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Seeking authentic ragu Bolognese

Not the near-ubiquitous ground beef in red sauce touted as "Bolognese," (which at its best can be quite good), but the real Italian-style stuff that takes many hours to prepare and includes finely chopped onions, celery, and carrots, only a bit of tomato, nutmeg, and multiple liquids (wine, milk, stock) added one at a time and simmered slowly into a reduction. I make it myself when I have a spare day, but would love to find a restaurant that serves it for when I just don't have the time (which is usually).


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  1. Figs in Wellesley used to have a very good bolognese "old world" so-called. They are closed but the other Figs in Charlestown or Beacon Hill may have it. I make my own and am very fussy - this is the closest I have tasted to my own.

    1. Teatro has it, and it's excellent.
      I think Trattoria Toscana has it too.
      Both worth a try.

      3 Replies
      1. re: twentyoystahs

        TT was my 1st thought too. Had it when they 1st opened & it was a huge, savory, meaty, comforting serving. In fact, there was so much hearty sauce, that I ended up eating all of it & not too much of the underlying pasta. I do not see it listed on menupages, so you might want to call ahead to make sure it's on the menu. 617) 247-9508

          1. re: twentyoystahs

            The Bolognese at Teatro is ground meat, grainy and not correct. Not to mention the undercooked half rigatoni they serve it with.

          2. I recall really enjoying the Bolognese at Maurizzio's, though it's been a few years.


            1. I don't know if it is exactly to your recipe, but I think the bolognese at Via Matta is tough to beat. I order it almost every time I go there.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Gabatta

                I have also enjoyed the Via Matta Bolognese.

              2. My favorites for bolognese in Boston are Davio's and Stella. Stella is the better of the two.

                I also had it recently at No. 9 Park and enjoyed it thoroughly.

                Does anyone know if Grotto offers it? If so I would expect it to be delicious!

                1. Good bolognese should have veal and pork along with the beef. Actually, my favorite is when it is cooked with pork and veal "on the bone," often pigs feat, ribs, chops, etc., and the meat falls off as the sauce cooks. Then you take out the bones and serve in a bowl for gnawing and marrow-sucking! yum!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: tamerlanenj

                    Il Capriccio definately uses veal and was excellent the one time I had it, but its been a while.

                  2. Good tips, thanks! Now let me refine the question a notch: do any of these places make a lasagna with it?

                    1. Prezza has a fabulous authentic bolognese. If you're in the 'burbs, La Stanza Diva also has a great one. We jokingly call it "brown bolognese," not to be confused with the ubiquitous red meat sauce served in WAY too many places.

                      1. I second previous posters suggestions of Teatro and Stella. As an aside, The Hill Tavern on Cambridge Street makes a very tasty and respectable version. Go figure.

                        1. No. 9's is pretty terrific. You can also buy it retail, frozen, at The Butcher Shop.

                          Other versions I like: Trattoria Toscana, Bricco, Lucca. Haven't liked the version at Stella recently as much as we used to.

                          1. I've heard good things about Armani Cafe's bolognese.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: tamerlanenj

                              it's not bad, actually. perhaps a bit too salty.