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Restaurants & Bars 9

Boston Report Nov 1-5

winefuhrer | Nov 6, 201305:34 PM

Thank you to all Boston CHers who helped with input on our trip.

We started Friday at Neptune Oyster in the North End. We had a bottle of delicious Bandol blanc, a dozen oysters and the hot lobster with butter. We sat at the bar and service and food were wonderful. We had a bit of a wait before we could sit so we went to Quattro (up on the corner) and had a couple beverages while waiting. Neptune takes your cell # and calls when your table is ready, a nice touch since they do not take reservations (at least for smaller groups, not sure about larger parties).

Next we hit Carrie Nation and Moo in XV Beacon, respectively, for drinks. I had a very good drink called Spigot Bigot at Carrie Nation.

We went to Newbury Street where my wife found a hairdresser. I viewed this as the perfect opportunity to head over to L’Espalier for some cheese. I sat in the lounge area and had too much cheese and a glass of a lovely Secondé Rose Brut. The wine paired very nicely with each cheese.

We stopped at Myers & Chang for takeout.

Saturday was the parade. We had ballet tickets so wanted to dine relatively close to the Opera House. At the recommendation of several people on the board we did Bistro du Midi. We had a nice white Minervois, wife had a chicken Caesar and I had a very nice piece of chicken with crispy skin and polenta.

We did drinks at Hawthorne (real swanky, had a nice scotch + ginger drink) then Shojo (great take on the painkiller served in a tiki glass).

Dinner at Oishii…it was fine, would not return. I thought the quality of the food was good, but too much pomp and circumstance for me. I was not crazy about the space. I did 5 pieces of sushi (toro, white salmon, salmon, shrimp) and wife had a roll. The wine list was surprisingly very small but we had a really delicious bottle of Willamette Valley Pinot Gris.

Sunday it was rainy and cold so, of course, I insisted on walking to Cambridge to burn some calories. This was not the best decision I made on the trip. Fortunately, the brunch choice was a home run. We did TW Food, very, very small space…I counted 40 seats. The menu is a la carte or prix fixe (starter, main, and cocktail or dessert) for $33. We did a charcuterie plate, smoked salmon and watermelon salad, and two omelettes…and a couple delicious mimosas with freshly squeezed oj. Space was very nice, servers and service was top notch. Sundays TW has live jazz as well.
Next Craigie on Main, split a burger with a couple drinks. The burger is well enough known I will not expound.

I stopped at some place (cannot remember the name) and had a couple scoops of great ice cream (maybe Toscana or something like that).

We took the T back (it was this or divorce) then back to Somerville that evening for dinner. We did Bergamot and I thought this was one of the highlights of the trip. I started with potato pierogies, which were full of flavor yet delicate. I had a vegetable raviolo as an entrée. We had a couple btls of a Faury Syrah that worked well with the food and was very reasonable.

Monday we did breakfast out. We went to Paramount and I had the banana and caramel French toast. We had mimosas in the plastic Champagne flutes pulled out of a box at the register: interesting. Monday was more up in the air than other days so we just walked around. We ended up back in the North End and had lunch #1 at Antico Forno. It was decent, not great. My wife tries to do gluten free and it was one of the daytime spots I found that has gf pizza. Service and food seemed a bit uninspired but it was fine. I had a pizza with three ingredients and, essentially, each ingredient was on one third of the pizza rather than dispersed equally.

We had to do Neptune again before leaving Boston. We repeated day 1 procedure, put down our names, went to Quattro and had a drink, then to Neptune. Food was very good again. We did the triton plateau. We would opt for something else next time (not a huge clam or cold mussel fan).
We went downtown to shop for a bit. When I started to fall asleep waiting at the makeup counter I decided to go have a beverage somewhere. I ended up at JM Curley. The bartender was a young man named Watson who was so pleasant. He made a great drink (or three as the case was) as well. I had the obligatory Dark ‘n Stormy plus a couple other cocktails from the list. Everything was wonderful, a nice bar with nice staff.

We stopped at Windsor for dim sum on the way back to the room. I think I fell asleep then ordered to-go from Picco. The pizza was amazing…very, very crisp crust. I ordered the homemade ice cream sampler also and had dense, creamy raspberry chip, peanut butter chip and ginger ice cream.

Tuesday, we went to Flour in the South End, had a lemon and ginger scone, walked around and realized we missed a ton of great spots there (Toro, Gallows, etc)…had a couple mimosas at Moo then lunch at Carrie Nation (one of the few spots I could find that opens at 11h00 for lunch). We had mussels in tomato, coconut milk broth, a Greek salad, and a burger…everything was fine. The wine list was small but had enough solid choices. I was not “wowed” but have no real complaints.

Got on the plane, back home, weigh a lot more but fell in love with Boston, the people, the food…thanks for the input and a great time. We will be back to further support the food and drink scene.

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