Update 3/16/09: I recently heard (from the restaurant) that the Roslindale location for Himalayan Bistro was in doubt. I suppose in this economy there are no sure bets.
I have it on very good authority* that our favorite Indian/Nepali restaurant, Himalayan Bistro, is coming to Roslindale (from West Roxbury), into the oft-turned-over location last assigned to NuVo, and Gusto before that. Perhaps the third “-o” restaurant will be a charm. Assuming they serve up the same superlative food and atmosphere as the West Roxbury location, I’m sure this one will be a keeper. (My only concern is that having the two restaurants so close to each other may result in self-competition.)
*Authority = Himalayan Bistro delivery guy. You don’t get much more authoritative than that.
In other Roslindale Restaurant news, we heard via RVMS recently that Robyn’s Bar and Grill has changed hands to the owners of the Halfway Cafe in Dedham, which could be a change for the better. Roslindale did not need another pizza/sports-bar, and still does not need one, although maybe that’s all the Robyn’s location will ever be. Even more recently, however, we heard an unconfirmed rumor from a neighbor that the sale fell through and Robyn’s is not changing owners.
In other potentially disappointing news, the Roslindale Emac and Bolio’s has changed owners again, this time to a co-owner of the Blue Star Restaurant. I want to like Blue Star, but they can’t seem to get the most basic short-order cooking tasks right. A diner must, first and foremost, deliver greasy food fast, hot, and at the same time for the entire group. At worst, serve the kids first. It also helps for the food to be consistent. Blue Star in our experience (many visits) only occasionally satisfies the basic diner requirements, much less delivers any sort of creative urban-chic reinterpretation of the classic retro diner. (By contrast, Deluxe Town Diner in Watertown is our current Greater Boston favorite — it’s always a good sign when a greasy spoon also actively caters to vegans.)
Which brings me to Emac and Bolio’s, which apparently will be renamed “Select CafÃ©.” First, why give up the goodwill associated with the Emac’s trademark? Second, the initial signs of the change-over are not promising. A handwritten sign posted in the window announces that the cafe is under new management, and (1) no credit or debit cards will be accepted and (2) no Emac and Bolio’s gift certificates will be honored. I’d love to be proved wrong about this, but I’m pessimistic that this is going to be the Change We Need in Roslindale — namely, a top rate artisanale snobby espresso shop. We can only hope that Simon’s, Flatblack, Cafe Nation, Diesel, or another of their ilk will come occupy one of the vacant storefronts on the courtyard. That we have any vacancies at all in the square, much less several, is a crime against humanity.