An Artsy Southern Restaurant Lands in Back Bay This Month

Back Bay Beats—aka B3—is near Berklee College of Music, and comes from an established ownership group.

Back Bay Beats chef Nicholas Swogger. / Photo provided

Back Bay Beats chef Nicolas Swogger. / Photo provided

The latest restaurant from the owners of Parsnip and Night Market marches to the beat of a different drum—literally. Back Bay Beats, shortened to B3, is eyeing a late February debut, Eater Boston reports, with Southern-inspired cuisine, bespoke cocktails, live music, curated art installations, and more.

The 3,850-square foot spot is on the ground floor of a Berklee College of Music building at 160 Massachusetts Ave., but it has no affiliation with the school beyond a partnership to showcase its student and alumni talent. The restaurant will offer a few, acoustically designed rooms, including a dining area, a bar and lounge, dubbed the Alley, and Backstage, a private dining space decked out in dark leather and lush velvet, an homage to the inside of an instrument case.

In the middle of the space, a slightly raised, central stage will host students, faculty, alumni, and visiting artists for diverse, intimate performances seven nights a week, and during brunch. The adaptable feature is made of rolling steel and glass, acoustical paneling. B3 will also feature digital art installations from local artist Marka27.

But it will also satisfy your hunger. Chef Nicolas Swogger, an alum of Hungry Mother, is executive chef. The Southern son previously worked at Bouré in Oxford, Mississippi, under James Beard Award-winning chef John Currence. His shareable menu culls from contemporary Southern, Creole, and Cajun inspiration, “but I also bring in a lot of international influences,” Swogger says in a press release.

Some of the opening menu dishes include chicken liver pâté with five spice, wild mushrooms, and porcini powder; smoky pork cheek hoppin’ john with Carolina Gold Rice grits; and lamb tagine with Sardinian couscous, grated pecans, dates, golden raisins, and mint. Samuel Richlovsky is the senior sous chef, and Emma Ozment is on board as pastry chef.

On the bar, expect cocktails featuring house-made infusions and syrups, plus boutique wine varietals and craft beer. The restaurant and performance space will be open for dinner nightly, and for brunch on Sundays.

160 Massachusetts Ave., Boston, 617-997-0211,