Take a look at Southbound, the gorgeous, airy, SoCal-inspired taco bar coming to South End

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The team behind Mac’s Speed Shop has a massive new project underway in South End.

Southbound, a Southern California-inspired taco bar, is targeting a late summer opening next to Mac’s on South Boulevard, and I am out-of-my-mind excited about it.

The roughly 7,000-square-foot space will anchor a larger 12,000-square-foot development likely to include additional mystery tenants that are currently under wraps.

Business partners David Jewell and Hall Johnston aim to thoughtfully replicate a West Coast surf and skate vibe with their casual taco joint.

Related story: Enormous building next to Mac’s becoming a taco restaurant. In the back will likely be a barbershop and speakeasy

The front patio facing South Boulevard

Front patio

Southbound has a breezy indoor/outdoor design with a huge front patio and large roll-up windows.

The building is architecturally interesting without trying too hard.

They’ve kept it as raw as possible with exposed beams, industrial windows and repurposed shipping containers polished off with slick white subway tile and custom handcrafted metal chandeliers.

Creative use of outdoor elements inside — like string lights and palm trees in the dining room — strategically blurs the line between different spaces.

A 20-foot custom door rolls up to completely open the front of the restaurant. They’ll seat 196 inside and another 95 outside.

Front patio looking in to the restaurant

Inside looking out to the front patio

Main dining room

The menu will feature tacos, enchiladas and burritos made with fresh ingredients and house-made tortillas.

The kitchen is inside a repurposed red shipping container with cut-outs so guests can watch fresh guac and tortilla prep.

Around the side of the kitchen shipping container is a walk-up taco window where you can bypass the restaurant experience and just grab a bag of tacos to go. Brilliant.

Kitchen shipping container

Walk up taco window

The bar will spotlight Mexican beers and margaritas made with fresh-squeezed juices.

Don’t look for taps. All the beer will be in bottles.

The barstools are recycled old school chairs on custom legs.

Main bar

Custom school chair barstools

Wait, there’s more…

To the right of the building is a sprawling open outdoor space that will have string lights and a stage for live music as well as a second, smaller indoor bar area around the back.

Outdoor area for live music facing a second indoor bar area in the back

Inside the back bar

Southbound is targeting a late summer opening.

And Jewell and Johnston tell me what we’ve seen of the concept so far is only the beginning. Expect more big announcements and keep your eye on this South End game changer.

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Katie Levans Loveluck
| @katie_levans |

Co-Founder and Creative Director