Licensing Board Approves Grand Tour Name Change; and Union Park Pizza Relocation to Newbury Street

The City of Boston Licensing Board held a virtual Transaction Hearing on August 24 and a Voting Hearing on August 25, where it approved a change in d/b/a at 314 Newbury St., as well as the relocation of Union Park Pizza from 1403-1405 Washington St. to 244 Newbury St.

314 Newbury St.—Grand Tour Name Change

Attorney Kristen Scanlon spoke on behalf of chef and owner of Grand Tour Michal Serpa, who requested to change the name of the restaurant to Little Whale Oyster Bar. She said that there will be no change in ownership, and the “only change is to the concept and menu,” which “will now offer and highlight classic New England-style seafood dishes.”

The renovations and update will cause “minimal disruption to operations,” and the restaurant will be shut down on Sept. 4 to make the changes, and is expected to reopen on Sept. 12.

The Licensing Board voted to approve this request.

Union Park Pizza

Attorney Kristen Scanlon also represented Joe Silva, owner of Union Park Pizza, who is looking to relocate the restaurant from 1403-1405 Washington St. in the South End to 244 Newbury St.

The building where the restaurant currently exists is under renovation, so Silva was seeking a new location to keep the restaurant open.

Scanlon said that Silva has been in the restaurant industry for more than 20 years as a general manager and also a part owner of a different restaurant. The current location has 16 indoor seats and 30 seats for temporary outdoor dining, though those were not used this year “due to the pending move,” Scanlon said.

“They’ve been working on obtaining a new space since they learned of that news and found  this particular space on Newbury St near Fairfield St. and are excited to move over and become new members of Back Bay,” she said. “In the South End, they’ve quickly become the go-to neighborhood spot for brick oven pizza, priding themselves on making their sauce and dough in-house daily with organic ingredients as well as imported ingredients from Italy.”

Union Park Pizza opened in 2018, and obtained a beer and wine license shortly after, Scanlon said, and has been an “exemplary licensee.”

The space at 244 Newbury St. is currently home to Wichit Sandwich, though the restaurant is closed. It features 18 indoor seats and about 30 seats outside, which Scanlon said will be the same when Union Park Pizza takes over the location.

The proposed hours are 11am to 11pm, but the patio will close at 10pm.

Scanlon said that Union Park Pizza has been a “great neighbor in the South End” and “will continue and are looking forward to doing so in Back Bay.”

She said that while there are “other pizza offerings in the area,” Union Park Pizza is “unique” in that it serves brick oven pizza. The restaurant also serves salads, appetizers, and specialty pizzas, Scanlon said.

The restaurant met with the Neighborhood Association of the Back Bay (NABB) in July, which “did not oppose the change of location,” Scanlon said, and an abutters meeting was held on August 24. 

The restaurant hopes to open “ASAP” on Newbury St., according to Scanlon, which means “hopefully by October.”

The board voted to approve this request.

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