The Big Heart Hospitality peeps – that’s chef Tiffani Faison and restaurateur Kelly Walsh – have officially opened Orfano, their fourth Fenway property, on the ground floor of Pierce Boston (just down the street from sister restaurants Sweet Cheeks, Tiger Mama and Fool’s Errand).
As the most upscale concept in the group, Orfano’s dining room evokes old school elegance with sparkling chandeliers, velvety banquettes and dark mahogany millwork but adds more than a dash of modern whimsy and a touch of femininity in the form of massive prints of iconic, badass women like Anna Pellegrino (matriarch of Rao’s in NYC) and Lady Gaga (eating spaghetti) as well as a ceiling collage tribute to Sophia Loren.
The menu takes classic culinary traditions and has its way with them, ditching conventions to create fare that’s sophisticated yet cheeky – which Faison can totally get away with, given she’s already got three successful restaurants, a couple nods from the James Beard Foundation and a talented group of professionals to back her up. Heading up the kitchen at Orfano: Creative Culinary Director Michele Carter who was most recently with the Barbara Lynch Collective and Pastry Chef Dee Steffen Chinn who was just named Best Pastry Chef by Boston magazine. On the other side of the swinging door: General Manager Nicole Valva who cut her teeth at Waypoint in Cambridge; Brian Callahan, Beverage Director for Big Heart Hospitality, who oversees the bar program including the array of specialty martinis; and Charlie Gaeta, Wine Director for Big Heart Hospitality, who has put together a wine list with plenty of intriguing Italian varietals and domestic selections.
Reservations are recommended for Orfano’s 60-seat dining room though the café and bar are both open to guests who prefer to take their chances. Book a table by calling 617.916.9600 or pop in for dinner Sunday through Thursday from 5:00-10:00pm, or Friday and Saturday from 5:00-11:00pm.