The owners of Dave’s Fresh Pasta, a specialty food and wine market in Davis Square, are planning to open a small new restaurant and bar in late spring on the edge of the Tufts campus, near the Collaborative Innovation and Learning Complex at 574 Boston Ave., called Semolina Kitchen and Bar.
According to Robert Chihade, Tufts’ director of real estate, the new restaurant’s concept was selected from proposals by Dave’s and another interested restaurant group.
“Dave and [General Manager Christina Theophanis]’s concept was selected based on community and institutional comfort, a menu, a long history and knowledge of their food and personalities,” Chihade told the Daily in an email.
According to Theophanis, Semolina Kitchen and Bar will be a more sit-down style establishment compared to the original shop, and it will feature indoor and outdoor seating. Chihade added that Semolina will have a full liquor license and will serve cocktails, but will not be a “full bar.”
“We’re going to be open in the morning for coffee, pastries … and a more continental-type breakfast, and then [we’ll] go into lunch and then into dinner,” Theophanis said.
The new restaurant will be a causal place for food and drink, Theophanis said. In addition, there will be take-out service and a pizza oven. The restaurant is planned to open in late spring of this year.
“We’re really excited about it and grateful for the opportunity with Tufts,” Theophanis said. “We feel like over the years we really developed a great relationship with the university, and we look forward to keeping it going.”
Theophanis said the idea of the new shop was borne out of the opportunity to occupy a vacant building on Boston Ave. The restaurant will be housed in a retrofitted industrial building, according to the building’s designer, Incite Architecture firm.
“The building became an opportunity for us, and then we decided what’s good for the neighborhood and community up there in Medford and how we can compliment [Dave’s Fresh Pasta],” Theophanis said.
The idea for a restaurant was presented in a 2015 neighborhood meeting and was well-received, according to Chihade.
“[We’re] catering to the neighborhood, as there’s really no food up there,” Theophanis said. “The aspect of having all three meals and some retail stuff available is good for the community.”
Chihade said that Tufts hopes the restaurant will be welcomed and successful on campus as a community amenity. According to Theophanis, the community is a large part of the new restaurant project, and she expects both Tufts students and Medford community members as customers.
“We’re a very community-based business here in Somerville and part of the reason why we’re so successful is because we have support from our community, and we’ll need that in Medford too,” she said.
Theophanis predicted that the restaurant’s proximity to campus will likely draw many Tufts students. Theophanis noted that Tufts itself has been helpful as a facilitator for the restaurant’s development.
“We’re really lucky to have Tufts involved, for sure,” Theophanis said.
Hans Reuter, a junior majoring in chemical engineering, said that the restaurant will be a helpful amenity, given the general lack of food options in that part of campus.
“It would be really convenient to have a place where students can go and get food on this side of campus because it seems like all of the food places are on the other side of campus,” Reuter said. “When people go to SciTech and 574, it’s really hard to access any food items.”
Graduate student Kim Hallett agreed that the restaurant will add to that area of the Tufts campus.
“I feel like this spot of Tufts is kind of food barren, aside from having to go to the dining halls,” Hallett said. “So it’s nice to have another option.”
Daniel Caron contributed reporting to this article.