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Nov 30, 2007 03:51 PM

Birthday Dinner

Hi hounds, I need some help!

I want to take my SO out to a special birthday dinner next week. Unfortunately, I'm a student and can't afford to go anywhere that's exorbitantly expensive. I'm looking for a place where the food quality and prices are somewhere along the lines of Ten Tables, Trattoria Toscana, or La Voile (We've been to these already). Are there any other affordable gems like these in the Boston area?

I appreciate your help!

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  1. Pops, Coda, Franklin Cafe, Gaslight. All in the South End.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Blumie

      Unfortunately, We've also been to Franklin Cafe (which is delicious...)

      My assumption was that while those restaurants in the South End had good food for a good price, they didn't really have the ambiance I was looking for in terms of a birthday dinner. Am I mistaken?

      1. re: Vdawg

        While I don't know what ambiance you're looking for, is there anything terrible about going back to a place that you've always been, perhaps a place you both really enjoyed?

        1. re: Blumie

          No, of course not, but we enjoy surprising each other on special occasions with a new place, just the way we do things. In terms of ambiance, I was looking for something along the lines of the three restaurants that I originally mentioned. Again, I could be mistaken, but I had the impression that the restaurants in the South End mentioned had an even more decidedly casual/laid back ambiance. Please let me know if I'm mistaken!

          1. re: Vdawg

            I think Coda has a more casual atmosphere, Gaslight can be a bit on the louder side but I think Pop's could be a good's really cute in there. You can kind of see some pictures on their website. I think the Grotto recommendation is also a good one and while I like certain menu items at Rocca alot, I very much dislike the decor and ambience in the upstairs dining room. I stick to the downstairs bar area which you may not want to do for a special dinner.

      1. re: pollystyrene

        I second Oleana and EVOO - think they fit perfectly in the mix you mentioned above. Haven't been to Grotto yet...

      2. La Morra in Brookline Village would be one option. If you order off the menu, it is a little more expensive than Ten Tables. They also have a 4 course menu for $35 (+$15 for wine) every night which I thought was a really good deal (although the last few times I have gone we have preferred to have 1/2 orders of pasta, entrees and a dessert to share which gives you a better selection and makes you less ridiculously full).

        Of the places in the South End - I have only been to Coda for drinks. It had a laid back feel to it, but to me not any more than Trattoria Toscana. The drinks were good for the price, but I have not tried any of the food.

        1. Coda may be more casual than you looking for. Good food, though.

          Pops has the right mix of food and surroundings. If you check out their web site, try to ignore the background music.

          560 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02118

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