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Dec 12, 2007 06:03 AM

Two dates: One romantic-ish, one non-romantic

I've got two dates coming up. One with Mom and one with my BF.

I'm taking Mom to the 4 p.m. Holiday Pops next week. She's all fired up for her big fun day and eve in the city. I don't know how long the Pops will last but I imagine we can manage a 7 p.m. reservation any place in the city. Currently considering Prezza, Rendezvous, Petit Robert, and Aquitaine. She doesn't get out for dinner often so I'd like it to be special, which doesn't require anything too over the top. Anyone been to any of the four mentioned recently?

My old man and I have been in a bit of a restaurant rut so I'm looking to shake it up a bit on "date night." Looking for lovely food, some place comfy, dimly lit, with a bar in case we want to stick around and linger. There's a few places that I haven't been to that I'm curious to check out. Those are: The Beehive, Gaslight, and POPS. Will these three fit the bill? And, what kind of nightmare will it be on a Friday around 8:30? Man has a real soft spot for steak frites, so if they're good at Gaslight they get the edge.

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  1. Of the four for the date with your mom, Prezza is my favorite. I really enjoy the atmosphere, the service is always good and the food is delicious. As for Petit Robert, I find the service at their Kenmore location to be better than the South End one.

    I don't think the food at the Beehive is that great though if you like music, the atmosphere would be good. Gaslight is tough to linger depending on the night since the bar gets jammed but it does have good steak frites. You could make a reservation there for dinner and then go elsewhere for drinks after. I have frequently been enjoying the bar at Sage which is close by. Pops is fun, the food is good and quite reasonably priced.

    1. It's not on your list for date #2, but you might consider Central Kitchen where you could have a great steak frites in a dimly lit bar, then repair to the Enormous Room upstairs for further drinking/amusement, if that's your style.

      Central Kitchen
      567 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139

      2 Replies
      1. re: DavisSquare

        CK is a great call for dimly lit steak frites. Blue Room is also dimly lit, subterranean even, and I had a great strip steak with potatoes on Sunday (not frites).

        1. re: DavisSquare

          I second that review! The combo of Central Kitchen and the Enormous Room is a winning combination! Steak frites are delicious with a good red wine.. Relax, eat, and converse! Afterwards, go upstairs to the Enormous Room to dance off those calories and laugh the night away!

        2. Pops concerts last around two hours. They can't go much longer since they are doing another concert in the evening and need to clean the hall etc.

          I am a fan of Petit Robert at Kenmore. That's also a reasonabvle distance from Symphony Hall. In the same area is Eastern Standard which is also quite good with greater variety.

          Eastern Standard
          528 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215

          Petit Robert Bistro
          468 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215

          1. Thanks to all. Mom has enjoyed ESK on a couple trips so I'm looking to change it up. I've been to Prezza many times and love it but not Petit Robert in Kenmore. I think I'll leave it up to her to decide. Seems like I'm on the right track though.

            Hadn't thought of Sage. I'll check out the menu. It's on my "meaning to get there" list. I should have mentioned that the "restaurant rut" consists of CK, Blue Room, ECG, Carmen, ESK. Independent, B-Side... Parking is easy and food is consistent so we don't often stray, or we just don't get inspired to think of other options. We need to venture across the river into the city more often.

            4 Replies
            1. re: kittychow

              Sheesh....and I was thinking "rut? mmhmm....Applebee's...I hear ya"

              1. re: Bob Dobalina

                It's a terrible "rut" right? I could have bigger problems, I know. Still, feeling like we need to motivate to check out new places. Maybe find some new standy-by favorites.

                1. re: kittychow

                  I think it was Gertrude Stein who said, "A rut is a rut is a..."
                  LOL - no worries. It just wasn't quite what I had in mind when you posted. :D
                  I am in this terrible decade-long post-college rut of eating mac-n-cheese tuna casserole and oodles-of-noodles on nights that I don't dine out, so I guess I am striving for a higher rut. ;)

              2. re: kittychow

                Some rut! Anyway, if you want to stay on the left bank, you haven't mentioned the West Side Lounge as part of your rut. I don't know about the steak frites, but the fish is fantastic and the drinks too. Parking not so easy, though.

                West Side Lounge
                1680 Mass Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138

              3. You may want to give Rendezvous in Central Square a try for date #2. My wife and I went there on a whim last week because Central Kitchen was too full. We sat at the bar (waited 2 minutes at around 8:30 pm on a Friday). I had a cheese plate and the charcuterie of the week. She had the cod. All of the food was very pleasing. It's a dimly lit place too and the bartender was friendly, although he didn't have a recommendation for a wine to go with my food. He did ask a manager who was close by and his suggestion ended up being great.