The Secret Life of Alibi

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42-17679428 - waiter running with dinner on platter

Its a good thing the Liberty Hotel‘s new restaurant, Scampo, finally opened to the public last week. While we never take a projected opening date at face value, we’ve been hearing the “any day now” bit since last October. And it’s not just Chef Lydia Shire‘s upscale Italian fare we’re looking forward to.

With the opening of Scampo’s kitchen comes another blessing: the end of Boston’s most amusingly hare-brained restaurant scheme.

The back story: Alibi, the Liberty’s trendy, see-and-be-seen bar, has no kitchen of its own. So they hatched a plan: have the food made to order at nearby Harvard Gardens and then run it across the street.

Now, both establishments are owned by the Lyons Group (as is Scampo). So in theory, it makes sense. . . until you consider inclement weather, the time it takes to run a pizza down the block, and the fetching of missing condiments (“I said extra ketchup!”).

You think valets have it rough? Imagine maneuvering through a drunk, sweaty crowd, bolting down the block, picking up a salad, and bolting back. Truth be told, we harbored a secret desire to order a $10 plate of mac and cheese, watch the runner scamper down Cambridge Street, take one bite of our food, and send it back.

Naturally, the food at Alibi was never much to speak of. But there was plenty of eye candy to feast on, so no big deal. And seeing pizza boxes stacked on the hostess station was always good for a laugh.

Now that Scampo is handling the bar’s small bites, the staff can rest their shin splints (and serve much better snacks). But maybe if we’re nice, we can convince the bouncer to run our apps around the block until they’re cold. You know, just for old times’ sake.

Source URL: https://www.bostonmagazine.com/restaurants/2008/04/09/the-secret-life-of-alibi/