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Good/Fun Place to Eat in Cambridge....Any Suggestions?

t
T Y Jul 26, 2006 10:40 PM

I have a friend going off to graduate school in Cambridge and I wanted to give him a gift certificate to a cool place with good food...any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

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  1. MC Slim JB RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 12:24 AM

    To feed how many people, for how much money?

    1. t
      T Y RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 01:01 AM

      I want to get a gift certificate for at least $100, he has a favorite place out there but they don't do gift certificates online or on the phone. I guess it would be for one person unless he has others come with him.

      5 Replies
      1. re: T Y
        MB fka MB RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 01:45 AM

        My picks for you to check out:

        East Coast Grill
        Central Kitchen
        Chez Henri
        Rendezvous
        Oleana
        EVOO (actually Somerville, but a 10 min. walk from Harvard's campus)

        They are more or less in the order of (my perceived) upscale-ness. ECG is pretty casual, Central Kitchen and Chez Henri are probably the coolest. Oleana and EVOO could be good date spots, but I've eaten at the bar solo more than once at both places.

        I don't have personal experience yet at Conundrum in Harvard Square, nor Om (only drinks) but those would be worth checking out too.

        Looking back - and not as convenient to Harvard (in Kendall near MIT - is the Blue Room which I'd add as well.

        1. re: T Y
          Bob Dobalina RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 01:04 PM

          What's the favorite place that does not do gift certificates?

          1. re: Bob Dobalina
            t
            T Y RE: Bob Dobalina Jul 27, 2006 07:11 PM

            i forget how to spell it but i think it's something like Chau Chaus.....at least that's what it sounds like, not spelled like though.

            1. re: T Y
              MC Slim JB RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 07:12 PM

              Cuchi Cuchi, maybe? It's a pan-European small plats place near Central Square.

          2. re: T Y
            MC Slim JB RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 07:31 PM

            That gives you some leeway. Some of my current favorite sit-down places for a celebration: Rialto (easily the swankiest of my list), Green Street Grill, Tamarind Bay, Craigie Street Bistro, East Coast Grill, Dali, The Helmand, OM, Salts, and the Rendezvous.

          3. d
            Dreamworks RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 04:19 AM

            Don't forget Gargoyles in Davis Square. It's not right next to Harvard. But I think the food, decor and service are excellent for the price.

            1. s
              SoWaDiner RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 01:30 PM

              I recommend East Coast Grill - just ate there last week, and it was awesome. And a fun atmosphere also.
              Oleana and Chez Henri are excellent choices also!

              1. h
                HeelsSoxHound RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 01:31 PM

                gotta go with central kitchen, chez henri, or east coast, not necessarily in that order. gargoyle's, in my opinion, has gone downhill a bit in the past couple of years. rendezvous, at this point, is doing better food than steve's previous digs, the blue room. i've had a couple of really memorable meals there, but it's not as romantic as chez or central. east coast not really romantic at all (are we going for that?) but the food and drinks are unquestionably kickass.

                1. m
                  mwk RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 01:50 PM

                  When I think of a "cool place with good food", in Cambridge, I think of Cuchi Cuchi. Their food is excellent, and the drinks are great and the vibe in the room is a lot of fun.

                  1. c
                    csifitgirl RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 02:09 PM

                    some cool places in Cambridge to try are:

                    Central Kitchen
                    Cuchi Cuchi
                    OM
                    dante
                    middlesex lounge

                    1. erinire RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 07:10 PM

                      B-Side? Thoughts?

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: erinire
                        gini RE: erinire Jul 28, 2006 05:35 PM

                        B-Side has an overwhelming cocktail list and their bartenders are quite talented. Their food, however, isn't as great as it used to be. The braised short ribs, though, if they have them are fabulous. Very relaxed, casual atmosphere. Great bar.

                        1. re: gini
                          Dax RE: gini Jul 28, 2006 05:44 PM

                          I think their entrees fall a bit short when a number of them are reaching the upper-teens - Franklin Cafe remains a better value there.

                          However, some of their apps are really good. They used to have my favorite mussels in town, the baked brie, as ubiquitous as it was five years ago, remains a delicious option. The sirloin and fondue app also sounds good. I miss the lobster mashed potatoes. I haven't eaten there (to eat) in a good two years though ...

                          1. re: Dax
                            gini RE: Dax Jul 28, 2006 07:52 PM

                            They took the sirloin and fondue app off of the menu. Was there this spring and they said they haven't had it on there in years.

                            1. re: gini
                              Dax RE: gini Jul 30, 2006 09:31 PM

                              Their online menu still lists it but I recall that they have always been terrible about updating the site.

                              1. re: gini
                                erinire RE: gini Jul 31, 2006 02:14 PM

                                I was there not too long ago and they still had the fondue... but they do seem to be making some small tweaks lately, and some of the staff is new.

                        2. t
                          T Y RE: T Y Jul 27, 2006 07:12 PM

                          thanx everybody for the suggestions!

                          1. steinpilz RE: T Y Jul 28, 2006 05:46 PM

                            I'll add Casablanca, nice place, nice location, good food.

                            1. s
                              Salt and Pepper RE: T Y Jul 29, 2006 06:34 PM

                              I suggest EVOO (on Somerville/Cambridge line near Harvard Square, or Central Kitchen in Central Square. I have eaten at both of them dozens of times, and they are consistently very good. Have had and heard of many terrible experiences at Rendezvous in Central Square.

                              1. y
                                ypeopleeat RE: T Y Jul 29, 2006 08:44 PM

                                Rendezvous in Central Square, I had a great meal there recently. A well prepared meal in a pleasant setting with gracious service and fairly inexpensive.
                                http://www.rendezvouscentralsquare.co...

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