The owners of Monument Restaurant on Main Street are preparing for a major expansion inside and outside the Town.
Jon Sweeney and Damien Donovan told the Patriot-Bridge that they have purchased the Ironsides Grill on Warren Avenue and will hopefully have it open with a new concept early next year. That comes just as they were chosen to open a location in Terminal B of Logan International Airport, a move by MassPort and MarketPlace Logan to bring more local flavor into the airport.
In the neighborhood, the expansion to Ironsides is the talk of the Town, and both said they were excited to take over such a known location.
“We had our hearing for the liquor license transfer and had amazing support,” said Sweeney. “I feel like the neighborhood is still a little underserved in terms of restaurants.”
Donovan said the concept will be worked out in the coming months.
“We’re still figuring out a lot of what we’ll be doing there,” he said. “The decision to keep the name was important because it’s a Charlestown institution for decades and the historic tie to the USS Constitution made it a no-brainer to keep the name. The only slight change is it will be Ironside Tavern rather than Ironside Grille.”
Sweeney said it will be important to have great food, and to be very family friendly – which is what they’ve hung their hats on at the Main Street location for the past two and a half years.
They said the décor will be updated, as the same owner has had it about 50 years, and they hope to do more highlights of the history of Charlestown.
“We feel that’s important not to get lost,” said Sweeney.
The Tavern will also keep the generous, 40-plus seats on the outdoor sidewalk patio and they expect that to be a great amenity of the new restaurant.
Donovan said they have been wanting to expand for several months, and they really wanted to do so in Charlestown – as other popular restaurateurs have done recently.
“John and I for the better part of six months were ready to do something else in Charlestown,” he said. “As we’ve said, we felt Charlestown was still underserved in regard to restaurants in general. We had no idea the owner essentially was going to retire. We got wind of it and inquired about it and developed a great relationship with her. We were eventually able to acquire the space.”
Added Sweeney, “With the space we have on Main Street, to do another restaurant on the other side of Town with close proximity to the Freedom Trail made it a good fit for us.”
They said they expect to open the new Ironsides Tavern after the first of the year some time.
•Meanwhile, a surprise expansion opportunity came in the form of Logan Airport, with the concessions operator contacting them to see if they wanted to locate their Monument brand in Terminal B.
Right now, Terminal B is undergoing a major renovation of amenities that includes restaurants and shops. While the shops include makeup companies and a New Balance store, the restaurants are more of the local variety. Monument was chosen alongside Sullivan’s Castle Island of South Boston and B.GOOD of the South End and Back Bay.
It is expected to open right after Thanksgiving.
“Our project is a joint effort with a company called HMS Hospitality,” said Sweeney. “They operate restaurants in an airport environment around the country. They reached out to us about the idea of partnering.”
Donovan said they will transfer their menu and drinks and beers to the location, and it will be very much the same relaxed experience like at the Main Street Monument.
“We designed a space to look and feel as close to Charlestown as it can without being right on Main Street,” Sweeney said.