FALL RIVER – The home of the former Lusitano Restaurant, a longstanding South End establishment which closed in 2019, is coming back to life.
A Boston-area investor embarks on a new journey, hoping to please Fall River’s foodie palettes with something different and unique with the upcoming opening of The Path Restaurant and Lounge.
Owner Gainer Forrester, originally from British Guiana who runs operations at The path along with his fiancée Carl Brooks, brings a taste of the Caribbean to the South Coast, providing much-loved diversity to the local culinary scene.
The Path spices things up with a generous serving of Caribbean and American cuisine, but Forrester said the dishes also feature Asian, Indian and Portuguese influences.
And although they won’t open on King Philip Street until next month, the pair have toured Fall River and say the community has really embraced them.
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“We reached out to everyone from people on the street to neighbors to business owners,” said Brooks, who is from Jamaica. “We received excellent feedback. »
“We can’t wait for opening day,” added Forrester, 48, who lives in Brockton.
A grand opening at The Path is scheduled for April 30.
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According to Forrester, getting into restoration has always been a dream. “I’ve always loved the idea of cooking. It’s my other hobby, being from the Caribbean.”
When the Fall River property hit the market, Forrester, a banker/investor with real estate in Boston and Brockton, said she saw a great opportunity and jumped on it.
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Forrester purchased the mixed-use property, which sits at the corner of King Philip and Tuttle Streets, in September 2021. The property includes the restaurant, bar and reception hall on the first floor, 12 residential units as well as parking on King Philippe Street.
The purchase marks a new chapter for the building, which housed a Fall River staple for traditional Portuguese cuisine in its previous life. Lusitano’s doors closed in 2019 when former owners Horacio and Maria Soares retired after 50 years running a well-known neighborhood restaurant there.
Forrester hopes to carry on the tradition, aiming for an “upscale” restaurant with a family atmosphere and a community vibe.
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But change is also good.
Forrester and Brooks said it has been busy in recent months as the building has undergone both a cosmetic and necessary makeover.
Forrester and Brooks have been working to modernize the space, taking it from the 1970s to 2022. The dining areas have been updated with new paint, hardwood flooring and lighting to give it a look and feel. Fresher.
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The kitchen also underwent a complete $80,000 renovation, which included all-new appliances and safety upgrades, one of their biggest projects being opened.
There won’t be a TV in the dining room in an effort to make it “more family friendly” so if you’re looking for that kind of entertainment you can head to the living room.
An exciting draw for Forrester is the banquet hall, which has hosted a handful of events in the past. Forrester and Brooks even plan to have their wedding there in July.
“What a way to promote our own place,” Forrester said.
Future goals for The Path include live entertainment and weekend brunch buffets.
What’s on the menu at The Path
The menu is still being finalized – in collaboration with a former Lusitanian chef who has joined The Path – but will largely consist of Caribbean and American dishes.
Dishes will include everything from lo mein and fried rice “with a Caribbean twist” to chicken and goat curry, marinated steak with a Caribbean twist, jerk chicken and pork, seafood platters, fried fish with onions, tomatoes and peppers, plantains as well as lasagna. Bar fare such as mozzarella sticks, fries, burgers and fish and chips will be served in the lounge.
The menu will also include soup, which Forrester says is important in its culture. She said that in the Caribbean they are made with different types of meat and ingredients such as corn, yuca, plantains, small dumplings and peas.
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They will also have the cappuccino machine for those looking for an after-meal espresso, which the old Lusitano customers were used to.
“We also try to connect with the Portuguese community,” said Forrester, which has a total of 10 employees, including a couple who previously worked at Lusitano.
Forrester came to the United States from British Guiana in 1995, aged 21, to join her family in the Boston area. She is an investor, but also runs a staging business and a business consulting firm, and Brooks has a trucking business. The couple are also flipping houses.
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Although they have many projects in hand, Forrester says her focus is on the path, which she described as a long-term endeavor for the couple. Forrester said it is looking to invest more in Fall River in the future and plans to eventually move here.
“We met all these people in Fall River who were willing to give us a chance, believe in us, and want big things for us, so that’s my goal,” she said.
Forrester also aims to be involved in the community, beyond the day-to-day operations of the restaurant.
She hopes to be able to offer free meals to the less fortunate on a semi-regular basis and plans to hold free Thanksgiving meals in the future. “It’s a given,” Forrester said.
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They are currently launching The Path website and social media pages. Forrester said customers should be able to find them soon for an update on the restaurant’s opening day and hours.
As it stands, Forrester said hours at The Path, located at 820 King Philip St.will be Tuesday to Sunday, 11 a.m. to midnight, closed on Monday.