The Wellesley Select Board this week approved a new restaurant to fill the space at 65 Central St. (previously inhabited by CVS, and further back, F.W. Woolworth), as well as an update to Fiorella’s liquor license to allow it to serve drinks both inside and outside.
During the Select Board’s meeting on Tuesday night, Meghan Jop, Executive Director of General Government Services, facilitated the discussion about these two proposals.
Black & Blue Steak and Crab Coming to Wellesley in late 2023
The Select Board has approved Black & Blue Steak and Crab’s fifth location, set to open ahead of the winter holidays on Central Street.
Charlie Fitzsimmons, a Rochester, N.Y. native and CEO and President of the Two for Seven Restaurant Group, joined the meeting to get board members and Wellesley residents excited about the surf and turf spot.
“We pride ourselves on getting people around a table for good food, good drinks and having a good time,” he said.
The new Wellesley location will be the restaurant’s second in the state; its Burlington location opened in 2018.
Describing the chain as “a blend between fine dining and fun dining,” Fitzsimmons explained that Black & Blue’s price points land roughly 15-20% lower than The Capital Grille, Smith & Wollensky and other comparable establishments.
As the name suggests, Black & Blue’s menu features a variety of different cuts of steak and seafood, which will be mostly sourced locally, with the exception of the wintertime: Fitzsimmons’s sister works with seafood down in Tampa, Fla. and will help him out during Boston’s colder months.
Representing Fitzsimmons and Black & Blue, lawyer David Himmelberger (of Wellesley) provided the Select Board with details regarding seating plans.
“The restaurant will have 246 maximum,” he said, “It does have seating on the lower level [and] it also has 24 seats at a bar area on the first level.”
Himmelberger also disclosed that the hours of operation are currently scheduled to be 4:30-11:30 p.m. Sunday to Saturday, but it is possible that lunchtime may be factored in as well.
Additionally, the restaurant has “submitted for an entertainment license to allow the playing of television [and] music […] and the alcohol license as well,” according to Himmelberger.
Members of the Select Board expressed their excitement for this upcoming addition to Wellesley, especially attracted to the possibility of a new lunch spot in town.
“We love the community, we love Massachusetts, we think our brand and Black & Blue really fits,” said Fitzsimmons.
Updates in the works at Fiorella’s
Wellesley staple Fiorella’s has been approved by the Select Board to extend alcohol service to those sitting outdoors.
“We have been working with outdoor seating with Fiorella’s,” said Jop, “We’re at the point where they have their alcohol license, we’ve tested out the temporary seating and now we are looking to modify the exterior as part of the license to encapsulate the outdoor dining provisions as part of their ability to serve alcohol in those locations.”
Jop explained that since the area that will become the restaurant’s outdoor seating technically sits on the town’s land, the town had to “authorize an access agreement” of the Select Board’s plan before they could vote.
There was a bit of contention surrounding the exact layout of Fiorella’s outdoor space with some Board members specifically concerned about the disruptions caused by trees and sidewalks, but nevertheless, the motion was passed.
Fiorella’s will have 18 outdoor tables—a change from the 20 included in the original proposal—on Washington and Church Street.