As one drives through the back roads of Sudbury, amber-lit mansions punctuate the thick darkness, which threatens to contain bears possibly, or at least badgers and big-winged bugs. We are a long way from the South End, where chef Evan Deluty’s restaurant Stella first made a splash in 2005. With its gleaming white decor, late hours, and strong cocktails, it was instant bait for fashionable urbanites.
Now Deluty has joined forces with WAAF radio personality Greg Hill to open 29 Sudbury — essentially, the suburbanite’s Stella. It is a mansion to Stella’s 1-bedroom, two stories in a big old building that’s been gutted and redone with concrete floors, multiple bars and outdoor spaces, and an open kitchen. The first floor is raucous and casual, the second more sedate, with plush curved banquettes upholstered in black-and-tan geometric fabric. A group of women sink into one for dinner. “Ladies’ night? Kids at home?” asks a host. (File under: questions one doesn’t get in a city restaurant.) Service runs the gamut here — you’ll find seasoned pros and young people clearly waiting tables for the first time. An older couple is getting frisky at the bar. On a Friday night, the place is packed to the gills, the first floor louder than loud, conversation ricocheting off the hard surfaces. The open kitchen affords a view of each dish traveling from hustling staff member to hustling staff member to table, like batons in a relay.