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Celebratory Lunch Tomorrow--Ideas?

MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 03:17 PM

Prefer Boston proper and something fun or with bit of drama, maybe Locke Ober for martinis and lunch? I don't much like No. 9 (overrated, IMHO). Perhaps a small plates kind of place, so we can have a leisurely multi-course-fest/feast? Food is #1, setting #2, price not so much an issue (it is lunch after all).

Maybe Bristol Lounge or Grotto or Pierrot Bistro? I've not been to any of these. The menus at Davio's and Ivy look interesting, but are they any good? Via Matta has been my go-to place for upscale lunches, so that's a pass this time. I'm drawing a blank on lunch options in the North End, besides Neptune which has been my other go-to place. (Who's on an Italian kick?)

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  1. b
    Bostonbob3 RE: MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 03:21 PM

    Locke Ober certainly has the "drama" bit down. Pretty good food, too.

    Radius also serves lunch.

    1. t
      Taralli RE: MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 03:35 PM

      Probably no drama, but Jake Wirth's might be fun for something different http://www.jacobwirth.com/pages/menu_...

      1. b
        BBHound RE: MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 03:37 PM

        Bristol Lounge fits the bill quite well. I have had good experiences there.

        You might consider the Oak Room in this class as well. Good food and dramatic room. Or Ruth's Chris' Steak House and Smith & Wollensky, both of which have historic settigs and serve lunch.

        1. Joanie RE: MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 04:46 PM

          The steak houses are a good idea but if you haven't been to Davio's yet, that would definitely work. Not sure what the day time atmosphere is like, it's usually pretty fun and lively at nite, and mmm those chicken livers.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Joanie
            Northender RE: Joanie Oct 3, 2006 08:52 PM

            Joanie, It took my staff to Davio's for lunch last year and the place was packed and lively - but still great service. this was around the Christmas Holiday Season, but I suspect they do a pretty lively lunch trade - and mmm those chicken livers.

            1. re: Joanie
              MB fka MB RE: Joanie Oct 3, 2006 09:39 PM

              I was thinking of you when I added Davio's to the list of potentials as I recall you've always had solid experience there.

            2. a
              A Fish Called Wanda RE: MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 05:16 PM

              Sel de la Terre is my favorite special occasion lunch. Get a steak frite or any fish entree -- reasonably prices and really yummy :)

              Helen's Kitchen >> http://www.helenrennie.com

              1. c
                cmd RE: MB fka MB Oct 3, 2006 09:57 PM

                I don't have experience with most of these places, but I don't think Ivy is worthy of a celebratory lunch. I like it, but in a "work is over and I must have a bottle of wine and a snack" way, not a special occasion way.

                1. Alcachofa RE: MB fka MB Oct 4, 2006 01:45 PM

                  You've probably made your choice by now, but if not, what about Lala Rokh? The room is a little bland, but the food isn't. Lots of shareable items. The "drama" can be the walk up the little hill to get to their front door.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Alcachofa
                    gourmaniac RE: Alcachofa Oct 4, 2006 01:53 PM

                    FYI on the decor at Lala Rokh. The Persian miniatures (paintings) on the walls are originals some dating back to the 15th century. They are exquisite and worth millions. That may help with the drama. For the orignal post, Grotto is always a treat and also on Beacon Hill. It would be a nice walk in a pretty part of town. today.

                    1. re: Alcachofa
                      MB fka MB RE: Alcachofa Oct 5, 2006 02:58 PM

                      I found Lala Rokh to be overrated, after 2 visits.

                    2. C. Hamster RE: MB fka MB Oct 4, 2006 05:17 PM

                      Davio's and Sel de la Terre are fabulous lunch places. My work friends and I go to Davio's once a month or so since we work close by. It's always good.

                      IMO Jacob Worth's has the worst food in Boston, unless they hired a new chef.

                      1. MB fka MB RE: MB fka MB Oct 5, 2006 04:27 PM

                        Okay, here's the rundown from the Day of Debauchery:

                        Upstairs on the Square, 11:30am

                        We were going to sit outside, but apparently you cannot sit outside and have alcohol without ordering an entree. No, appetizers don't count. Seems kind of silly to me. Inside at the bar, then: giant, pink cocktails. Aviatrix and a Raspberry-Lime Rickey kind of thing. They were both tasty enough but I wouldn’t order either one again. We ordered that outstanding gazpacho and a steak salad. Rare slices served over a bed of well dressed mixed greens, with a bit of finely sliced radish, red onion, shaved fennel, and Great Hill blue cheese. They serve a pesto olive oil with their house-made bread that is quite amazing, too. Phantom Gourmet was there filming and there was a Weight Watchers meeting upstairs?? Frank at the bar is the man. In my experience, I find the whole staff to be great, I like the great service coupled with just a bit of casual/familiar.

                        Locke Ober, 2:30pm

                        Giant martinis - Hendricks and Grey Goose - about $10 each. Finally got to try that lobster stew. What took me so long!? This stuff is AMAZING. Growing up on the Cape there was always a lot of lobster bisque to be had, but it just doesn't compare. This is thin, rich yet bright, and the lobster meat is cooked perfectly. They split the order in the kitchen, which was a nice touch. Seated at the bar were a few regulars who tipped us off to the barman's secret addition--a bit more sherry. Mmmmmm.

                        Bouchee, 4:30pm ?

                        Some great bar skillz here. The French 75 was fantastic, but after two of them, there's no way I could share much detail. Had a nice pork rillette served with diced cornichon and a grainy mustard. Nearby diners were getting into a braised short rib special. Big portions here. Perfect weather for outside seating and that patio is quite lovely. The place got pretty busy as we were finishing up and it’s clear that they’re still working out some service kinks, but everyone was great.

                        Carmen, 8:00pm??
                        Dined at the bar. The marinated mushrooms are addictive--bacon makes everything better. Shared an appetizer of mozzarella wrapped with prosciutto, served on a small cutting board with a lovely pesto (I think??) Shared two half-orders of pasta, which were gigantic. My favorite was the “Crespelle Stuffed with porcini mushrooms and caramelized onions with our famous bolognese sauce.” This is a perfect fall dish and I would head back to Carmen soon just for this (and those mushrooms). We also had an orecchiette dish served in a light tomato sauce with spicy sausage and rabe that was also fantastic. Our server made a great wine recommendation (but 4 martini drinks into the day, of course I don’t remember) but it seemed a value at $36.

                        Stuffed, but clearly feeling overly adventurous, we found our way to Trani. Sober this would not have been a good idea. Soft serve injected into brownie cupcakes. The ice cream and chocolate coating were fun, but even with all that alcohol coursing through my veins, the calories weren’t worth it and the remainder went in the trash. The place is really fun, though. I almost feel like it should be in Allston...or West Hollywood.

                        1. t
                          twentyoystahs RE: MB fka MB Oct 5, 2006 04:31 PM

                          Wow. Now THAT'S the way to celebrate. Wish you were my friend ;)

                          1. Rubee RE: MB fka MB Oct 5, 2006 04:47 PM

                            What fun. That's my kind of day!

                            1. gini RE: MB fka MB Oct 5, 2006 05:42 PM

                              That sounds fantastic. I'll order you a wheelbarrow stat to get around town.

                              1. MB fka MB RE: MB fka MB Oct 5, 2006 07:54 PM

                                Ha! You all let me know when you're ready! But I'm gonna need a day to recuperate. :-)

                                1. MichaelB RE: MB fka MB Oct 5, 2006 10:43 PM

                                  My god, that's impressive. And back in form and posting the next day? True chowhound devotion! Thanks for the amazing report.

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