Visit Fox 25 News Zip Trip with Masona Grill

WR Transcript
(May 28, 2008)
Masona Grill a Cozy Combination
by Victoria Groves
If you live in the Parkway and you’re still driving into downtown Boston for an upscale dining experience, save the gas and the valet tip and head to Corey Street. Masona Grill offers the same eclectic fare and cozy atmosphere, right in your own back yard.

Nestled opposite the Highland commuter rail stop, the restaurant is just steps away from the hustle and bustle of Centre Street. Read More
(Februrary 13th, 2008)

Masona offers a neighborhood feel to gourmet food. If you want to be wined and dined as if you are in a gourmet institution, this is not the place. The prices are more than reasonable for the quality of food, especially entrees and desserts, which offer mammoth portions. I had never thought about driving to West Roxbury just for a meal. However, after sampling the roast duck and banana bread pudding at Masona, I may just have changed my mind. Read More

The Boston Globe:
(January 9th, 2006)

Manuel Sifnugel, Former owner of Claremont Café in the South End, has just started the process for Masona Grill, which he plans to open in West Roxbury, a neighborhood that is beginning to attract more restaurant life. He hopes to open his place in April but needs a beer and wine license to make the business succeed. “I don’t see a need for you to have to pay $50,000” to buy one, Sifnugel said, adding that he hopes the city petition is approved before he opens.

Masona on the Menu

The West Roxbury dining scene continues to heat up. Construction begins today on MaSoNa Grill, the new restaurant from Manuel Sifnugel, former chef and owner of Claremont Café in the South End. Sifnugel says his new bistro — named after daughters Marcella, Sofia, and Natalia — will feature the foods of France, Spain, Italy and his native Peru. Prices will be less than $20.
MaSoNa Grill, 4 Corey St., West Roxbury, is slated to open in April.

Proud Papa

Only a few months after selling Claremont Café in the South End, Manuel Sifnugel has bought a building in West Roxbury near the Highland commuter rail station and has hit the drawing boards. The 48-seat Masona Grill will be “a classic bistro, very heavy on the grilled foods.” Though it sounds vaguely Latin, the name doesn’t reflect Sifnugel’s Peruvian heritage as much as his American legacy: It combines the names of his three daughters, Marcella, Sofia, and Natalia.

Boston Magazine
(February, 2006)

Meanwhile, Manuel Sifnugel, who owned the South End’;s Claremont Café for 13 years and the now closed Café Three Hundred in South Boston, is headed to West Roxbury to open Masona Grill (it’s a combination of Marcella, Sophia, and Natalia, his daughters’ names) in April.

Tackling a neighborhood’s up-and-coming dining scene is his thing: “I opened one of the first restaurants in the South End, then a place in Fort Point Channel when it was pretty raw,” Sifnugel says. “For the third time, I’m starting in an area where there’s nothing but potential.” The 48-seat restaurant will offer Mediterranean fare with twists from Sifnugel’s homeland, Peru.

French, Latin restaurant planned for Coffee Break site
by Frank Tarara

Restaurant proprietor Manuel Sifnugel plans to add to the restaurant selection in the West Roxbury by opening what he calls “a neighborhood bistro that will combine French cuisine with Latin accents inside a warm and vibrant setting.”

Sifnugel plans to create a thriving business that will appeal to clientele from neighboring towns and improve the local revenue.

“After successfully running the Claremont Café in the South End for 14 years, I felt that it was time for a change, and since we moved to Rosindale, West Roxbury seemed like the best location for a novel restaurant,” said Sifnugel.

The Masona Grill (Masona being an acronym of his daughters’ names Marcella, Sofia, and Natalia) is still at early stages of planning.

“We still need approval from the city before we can move to construction and we are preparing to meet with the community in order to introduce our plans and listen to any feedback,” Sifnugel said.

Sifnugel is leasing 4 Corey St., which was the Coffee Break Shop, along with the vacant shop next door and he plans to comfortably seat 45-48 customers.

“The people at (West Roxbury) Main Streets have been extremely helpful especially Kelly Tynan, who has assisted us with the architects and plan coordinators along with organizing community meetings,” Sifnugel said.

Sifnugel will meet with the Bellevue Hill Neighborhood Association on Wed. Dec. 7, at about 7 p.m.

“This will be an excellent time for Mr. Sifnugel to introduce himself and go over his preliminary plans while allowing local residents a chance to comment on his proposal,” said Kelly Tynan, executive director of the West Roxbury Main Streets.

“I’m going to carefully listen to what the neighborhood has to say and resolve any initial concerns while I try my best to offer a unique taste to this great community,” Sifnugel said.

Sifnugel plans to have the shop open for business by spring of 2006 and will be hiring towards the final stages of construction.

Masona Grill gets positive review
by Jeff Gilbride (The Bulletin)

Parkway residents may soon be able to enjoy French, Spanish, Italian and South American delicacies, all under the same roof, if the West Roxbury Neighborhood Council and Inspectional Services Department approve plans for neighborhood bistro.

Manuel Sifnugel of Rosindale has received support from several residents and West Roxbury Main Streets to open Masona Grill in the former Coffee Break Shop and adjacent vacant storefront on Corey Street.

Sifnugel presented his plan to a small gathering at Emmanuel Church on Stratford Street in West Roxbury Tuesday, Jan. 10.

The restaurant would have 48 seats and serve dinner nightly. Sifnugel said the food will be eclectic and he will offer nightly specials for and average price of $17 to $21.

Sifnugel, who is originally from Peru, said he wishes to offer a very fine selection of beers and wines at the restaurant and thinks he should be able to obtain a license from the city. Licenses are scarce according to the city’s licensing board.

“I’m going after a beer and wine license. Basically it would be very hard for me to sell my product without a good glass of beer and wine,” he said. “If you present your case and you show a public need and if you’ve been in the business for a while, I believe there’s a good chance.”

Sifnugel hopes to open the restaurant in April 2006.

“I was told plans should be here this week or next week,” he said. “I don’t think construction will be hard, but you have to get it inspected (by several city agencies) … You say April, it could end up being June.”

Sifnugel has an education and experience in cuisine. He graduated from Boston University in 1986 with a Bachelor’s degree in Hotel and Food Management. In 1992 he opened the Claremont Café in the South End. In 1995, he opened Café 300 in the Fort Point Channel Area, where the new convention center is located.

Kelly Tynan, Executive Director of West Roxbury Main Streets, said her organization voted to support the proposal one night earlier.

“Manuel brings a great reputation to the area and he’s not even open yet,” Tynan said. “It’s going to be a great restaurant for the community to draw more people to the business district.”

Ryan Fitzgerald, West Roxbury Neighborhood Coordinator, said the city would likely support this project if approved by the West Roxbury Neighborhood Council.

“Our biggest concern with any new project is the neighborhood around it and clearly this neighborhood is very supportive,” Fitzgerald said. “West Roxbury Main Streets is also very supportive of all the restaurants coming to this area. … We will likely support the restaurant.”

Plans percolate for Coffee Break site in West Roxbury
Veteran Restaurateur wants to change facility into bistro
By Lindsay Crudele

West Roxbury community organizers have been hoping that their hard work will stimulate a growing and bustling business district in the Centre Street area. But along with some vigorous shopping, the hope is that those shoppers may work up an appetite. To answer the hunger call, another Boston Restaurateur is hoping to join the lineup and serve Parkway residents soon, hopefully, he said, by April.

Appealing to attendees at the Bellevue Hill Improvement Association meeting last week, Manuel Sifnugel spoke about what he hopes to do with the facility he purchased at the current site of the Coffee Break at 4 Corey St.

A 1986 graduate of the Boston University’s School of Hospitality, Sifnugel owned the Claremont Café in the South End and Café 300 by Fort Point Channel until it was sold last year.

“I’m Spanish and Italian, so I’m thinking about a bistro,” he said.

Sifnugel said it would be a place that specializes in French, Italian and Spanish food. Menu items might include steak frites and pella at affordable prices.

He said he would also apply for beer and wine license.

“The area could definitely use some more fabulous restaurants,” said Jane Kennedy, owner of the Tranquility shop on Centre Street.

Sifnugel said one of his restaurants was sold when he was offered a high price for the space, and gave up the other after finding working 14 to 20 hours a day was too taxing on his family, including three daughters.

“I think it was time for a change,” he said.

Sifnugel has been known for vibrant, hearty dishes influenced by his heritage, also hailing from Peru originally.

Next on his agenda, Sifnugel will likely file soon for building permits and an alcohol license. He plans on meeting with the Stratford-Clement Neighborhood Association and the West Roxbury Neighborhood Council.

Masona Grill :: 4-6 Corey St. :: West Roxbury, MA 02132 :: Tel: (617) 323-3331

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