Food & dining
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    Tables: A bar blossoms in Brookline and Cultivar takes on the brunch crowd

    Wild boar bolognese at La Motta’s.
    Dina Rudick/Globe Staff
    Wild boar bolognese at La Motta’s.

    Closings: La Motta’s in the South End, which opened in 2015 as a throwback red sauce hangout, will shutter on Dec. 31. The Italian restaurant is part of the Aquitaine Group, which runs Cinquecento, Gaslight, Metropolis Café, and other neighborhood haunts.

    Allston’s 27-year-old Sunset Grill & Tap and Patron’s Mexican Kitchen (130 Brighton Ave. at Harvard Avenue) closed on Dec. 18. Parent companies Sunset Partners, Inc. and Bema Restaurant Corp. had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in June, an attorney statement confirms. A third restaurant, Sunset Cantina(916 Commonwealth Ave. at St. Paul Street), remains open.

    Coming Soon: Brookline Village’s Sichuan Garden (295 Washington St. at Holden Street) will welcome the Blossom Bar shortly after Christmas, says Ran Duan, the talented cocktail master who helped make Woburn a dining destination with Sichuan Garden’s Baldwin Bar and Baldwin & Sons Trading Co. He will remake his family’s sister property into a tropically influenced “paradise,” he told the Globe earlier, with Latin and South American cocktails. The restaurant will also get an updated menu.


    Brunches: Downtown’s Cultivar (1 Court St. at Washington Street) has launched Saturday and Sunday brunch service from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Dishes come from the restaurant’s hydroponic garden. Feast on roasted sunchoke toasts with root veggies, organic egg frittatas with kale and cauliflower, burgers topped with eggs and pickled onions, and — for the non-health-conscious — malted milk French toast with candied bacon ice cream.

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    Dinners: Downtown’s Townsman debuts a Sunday dinner series with fish and chips, burgers and bourbon, beer, or Bordeaux; baked rigatoni; and fried chicken with creamed spinach and cornbread served on ceramic TV trays, as in days of yore.


    Kara Baskin can be reached at