Restaurants & Bars

Greater Boston Area

Farmhouse Needham (longish)


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Restaurants & Bars Greater Boston Area

Farmhouse Needham (longish)

Science Chick | | Mar 23, 2013 05:24 AM

We went last night and had an overall positive experience. Arrived 15 min early for our 7:30 reservation and sat at the bar to wait. A lively, somewhat noisy, room that has a cold feel. A couple of nice wooden communal tables, but everything else pretty stark in grey/white. The tables are pretty crammed in tight and I think the space would benefit from a less crowded atmosphere. The bartender gave us wine menus but then became incredibly overwhelmed with table orders and basically ignored us for the next 10 minutes. Small bar (only about 10-12 seats), so he could have turned and given us a "be right with you" gesture. Another bartender showed up and took our orders. DH's Pinot Grigio was absolutely awful (thin vinegar), so we returned it for a Sav. Blanc and they were gracious about it. Strange, though, they serve glass wines in big stemless snifters and the pours seem quite small (probably an illusion of the enormous glass)...stemware was apparent on the bar but is probably saved for people ordering bottles. I had a red, so no problem for me, but DH's white really should be in a stemmed glass.

Our table wasn't going to be ready on time, but hostess came right by to let us know and offer us the option of sitting at the "tasting table", which is just an eating bar along the open kitchen. We passed and were seated about 15 minutes late at a small 2 top right next to the bar access area. It was a horrible table...there was a small floor cabinet (like you might have in your bathroom) up against the end of the bar and our table was right next to it (2-3 feet). Servers were constantly using it, so their backsides were frequently right in our faces. Very unpleasant, but it was so busy I didn't want to ask for another table and decided to just mention it to them when we were leaving so they would have some feedback.

Ok, onto the food.....very nice flavor combinations and presentation and service was very good. However, food overall lacked seasoning and we had to ask for salt for our table. Beet salad had 5-6 small peachy beet chunks and a nice helping of mixed greens, including some chards and perfectly toasted pistachios. An accompanying goat cheese/potato croquette was not memorable and lacked any flavor/seasoning. DH had the potato/leek soup with truffle oil, which was lovely but also needed a good shot of S&P. Farmer salad had similar greens as mine, with a few additional radishes. For main courses, I had the Nantucket scallops which were perfectly cooked with delectable caramelization, served with cauliflower and a grey puree of some sort that tasted of parsnips but was a very unappetizing color alongside the scallops and cauliflower. The plate could have used some visual snap. DH had the vegetarian quiche that he loved, albeit rather small, served on some nice wilted greens.

Service was attentive but the noise level, general chaotic feel and proximity to the service area made us less than comfortable. $89.00 including tip (excluding wines at the bar first). Not a bad experience for a casual dining, and with time they may work out some of the kinks.