I've never been, but I've been thinking about taking my francophile father to L'espalier when he comes for my graduation (he asked for something "fancy"). Does the food live up to its expense? How is their snoot factor? Menu reccomendations? Any opinions would be appreciated!
Well worth it. If you usually eat three courses, then it is no more expensive than any other place. Service is excellent, and I would not say "snooty" but I would say it is formal. Menu changes all the time, FWIW, I was there about a year ago and loved the foie and the lamb, my father had baby suckling pig. IMO, best place in Boston.
Unfortunately you may be too late to get reservations for any of the graduations, unless it is a weekday in June.
I agree altho I'd say you can usually get a good 3 course meal around town for about $10-20 less than the $68 pp I think you'll pay at L'Espalier. But it's a great experience, pleasant non-snooty service, pretty much a perfect dining experience. I had pheasant which was great.
My girlfriend and I went for an anniversary last year. We went big and got the tasting menu plus vintner's menu (with tip, around $400 for the night). It was amazing, though I thought the vitner's was skipable. I agree, however, that you can "do" L'Espalier for more like $65 a person if you stick to the regular menu.
The place is NOT stuffy - it IS very formal. I thought the service and decor were a treat - just the perfect setting for a meal. I'd really recommend it - especially for any sort of special occassion.
Probably about 1 star by NY Times standards. Waiters professional, not snooty. Had the three course tasting menu. Sauce for lapin crepinette was far too salty; beef tenderloin was cold when brought to table. Fois gras pate w/ truffles was delicious, but that's a hard item to screw up. Can't compare to Julien or other competitors in area.
P.S. L'Espalier, if you're reading this, the "Longoureau" St. Aubin should be "Langoureau".