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Fall dining favorites?

What are some places you will be visiting more now that the fall is upon us? Any favorites that you like to visit especially in the fall?

How about favorite fall cocktails?

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  1. I can walk to Oleana, which is one of my all-time favorites. I don't go there a lot, but walking there with a snap or chill in the air on darkened streets and shortening days and going in this warm, delicious special treat place (esp when the fire is going in colder weather) and eating food that tastes like it had special care put into it and enjoying service that seems to care about my experience...well, yum all around. Bring on fall, I say!

    1 Reply
    1. re: bee

      I love the burgers at 75 Chestnut but I tend to shy away during the summer. Might be time for a visit now.

    2. A few thoughts, despite my not really being ready to abandon my late summer local-corn-and-tomatoes mindset for autumn quite yet:

      Pumpkin: pumpkin ravioli at the Tuscan Grill (an annual tradition) and kaddo at The Helmand. Someone recently posted favorably here about pumpkin gnocchi at Antico Forno, a place I quite like, so that's on my list now too.

      Apples: Formaggio-provisioned picnics in apple orchards during apple picking season, tarte tatine with cardamom creme fraiche at Petit Robert Bistro.

      Cider: unpasteurized cider from local orchards: hot, cold, and/or mixed with bourbon or rum on brisk weekend days, especially with a college football game in front of it. My alma mater never wins, but with the right provisions, we don't care.

      Choucroute garni: heartier fare like this, from places like Sandrine's and Brasserie Jo, are what I start thinking about when the weather gets brisk.

      Polish food: I love Cafe Polonia, but I love it more in cool weather, when potato pancakes, borscht, stuffed cabbages, and fatty smoked sausages appeal to me more.

      2 Replies
      1. re: MC Slim JB

        I just tried the pumpkin gnocchi at Antico Forno. It was delicious, all of my friends were wishing that they had ordered that instead of their meals. Definitely a great meal for fall.

        1. re: MC Slim JB

          With the cool, damp weather yesterday, we stopped in to Cafe Polonia for lunch. Borscht warmed the core, with great mushroom dumplings. Split a combo plate - excellent grilled kielbasa with spicy mustard on the side - golumpki (stuffed cabbage) was also great - pierogies were ok, but would have browned/fried them more on the outside - heaping pile of kaputsa (fried sauerkraut) was studded with bits of meat but VERY vinegary. Not for everyone. DC had the potato pancakes, which were good with a side of sour cream, although they were essentially a combination of hash brown-y exterior with mashed potato interior. Not your Polish father's potato pancakes - I prefer shredded potato over this format. Still a great place to pop in for a good bit of food. Left very satisfied.

        2. Places with open hearths like Sabur or Antico Forno, or any BBQ joint for that smokiness that smells so good when the weather turns cool.

          1. Fall for me means matsutake mushrooms -- complex aromatic woodsy notes of pine and cedar. Would likely take good matsutake over white or black truffles. I've started to see it served as specials at some of the more upscale places in the area. Was actually wondering if anyone has had a good dish with these remarkable mushrooms.

            7 Replies
            1. re: limster

              Haven't had a dish around here with matsutake, but there was an interesting read about hunting them in the August 20 issue of the New Yorker: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/20...

              1. re: sifsw

                Have had five dishes so far this season with matsutake: Troquet (2 dishes), Craigie Street Bistrot, Uni and Clio; am looking for more. I could totally be wrong but might have once heard that they were foraged locally.

                1. re: limster

                  you might want to check in at TW Food about matsutake--I'm guessing, but it's probably worth a check-see.

                  1. re: MB fka MB

                    Thanks - that sounds like a great idea, been thinking about returning for another meal there as it's been a few months. Am curious actually about how they've shaped up.

                    1. re: MB fka MB

                      I looked up their menu online and they do have a dish with matsutakes. :D

                  2. re: sifsw

                    Forgot to thank you for the interesting article -- that's a good read!

                  3. re: limster

                    I love matsutakes also but have just ordered them over the web and made rice or soup with them -- roasting/grilling/braising/frying are other ways to cook them which I haven't tried yet.

                  4. The pumpkin dishes at The Helmond.

                    The cassoulet at Hamersley's.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Bostonbob3

                      Heartily second the cassoulet. It's so rich and the confit is perfection. I always take half of it home for later.

                    2. I like going to Doyle's in JP on a Sunday morning for brunch, then walking it off at the Arboretum before settling down to watch a 1:00 Pats game.

                      Also like heading up to the Cape Ann area this time of year to drive along some of the back roads before hitting Woodman's, Lobster Pool, Village Restaurant, etc.

                      And it's great walking through the Back Bay, especially along tree-lined streets like Marlborough Street and Comm. Ave. on my way to Beacon Hill (75 Chestnut) or the South End (The Dish).

                      Love making the trip up to Parker's Maple Barn in Mason, NH, too, but that's probably for a New England thread.

                      1. Carmen is a place that I would never go near in the summer, but love to visit when the temps dip. Love the suggestions so far. Keep 'em coming!

                        1. Ah, just had the new fall menu at Franklin last night. The pumpkin bisque was HEAVENLY. It was so perfect and wonderful...as was the turkey meatloaf with figs...dreamy!

                          1. On pumkin, we had an awesome kabocha squash & lobster bisque this weekend.

                            1. Matt Murphy's in Brookline Village. http://mattmurphyspub.com Great brown bread with plenty of Irish butter, hearty beef stew, a pint of porter, and a chilly/cozy window seat makes for a perfect cold weather meal.

                              1. On cocktails....had a great apple cider martini at Pops the other day. Yum!

                                1. Here's a couple of fall cocktails - I always look forward to No 9 Park's Spiced Cider Brulée with cardamom foam. A new favorite is the Pumpkin 'Martini' with Chai cream I had last night at Prezza.

                                  Speaking of seasonal drinks, I also have to mention No 9 Park's Tom and Jerrys around the holidays.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: Rubee

                                    Oh, I do love that Spiced Cider Brulee! Any idea what's in it? I am hosting a cocktail party tomorrow night and want to make a cider cocktail but am in need of a great recipe!

                                    Funny you should mention the Tom and Jerry- I see that Barbara Lynch is hosting a Tom and Jerry Party at Stir for the holidays, but I think it is already sold out.

                                    1. re: hsquare2southend

                                      You ask and you shall receive ; )

                                      John Gertsen's Spiced Cider Brulée

                                  2. Had pure Fall out in Newton this weekend. Venison, squash, cranberries, and port sauce.

                                    1 Reply