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Nov 13, 2007 07:35 AM

Sel de la Terre - Excellent

By way of thanking Chowhounders for this recommendation, a brief report.

I dined with four companions at Sel de la Terre last night. To cut to the chase, all agreed that it was an excellent meal. Among the first courses, the Mussels Provencal were tasty and flavorful in a wonderful sauce. The Divers Scallops were, according to our companion, "perfect." A pizza was more a delivery system for the spiced chicken and olives, but enjoyable nevertheless. Main courses included a peppered venison, braised short ribs (which my wife judged superb), and a pan-grilled swordfish that was remarkable moist and flavorful. We all shared one dessert and we picked well: the chocolate creme caramel with candied orange was, all agreed, the highlight of the meal. Only complaint: the bread, which received notice in the recommendations I received in my first solicitation, was merely adequate. We speculated that Monday night may be a light staff night and they purchased, rather than baked their own. With fine wines, all in all, a delightful meal. Thanks for the recommendation.

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  1. Which branch of Sel were you at?

    1 Reply
    1. re: BBHound

      Based on GameFish's original post asking for recommendations, I am thinking they were at the downtown, Long Wharf location

    2. no since their baker left to open his bakery in Framingham (B&R breads), the quality of their bread has really gone down.

      6 Replies
      1. re: joebelt

        They also centralized their baking a few months ago to serve the new places, perhaps the quality took a hit from that. I'd expect they'd have the kinks worked out by now. Occasionally the selection in the bread basket is not my favorites, maybe something similar happened with GameFish? I'm fairly certain the bread would have been fresh and made in-house. (Well, at the central facility.)

        Anyway, glad the rest of the meal was good.

        1. re: erwocky

          We we are the Long Wharf, across from the Marriott. To clarify, it is perhaps more accurate to say that the brtead did not live up to its hype--at least for us. That is not to say that it wasn't tasty.

          1. re: gamefish54

            I was back at Sel de la Terre again during the holidays and again their breads were very average. Nothing to do with the artisan breads that their old baker used to make.

            1. re: gamefish54

              gamefish -- I had lunch at Sel last week and the bread basket was great -- maybe not up to the "old standards", but the rye with caraway and the fig walnut were both super. Purchased a baguette for home and that was good too. I think SdlT is a great spot.

              1. re: yumyum

                I guess it all depends what you've experience before. But this French guy can't stand behind their current baker.

          2. re: joebelt

            When did their baker leave? Last summer I had great bread at Sel de la Terre, but when we were there last night it was definitely 'average.' For a Friday night I would think they would put out their best. If that was it, then its nothing to write home about.

            Also, our waiter was brusque, curt and unhelpful -- while the other staff were all gracious and hardworking, when your main interlocutor for the house cannot answer basic questions about a not-too-extensive menu and makes you feel demanding just for asking, it is pretty damaging. Last summer I thought the place was great, but it just moved into my 'overrated, no plans to go back' category.