New Clover open 24/7 – The Boston Globe

Ayr Muir has a secret aspiration. He wants all of his Clover Food Labs to be open 24/7. This week, he’ll be one step closer with Clover HFI. On April 24, the newest of his six brick and mortar locations (there are seven food trucks) opens its never-to-be-locked doors in Central Square.

That spot will replace Hi-Fi Pizza & Subs, which closed last year after more than 45 years in the business of serving slices, often in the early morning hours. “We figured Hi-Fi had been open till 2:30 or 3, and we weren’t going to shorten those hours,” says Muir. “We were going to be open at least that long, and then, we open at like 6 or 7 a.m. and there is a little bit of shut-down time, and a little bit of opening, so it just seemed to make sense to make it continuous.”

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Adds the restaurateur, “I’ve always liked 24-hour places, I always loved diners.” He lamented the lack of late-night eateries during his college days in Cambridge. “When I was at MIT, I never went to sleep before 4 a.m., like ever, and there were a lot of nights I was up all night and there was no place you could get food.” Muir believes there is a large underserved population of hungry night owls, including “people who work in laboratories, researchers, and students.” In the wee hours, he says, “I think we will find kids coming in here and programming on their laptop.”

The location abuts The Middle East Restaurant & Nightclub, T.T. the Bear’s Place, and is in close proximity to several bars, but Muir seems unconcerned about the possibility of a rowdy late-night crowd. “I think there are a lot of people awake in the middle of the night here who are not drunk people,” he says, adding, “We’ve always had a really respectful environment, so I expect that will carry over here.”

The 24-hour restaurant will put its popular breakfast sandwich back on the menu at midnight, and offer “some late-night snack-type of things, as specials,” says Muir. “You can be here at 3 a.m. and there are people around you, and you can still order coffee.” The owner says Clover will be the first Cambridge restaurant that’s open 24 hours a day. “This was a really nice opportunity to try that out.” Clover HFI, 496 Mass Ave., Central Square, Cambridge, www.cloverfoodlab.com

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CATHERINE SMART

More coverage:

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