HI all, it'll be our 5yr anniversary at the end of the month. Between family living w/ us, our 3y/o, and me away during the week for work, time together is kinda lacking lately. Been trying to plan this for over a month now and still can't finalize on a restaurant. We live on the Cape so in "getting away", thus far this is what I have. Saturday afternoon check into the Charles Hotel in Harvard Sq, sending her to a massage at the spa, I have a car/limo picking us up at 630p to go to Copley for a small champagne reception in picking up her surprise new "hand bag". From there I'm at a loss for dinner, after which we'll come back to the hotel for the night. Sunday I have reservations for Brunch at Cafe Fleuri at the Langham, afterwards to a movie, and then back home. For dinner, going out is usually Cheesecake, Joe's, or if I'm in Cambridge, take out from Izzy's. I love meat but don't like seafood, not allergic, just don't like the taste. She is a vegetarian, no meat, but she loves seafood. I've only seen her order haddock, cod, shrimp, king crab and mahi mahi, but never halibut, salmon, tuna, or sushi which seem to be on most menus. I can basically eat anywhere. Neither of us have ever really been to the real fine dining places except twice at Miel at the Intercontinental where we tried but both times ended up ordering off the bar/late menu instead of the dinner menu. I originally wanted somewhere in the Seaport district or North End to enjoy the car ride between Copley and dinner but now that isn't as important.
So after a month of reading reviews, suggestions, and menus, I'm thinking L'Espalier, Erbaluce, and Mistral are perfect romantic places and I would like to try something out of the ordinary for us as they may be able to customize a plate for both of us. However, I'm not sure if we have the palate to truely appreciate the smaller/fine dining dishes. The next ones I considered to have a nice atmosphere but I'm not sure she'd have many options on the menus were Carmen, Grill 23, Clio, Menton, and Grotto. Legal Harborside on the 1st floor I know has stuff she likes but we go there w/ friends and take the kids so the special/romantic feeling might be out the window. The 2nd floor, I run into the menu selection issue again, perhaps could drop in this week to ask if they can customize. I know Cragie on Main, Bondir, and Salts are highly recommended but again not sure on the menu and prefer dinner in Boston over Cambridge. Lastly, I'm considering Oceanaire, Turner Fisheries as we'll already be in Copley, or Mare in the North End as the menus I know she'll enjoy, but just not sure how intimate they would be.
I apologize if I seem all over the place here but am open to anything at this point, just trying to plan the perfect weekend. I've read so much and looked at so many menus, I can't remember which one had 1 reservation per night to sit with the chef or at a table in/near the kitchen and a meal specially prepared by the chef. There was also a steakhouse w/ a "seafood presentaion" but didn't list what it was. Maybe I'm overthinking and just need to keep it simple? Any and all help you can give is greatly appreciated. Thanks!