9 New Dining Hot Spots

New and noteworthy South Shore restaurants to try right now.

By Kellie Speed

Photography by Jack Foley, Kjeld Mahoney and Ed Nute

From an oceanfront steakhouse to a modern Chinese cafe, here’s a look inside 9 local restaurants that are perfect destinations for warming up with a delicious meal.

Legal Sea Foods


Legal Sea Foods Restaurant Group was sold to PPX Hospitality Group a few years ago. At the helm of the Hingham kitchen is Chef Francis Santos. Chef Shane Queiros also oversees the Legal Sea Foods Derby Street Shops location for PPX Hospitality Brands.

96 Derby St., Hingham


The stylish restaurant features the brand’s signature dishes (think creamy New England clam chowder and baked lobster mac and cheese) along with flavorful dishes like beet roasted salmon, Mediterranean swordfish, and Snake River Farms American Wagyu Bavette. New introductions include a sushi and sake program, caviar and bubbles experience, and “sea-cuterie” boards. Pair your meal with a glass of their signature red sangria, or a creative cocktail, like the Kentucky Calypso.


Anchored at the Derby Street Shops in Hingham, at the former space that housed Legal C Bar, the reinvented restaurant now boasts a blue interior with enormous fish murals spanning the dining room walls. Seafoam green booths and bright blue banquettes offer a nautical flair.



When Chef Laurence Louie’s mother decided to close her North Quincy bakery, Contempo, after more than 20 years of operation, Louie and his wife, Rary Ratsifahave, decided to move home from London to take over the family business and transform it into a modern Hong Kong café. Since opening its doors in August of 2022, Rubato has been dubbed one of Bon Appetit magazine’s “24 Best New Restaurants of 2023” and customers come from miles around to enjoy the mouthwatering cuisine.

412 Hancock St., Quincy


The menu is inspired by traditional Hong Kong and Cantonese comfort food, presented with a modern twist. Open for breakfast and lunch, signature dishes include slow-cooked savory rice porridge congee, flavorful fried chicken bolo bao (the freshly baked rolls are soft and buttery inside and delightfully sweet and crunchy on top) and an indulgent lava egg yolk French toast. Pair your meal with lemon iced tea, cold brew or Yuen Yeung (a creamy coffee milk tea).


With just nine highly sought after seats at a windowside bar facing the street, this cozy 500-square-foot restaurant focuses on counter service. Customers can peruse a giant wall-sized menu and check out an assortment of custom-designed Rubato apparel before dining in or taking their meals to-go.


Photos by Jack Foley

Cloud Asian Fusion & Bar


Owners, friends and “travel buddies” Jeffrey Huang, Jacky Mei, Judy Mei, and Peter Chan opened Cloud Asian Fusion & Bar in June. Tucked in a corner of Quincy’s President Plaza, this hip eatery serves up elevated and unexpected dishes prepared by Executive Chef Jacky Mei.


217 Quincy Ave., Quincy


Signature dishes include mango shrimp, lobster fried rice, pan-fried gyozas and truffle tater tots. Exciting dish presentations are designed to entertain diners and attract social media snapshots. Case in point, a cocktail called The Influencer offers a creative take on a classic margarita and is served inside a miniature treasure chest that emits a dramatic cloud of dry ice fog when opened.


The restaurant's industrial-chic decor features concrete walls and exposed rebar, accented by neon lights and a faux bank vault door that indicates to visitors that they are about to enter somewhere special. At the back of the restaurant there is a dynamic dining nook that features decorative sculptural decor adorned with mosses and tiny bonsai trees.


Photos by Jack Foley

Early Bird Breakfast & Lunch Restaurant

Early Bird Restaurant

Early Bird chef/owner Stephen Coe always has something exciting up his sleeve. Winner of the Food Network’s “Chopped: Beat Bobby Flay,” he works as a private chef and is the owner of the Lobsta Love food truck. Most recently Coe took over the reins at a local breakfast and lunch spot in Kingston and put a creative culinary spin on the menu. Coe was excited to find a spot that would allow him to have space to operate his catering business and food trucks all under one roof.


287 Main St., Kingston


Early Bird's menu features seasonal specialties like duck confit hash, Chef Coe's signature Portuguese chowder, and a homemade pastrami sandwich. In 2024, Coe is planning to add dinner a couple of nights a week, along with a weekend brunch.


The New England-style diner has been spruced up with local artwork and photography on the walls and there will also be a “trophy case” showcasing the “World Food Championship” winner’s numerous awards. A throwback luncheonette counter with spinning stools will showcase freshly baked cookies and pies on top.


Photos by ED NUTE

Sullivan’s Castle Island


Owners Brendan and Adrian Sullivan, third generation restaurateurs, opened the first South Shore outpost of the iconic South Boston eatery Sullivan’s Castle Island in March of 2023. Executive Chef Dan O’Donnell’s casual fare menu boasts timeless favorites that have been offered since 1951, like double cheeseburgers, hot dogs, and a basket of fish and chips, along with some surprising debuts.


1775 Washington St., Hanover


The menu features hearty dishes including scallops with steamed broccoli, lobster mac and cheese, and a Nashville hot chicken sandwich. In addition to familiar classics, the restaurant features a flavorful take on South Shore bar pizza, with flavors like pepperoni, ricotta and hot honey, and a combo North/South Shore-style white pie topped with fried local clams.


The Hanover Crossing Sullivan’s location features the same walk-up counter as Southie, but also offers plated entrees, shareables, and even has a full liquor license. Paying homage to its Castle Island roots, the backdrop of the bar mimics sand dune fencing. On warm days, a garage door wall in the bar area opens the space up to the patio.


Photos by Kjeld Mahoney

71° West Atlantic Steakhouse


The Hynes Group, which operates such popular dining spots as Stockholders Steakhouse in Weymouth and 42 Degrees North in Plymouth, gutted the former Isaac’s restaurant in Plymouth and opened a new waterfront eatery in August. For restaurateur Kevin Hynes, who was the owner of the original Isaac’s back in the ‘90s, launching 71° West Atlantic Steakhouse felt like coming full circle. Executive Chefs Mario Spotti and Valdomiro Fernandes head up the bustling kitchen.


114 Water St., Plymouth


The menu at 71° West Atlantic Steakhouse features elevated coastal steakhouse offerings, but without Boston prices. Showpiece entrees include the bone-in tomahawk ribeye, double-cut pork chop, shrimp scampi filet mignon, and signature baked stuffed lobster. Other popular dishes include the finger-licking-good sticky rib appetizer and freshly made sushi. Beginning in the spring, the restaurant’s rooftop deck will offer alfresco dining.


The airy second-floor dining room features an elegant bar, comfortable booth and table seating and expansive windows that immerse guests in a spectacular view of Plymouth Harbor. Susan Hayward Interiors reimagined the restaurant’s decor, with glittering circular pendant lights and white canvas palm trees that give the space an upscale Miami feel. There are subtle nautical nods, with whales serving as the inspirational benchmark. A dramatic mosaic water wall by the entrance, for example, depicts whales “bubble feeding.”


Photos by Kjeld Mahoney


B 3 Restaurant & Bar


Established by the founders of Brothers Roast Beef, B3Restaurant & Bar is a lively spot that focuses on elevated fare, including seafood specialties, homemade pizzas and weekend brunch. The restaurant took over the former Bar Rustic space at the Kingston Collection last year.


101 Kingston Collection Way, Kingston


Popular appetizers at B3 Restaurant & Bar include steak and cheese egg rolls, Brothers cheesy fries, spinach and goat cheese flatbread, and cranberry Buffalo chicken wings. The Brothers “famous” roast beef sandwich is a standout along with their juicy grilled burgers. Heartier fare includes steak tips, seafood risotto, and panko-crusted stuffed chicken.


The enormous industrial-style restaurant features an airy bar with high ceilings, light walls, dark booths and a wine display. A nearby spacious dining room boasts cozy table seating for nightly dinner, along with a wood-fired oven with bar seating to watch chefs prepare their popular buffalo chicken pizza. Private rooms are also available for holiday dining.

La Bamba Tacos & Tequila Mexican Restaurant


Teresa Bracamontes, who also owns Fiesta Charra Mexican Restaurant in Carver, opened La Bamba Tacos & Tequila in a shuttered Friendly’s location in Plymouth last November. Executive Chef Aaron Rulas dishes out authentic south of the border cuisine for daily lunch and dinner at this lively Mexican restaurant.


15 Sandwich St., Plymouth


Margaritas, piña coladas and mojitos are some of the restaurant’s most popular cocktails. Pair them with a sampling of street tacos, sopitos, or black bean soup to start. Move on to heartier dishes like Arroz con Pollo, a grilled chicken burrito, or Enchiladas Tres Amigas. The sizzling Parrillada platter of grilled steak, chicken, chorizo, shrimp is designed for sharing.


The colorful cantina offers an authentic interior yet is comfortable and inviting. The vibrant space’s walls are painted terra cotta, yellow and orange while a welcoming bar features bright bursts of Talavera tile.

Bluefish River Tavern


Owner Erik Daigle teamed up with business partners to transform the former Milepost Tavern in Duxbury into Bluefish River Tavern. The new restaurant opened its doors in October. At the helm of the scratch kitchen is Executive Chef Doug Cordeiro, whose elevated menu is inspired by fresh local ingredients as well as his Brazilian heritage.


581 Tremont St., Duxbury


Open for lunch and dinner, the 110-seat restaurant features creative cocktails like The Standish and Duxbury Spritz. For starters, look for street corn nachos, dragon wings, and a lobster boil flatbread. Main events include house marinated steak tips, Brazilian fish stew, and slow braised short ribs.


The coastal tavern was fully renovated and boasts a nautical theme outfitted with shiplap walls, exposed beam ceilings, and beautiful original art commissioned by local artist Timothy Basil Ering. He also hand carved the tap handles that pour a custom-made American IPA called “Always a Pleasure” by Mayflower Brewing.



Photos by Kjeld Mahoney