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21st Birthday Dinner in Harvard Square

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I'm trying to find a good place in Harvard Square to have a quick 21st birthday dinner (about 8 people). We're on a college budget, but I still want it to be somewhat nice - think relatively inexpensive yet classy. The options I've come up with are Cambridge 1, OM, and Small Plates. I'm leaning towards Cambridge 1, although the downside is that it doesn't take reservations. Does anyone have any other suggestions or thoughts? Thanks!

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  1. Cambridge One has excellent pizza and salads, and if you're looking for pretty cheap and fairly casual, it's a great choice. It wouldn't be my first choice for a birthday celebration since it's such a casual atmosphere, but then again, it's been quite some time since I turned 21. They do have wine and beer if that's important to you.

    If you can afford $18 entrees, I'd suggest heading up Mass Ave a bit to the West Side Lounge or even, if we believe Finlero about its recent improvement ( :) ), to the Temple Bar for more of a 21st birthday type vibe with good food and good drinks.

    3 Replies
    1. re: DavisSquare

      I forgot about Temple Bar - that's definitely an option (and I'll be able to see its improvements for myself!) And I've never heard of West Side Lounge, but it looks great - thanks!!

      1. re: meigga

        West Side Lounge is a great place (and right next to Temple Bar). Cambridge Common has solid pub food and a lively vibe.

        1. re: meigga

          WSL is one of our favorites and I think it's miles better than the Temple bar, although I haven't eaten at the latter in a couple of years and it's supposed to have improved in that time. WSL would be my personal top choice for a birthday celebration in Harvard Square at a price below the eye-watering .

      2. another thought is Garden at the Cellar down Mass ave towards central. it's a bit small and doesn't take reservations but if you time it right it could be a lot of fun. great food and fun atmosphere.

        1. Z Square
          John Harvard's

          1. haha, it's a good thing i'm probably going to end up having multiple joint bday dinners with different groups of friends (lots of my friends seem to be born in January!) West Side Lounge is a definite - and thanks for the other suggestions! not a huge fan of John Harvard's ambience for this occasion, but Z Square is a definite possibility, as is Garden at the Cellar.