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What's your favorite neighborhood spot?

You know, the place where you can wear your favorite old jeans and Chuck Taylors, have a great drink (poured/mixed by a friendly and knowledgeable bartender, of course) and a yummy bite, and not have to worry about dodging scenesters or tourists?

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  1. i'm really loving garden at the cellar in the harvard/central neighborhood these days. a bit of a scene on the weekends but the perfect neighborhood spot during the week.

    1. I like O'Leary's in Brookline. The food is good, the bartenders are really nice (and pour Guinness the right way), and it is frequented mainly by older people and regular Joes. A lot of folks who go there actually eat right at the bar, partly because the bartenders are willing to chat, and partly because the bar itself is usually not too crowded.

      This was one of my go-to places for awhile (along with O'Sullivan's, Eastern Pier, Cronin's, and Santarpio's), but I only get there every few months these days. I think I need to start getting back there more often...

      4 Replies
      1. re: hiddenboston

        O'Leary's IS a nice mellow place and not far from me. I look forward to watching some Sox games there. I wish I liked the food a little better, though. A person cannot live on Guinness (or cider in my case) and soda bread alone.

        Coda meets all the criteria except for not being in my own actual neighborhood.

        1. re: hiddenboston

          second O'Leary's (although we wish it wasn't quite so popular). if you haven't been lately you may have not know there is a the new cook, Mark. He is top notch. Check out the specials on a night when Mark is cooking.

          1. re: hiddenboston

            I went to Vee Vee in JP last Thursday; very cool neighborhood restaurant. I had the tuna nicoise which was very tasty. My friend had the bass, which looked was also very good. I like the menu, though small but lots to try. The bar is cozy, with candles and the place is a glow with red! Love it.

            1. re: hiddenboston

              les zygomates when it's really cold out and you need to hang somewhere forever...

              Always loved audobahn anynight the sox weren't playing. Potstickers!!! Decent Background beats.

              Deluxe in SE when there weren't too many bike messengers WITH their bikes bellied up. And it gets difficult if you have seen that scooby episode on the cartoon network a few too many times.

              Bukowski's before a flick on Dalton Street although I have seen three bar belliers on three separate occassions fall off the bar stools and hurt themselves. Best spot where you may actually run into Mickey Rourke all under the aural pleasures of late 70's retro ska punk.

              Parish Cafe if you need to get your sandwich thing on.

              Enormous room for some lounging in central square

              1. re: Bostonbob3

                I've tried James's Gate 3 times now and for me it's just OK. I like the feel of the place but the food has just been so-so. Shepherd's pie has been the highlight but nothing else has really rung my bell. Recommendations? It's received good buzz from people whose food opinions I trust including you. What am I missing? My wife and I has used Vee Vees as our neighborhood place, It's pricier that James's Gate but have enjoyed the food and sitting at the small bar there.

                1. re: gourmaniac

                  I agree about James's Gate. The food has ranged from OK to awful. I do like the fireplace in the winter, however.

              2. Buff's Pub, Newton; Tempo, Waltham

                1. My go-to place is Olde Magoun's Saloon in Magoun Square, Somerville.
                  Plenty of TVs to watch the game, a decent jukebox and a great beer selection.