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Feb 4, 2008 11:42 AM

Nice meal at the Blue Room

I used to dine at the Blue Room quite often, mostly because I lived near Cambridge. I don't live so close anymore so it's not in my travel circle anymore, and that is too bad, because based on my meal there a few nights ago, it still rocks. I was meeting a friend for a quick bite and neither of us was terribly hungry but we were wanting a comfortable place to enjoy a great meal without having it be too formal or stuffy. That's what I've always felt the Blue Room offers.

We settled on the grilled squid and smashed potatoes and the beet salad with warm goat cheese and ginger dressing for appetizers and we split a wild mushroom and polenta vegetarian entree.

The grilled squid was delicious with nice char on the squid, perfectly tender. I wasn't crazy about the olive-y and olive oily potato side that it came with - for me it was a bit to greasy and oily, but my DC loved it and the bread they provide (iggy's francesa) was perfect for sopping up all the juices and oils. I loved the light and bright dressing on the beet salad. The mache was fresh and the goat cheese breaded and lightly fried. All in all a very nice beginning to our meal.

The mushroom/polenta main was delicious. The polenta was light and had a little parmesan and truffle oil in/on it and the mushrooms were sauteed with thyme and other herbs and the whole dish was simple and easy and just what we were looking for.

Service was fine - it was a little mechanical and I wish my server seemed more interested in how things were with us rather than just going through the motions....but he was definitely competent. No complaints.

The vibe was great - lots of intellectual Cambridge types, a few single diners, some kids (going to the movies?) and some families. The interior looks like I remember it, clean and simple and comfortable. I'll gladly go back!

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  1. We always sit at the bar when Reggie is working and enjoy his great service & sense of humor.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Taralli

      Ditto that. Reggie is the best. We ate there last week (we usually show up once or twice a month), and I had one of my favorites - the scallops with extra large lima beans. Fabulous. (I later found out from the chef at Atwood's that they both get them at Christina's - so I bought some there this weekend. Again - fabulous.) Anyway, husband had the roasted Giannone chicken with garlic mashed and swiss chard. YUM - I was stealing his! We also (as is customary if you sit at the bar) received a gratis amuse of grilled salmon with a mint pesto. It was delicious. You just cannot go wrong at the Blue Room. Ever.

      1. re: Small Plates

        Another Reggie fan here. We also think the world of Nick. Thanks for the reminder to get over there more often.

    2. Don't forget their weekend buffet brunch which is one of the best in the area by far.

      1. Emma's was WAY too crowded last night, so we opted for the bar at Blue Room based mostly on this post and not having been there in a long time. The cocktails were really outstanding (Manhattan and Rose Martini). Both salads (mache noted above and arugula) were great. There was nothing wrong with the other food (sardines, squid, short ribs, and mashed potatoes), but nothing memorable, either. The Iggy's Francese was fresh and dipping EVOO very nice.

        Unfortunately for us, instead of the much-touted Reggie, a couple of pretty much surly and unresponsive bartenders (both female) were on duty. Granted, it was busy and the drinks were mixed well, but would a smile and a comment or two indicating some interest in service/customer satisfaction be so hard? They seemed to have no real opinions to offer about the food or the drinks when asked.

        We'll probably be back again as an alternate when in the area and Emma's is full again, but the weak service keeps this off our destination or recommendation list...or maybe we'll try Atasca next time.

        2 Replies
        1. re: rlh

          Omigosh, I was there a few weeks ago and thought the same thing. We arrived at the bar about an hour before closing, didn't order any food,(although had been there for dinner a couple weeks before that and it was amazing). Our bartender, female, just made us feel like she hated us and wanted us to go away and didn't want to bothered. In my previous visits I have always felt this from her, but tipped according to the bill(20%). If I wasn't in love with the chef maybe next time I will tip according to attitude-5%!

          1. re: rlh

            For future reference, for as long as I can remember Reggie hasn't work Saturday nights.