Cambridge’s Craigie on Main trailblazer Tony Maws is taking over the old Kirkland Cafe spot on Kirkland Street. Maws is calling the 115-seat restaurant and 12-person bar “The Kirkland Tap & Trotter.” The space is slotted to open later this summer.
Maws sent out an email saying that he’s “designing the menu so that you (and your friends and families) can eat there often,” boasting moderately priced entrees and possibly serving a “signature hot dog.”
In a recent interview on WBUR, Maws says he never imagined he would open a larger restaurant.
“Once upon a time ago, I owned a little 49-seat restaurant called Craigie Street Bistro,” the chef says. ”I never envisioned myself owning a larger restaurant where we could fit more people and offer more choices, and then one day it just seemed like we were ready for that and we had a team in place, so we moved to Craigie on Main.”
Maws and his team opened up the award-winning Craigie Street Bristo in 2003. In 2008, they moved the venue to Main Street in Cambridge, added a bar and rebranded it to its current Craigie on Main moniker.
“Business wise, I think it probably made a lot of sense to consider a second restaurant because we had good people and I think we put out a pretty good product,” Maws continues.
Even if he is really excited for the new restaurant, Maws says Craigie on Main will always be his first. He says he wants the restaurant to continue to be “significant, growing and very lively.”
“Main’s my restaurant and whatever I do second is still going to be another place, and we’re going to consider that to be very important as well,” he explains. “We needed a team of people that were going to take care of this and continue to [make it] grow.”
As for the food in the new establishment, Somerville residents can expect a more homely feel – with a touch of Craigie on Main.
“There was another type of food that I always dreamed of cooking,” the chef says. “Craigie on Main’s food is one of the themes that I have, and the other theme is the more rustic food that I cook for my family on Monday nights. It’s a little more family style and still great ingredients.”