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May 23, 2006 12:43 PM

Desperately Seeking Best Red Sauce

  • s

Californians traveling through New England with one Saturday night in Boston. Group of 8 adults want great Antipasta, Chicken Parm, Linguine with Clams, Spaghetti&Meatballs, tableside Caesar. Good wine list. From the board I've gathered the following (in no certain order):
Lo Conte, Cibo, Il Panino, Artu, and La Summa. Help!!! Information overload. Will be celebrating special occasion so price (within reason) no object. Many thanks in advance.

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  1. I'd add Antico Forno. But I don't think any of these places do tableside caesar (very little of that in Boston). I also didn't think Artu was an esp. red sauce kind of place but others would know better.

    7 Replies
    1. re: Joanie

      We've been to Antico and enjoyed it; a bit too casual for this occasion.

      1. re: Stonerose

        None of the places you listed are nicer than Antico Forno. Well, I don't know Lo Conte but the others are all fairly casual. La Summa is a cute little space but doesn't seem nicer than AF in my opinion. Artu is quite bright, Il Panino is small and packed.

        1. re: Joanie

          Thanks for that info, Joanie. It's so hard to pick that up from the websites. Any ideas?

        2. re: Stonerose

          Antic would be my choice as well.

          Unfortunately good food from the type of establishment you describe and somewhere more upscale than Antico do not go hand in hand. You are going to sacrafice food quality for atmosphere unfortunately.

        3. re: Joanie
          Adam Castiglioni

          Davide (326 Commercial St.) does tableside Ceaser.

          1. re: Adam Castiglioni

            Now that's a great Chowhound tip! I didn't know anyone did that in Boston - we go to Cafe Escadrille in Burlington for classic tableside - good to know. Will definitely check out Davide this week. Thanks again.

            1. re: Adam Castiglioni

              How's the rest of the food?

              I ate there years ago and enjoyed it but it rarely gets mentioned here...sort of "off my radar."

          2. Go to Dom's. He'll come to the table and talk to you and create a meal just for you.

            Second to that - I lived in the North End almost twenty years and L'Osteria remains my favorite red sauce restaurant in the neighborhood.

            3 Replies
            1. re: pam

              Wow such speedy replies! I will check them out; hopefully, they have a website. Is Dom's the name of the restaurant?

              1. re: Stonerose

                I agree with the L'Osteria rec. Definitely a red-sauce place - very moderate prices.


              2. re: pam

                Sorry, but Dom's would never be on my list.

              3. The tableside Caesar may be tough to find (I've had more luck with that in NJ than in MA), but as far as everything else you mentioned, here are a few of my favorites:

                Al Dente, Salem Street, Boston
                Cibo, Hanover Street, Boston
                L'Osteria, Salem Street, Boston
                Rino's, Saratoga Street, East Boston

                My favorite red sauce is probably at either Rino's or Al Dente...

                1. I like Cibo but it can be tough for parties larger than 4 people. It's small and the don't even have a dessert list so as to facilitate turnover, which they will be seeking on Saturday night.

                  1. c

                    Avoid all the North End restaurants. They are not worth the hassle of getting parking, waiting for a table, over- paying for mediocre food. Go to Carlo's in Brighten (next to Rangoli's and Pho Pasteur). May have to wait a little to be seated. During the week is easier than weekend, but food is good basic Italian. Best value in Boston.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: catspercapita

                      Nothing against Carlo's, but it's quite possible to not over-pay for mediocre food in the North End if you do some research.

                      1. re: Dax

                        ...and that's exactly what I am trying to do with this post. Thank you all - you're suggestions are most welcome! Keep em coming.

                        1. re: Stonerose

                          This isn't in the North End, but The Colosseum in Salem, NH has everything you are looking for - they do a wonderful presentation of tableside Caeser salad. They also take reservations and the food is terrific. The link is below.