restaurant pick for a special weekend
We are coming to Boston the first weekend in Feb. to celebrate my birthday. We are vegetarians and I have been researching various restaurants (with all of your help!) and I have found a few that seem great. Here are my "finals" L'espalier has a vegetarian 4 course dinner, Taranta on the North End looks great, I love Spanish wines and I saw Taberna De Haro but I did not know if it was a casual restaurant, Monday Club looks interesting. Please give me your input! Has anyone had a memorable vegetarian 4 course meal in Boston? I noticed many restaurants offer them. Thank you!
I'll agree with the other posters and put in my vote for Oleana. The vegetarian tasting menu is really delicious, and it's an interesting cuisine. The tasting menu actually includes a dessert, but I'll add that the dessert menu is fabulous - even includes Baked Alaska. The atmosphere isn't too formal, ansdd it feels very cozy at this time of year.
Upstairs on the Sq/Monday Club is fun and festive, but the food isn't as special. I do like L'Espalier, but can't comment on Taranta or Taberna de Haro. Oleana may have Spanish wines as they have a Mediterranean theme.
Agree with responses below. I would choose Oleana and Craigie St. Bistrot over L'Espalier. I was very disappointed with food at L'Espalier. L'Espalier might be considered more upscale because of the ambience and it's reputation, but the others have fabulous food and are also really nice.
I wouldn't go so far as to say I've been downright disappointed by the food at L'Espalier, but I know what you mean.
The overall formal experience is unique in Boston, and can be a lot of fun.
The food is a textbook example of the fact that flawlessness and greatness are not necessarily the same thing.
Nice research; you've got a great list.
I agree with heathermb's rec for Oleana. One of the best restaurants for vegetarians in the Boston area.
The very best vegetarian tasting menu I've had in town was at Craigie Street Bistrot, also in Cambridge. Tony Maws' French cooking technique is rigorous, and his ideas inspired. The basement space is a little quirky (either dingy or Bohemian, depending on your tastes), and it's quite expensive, but the meal will be delicious and memorable. For a vegetarian tasting menu in particular, it would be a good idea to call in advance.
Taranta is sort of a fusion between Italian and Peruvian...leaning more toward Italian. I've been there once on a special occasion a couple of years ago. It was pricey, but good. I haven't been back, but that's more because of budgetary reasons than anything else--when in the North End I usually head for a moderately priced place when there are so many good ones to choose from.
Taberna de Haro is casual to me...but defining "casual" can be a challenge. It's got table service, you'd be fine wearing jeans there.
It's not on your list but my top recommendation would be the vegetarian tasting at Oleana in Cambridge. If you do a search on this board you'll see that it is quite well-liked by Boston hounds, for the most part. Enjoy!
134 Hampshire St., Cambridge, MA 02139