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Jul 28, 2008 01:42 PM

Help a Brooklyn Chow! Back Bay with a 5mo baby?

We will be staying at the Sheraton in the Back Bay for a conference (Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights) and could use some solid recommendations for the following:

Quick and Easy breakfasts - coffee, eggs, etc.
Lunches - lighter, quicker, salads, lobster rolls, Vietnamese?
Dinners - one very decent meal and one a bit more of something special

If you know NYC - we are looking for the likes of Marlowe & Sons, Diner, Schiller's, Mama's, Queen's Hideaway, Momofuku, Minca, Corner Bistro, etc.

Our daughter just started "talking" and likes to make lots of noises, but no screaming thank goodness, which means we either need a somewhat loud place or a more casual place.


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  1. Parish cafe on boylston between arlington and berkeley for lunch or Steve's on Hereford and Newbury. Charlies on Tremont near West Newton for breakfast, or Mike's Diner on Washington near Mass ave. Dinner maybe the Deluxe on Clarendon near Shawmut for informal, or Brasserie Jo on Huntington near Hereford, or Meyers and Chang. For fancy dinner with little one, maybe someplace with an outside option: Hammersley Bistro.

    1. Are you looking for walking distance, drivable, or accessible by T?

      Walkable is a little tricky. Summer Shack across from the Sheraton has a decent lobster roll, and it's quite kid-friendly, even if it's not generally Chowhoundish. Parish is also loud enough that it's kid-friendly. Charlie's is on Columbus Ave--walk out the back of the Prudential near the Barnes and Noble, cross the street, take W Newton St until the next stop light, then turn left and walk 1.5 blocks. Definitely kid-friendly, but go early if on Saturday for breakfast. Petite Robert Bistro, which would be right at that stop light, also has outside seating for a very decent meal. I believe that La Voile on Newbury St may also have outside seating.

      Drivable or accessible by T opens up a bunch of other options.

      Sorry, nothing quite like Momofuku here.

      1. ruthie - i love your nyc places.

        i think toro in the south end would be great for you. it would be about a 10-15 min walk from your hotel. they don't take reservations so go before 7pm. your daughter can make as much noise as she likes there and you guys will love the drinks and food.

        i second the recommendation for parrish cafe - go there for lunch, great sandwiches.

        if you want to venture to the north end for lunch (or dinner) head to neptune oyster for lobster rolls (also no reservations), b&g in the south end is open for lunch too, i don't like the lobster roll as much as neptune (8/10 for me with neptune at a 10/10) but it is just great and also kid friendly enough.

        for special meal i think you'd be fine at sorellina right near your hotel. i love it there. it's noisy/fun enough that i don't think anyone would be bothered by a 5mo and the food is simply awesome.

        i haven't loved by meals (breakfast/lunch place) at trident cafe but people seem to really like it. it could work for you bc it's totally kid friendly, near your hotel and you can borrow their magazines/books while you dine.

        have a great time!

        1. You don't mention what part of Brooklyn you're from, but two places here are in the same vein as
          two places I love in Brooklyn. Trattoria Toscana near the MFA is like Al di La, and Gran Gusto in North Cambridge has pizza like Lucali's, except that Gran Gusto also has a full menu and wine (Lucali's doesn't even serve salad). Trouble is, they are maybe hard to get to without a car...I'll let other hounds comment on my suggestion.

          1 Reply
          1. re: cassis

            Wow - thank you for all of the information!!!

            To answer some of your questions:

            - We will have a car, but will only really have time to travel for dinner. We are definitely up for adventures. The T is fine, the baby is very used to traveling by subway and we wear her in a carrier so there is no stroller to contend with.

            - We live in Clinton Hill and have eaten at Al di La for a birthday celebration. The pizza place I don't know because I love Grimaldi's under the Brooklyn Bridge. My husband, however, thinks Totonno's in Coney Island is better.

            - I am not eating dairy these days because the little one might have an allergy to cow's milk protein, so that rules out the pizza. I have had pretty good luck eating out so far and am even trying to make sure we find a lobster roll that is made with mayo instead of creme fraiche or sour cream. No butter toasted bun, but I'll survive.

            Thanks for the restaurant info and the advice for dining with a baby - every day is so different and such a surprise.


          2. Good suggestions above, though am not a fan of Summer Shack.

            For Vietnamese, you're probably best off in Chinatown, reachable via subway on the Green Line. Take the Hynes Convention Center stop inbound, get off at Boylston, and walk a couple blocks. You'll find places like Xinh Xinh (probably the best and most authentic of these), Pho Pasteur and Pho Hoa (both good and arguably a little less funky), plus some banh mi shops with very minimal seating.

            Also note that you're probably better off not driving in Boston as traffic routes can be confusing and parking is a bear. Fortunately, the subway and bus system are excellent.