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Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette Look Globally at Their New Boston Restaurant

They won't be restricted by one cuisine

Jamie Bissonnette (left) and Ken Oringer.
Jamie Bissonnette (left) and Ken Oringer.
Nick Solares

The dynamic duo of Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette is back with their latest venture. The partners behind a few acclaimed Boston and New York restaurants officially opened Little Donkey in Beantown's Central Square Monday evening, making a departure from serving a single style of cuisine. At their new restaurant, Oringer and Bissonnette refuse to be defined by one nation's borders.

"We can finally cook food without any rules," Oringer told Eater Boston last month. "It has to be Italian-esque for Coppa; it has to be Spanish-style for Toro. [At Little Donkey] it can be simply anything, because we talk ideas non-stop, 24 hours a day."

In addition to their experience running restaurants, Oringer and Bissonnette bring individual accolades to their new spot. They've both won the James Beard Foundation's Best Chef: Northeast award — in 2001 and 2014, respectively — and Bissonnette was also named "The People's Best New Chef" by Food & Wine magazine in 2011. After all of their successes, Eater Boston reports Little Donkey will be something new entirely.

While fusion was all the rage in the 1990s, bringing together multiple cuisines into a single dish, it appears Oringer and Bissonnette to achieve the modern version of that concept. These days, American chefs take inspiration from their travels to apply the idea to an entire menu instead of one plate. Little Donkey's offerings range from Southern American (pickle-brined fried chicken sandwich) to Italian (lobster fra diavolo) to Indian (red lentil kale dhal). There's even a hint of '90s fusion sensibilities with Japanese and Jewish cultures colliding on matzo ball ramen.

"We have all of these ideas, so now we can put them all into fruition," Oringer told Eater Boston. "As crazy as they all are, we can still put them together in that type of restaurant."

Little Donkey

505 Massachusetts Avenue, , MA 02139 (617) 945-1008 Visit Website