After 10 years, Boise restaurant to close in prime spot on popular 8th Street corridor

A veteran food-and-drink presence along downtown Boise’s popular 8th Street corridor soon will be gone.

Juniper, a restaurant and bar at 211 N. 8th St., will close permanently to the general public after a final day on Saturday, Feb. 17.

“After 10 years of business on 8th Street, our lease is expiring,” owner-operator Kacey Montgomery said in a note to customers, “and it is time for us to close our doors.”

Named after the distinctive ingredient used in gin, Juniper opened in 2014 after remodeling the former home of a Mediterranean restaurant. Focusing on Northwest-inspired cuisine and craft cocktails, Juniper debuted in a space that was “bursting at the seams with diners who appeared to be curious about the new kid on the block,” according to an Idaho Statesman restaurant review.

From an upstairs eating area, the bar and ground-floor dining room at Juniper in Boise.
From an upstairs eating area, the bar and ground-floor dining room at Juniper in Boise.

As the business evolved over time, it became a reliable dinner destination for everything from a half chicken or rib-eye steak to half a dozen different pizzas. When I last dined there just over a year ago, I savored a delicious spicy linguine with clams.

“At Juniper,” Montgomery wrote in his closure announcement, “we strived to be more than a restaurant. Whether it was introducing Idahoans to Idaho wines in Freak Alley, Prohibition Burlesque shows, live music with Hillfolk Noir and friends, chef’s tables, wine dinners, housemade tonics and ginger beer, and the largest selection of gin in the state, we were always looking to evolve. To all of the local purveyors who let us showcase their products, thank you. We always strived to put Idaho first and are proud to have done so.

“We look forward to serving you these next few weeks. Please stop in to say hi one last time.”

Montgomery and his wife, Shannon Lincoln, continue to operate their other Boise restaurant, Red Bench Pizza, at 1204 S. Vista Ave.

So why shutter Juniper?

“Just getting older,” Montgomery explained in an email, adding a laughter emoji. “I am happy to focus on Red Bench, coach my kids’ teams, be in bed by 10, that sort of thing. I spent 16 years on 8th Street, and it’s time for someone new in that space. I have the equipment and liquor license up for sale.”