such as the vongole, topped with fresh garlicky clams, and the self-explanatory potato, anchovy, and ricotta. 11 Fan Pier Blvd., 617-421-4466
Boston Wine Festival Celebrates 25th Anniversary
There is no better cure for the late-winter blues than to pair them with award-winning reds and whites. The Boston Wine Festival, at the Boston Harbor Hotel, is celebrating 26 years of showcasing wines from the best vineyards around the globe through lavish dinners and seminars. The hotel’s chef, Daniel Bruce, founded the festival, and each year he creates exquisite, one-of-a-kind wine dinners. Featured events this year include the Rising Stars dinner on February 27, presenting the best new winemakers from California, and the Mediterranean Reception on March 6, highlighting wines from Spain, the South of France, and Italy. Tickets for the various events can be purchased online. March 6–27. 70 Rowes Wharf, 888-660-9463
A Preview of Strip by Strega
Nick Varano’s new restaurant, Strip by Strega, opening this spring at the Park Plaza Hotel, merges the lush atmosphere of Strega Waterfront with the steak-and-chops focus of Strega Prime. At the sure-to-be-sexy eatery, Executive Chef Farouk Bazoune will offer classic fare like steak au poivre and juicy rib eye, as well as refined dishes such as roasted beet salad with honey-whipped ricotta, pistachios, and a micro marigold garnish (PICTURED). 50 Park Plaza
The Perfect Drink: Bully Boy Distiller's Hub Punch
Take a trip back to pre-Prohibition Boston with a glass of Bully Boy Distiller’s Hub Punch, a 70-proof spirit that was once the toast of the town. Try it in the 4 Leaf Clover cocktail at The Hawthorne. 500A Commonwealth Ave., 617-532-9150
Tasting Counter's Special Menu Offerings
Satisfy your eyes as well as your appetite at Tasting Counter. Chef Peter Ungár, who honed his craft at Le Céladon in Paris and Aujourd’hui in Boston, is offering a three-course tasting menu for lunch and a nine-course tasting menu for dinner, both of which will change frequently and feature dishes like rice smoked ocean trout with lime, confit, and dashi rice crisp (PICTURED). Guests will also be able to observe the entire operation, as the 20-seat dining area overlooks an open kitchen. Tickets are required and can be purchased online here. 14 Tyler St., Somerville
PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF BOSTON HARBOR HOTEL (BRUCE); THE VARANO GROUP (STREGA); BY KELLY CAMPBELL (BABBO)