While everyone is paying attention to the redevelopment of downtown, Worcester – with its addition of seven new restaurants this year – Michael Sobel is on a mission to redevelop another area of the city: Coe’s Pond.
With over twenty years of chef experience, Sobel kicks off 2018 with his first restaurant launch. Sobel, executive chef, and co-owner, of Legacy Bar and Grill opened its doors on Thursday, January 25th, in hopes of giving the residents of the other side of the city a little taste of Worcester’s restaurant hub.
“I grew up in the Tatnuck Square area and there has always been a need for great food and entertainment here,” said Sobel. “When we saw this space on Mill Street vacant, we knew this was the perfect place and time to embark on our own restaurant.”
242 Mill Street is no stranger to change. Coupling the years before the restaurant boom in Worcester with the lack of traffic along Mill Street, 242 Mill Street has been home to a lengthy list of restaurants. Sitting on the edge of Coe’s Pond – another piece of the city’s revitalization plan – Legacy Bar and Grill will cater to the feel of the neighborhood. “We want to be the new place in the neighborhood that everyone can enjoy, whether it is after work or on the weekend,” said Sobel. “I know we need more food places on this side of the city and I hope our launch can bring that together.”
Serving a family-style menu, Legacy Bar and Grill will make the traditional New England favorites with a little Sobel twist. The prime rib – an anticipated new favorite on the block – will be offered on Friday and Saturday nights only, but with cocktails like the Passion Mojito – a Tazo passion tea house infused Rum with St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur, mint and soda – no one will have to wait until Friday to get that weekend feel.
When news broke earlier this year of Worcester’s “restaurant row” getting a chain restaurant, emotions were mixed. But, as of Monday, April 11th, the British have arrived and are aching to prove they want to be part of the city’s fabric. With its opening, Shrewsbury Street, in Worcester, welcomes British Beer Company to the space formerly occupied by The Urban Kitchen and Bar and Coral Seafood.
The space has been completely re-invented to create a comfortable environment for family-friendly dining, private functions (both large and small) and even casual bar dining (as apparent by the focal center bar that is designed with rich architectural details). The physical space is unrecognizable from previous tenants: the kitchen has been moved to the back of the building and windows that previously looked into it have been replaced with private cove, booth seating; the function room which resided on the second floor remains, but now overlooks the main bar area with a balcony that allows the entire restaurant to have an open feeling; the spot previously home to the Coral and Urban bar have been replaced with a smaller dining room which is removed enough from the bar to feel private.
The only part of this restaurant that one could argue makes it a “chain,” is that the menu is shared across its other BBC locations. This, however, does not mean that the freshness, creativity, and flavors are cookie-cutter, as apparent by the Sweet Thai Chili Salmon. Even the drink menu, which has several notable favorites (from both sides of the pond) even include hometown favorites, such as Wormtown beers.
While some may cry foul allowing a “chain” onto Shrewsbury Street, it’s important to remember that any tax paying entity should show signs of growth for the city and when there is so much attention to detail to every aspect of a restaurant, British Beer Company should be example of how a “big company” can compliment the diversity of food “in the neighborhood.”