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Eastern Standard?

Heading into the Kenmore area for the night on Saturday - Is Eastern Standard worth the money? The menu looks inviting. Are the cod fritters good? How is the cheese plate selection? Is the hanger steak as tasty as Aquitaine? I'm spying that chocolate brioche bread pudding, too. I should really eat something now.

From the photos, the place looks cavernous. Is noisy and cold? Would we be better off at Petit Robert Bistro?

TIA,
Javagrrl

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  1. I like both those places. Petit Robert I think is probably better all around for authentic French bistro food, and has better desserts. It's smallish and intimate and a bit cheaper. I think PRB's steak-frites is better than ESK's.

    ESK's menu is a bit broader, with some American and Italian dishes on top of the French stuff, plus truly amazing bartending, worth a trip in itself. It has a big, handsome, urban brasserie vibe, more lively. Those salt cod fritters are fantastic.

    1. it most definitely worths (sorry, internets idiom).

      - the saturday beef wellington special is tremendous.
      - love the bone marrow app which is hard to come by anywhere else in boston.
      - i think the steak frites dish is good, but is inferior to aquitaine (some people don't like the truffle vinaigrette, but i'm with you). i do think it's a little better than PRB, though.
      - i have enjoyed the beef short rib bourguignon, which is simple and hearty (and have had a terribly mediocre one at the south end PRB).
      - the mussels app has improved over time. on our first visit shortly after it opened, some were gritty, but now it's a solid standby.
      - the charcuterie plate and baked raclette are great.
      - and, yes, the warm bread pudding beckons...

      ESK is boisterous, but i've always conversed at a normal, comfortable volume there. the high ceilings seem to effectively dissipate the noise. also, half the draw for me is the bar. i'll take any chance to revel in their sazerac.

      1. Food is decent, no more. Bartenders and cocktails are quite good. Nice quiet room in the back for private parties is nice too. Noisy and not as good as it thinks it is.

        1. PRB and Eastern Standard are different in atmosphere. PRB Kenmore is a very good bistro with better service than their South End location but it doesn't have much of a bar area. At ESK I really only ever sit at the bar which you should absolutely do if you are a cocktail lover. Just put yourself in the hands of one of the fabulous bartenders there and you'll be quite pleased (my favorite cocktail is the au provence). I too really like the bone marrow as ESK as well as the raw bar and the burger.

          1. Cod fritters are one of my least favorite things on the menu, tasteless. The charcuterie plate is always good(and always includes head cheese!!!!!!!) Burgers are great. Oysters have been decent. Atmosphere depends on if their is a sox game or not.overall one of our favorite places in Boston

            4 Replies
            1. re: kechefs

              I had mixed feelings about the fritters. I thought they tasted good, or maybe it was the sauce that came with them, but the batter on a couple was raw in the middle. (It did not stop me from eating them, of course)

              1. re: Bob Dobalina

                They've been really good the two times I've had them.

                1. re: Bob Dobalina

                  I've had mixed success with those fritters. Bob, I've had the raw batter on the inside on more than one occasion but that was some time ago. I haven't ordered them in awhile. My favorite cod fritters are at Toro.

                  1. re: lissy

                    Those fritters at Toro are GOOD!