anoush’ella saj kitchen coming soon

BOSTON – A first time restaurateur and designer, Nina Festekjian, will spice up the South End later this month with the opening of anoush’ella: saj kitchen, a “Fine Casual” Eastern Mediterranean restaurant, inspired by her Armenian-Lebanese heritage.

Located on the corner of Washington and West Newton Streets, anoush’ella will bring a contemporary twist on the classic wraps and salads found in the bazaars and souks (street markets) of Beirut and Aleppo and the streets of Yerevan and Jerusalem. Guests will be able to dine-in or take out. To complement the food, anoush’ella will serve local craft beer and wine as well as signature cocktails.

“anoush’ella” means “may it be sweet” — an Armenian expression for the love and pride that goes into serving someone who enjoys your food and thanks you. The nam underscores Nina’s belief that when food is prepared with love it not only awakens the palate but also enriches the mind and satisfies the soul.

The centerpiece of anoush’ella is the saj, a convex metal grill where chefs will griddle-to-order m’anoush, a thin flatbread used as a wrap for sandwiches as well as an edible scoop for dips, soups, salads, grains, and marinated meats and poultry. “The menu is meant to capture the explosive flavors of Eastern Mediterranean street food of my childhood,” says Nina Festekjian.

We’ve all heard about the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. anoush’ella will use the freshest available local ingredients, including organic chicken and antibiotic-free lamb and beef. The signature labne bar is a strained yogurt served with a selection of savory or sweet options. Spices are carefully sourced from select providers from around the world.

The culinary foundation of anoush’ella’s menu is a homemade flatbread wrap called m’anoush (cooked on the saj), that is topped with a variety of ingredients and grilled and hand rolled to order. Additionally, diners can choose from other Mediterranean specialties like hummus, lamadjoun “pizzas,” za’taar chicken, grill koftas and overnight braisd beef. With many salads, soups, and assorted dips, the restaurant is vegetarian-friendly.
The newly constructed space features oversized windows overlooking bustling Washington Street. As envisioned by Nina and designed in partnership with Jim Piatt of Piatt Associates, the restaurant will offer a comfortable yet elegant look designed to be both spacious and inviting – is a brick and mortar metaphor for Nina’s commitment to community and cultural sharing. The interior and its materials reflect this with ironwork details to echo the iron Saj itself, gray ash planking mimicking the weathered wood of the mountains, fire-worn black stone tiles, and contemporary bentwood seating  to invoke the comfort of a café in the souk. A large communal table in the center of the space is an enlarged spice box, providing a rich contrast to the fresh meals and bright seasonal dishes that will be served.

There’s a bar and communal table as well as outdoor seating. The restaurant will accommodate about 58 indoor and 34 outdoors.

Though the restaurant is the brainchild of Nina Festekjian, anoush’ella is owned and operated  with her husband Raffi.

It was love at first sight for anoush’ella owners Nina and Raffi Festekjian. While both were born and raised in Beirut, Lebanon, Raffi lived in Boston in the early 1990’s, pursuing a post-graduate career in high tech. On a trip back to Beirut, he met Nina. The couple was engaged after two weeks and now have been married for 24 years. Nina’s background is interior design and fashion, while Raffi built several technology companies and wrote software for financial risk and regulatory areas. Both are avid home cooks. Their individual histories and shared culinary roots come together at anoush’ella, where Nina’s refined aesthetic informs both the cuisine and the décor, and Raffi’s scientific mind fosters connections between the kitchen and diners. At anoush’ella, the Festekjians’ shared love for each other and the foods of their homeland will magically transform your dinner into an unforgettable experience.
anoush’ella is located at 35 W. Newton Street in Boston’s South End. Hours: Daily 11am-11pm. Brunch: Saturday and Sunday 8am-1pm.


Troquet on South holds annual wine “garage sale”

BOSTON – It’s “Garage Sale” time at Troquet on South when guests can find off-the-menu bottles, last of the case items, single bottles and older wines of various vintages, all priced to sell along the evening meal of favorites such as the ricotta cavatelli and roasted Vermont suckling pig. The wines must be enjoyed on-site and accompanied by food. All are sold on a first come, first serve basis and cannot be held or stored. The offer is good through the month of August/Labor Day.


SHOES FOR CREWS, LLC intros new footwear

WEST PALM BEACH, FL – SHOES FOR CREWS, LLC introduces New Balance, Dockers and ACE to its slip-resistant footwear collection. The company, since 1984, has pioneered corporate programs that provide slip resistant footwear to more than 15,000 companies and 100,000 locations worldwide.

SHOES FOR CREWS will initially offer women’s and men’s New Balance styles 510 in five colors and 623 in two colors with a slip-resistant SureGrip outsole, with additional styles and colors coming in early 2018With the addition of the New Balance styles, SHOES FOR CREWS now offers a total of 49 wide styles.

SHOES FOR CREWS will offer Dockers men’s styles the “Partner” in black and the “Director” in brown and black, both featuring Stain Defender™ technology and a slip-resistant SureGrip outsole. Visit

99 Restaurants to be sold to J Alexander Holdings

99 Restaurants, in operation since the chain’s founding by Charlie Doe in 1952, will reportedly be sold to J. Alexander Holdings Inc. of Nashville, TN for $199 million.

Sysco CEO plans to step down in January, 2018

The chief executive officer of Sysco is expected to step down in January,2018 and be succeeded by Tom Beal, president and chief operating officer currently. CEO Bill Delaney will remain in the capacity of advisor.




Meet Party Rental at its August 22 launch event

BOSTON – Party Rental Ltd. holds a introduction to its new Boston design studio on August 22 at 186 South St., 2nd floor, from 5 to 8 p.m. Meet the team, experience the company’s products firsthand and network with industry professionals. One lucky guest will win an i-Pad. The 1,650 sq. ft. studio displays samples of its products and party planners can meet event rental specialists.

Be healthy with Beetology this summer

Beetology from Kayco, a large manufacturer and distributor of kosher food products, is 100 percent non-GMO, USDA Certified Organic and certified kosher, with no preservatives, additives, artificial colors, or flavors.  “Beets are the new pomegranate,” says Charles Herzog, Chief Beetologist and VP of New Business Development at Kayco. “Chefs, foodies, health-conscious folks, and even athletes have been tapping into the versatile beet in creative new ways. We can’t wait to see the exciting new coolers our consumers come up with Beetology as their inspiration.” Beetology comes in five different hand-crafted blends. Follow Beetology on FB and Twitter @mybeetology. Every variety is 100% non-GMO, U.S.D.A. Certified Organic, and Certified Fair Trade. They are non-soy, non-dairy, and certified kosher, with no preservatives, additives, artificial colors, or flavors.

For additional information about all Kayco products visit


Bon Appetit names Northeast winners in 50 Best New Restaurants list

Congratulations to Bon Appetit’s Northeast winners in its top 50 Best New Restaurants in the U.S. They include:
Asaka, Brooklyn, NY

Bucktown, Providence, RI

Hart’s, Brooklyn, NY

Le Coucou, New York, NY

Mamaleh’s, Cambridge, MA

Nina June, Rockport, ME

Olmstead, Brooklyn, NY

Wine of the Week – Trimbach Pinot Blanc 2015

Summer days are upon us and we’re delighted to be sipping this Pinot Blanc from Trimbach. Dry and fresh, it’s perfect with seafood – think shellfish – quiches and light seasonal dishes. The Trimbach estate has been making wine for a very long time – nearly 400 years since 1626. This soft, fruity, yet dry white is ideal for the season and year-round, paired with seafood and light meals. It is 13 percent ABV and offers the refreshment we seek in warmer weather. The winemaker calls it “a wine for pure pleasure,” and with a modest suggested retail price of around $14, it’s an excellent value. Check it out at

What’s Brewin’ – Matchless Hops The New Fruit IPA

Matchless Beer’s IPA pairs bitter notes with bright tropical fruit. You get hints of pineapple, papaya, and later, mango and nectarine. We’re not sure we picked up on the honeydew and cantaloupe at the end but it’s a tasty brew, bright and medium-bodied. Matchless calls it a take on a New England style IPA, fruity and 6.8 ABV. No fruit, the brewer tells us, was harmed in the making of The New Fruit IPA. in Tumwater, WA.


Coppola launches award-winning Diamond Collection

GEYSERVILLE, CA – Francis Ford Coppola Winery recently released its Diamond Collection wines in cans. The three premium whites – Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, and Sauvignon Blanc – are expected to solidify the winery’s position as the leading premium wine producer in the canned category.

Coppola has been making canned wines since 2002 and in 2004, introduced its Sofia Minis, 187 ml mini aluminum cans of Sofia Blanc de Blancs sparkling wine. Today, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, and Sauvignon Blanc have been added to the portfolio of 250 ml cans in a portable, lightweight 4-pack. Go to