HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >


"no name"

Hello, my dad is in town and he wants to go to the no name - he hasn't been in ages. I checked these boards and some say now it's a tourist trap, so going there may be a disappointment. Any thoughts?

(and/or is there another place I can suggest for some cod like he remembers?) thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. No Go - No Name - No Good!!!

    1. No Name was a great place to go 25 years ago. Today, forget it!

      For good basic seafood he'll probably enjoy Legal.

      1. Cod and Scrod (young cod or haddock) are more commonly encountered in old(er) school Boston restaurants. Legal would probably have the most dishes based on it, but also places like the Union Oyster House on the touristy side, Locke-Ober for something more upscale, summer shack has cod cakes and scrod but is a bit of a zoo. Most of these restaurants get mixed reviews from the board, but if that is what you are looking for these are probably the places to encounter it.

        The Dolphin Restaurant in Cambridge has a fish chowder that is quite similar to the No Name and is a good restaurant, but I don't know of cod or scrod on the menu.

        Beyond that cod cheeks have become quite popular in higher-end restaurants in the past years, including a couple of North End restaurants that have offered them. You could call Neptune Oyster and see if they have any current offerings for cheeks or cod itself.

        Update: Two others I should have included for scrod are Durgin Park and Parker's restaurant. You could respectively try the indian pudding or boston cream pie.

        1. The fish chowder at the No Name is still very good and loaded with fish. The rest of the food is not worth the trip.

          1. Just my two cents, I think the no name has very good, if simply prepared seafood. The fried and broiled platters have five or six kinds of seafood and are dirt cheap. Free garlic bread is nice and the pie and ice cream for dessert are great.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ltownhound

              Just fyi, I used to work with a woman whose husband job was buying fish for area restaurants. He said none of the pro buyers would eat at the No Name.

            2. AHHH NO! My Dad wanted to go there too! He had fabulous memories of this cool place with peanut shells and saw dust on the floor. We went and it was a TOTAL let down!!!! We really tried to make it fun but it was bad food and not the atmosphere he remembered!

              1. thanks for the replies! I will mention these comments to my dad and see if he still wants to go there... I think in addition to the food he really liked the atmosphere (and prices!) of the no name, so a "fancy" place isn't what we are looking for.

                I was thinking about suggesting the court house restaurant in east cambridge - but that might be too casual for him (you order at the counter) We do want to sit down together for a while since my parents live in another state.

                I am actually not much of a fish or seafood fan myself so I wasn't sure.

                I will pass on the info and let my parents decide, thanks!

                1 Reply
                1. re: mshillue

                  I am with the tide and think no name sux. I have not tried the chowder, however, so maybe for old times sake, it won't be too painless to just go for that. But I know it will be hard not to be sucked into ordering the crappity crap crap crap that they serve once you're already there.

                  Would Daily Catch (North End location only) have the menu items your father will be looking for?

                2. Hi,

                  Sorry, but I will go against the tide and recommend No Name. I eat there occasionally when I'm attending concerts at the Pavillion next door. The fish chowder is fresh and light, with lots of fish chunks and a thin milky broth which doesn't hide the flavor of the fish.

                  I usually get a piece of broiled fish, or the fried fisherman's platter, and I enjoy it very much. The fried clams are sweet and tasty, the french fries are crisp and brown, and the cole slaw side is homemade, and doesn't have that awful sugary taste of the commercial stuff.

                  Every time I go, it's crowded and I see lots of people who are enjoying themselves and their food. I say, go try it.

                  1. IMO it was a tourist place when I first went there in 1980. Have been maybe once in the past 5 years and that's enough for me. With the gentrification of that whole area (Boston Globe did a story recently on the influx of restaurants), I can't see how it'll survive.

                    The Globe article claimed there was a Legal Seafood Test Kitchen restaurant very near No Name which was recently opened. AM in that neighborhood frequently, but can't recall seeing it.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: C. Hamster

                      The LTK is in the new appartment building opposite Jimmy's. It is on the side of the building opposite the little park.

                    2. ya I went there recently, the fried seafood (if that's what you're into) is excellent, all else sucks.

                      1. I was there this Saturday for the first time in years. I should have turned around when I saw the tour bus out front.

                        The fried seafood was ok. The lobster was ok. Fries and coleslaw don't bother. Can these folks get real size coke cans or bottles?

                        1. I used to go to the No Name some 30 years ago. Out of nostalgia, I tried it again a couple of years ago. Not good.

                          my blog

                          1. It's been a while since I've been there but I wonder if Village Fish in Brookline would be a good substitute. As I recall it was good fish, a few preparations, not particularly upscale.