Haute Spots Boston: Juniper

Boston: Tucked away behind a small nondescript storefront in tony Wellesley is David Becker’s latest concept – Juniper. Best known for his standout Needham restaurant, Sweet Basil, his latest endeavor dabbles with Mediterranean fare that will take you on an unforgettable culinary journey.

Step into the neighborhood restaurant and you will enter the long bar area in front. There is a larger dining room in back for more private dining dotted with tables and comfortable deep booths. Our friendly server Marissa got us started with a delicious glass of a white blend “The Whip” Murrieta’s Well from California. The impressive wine list here takes diners on a quest from the United States to Italy and beyond (think Lebanon, Israel and Argentina).

Juniper Interior (1)Photo Credit: Juniper

As for dinner, get started with a sampling of marinated olives before moving on to some shared plates like the soft flatbread served with Matbucha, a delicious spread of roasted tomatoes and peppers and Tzatziki (Greek yogurt).

There are a variety of familiar appetizer selections here but offered with a twist like the fried calamari with Kalamata olives, roasted cauliflower with spiced chickpeas and roasted beet salad served with a goat cheese puff. We recommend the chicken shish taouk, four grilled marinated skewers of juicy chicken arrived on a bed of local greens served with a size of Greek yogurt for dipping.

Juniper 2Photo Credit: Juniper

For main events, don’t miss the decadently rich lamb Bolognese spiced up ever so slightly with the addition of chili oil made with handmade saffron malfadine served in a roasted tomato sauce. Other entrees include chicken tagine, slow braised chicken thighs with Israeli couscous; pistachio crusted chicken breast with Lebanese spiced potatoes; duck served two ways (confit duck leg and grilled duck breast souvlaki) with Moroccan carrot slaw and roasted figs and a grilled boneless ribeye with charred brie.

Juniper4Photo Credit: Kellie Speed

The Mediterranean restaurant was filled to capacity on a recent Monday evening so be sure to arrive early to avoid a wait. Juniper is located at 13 Central Street in Wellesley, Massachusetts.