Closing: Shepard (1 Shepard St. at Massachusetts Avenue) will close on New Year’s Eve, says owner Rene Becker, who also runs Cambridge’s Hi-Rise Bread Company. He and chef Scott Jones (No. 9 Park, Menton) will open a new concept in the space, hopefully by January.
“We decided that we should let Shepard run its course until the end of the year, close, and create something new,” Becker says. He won’t reveal what that is (yet).
Shepard opened in 2015 in the longtime Chez Henri space.
Revelry: Citrus & Salt (142 Berkeley St. at Columbus Avenue) hosts a New Year’s Day brunch party with fried chicken and waffle tacos, grapefruit brûlée, and cocktails for those who haven’t had enough, including watermelon soft-serve mimosas and frozen watermelon margaritas — which the restaurant likes to call “adios pantalones.” Eat and imbibe from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.
In the South End, Bar Mezzana (360 Harrison Ave. at Traveler Street) throws a “Magnum PI” brunch with tiki cocktails and magnums of champagne. Hawaiian shirts and mustaches are optional from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. Sister restaurant Shore Leave hosts a tiki party beginning at 9 p.m. on New Year’s Eve; a $20 door charge gets you complimentary passed appetizers until 11 p.m. and a disco ball drop at midnight.
The City Tap House (10 Boston Wharf Road at Congress Street) hosts a “recovery brunch” with hangover-curing meals like cheeseburger pizzas, cheesesteak egg rolls, tater tots, and Jameson shots with a side of bacon, soundtracked by a DJ from noon until 4 p.m.
Partiers with children can visit Assembly Row’s Smoke Shop (325 Assembly Row) for the restaurant’s first inaugural “Baby New Year’s Eve Party,” which begins at the very reasonable hour of 3 p.m. Chef Andy Husbands hosts kid-friendly games and activities, including a build-your-own popcorn station with all the trimmings and a balloon ball drop, plus a barbecue buffet with hot dogs, chicken fingers, and mac-and-cheese. A baby carriage valet will be available. Tickets are $10 for kids 6 through 12 and $22 for adults; buy them at www.thesmokeshopbbq.com.
ArtBar at the Royal Sonesta Boston (40 Edwin H. Land Blvd. at Cambridge Parkway) waits until the festivities have died down to introduce a three-course “fancy” brunch for $45, beginning on Jan. 4. Embrace the new year with avocado toast topped with caviar and potato latkes with smoked salmon (and more caviar), until Jan. 27.
Wine: The Boston Wine Festival has aged well — like a fine wine, in fact. It turns 30 this year with a series of special events at the Boston Harbor Hotel (70 Rowes Wharf), commencing with a reception on Jan. 11. Over the course of two otherwise dreary winter months, there will be dinners with winemakers from around the world, a cutthroat Battle of the Cabernets, and a Valentine’s Day dance. Browse the itinerary and get tickets at www.bostonwinefestival.net.