Harvard Square will soon be home to Wusong Road, a new Chinese-American restaurant and tiki bar run by chef Jason Doo and Thomas Brush, owner of Felipe’s Taqueria.
Wusong Road is targeting a “late fall” opening at 112 Mt. Auburn St., the historic building where French restaurant Les Sablons was located, Doo said in an interview. The new restaurant is located near Flour Bakery and Harvard Square Hotel.
Doo said the restaurant has been under construction for a long time. He added that although he and his business partners formulated the business idea before the pandemic, the rise in anti-Asian sentiments during Covid-19 motivated them to delay the opening.
Doo said the team envisioned Wusong’s first floor as a “rice plate” restaurant – with specialties including Chinese-style roast meats such as pork, duck and chicken at an affordable price.
“We are actually importing an imperial style roasting duck oven,” he said. “We’re going to try to keep everything in that $ 10 price tag so that everyone can eat there.”
Doo also said he hopes the second floor – aimed at guests 21 and older – will be a place for local residents to relax after work.
Denise A. Jillson, president of the Harvard Square Business Association, said local businesses and customers “look forward to welcoming” Wusong Road.
“It’s very important that this building light up again for this particular area of Harvard Square which tends to be pretty quiet,” Jillson said.
Doo – who noted that the cuisine on offer at Wusong will not be “necessarily traditional Chinese cuisine,” but rather a nod to the Chinese-American cuisine of his upbringing in Malden, Massachusetts – said he hopes to serve the type of food he likes to eat. .
“I no longer feel like I have to prove myself by making a ten-course tasting menu,” added Doo, who previously worked as a chef at upscale French restaurant Menton in Boston. “It’s, ‘Hey, I really like this food. I’m going to put my life story on a plate. ‘ “
Several Harvard students said they were not happy with China’s current offerings in the square, a void that could be filled by Wusong.
Nicholas Y. Gu ’24, who has dined at Hong Kong restaurant in the past, said many students, including himself, frequent the establishment “out of need” because it is one of the few Chinese restaurants in proximity to campus.
Gu said he would like to see more authentic Chinese food offerings in the plaza, citing another restaurant – Dumpling House – as tasty but impractical due to its relatively remote location.
“I would really like to see Chinese food. The closest restaurant which is pretty good is Dumpling House, and even that is a 15 minute walk away and it’s tucked away in a corner, ”he said. “So having just one option would be really great. “
Gu, who was unaware of the entrance to Wusong Road in the square, called it a “staggering revelation.”
“I am very excited,” Gu said.
Doo said he hopes Wusong Road can open soon, so Cambridge residents and Square patrons have another cold-weather dining option.
“We would really like to open up and offer this escape to a tropical style bar during the cold New England winters,” he said.
– Editor Vivian Zhao can be contacted at [email protected]