Times Are a-Changin’
Keeping up with Great Barrington’s restaurant scene
It’s not easy keeping up with Great Barrington’s restaurant scene. Shelly Williams, known for Haven Bakery & Café in Lenox, has opened Prana Bar at 325 Stockbridge Road, with a menu of “global street food” having Asian, Spanish, Indian, and European roots.
Across town, Chef Michael Ballon, after 27 years in the kitchen, sold Castle Street Café this winter to Vern Kennedy of Berkshire Restaurant Property. In line with the old adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” Kennedy promises to keep the restaurant essentially the same, says Betsy Andrus, executive director of the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce.
The owners of Xicohtencatl restaurant just opened Tangier Café, a Moroccan/Middle Eastern eatery in the former Fuel at 286 Main St. Co-owner Toni Bergins says the café has a “spicy, warm, fun vibe” accented by the artwork of Joel Haynes on the walls. Try the Turkish coffee, mint tea, and exotic dishes by chef and co-owner Angel Espinoza Jimenez.
And a new development at the top of Railroad Street will transform the former Martin’s Diner and Mario’s Restaurant, says developer Ian Rasch. He and Sam Nickerson, co-founders of Framework Development Group, have plans for four to five retail spaces and 13 apartments, with two storefronts fronting the alley-cum-walkway between Railroad and Castle streets. Renovation should be finished by January 2018, with tenants that might include a bakery and café or a wine bar with tapas.