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homestyle italian

I have been in the mood for warm, simple and delicious italian food. Is the Northend just a tourist spot or are there actually some places worth going to. I have been to prezza, which was very good but not what I am looking for. Give me a place that makes a great bolognese and pasta fagiole (sp). I keep hearing about a small place in allston.

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  1. On the corner of Salem and Prince I think it's spelled Al Danta ,any way you spell it they have the best bolognese

    1. The small place in Allston you've heard of is probably Carlo's and It is just what you are describing--give it a try

      1. I went to Al Dente once and enjoyed it. I went there because it wasn't on the main strip and I followed some locals speaking Italian and this is where they went. My mother and I really enjoyed it. It's really small, but we were treated well and the chow was good!

        1. My only complaint about Al Dente....improve the bread served before the meal. Very disappointing. Otherwise, the entrees are simple and very good. Service is excellent.

          1. I'd give Trattoria Toscana the nod over Carlos in quality of food, authenticity, and atmosphere. Pasta for you to try is the norcina, straciacatta, or carratierra. It's in the Fenway.

            1. Yeah, a lot of the North End is pretty bad, but don't tell that to the people standing in line to get into crappy places. They'll just clog up the places you actually like.

              Trattoria Toscana is the kind of place that's so good I go there on my birthday (as I recently did). Real Tuscan food: simple, soulful, delicious, and not expensive. Nothing fancy, and only a few wines to choose from (I generally get a carafe of the house red, which the chef/owner actually pointed me to). I used to think parking was a total challenge around there (I take the 55 bus myself), but I recently discovered a garage right around the corner on Queensbury Street (we had walked over to the bar at the Linwood for some pool and a drink while we waited for our table -- TT doesn't take reservations), and walked right by it.

              I also like Carlo's in Allston. Some others I think are inexpensive to moderate and worthwhile: Vinny's at Night in Somerville, Carmen in the North End (a bit fancier), Carmen's Kitchen in Eastie, Zafferano in Eastie (also a bit nicer than average), Antico Forno in the North End (more about pizza and baked pastas), Grotto on Beacon Hill (though they're less traditional). Trattoria Pulinella in Huron Village was on this list as well, and it's gotten some recent raves here, but I haven't been back in a while.

              1. The Daily Catch for monkfish marsala with a side of squid ink pasta.

                Piccola Venezia might be a place that looks very touristy, but the tripe dish and the ricotta cheesecake are solid.

                Slightly on the pricey side (main courses in the $20s) but worth it for the hearty Sardinian dishes such as the mazzamurru and the malloreddus. Website here for dish descriptions: http://www.mauriziosboston.com/dinner...

                There's a couple of Abruzzese dishes at Ristorante Lucia that are worth trying, and the desserts are good and rustic.

                Carmen in the North End serves a good crespelle bolognese.

                For pasta fagioli and Tuscan stuff, Trattoria Toscana is the place to go.

                1. Just ate at Marco last night abd really enjoyed the meal. Started with homemade bread with eggplant tapenade which was decent. Fried calamari with hot peppers were nice and light and crispy. Ricotta cavatelli were in a nice fresh tomato sauce.Marco salad had everything in it, lettuce, egg, artichoke, sopressata, kalmata olives, gorgonzola, and a red wine vinagrette. Then we had the mixed grill of perfectly cooked flank steak, chicken sausage and pork sausage(made in house) all topped with peppers and onoins and hot cherry peppers. All that food with 1 1/2 carafes of house red came served family style for a mere 100 bucks.

                  1. Little Vinnie's in Somerville is also good. Don't overlook Canestero's in the Fenway for reasonably priced good food. Carlo's is good, but no better than Canestero's or Abbondonza II in Norwood.

                    1. limster -

                      YUM...squid ink pasta...my husband and I recently went to sicily to visit family and my cousin's restaurant serves the BEST spaghetti with squid ink! SO GOOD!

                      most people think i'm nuts but i love it... is it good at Daily Catch?

                      i agree...alot of the north end restaurant cater to tourist and make blah tradition italian food, alot of the places 'off the strip' are the best places. However, being sicilian, I rarely go out for italian food...why? i cook great sicilian/italian food myself! :o)

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: lasiciliana

                        It's good at the daily catch; I get mine aglio olio. Surprisingly, it's a bit better when the Vietnamese chef is cooking.

                        1. re: limster

                          Asians and Italians...they know how to make a great tasting squid dish!