Where to Southie’s new Worden Hall. The name honors a 19th-century guest house in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
What for Deep-dish pizza, hot dogs, spuckies, liquor, and good cheer.
The scene Just a little tipsy on a hazy Friday. Thickly bearded men drain whiskey at high-top tables. Lovebirds share mounds of fried food. Young bucks in backward baseball caps discuss Kickstarter while navigating sandwiches. Windows open onto the street, offering prime views of antics at the Broadway T stop, where a limber lady performs an impromptu ballet in the heat. An older dame with tennis balls on her walker and sunglasses dangling from her neck blazes past the host stand and into the dining area, surveys the scene, and beelines for the bar.
What you’re eating Worden Hall comes from the team behind Five Horses Tavern in Somerville and the South End, and it has a similarly sprawling menu. Appetizers are called hors d’oeuvres and exist in profusion, ranging from coconut-crusted chicken nuggets ($9) to fluke crudo ($12) to smoked lamb ribs ($15). There are deep-dish pizzas ($20; Margherita pictured), hot dogs ($7) topped with modernized condiments like pickled mustard seeds and horseradish aioli, and spuckies — towering sandwiches made of crispy pork belly ($14) or house-smoked pastrami ($15). Vegetarians will be happy here, too, with buckwheat and ricotta crepes ($18) or a baked heirloom tomato with succotash and pepper puree ($18). Helpfully, menu items are noted as vegetarian or gluten-free.
Care for a drink? The bar menu arrives in a soft, thick brown booklet that looks like a hipster’s diary. It’s designed for devoted drinkers: There are more than 100 types of whiskey and 40 draft beers.
Overheard A woman in Chuck Taylors fidgets with a plastic rose. “He bought it for me,” she giggles to a waitress, gesturing to a bashful beau. “She is 6 feet tall! She should not be in patterns!” a woman hisses to a comrade at the bar. “Am I free to do what I want now? Legally, yes!” hoots a ponytailed, tattooed man several stools over. Cheers all around, and a grin from the bartender. “My beard is still in development,” laments another fellow, setting down his beer to make air quotes. A seated couple lean across a table to peck on the lips; the woman then skips through the open window and trots down the busy sidewalk, leaving her beloved with the check. 22 West Broadway, South Boston, 617-752-4206, www.wordenhall.com
Kara Baskin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.