For Bostonians wary of tasting Vermont’s take on Eastern Mediterranean flavors, we’ll just say the magic word: Oleana. That’s where Honey Road’s chef-owner Cara Chigazola Tobin once worked, and she’s translated her exotic flavor chops, earned under the tutelage of Ana Sortun, to her Church Street spot. Fans of Sortun’s Cambridge and Somerville restaurants will note the similarities: a glossary gracing the menu, a meze-focused dining style, and a tahini-makes-everything-better ethos (all the way through to the Tahini Sundae, a must-order masterpiece topped with sesame caramel and crumbled halva).
But this isn’t an Oleana rip-off. Tobin’s menu highlights the best of what grows in Vermont. Her colorful meze selection boasts ample veggie options, particularly during harvest season. And she’s earned three James Beard award nominations (Best New Restaurant in 2018 and Best Chef Northeast in 2018 and 2019), an impressive feat considering Honey Road’s only been open for two years. Eat here and you’ll understand why.