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According to Boston Magazine, the Boston restaurant scene has entered its golden age. From beloved restaurants in historic neighborhoods to tech-savvy modern restos—Beantown has it all. This thriving restaurant industry is attractive for those looking to invest in the city’s food business. To help you in building the perfect venue for intimate dinners and casual lunches, here are the top 15 restaurant contractors in Boston.
We have examined hundreds of local contractors and ranked them based on their portfolio, press coverage, awards, principals, versatility in work, and overall standing in the community. So whether its a franchise from a national food chain or local name you want to establish, these contractors can help you create your ideal dining space.
15) ACS Group Inc.
Website | 617-381-0822 | 26A Sheafe St., Malden, MA 02148
Malden-based ACS Group Inc. offers general contracting services for commercial and residential projects in eastern Massachusetts. The company has completed more than 600 projects throughout the Boston metro area and surrounding cities. These include single-family and multifamily homes, office spaces, retail stores, and restaurants. ACS Group Inc. was founded by brothers Dauro and Mucio Aquino in 2004. Restaurateurs and design partners laud the company for its high standards and reliability in completing every project on time and under budget. The firm has gained the trust of many skilled tradesmen and clients alike, resulting in repeat clients and trusted partnerships.
The firm renovated the old Boston Beer Garden into The Broadway, a large bar and restaurant with a vintage, industrial design. Designed by Sousa Design, its wood came from the Boston Beer Garden and is accented with steel and subway tiles. Communal seating, wide booths, and two bars allow plenty of space to all party sizes. The more than 8,000 square feet was constructed in just eight months.
14) Hadley Contracting
Website | 617-676-8978 | 93 Concord Rd., Weston, MA 02493
Hadley Contracting is a premium residential and restaurant builder that works in many New England states. The firm’s expertise in restaurants comes from its founder’s extensive experience. John Hadley has spent more than two decades working on high-profile projects—from New York to Boston. Hadley worked on the ultra-luxe Nobu 57 in New York City and the Kennedy Center Restaurant in D.C. His experience in national, high-profile restaurants got him acquainted with extremely complicated architectural designs and high-end finishes.
The firm built some of Boston’s most iconic restaurants, like the Centre St. Cafe in Jamaica Plain and the second location of Sa Pa in Cleveland Circle. The firm also built Novara, a hip, modern Italian restaurant in East Milton Square. New Kids On The Block singer and member Jordan Knight is an investor in the restaurant. Hadley Contracting converted the old Milton Cinema, a historic landmark, into an upscale dining space fit for the affluent Milton neighborhood. The 5,500-square-foot restaurant plays up the 23-foot theater ceilings, with an island bar at the center of the space, a visible kitchen, a courtyard, and a drop-down projection screen. It also includes a wine room for private parties.
13) Bald Hill Builders
Website | 781-806-5951 | 25 Walpole Park South, #10, Walpole, MA 02081
Bald Hill Builders is a general contractor and project management firm known for its upscale condominiums, restaurants, and retail projects in Boston and Cambridge. Its adherence to safety practices and excellence in construction have been recognized by industry organizations in the state. The firm earned a Gold Safety, Training, and Evaluation Process (S.T.E.P.) Award in 2017 and a Merit Award at the 2017 Excellence in Construction Awards, which were both issued by the Associated Builders and Contractors of Massachusetts.
The firm provides ground-up construction, build-outs, and renovations of restaurants, hotels, condominiums, and office spaces. Its restaurant portfolio is filled with quaint cafes and rustic taverns like the French Press in Cambridge and Doretta Taverna in Boston. The project featured here is the Sorelle Café in Seaport. Dressed in upscale minimalist decor, the third location of the trendy cafe features white-painted brick walls, a chalkboard-style menu, and a variety of simple tables and chairs.
12) Berkeley Building Company
Website | 781-246-3353 | 248 Main St. Suite #103, Reading, MA 01867
Since 2010, the Berkeley Building Company has served New England with a full range of construction services that are cost-effective, fair, and transparent. With offices in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, it has acted as a general contractor and construction manager for a plethora of projects in various markets, such as corporate, restaurant, retail, and academic. The young company is captained by seasoned construction veterans. The firm’s founder, Emil Frei, has a construction resume that spans over 30 years and more than a billion dollars of projects throughout New England and New York. The firm’s current president, Patrick Kelly, has 17 years of experience.
Berkeley has completed restaurant projects throughout New England—from the fun and colorful The Friendly Toast in New Hampshire to casual staples like the British Beer Company and Fro.zen.yo in Boston. Mooncusser is another one of the firm’s restaurant successes. Atop the mini Flatiron Building at Stuart and Columbus, the fish house is cozy and intimate, with 60 dark-wood seats. The elegant and minimalist space is the perfect venue for the restaurant’s understated but delicious menu of local catches and seasonal accompaniments.
Website | 508-679-2500 | 163 Grand Army Hwy., Swansea, MA 02777
Cornerstone Construction is one of New England’s premier builders of restaurants and retail stores. Founded in 1987 by Bob Sanford, the company offers a full suite of general contractor services—from tenant fit-outs and ground-up construction to drive-thru additions and remodeling. Client reviews have called the firm flexible collaborators and adept problem solvers capable of meeting unique demands. The firm is a member of the Associated Builders and Contractors of Massachusetts and is OSHA Safety Certified.
The firm is a leading contractor for franchises and is a preferred builder of many restaurant and cafe chains. Its clients include Panera Bread, Sweetgreen, Chipotle, Moe’s Southwest Grill, Starbucks, and Life Alive. The firm’s partnership with this vegetarian and vegan restaurant chain has resulted to five locations throughout Massachusetts, including its flagship store in Brookline and newest store in Back Bay. The colorful new Life Alive store features wood, textile, and concrete, creating a lively feel.
10) Construction Management & Builders
Website | 781-246-9400 | 75 Sylvan St. Building C, Danvers, MA, 01923
Boasting 500 collective years of teamwork and experience and over 1,000 completed projects, Construction Management & Builders is a commercial general contractor that banks on experience and hard work. The continued development of its construction practices to keep up with the latest trends and technologies has earned the firm repeat clients, which make up 75% of its business. Its leadership team is comprised of construction veterans with an average of more than 20 years of experience. Founder Kevin Puopolo has worked in the construction industry for over 35 years and established the firm in 1992.
The firm serves Boston, Cambridge, Salem, and Somerville with a variety of project types in the restaurant market, from the exceedingly popular food hall format to premium fine dining establishments and fast-casual restaurants. The company specializes in food halls, with six already constructed in New York. The firm’s new creation is the Time Out Market in Boston. The first of its kind, the cavernous food hall spans 25,000 square feet and was designed by Dyer Brown. The former Landmark Center now houses 15 food vendors, two bars, and a demo kitchen. Its architecture is meant to blend with the building’s original Art Deco design.
9) Construction Coordinators Inc.
Website | 781-449-7700 | 140 Gould St., Needham Heights, MA 02494
From hole-in-the-wall eateries to prestigious clubhouse dining, Construction Coordinators Inc. has mastered the art of creating kitchens and dining areas for the foodservice industry. It recognizes that efficiency, cleanliness, and worker safety are vital in every successful project and delivers these effortlessly, along with beautiful decor and interior design. The 28-year-old firm’s restaurants have been featured in The Boston Globe, Thrillist, and Boston.com. Additionally, the firm is a leader in safety construction practices, having won the AGC Safety Award eleven times, including the 2015 National Safety Award.
The firm is well versed in handling historic renovations and preservations, from residential work to commercial markets like hospitality, corporate, and restaurant. An example of this is its work on the Barcelona Wine Bar on Beacon Street. With full coordination and approval from the Brookline Historical Society, the firm transformed a run-down location to a functioning tapas and wine restaurant. Construction Coordinators used reclaimed wood to emphasize the age of the area and conducted extensive work on the concrete facade. It took down the concrete piece by piece, restored it, and put it back up in exactly the same place.
8) Groom Construction Co., Inc.
Website | 781-592-3135 | 96 Swampscott, Salem, MA 01970
Salem-based Groom Construction is a well-known residential and commercial builder in eastern Massachusetts. Founded in 1979, it started with residential additions and renovations but quickly grew to include custom homes and commercial projects. Groom Construction’s stellar performance is owed to its well-rounded team —Tom, David, Dwight Groom and Scott Faulkner. Each principal has a specialty to contribute to the firm’s development and success. Tom has served as president for 35 years and focuses on remodeling and building high-end, energy-efficient homes. David’s 30 years of experience focuses on ground-up commercial buildings as well as several tenant fit-out projects. Dwight heads the retail division with his 20 years of experience and over $250 million in retail build-outs. Scott has been with the company from inception, 40 years ago this year and leads the Commercial Construction Arm of Groom.
The firm’s retail division has forged long-lasting relationships with clients from all over the country. These include popular food brands like Panera Bread, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, and Pinkberry. The firm was also contracted by Florida-based burger chain Burger-Fi to increase its presence in the Northeast. Groom Construction built the brand’s first Massachusetts locations in Boston and West Roxbury. Additionally, the firm performs remodels and renovations of local restaurants, such as the Lyceum Restaurant in Salem, which involved paying careful attention to historical details. They also built Wild Horse Café in Beverly and Wick’s Restaurant in Marblehead.
7) Consigli Building Group
Website | 617-259-1007 | 266 Summer St., Boston, MA 02210
Consigli is a fourth-generation company founded in 1905. As one of the largest commercial builders in the Northeast, it has greatly changed the landscape of Boston, from landmark restoration and academic projects to hotel, hospitality, and healthcare construction. Peter Consigli, a skilled mason, established Peter Consigli & Sons in Milford. Over a century later, his great-grandsons Anthony and Matthew Consigli continue to build an empire based on hard work and integrity. Consigli has ranked among Engineering News-Record’s (ENR) Top 400 Contractors of the Year for several years. In 2019, it ranked in the top 100 contractors nationwide. In the Boston restaurant scene, the firm is responsible for extensive renovations and reimaginings of the city’s high-end spaces, such as the Bar Mercato in the Hyatt Centric Hotel, the Harvard Club of Boston’s three luxe dining rooms, and the Grill Bar Tavern.
One of Consigli’s biggest restaurant projects in Boston is the high-end Italian food market, Eataly. Located in the Prudential Center, the project consisted of multiple restaurants, support kitchens, and a restaurant atop of the new food market. Terra sits atop the complex as a respite from the busy food market above. This Italian greenhouse-style bar and grill won Design of the Year Readers’ Choice Winner in 2017 from the Boston Eater. The dining room centers around a wood-burning Italian grill with an eye-catching hood. Consigli worked with international vendors to bring this Italian greenhouse to life. To achieve this goal, the firm incorporated simple raw materials, antique garden objects, and Italian artwork into the space.
Website | 617-426-7600 | 77 Charles St. South, Boston, MA 02116
Boston-based Cafco is a general contractor and construction management firm that specializes in restaurant, hotel, residential, and academic projects. The firm has built dozens of restaurants in Boston, Cambridge, and Salem, focusing on local pubs, cafes, bakeries, and fine dining spaces. In its 30 years in the business, it has catered to a variety of restaurants, from oyster bars and steakhouses to Asian restaurants and European cafes. Cafco is responsible for building Tiger Mama, Boston Eater’s 2015 Best In Design winner. Working with Sousa Design, Cafco brought in greenery and reclaimed wood to fulfill Chef Tiffani Faison’s vision of Southeast Asia. Bright orange accents, dramatic lighting, murals, and a disco elephant make Tiger Mama an energetic hub for bright flavors and cocktails.
The firm is led by Adam Amontea. He has worked for Cafco since 2009, working his way up from a superintendent to project manager and eventually to president of the company. He earned his degree in Construction Management from Wentworth Institute of Technology. He further pursues his passion for food as a part of the Board of Directors of Lovin’ Spoonfuls, an organization aiming to reduce food waste by efficiently distributing healthy and fresh food to community organizations.
5) Columbia Construction Company
Website | 978-664-9500 | 100 Riverpark Dr., North Reading, MA 01864
Founded by Sam Lilly in 1925, Columbia Construction Company is one of the oldest and largest companies serving the Northeast. It ranks in the top ten among Massachusetts’ largest construction firms by the Boston Business Journal, with an annual project volume of over $452 million. The firm is a frontrunner in various sectors, including academic, corporate, healthcare, hospitality, life sciences, and residential. It is also one of the most technologically-forward firms on this list, utilizing programs such as Building Information Modeling (BIM) and its own cloud-based project management system, Columbia Extranet. The firm has been recognized by industry organizations over the years for its design-build techniques, project management skills, and sustainability efforts. In 2019, ENR ranked the firm among New England’s Top 10 Contractors. For its safety practices, the firm has earned a 2019 National Award for Safety from the Associated General Contractors as well as a 2017 Merit Safety Award from the Massachusetts Chapter of the organization.
For the restaurant sector, Columbia often builds restaurants for and in known luxury hotels all over Boston and the Northeast. One of its known projects is Bar Boulud in the Mandarin Oriental. The French-inspired bistro is Boston’s first celebrity-chef restaurant headed by Michelin-starred chef Daniel Boulud. While the bistro’s cuisine is European, the restaurant’s interior blends seamlessly with the hotel’s Oriental aesthetic but also has a touch of Boston. Oriental red and gold tones are paired with open-beamed ceilings that reflect Boston’s rustic charm.
4) Stack + Co.
Website | 800-265-3884 | 555 East 2nd St., Boston, MA 02127
Stack + Co. is a 12-year-old Boston based company providing both architecture and construction for food and beverage projects, and bringing together aesthetic design, polished architecture, and sustainable technology in its approach. Its impressive leadership team boasts top industry affiliations, overseas work, and many years of experience. The firm is led by Joshua Brant, who earned his degree in Structural Engineering from Brown University, along with architects Andrew Wade Keating, AIA (a graduate of the Harvard Graduate School of Design), and Catriel Tulian, AIA (a seasoned professional with national and international projects in his background).
The firm’s numerous projects have been favorites of the press, with features in trade publications like Design New England, Boston Home, Boston Magazine, Dwell, and the Architectural Record. The firm’s marriage of tasteful and modern architecture with construction is seen in all of its projects—from multi-unit residential and high-end, custom, modern homes to retail stores and restaurants. A perfect example is the firm’s work on Bon Me restaurants. The Asian-inspired food truck and restaurant chain has partnered with Stack + Co. to bring to life their beautiful food venues, from their flagship brick and mortar store to their test kitchen.
3) Trinity Building and Construction Management
Website | 781-938-0008 | 1 Jewel Dr. Suite #322, Wilmington, MA 01887
Award-winning Trinity Building and Construction Management is responsible for many luxurious restaurants and entertainment spaces in Boston and New York. Since 2005, the firm has taken on extensive hotel build-outs for restaurants, bars, and clubs. It is a nine-time Inc. 5000 honoree and has earned a 2014 PRISM Gold Award – Best Commercial Project for Skylark, a fancy cocktail lounge in New York City. The Wilmington-based company is also one of the largest companies on this list, with a wide national reach and a presence in Canada. The firm is founded and headed by Matthew Kilty, David Story, and Paul Mancini. Matthew Kilty is a known leader in the Boston commercial construction industry and sits on the Board of Directors of the Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts.
Trinity caters to large entertainment groups as well as known restaurateurs like Emmy Award-winning TV personality, Guy Fieri. The firm’s projects are large, sparing no expense in detail and finishes. This can be seen in Mystique, a massive restaurant specializing in Asian cuisine in the new Encore Casino. The firm brought to life the ideas of award-winning designer Peter Niemitz. The glamorous 16,400-square-foot restaurant and lounge feature an open kitchen, a wrap-around stone bar, two private dining rooms, and the main dining room, which can seat 450 guests.
2) Ashling Inc.
Website | 617-764-1916 | 258 Elm St. Suite #200, Somerville, MA 02144
With over 200 successfully completed projects ranging from independent restaurants to multi-regional brands, Ashling Incorporated is steadily rising as one of Boston’s leading retail and restaurant contractors. Founded in 2003 by Thomas K. Clark, the firm has built one-of-a-kind restaurants in casual and luxury settings. Its portfolio boasts extensive renovations and build-outs defined by tasteful architecture and luxe decor. It can also incorporate some of today’s latest technology, like a patented, automated meal production system it built for Spyce, the brainchild of four MIT graduates and Michelin-star chef Daniel Boulud.
The firm is known for creating design-forward interiors for numerous Boston restaurants. It has built award-winning works of art from top-notch architects and interior designers. Two of its notable projects are Lolita Cucina and Nahita, which won Boston Eater’s Design of the Year in 2017 and in 2018. The interior of the Latin American/Asian restaurant, Nahita, is a jungle palace equally suited for a festive celebration or a romantic evening. Impressive columns, intricate tile work, and a striking mural are all brought together by lush greenery.
1) Shawmut Design and Construction
Website | 617-622-7000 | 560 Harrison Ave., Boston, MA 02118
One of the oldest commercial construction firms in Boston, Shawmut Design and Construction has become the leading expert in retail and restaurant construction. Jim Ansara founded the company in 1982, taking on renovations and build-outs of ice cream stores. The firm eventually worked on pizza parlors, which led to restaurants. What started as a small commercial renovation firm has become an award-winning national name, providing general contracting and project management to the biggest metros in the country. The firm has also expanded its services to the healthcare, academic, cultural, and luxury residential markets.
The firm’s proven expertise in restaurant build-outs and construction has attracted the top names in the restaurant scene locally and nationally. Shawmut has constructed highly-detailed luxury dining spaces and restaurants, from Nobu in Malibu to Limani in New York. One of its latest projects is Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse in Boston’s Prudential Center. The nearly 18,000-square-foot restaurant was designed by Aria Group of Architects and took only six months to fit out. The restaurant boasts seating for 450 in both communal and private dining areas. The most impressive feature of the space is a LED-light glass wine cellar that houses the restaurant’s vast wine collection—all 12,500 bottles of it.
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