The Fireplace Restaurant

The Fireplace Restaurant

In addition to its the long-standing reputation for excellent food, live music and monthly “Fireside Chats”, there is another reason to visit The Fireplace on 1634 Beacon St in Brookline.  Your meal can help survivors of last month’s disasters in Japan rebuild their lives.

During his senior year in college, Chef Jim Solomon lived with a host family in Uji, a city on the southern outskirts of Kyoto, while attending Kansi Gaidai University.  During his six months there, he fell in love with the country and was deeply moved by the devastation caused by the earthquake and tsunami.

A member of the Japan Society of Boston, Chef Solomon contacted the organization for information on helping relief efforts.  While the Japanese government’s initial recommendation was to direct aid through the American Red Cross, Jim learned of the creation of the Japanese Disaster Relief Fund through communications with the Society.

To aid recovery efforts, Chef Solomon and The Fireplace joined other local organizations supporting the Relief Fund. Three Japanese-inspired items were added to The Fireplaces’ menu, the proceeds from which will be donated to the Fund. These special are available until April 30.

The new offerings are :

  • Sake-tini : Vodka, sake, torn shiso and fresh muddled cucumber
  • Sweet soy glazed hanger steak over daikon radish mash with a cabbage & shimeji mushroom stir fry
  • Sticky rice pudding with black plum sauce & sharp ginger cream
The Fireplace, in addition, is making the Relief Drive a community event.  At 9am, on Thursday, April 28, Chef Solomon will cook his Sticky Rice Pudding for 100 2nd graders at the Devotion School. These students also raised funds which will be co-mingled with those collected by The Fireplace.  Chef Solomon and the children will present a check to the Japanese Disaster Relief Fund right afterwards.

About the Japanese Disaster Relief Fund

The Fund is a collaboration of the three organizations – the Boston Foundation, the Japan Society of Boston and the Fish Family Foundation, and was launched with a gift of $100,000 from the Fish Family Foundation. It is tasked with providing immediate relief as well as ongoing support to the affected people and communities in Northeast Japan. All funds raised will be directed toward providing immediate relief and meeting longer-term needs.

The impact of the earthquake and tsunami are mind-boggling.  According to the Fund’s website, an excess of 11,000 people are confirmed dead, and the fate of more than 15,000 people is unknown. The impact upon the daily existence of survivors has been devastating. There are more than 400,000 people living in temporary shelters. Hundreds of thousands lack running water and power and are living in near-freezing conditions.

The Fund first targets meeting immediate needs by supporting local NGOs and communities in the effected areas that are best able to provide aid. It is anticipated that it will take 3 months to complete needs assessment, perform due diligence and allocate funds to meet these needs. Remaining funds will be dispersed periodically over the next two years to meet longer term needs.

Fund-raising events, including the specials featured at the Fireplace, have been held throughout April and donations will be accepted until March 2013. Recent events have included charity ice skating fundraiser at the Cronin Skating Rink in Revere, a Sushi Spectacular Gala Reception at InterContinental Boston and a Discussion on Recovery from the Disaster by Mr. Takeshi Hikihara, Consul General of Japan.

Additional information on the Japanese Disaster Relief Fund is available online.

Catie Hayes, Editor