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Apr 29, 2007 05:11 AM

Anthony's Pier 4

By mistake I ended up tehre for a late lunch yesterday with a friend. I was dreading it actually. I hadn't read anything about it on the Boards but it had all the earmarks of a place that survies on tourists and old families who remember that it was the place to be seen in 1952. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. We ordered a half dozen Bluepoints that were briny and crisp with a fabulous mingonette and washed them down with a cute little 2-glass bottle of champagne. I got the "open face" seared tuna sandwich. They should really jsut dispense with the "bread". It was more like a rock-hard toast shingle. But the tangle of mesclun on top was fresh and crisp with a very nice balasmic dressing and the tuna was all you could ask for-rich and perfectly seared otuside, perfectly cool inside. After spying some fine-looking onion rings on someone else's plate, I ordered a side for my self and boy were they EXCELLENT!! Totally grease-free, not batter-dipped but rolled in something that gave them an extremely crispy, dry coating. The onions were obvsiouly freshly cut, thick and sweet. My dining partner had a crab cake appetizer for her entree ( a perfect Weight Watchers size), and it was nice chunky backfin, no filler, good mix of onions and a few tiny dices of green pepper, lightly sauteed, with a little side of the same greens. We split a respectable, not stellar, creme brulee. The standout on it was a pyramid of candied orange peel-dripping just enough instensely orange syrup onto the crackly sugar top. Topped off with a pretty fair capuccino, it was a nice, leisurely (expensive : $40 each!!!!) lunch in a beautiful room with a grand view of the harbor.Good people watching too-especially the group of perfectly coiffed debutantes and their similarly well-groomed matriarch, all in pretty spring dresses, digging into some EEE-NORMOUS lobsters after having an attantive tuxedo-clad waiter tie on ther plastic bibs. And the couple in the corner who ordered some tall beers-they must have been 24 inches high and held in wooden racks.
I'm not necessarily giving it a ringing endorsement, but it didn't kill me to eat there!!!!

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  1. WOW! That was interesting because I swore that I would never ever eat there again. As a child I grew up eating there very often as it was considered one of the only fine dining establishments in the city. I loved the popovers, marinated mushrooms, prime rib with baked potatoes that were filled with sour cream, bacon and chives. I loved my Shirley Temples with a plastic lobster tail to stir it with. The relish trays were devine as the lemon pier 4 ice cream pie. As I grew older I ate the shrimp Rockafeller. I even loved the goey mints on the way out.
    I decided to take my in-laws there for mother's day about four years ago and it was awful. The service was bad and so was the food. I made my mother in-law order the dover sole and I told her she was going to love it. Three of us at the table ordered it and it was filled with bones. There were 10,000 children in there enjoying the day but there was no childrens menu. When I asked the waiter he said we do not have one but kids love lamb! Where do kids love lamb? I had eaten there in the past with my daughter and they had a children's menu but not for mother's day. I was disgusted! I swore that I would never eat there again and I have yet to return. Besides now that Boston is a "playah" in the food world who needs to go there anymore.

    2 Replies
    1. re: hoplover

      mother's day is probably the worst day of the year to try to eat out. especially in a barn of a place like that, where families have decades of tradition going there. unless the sole has been fileted, yes, it will be full of bones, but the fish opens like an envelope.

      they have one of the most beautiful views of boston.
      they have a very good wine list.
      good oysters and boiled lobsters.

      it's not gourmet, but i don't mind it at all for the exact things i mentioned above. and they serve that retro cheese spread at the bar, lol!

      p.s. as a kid, i loved lamb.

      1. re: hotoynoodle

        Me too (loved lamb as a kid), and like Missy, I was surprised that I didn't have nearly the wretched experience I was expecting. Still loved the popovers, the wine list, and whatever I ate was just fine. This was about a year ago, a quiet Monday night, and I don't remember what it was I had for an entree nor have I been back, but I remember thinking I wouldn't mind hanging at the bar sometime.