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My Birthday Dinner- narrow the choices

idreamofrivers Jan 25, 2007 12:07 PM

Me and my man are going to celebrate my birthday with some fine fine food. But I need help- which one?! I adore good food but I am no expert so don't want to be overcharged if I can't appreciate it- and I'm NOT a fan of the molecular gastronomy. Nothing to snobby. I've narrowed it down to:

L'Espalier
Troquet
Clio
Pigalle

But if you think there's an option we should go to instead, just holla! Thanks!

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  1. l
    ltownhound RE: idreamofrivers Jan 25, 2007 12:47 PM

    All of those get very high marks on the board, it depends what kind of atmosphere and food you are looking for, I would suggest doing individual searches to research. Also, Salts in Cambridge and No. 9 Park are also excellent.

    1. b
      Bostonbob3 RE: idreamofrivers Jan 25, 2007 12:56 PM

      "Don't want to be overcharged" and "nothing too snobby," huh?

      In that case, although I love Clio a lot (not snobby, but very pricey), I'd choose Troquet or Pigalle from your list.

      Agree with Itownhound though; I prefer Salts to either place.

      No. 9 Park is too hit-or-miss lately for my tastes.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Bostonbob3
        tatamagouche RE: Bostonbob3 Jan 25, 2007 03:40 PM

        How so (No. 9)?

      2. l
        louise8 RE: idreamofrivers Jan 25, 2007 12:57 PM

        L'espalier. Very friendly. Always professional service. A bent towards local products. (As a local product supplier to them I can say they a good to us farmers.) Organized staff. Not too bigger than life feeling, but very special.

        1. m
          MRS RE: idreamofrivers Jan 25, 2007 02:15 PM

          Pigalle! Great food, great service and a grown-up but chill vibe.

          1. j
            jcanncuk RE: idreamofrivers Jan 25, 2007 06:58 PM

            L'Espalier hands down. For something on the hipper side, consider Sorellina. The food and service are excellent - can get a bit noisy though - depends where you are sitting & the night.

            1. s
              scotttryan RE: idreamofrivers Jan 26, 2007 08:58 AM

              Why not try Ten Tables in Jamiaca Plain? I went there for my birthday last year and was very happy with my experience. It's super cozy (Only ten tables literally) but the service is great and the menu is creative and well executed. The price is right as well. Considering the quality of the food I felt as though I underpaid.

              1. Sal Monella RE: idreamofrivers Jan 26, 2007 09:18 AM

                Throw this in the ring too...Radius.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Sal Monella
                  b
                  Bluebell RE: Sal Monella Jan 27, 2007 08:06 AM

                  Even though I haven't been to the four options suggested by the poster, I have to admit that I wasn't overly thrilled by a tasting menu at Radius last month. Service was good, but there is a sort of snobby air there. Haven't been to Salts or No 9 Park in several years, but have fond memories of them. Last year's splurge dinner was at EVOO, and that was quite tasty--maybe you can put that on a future list.

                2. idreamofrivers RE: idreamofrivers Jan 26, 2007 10:38 AM

                  Thanks everybody. I like how low key Salts seems, even though the menu looks fab. Clio is out ($) but Salts has been added. Dear me- its a good dilemma when there's so many great choices. More comments appreciated and I'll pass this on the man who make the final decision and let the evening's locale be a surprise. Cheers!

                  1. saridt RE: idreamofrivers Jan 26, 2007 12:41 PM

                    I love Troquet --ask for a table near the window...I recently posted about my terrible experience at Pigalle but I seem to be in the minority on that one.

                    1. onefineleo RE: idreamofrivers Jan 26, 2007 03:20 PM

                      I took my husband to Salts for his birthday earlier this month, and it was a wonderful evening. Please see my post:http://www.chowhound.com/topics/360114

                      I'd go again anytime.

                      (Happy Birthday)

                      1. m
                        mambobean RE: idreamofrivers Jan 27, 2007 10:49 AM

                        Oleana in Cambridge -- for my money, it is the most original/singular menu in the area and every meal is great.

                        1. crystallyn RE: idreamofrivers Jan 27, 2007 10:54 AM

                          I'd second Salts...my husband and I have always counted that among our favorites. I would also really give a HUGE thumbs up to Sorrellina. Wow. We had the most amazing meal there before Christmas. Can't wait to go back! Plus it's a favorite of Manny Ramirez, who was dining there that night, so if you are a Sox fan, you never know!

                          1. c
                            cing2x RE: idreamofrivers Jan 30, 2007 07:06 PM

                            I'd avoid Troquet. Loses on all points - waaay overpriced, food mediocre, service seriously lacking, loud atmosphere.

                            1. idreamofrivers RE: idreamofrivers Feb 5, 2007 12:40 PM

                              Yay for everyone's terribly thoughtful replies (and wishes for my birthday, yippee!). So? While Salts is the back-up- and I have a mile long list of 'Must Eat At...', I have reservations at No. 9 Park. I work at Oldways and we've a new book out that Barbara and Cat are in and are helping us promote. Since I haven't met them and we're doing an event together, I thought I should take pleasure in their cooking beforehand!

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