Kava Neo-Taverna Brings Greece to the South End this Spring

The owners of Trattoria Newbury are opening a 'chic Greece' spot with meze, seafood, and more. —Brent Rydin

Kava Neo-Taverna. / Photo by Brent Rydin

Kava Neo-Taverna. / Photo by Brent Rydin

UPDATE, May 11: Eater Boston reports Kava Neo Taverna opened this week.


When the team behind Trattoria Newbury got ahold of a prime Union Park spot across from the South End Buttery, they initially planned to open another Italian restaurant. According to the owners, however, the space just “felt more Greek,” and from there, Kava Neo-Taverna was born.

At last, after being in the works for over a year and under wraps since renovations began last fall, the newest addition to the city’s epicenter of trendy restaurants is almost here.

Since conceptualizing Kava in January of 2015, co-owners George Axiotis, Irakli Gogitidze, and Shahrokh Reza have been committed to authenticity, both in the restaurant’s menu and its décor. The team designed the restaurant themselves, importing stone for the bar, reclaimed wood for the tables, and all manner of decoration directly from Greece.

The menu will be comprised not only of replicated Greek recipes, but of food brought in directly from the Mediterranean. “The menu will always be evolving, depending on the season and on what’s available,” Axiotis says.

Expect that to include a wide range of mezedes, or small plates; imported feta cheese, horiatiki salad, and an ever-changing selection of fresh-from-the-Mediterranean seafood including lavraki seabass, and grilled octopus. The bar will be stocked with hard-to-find Greek wines and liquors, plus the usual list of spirits and craft beers. There will be Greek coffee and traditional frappes, along with desserts like baklava, Greek yogurt and honey (both also imported from Greece), and more.

With its sophisticated Mediterranean design, an oil mural by artist Giorgi Shanidze, and a “simple, authentic, and clean” menu, the trio says, Kava will be a distinctive addition to the South End’s landscape of eclectic restaurants. “We call it chic Greece,” Gogitidze says.

“We want this to be a restaurant that you could walk into on Mykonos,” Axiotis adds. “And the menu speaks for itself.”

Yiamas to that.

Kava Neo-Taverna is aiming for an early spring debut.

Kava Neo-Taverna, 315 Shawmut Ave., Boston; kavaneotaverna.com.