PROVIDENCE — The East End is temporarily closed for renovations, but when it reopens for dinner service after Thanksgiving, there will be someone new running its kitchen. Josh Davis, who worked in kitchens in Boston and in Portland, Maine, has been hired as the Wickenden Street tavern’s new executive chef. In Portland, Davis most recently worked as the chef at Rising Tide Brewing Company and as the chef de cuisine for Duckfat, a small but mighty cafe known for its Belgian-style fries (cooked in duck fat, of course), gelato shakes, housemade sodas, and craft beer. In Boston, he worked as the culinary director for Red Paint Hospitality Group (which operates The Westland, The Avenue, and the Hopewell Bar & Kitchen, among others).
The East End is overhauling its kitchen, renovating its bar, and doing other repair work. In addition to cosmetic changes, keep an eye out for menu upgrades. It’ll reopen for bar service only on Nov. 22, and will fully reopen on Nov. 25.
Here’s what else you should know about Rhode Island’s food scene right now.
New drinks and tunes: Inside Warren’s new In Your Ear record store, Taylor Benton and two of his partners have built out The Upside Bar, which just recently opened. They’re hoping to host chefs for “kitchen takeovers” and pop-ups, along with some acoustic performances.
Take an online cooking class: Chef Eric Brown, who owns Thick Neck in The Dean Hotel, is hosting Eating with the Ecosystem’s last “Cook a Fish, Give a Fish” cooking class on Nov. 29 at 6 p.m. Brown, who attended Johnson & Wales University and cooked under chef David Posey at Elske in Chicago, will teach attendees how to prepare chicken fried monkfish with dressed cabbage. Tickets are $35, and each ticket purchase allows the group to buy 25 local seafood meals for Rhode Islanders in need.
Also: Brown announced recently that he and his wife, Sarah, will “soon” open a new brunch and lunch spot at 110 Doyle Ave. in Providence. The spot, Frank & Laurie’s, is named after his grandparents.
Something new: Suya Joint, a West African restaurant in Roxbury, will be opening a second location in downtown Providence sometime in the spring of 2024. Read more.
Counting down to wine: It was the epic countdown to midnight — but for wine — at Pot au Feu this week. Last week, the restaurant held its annual Beaujolais Nouveau uncorking where it poured the first bottle of the French classic in America just a minute after midnight. Read about it here.
Know a noteworthy restaurant or chef? You can nominate folks for the 2024 James Beard Awards through Nov. 30. Enter your recommendations here.
This story first appeared in Globe Rhode Island’s Food & Dining newsletter, a free weekly email about Rhode Island’s restaurant industry that also contains information about local events, Q&As with chefs, dining guides, and more. If you’d like to receive it via e-mail each Thursday, you can sign up here.