The team behind Local 360 has a new spot in the works at 200 Bell Street. And while the food still hews local, the inspiration is a bit more far flung in both time and geography. Bell and Whete is a tribute to the Normans, a people who forcibly spread their influence across Europe and continents beyond during the Middle Ages, collecting culinary traditions along the way.
Have a look around in the photos above. Meanwhile, here's what to expect when the restaurant opens this week.
Eat: Swine and fowl. Chef Forrest Brunton (a Maria Hines alum most recently the executive chef for all things Linda Derschang) counts 14 different proteins on the menu, including boar, venison, pheasant, veal, squab, and pork knuckle. Sausage and charcuterie are housemade and all entrees are $19 or less. Even the foie gras. Order the aptly named tour de viande and the staff will heft over a massive charcuterie board containing four sausages, three hams, a foie gras torchon, smoked trout with pickled shallots, and three kinds of housemade mustard.
Drink: And drink and drink and drink. That's what happens when you've got an impressive gin collection and a massive lineup of 66 taps, pouring relative rarities from Belgium like Cuvee des Jacobins Rouge and St. Bernardus Abt 12, as well as local brews.
Sit: In a cool tufted leather booth. They give the space an anchor of manliness (or library-ness). And the new construction has plenty of other Anglo-Norman elements for character: A barrel of wheat, a massive iron-hinged door, and artwork inspired by an early cookbook printed in German around the year 1485.
Bonus Intel: First of all, the patio outside is ready to go. Should you end up indoors, the life-size painting that watches over the bar has been dubbed Mama Whete, the house matriarch. The name Bell and Whete, by the way, comes from the Bell Street address and the old English spelling of "wheat."
Bell and Whete opens at 11 Monday through Friday. Dinner service begins at 4 every day and happy hour runs 4 to 6. Weekend brunch is on the way.