Lost in the suburbs
OK. Girlfriend's parents want to take me out to birthday dinner. They live in Shrewsbury. We live in Boston. If you have to go West where does one lay one's hat? I've heard there's some good restaurants out there, but their idea of good eats is John Harvards. What's inexpensive and still good. Italian? Nouveau American. Authentic and honest would be a plus. No Olive Garden please...
If they like JH, they'll order an entree at Tomasso and leave hungry. It is a great restaurant, best when ordering multiple courses. Also consider arturo's and El Basha (BYO), both in Westboro. Admitedly, I am partial to the Parlor in Upton. Sky in Sudbury would be another good halfway point.
If you're NOT meeting them at some midway-point or if you're going back to the in-laws afterwards Tony's excellent suggestion of Willy's Steakhouse in Shrewbury makes sense; http://www.willyssteakhouse.com/
As does trufflehounds pick of Arturo's in Westborough.
My best-of-the-best favorite in the area would be Romaine's in Northborough; http://www.romainesrestaurant.com/
All three are exceptional, will not disappoint and a short drive from anywhere in Shrewbury.
I get lost outside of 128 but when a friend moved up from North Carolina to Worcester I asked another food group, ne.food, for recommendations in the area and here is the best response. We still haven't followed up yet - too cold!
"Oga in Natick is a great Japanese restaurant. Tomasso's (pricey) in
Southborough is one of the best Italian restaurants in the Boston area.
Sichuan Gourmet is a great Sichuan Chinese restaurant. All are
located on Rt. 9. A nice Greek restaurant called Aegean is located on
Rt. 30 in Framingham. The food is great and the interior design is
You really need to venture out of Brookline to the "the country" that we call Metro-West sometime, lol. Sichuan & Oga both get fairly uniform rave reviews. Tomasso's has it's vocal supporters & detractors, present company included.
The Aegean's relocation to more spacious digs was long overdue, given it's deserved popularity. I wouldn't say it rises to the category of excellent but it is a very good, very family friendly Greek-American restaurant.
Btw, an aside regards your profile;
Way out west, we even have a Jae's Inn, where you can stay if you like. It's in his hometown of North Adams. :-)