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Friday night spot - eat at bar & close to Amtrak train station

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I'm looking for a recommendation for a spot to meet my husband for a light dinner at about 8:30pm. I don't want to make reservations so I'm thinking somewhere that has food service at the bar. We'd like to be close to the Amtrak stop in Boston (Back Bay? Is that the one across from Neiman Marcus?). I'll have a car so hopefully somewhere not too challenging in terms of parking. We like all kinds of food. Was thinking American, Italian or anything not Asian or Mexican.

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  1. Amtrak stops at both South Station and Back Bay, so I'd double check to make sure which one you're near first. Vastly different food options.

    South Station is right by Chinatown, which won't help you. The only other places I know nearby are higher high end restaurants or hotels (Le Meridien, Boston Harbor Hotel, Intercontinental, etc.).

    Back Bay definitely has more in the immediate area, but since I rarely pay attention to bars or bar service, perhaps others can give you better recommendations.

    1. If you decide on South Station, have dinner at the Boston Harbor Hotel Bar. There are two bars. I'm talking about the "dark" bar. You can wait the Red Sox and have great cocktails and dinner. About 4 blocks from South Station.

      1. If it's the South Station stop then you sholud go to Les Zygomates. Great spot for dinner/drinks and entertainment.
        If it's the Back Bay stop then walk a few blocks down Dartmouth St. (or is it Clarendon St?) to Tremont Street and go to Hammersley's Bistro. You will be thrilled with either place. Both have been around for years and have great reputations for wondeful food, service and atmosphere. Have fun!

        1. If it's South Station, you could go to Sorriso for Italian. (I like the Les Zyg suggestion as well.)

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          1. re: cmd

            I'll second Sorriso. We had a great meal and some fabulous wine at the bar one evening and the service was impressive. Their wine guy really knows his stuff.

            If he is getting off at Back Bay Station you can park at the Prudential Center or Copley Place (I find Copley a really awful parking lot and would opt for the Pru. We will no longer use the Zipcars at Copley because it takes too long to get in and out.)

            There is a dining bar at Turner's Fishery at Copley almost across the street from the station. They do decent seafood- nothing spectacular but it you are just looking for a meal, that might work.

            You might also consider Brasserie Jo over on Huntington at the Colonnade Hotel. They do have parking and the food will be better.

            Hamersley's mentioned above is fantastic- that would turn meeting the train into a special evening.

          2. If the train is coming in from the west, it will stop at the Back Bay Station. There is a parking garage attached to the station. You can park there, or double park and meet your husband out front and drive anywhere. Turner Fisheries is almost across the street or you can walk through Copley Place to Huntington Ave to reach Brasserie JO. Both places are participating in Restaurant Week, and may be crowded. Hamerlsey's in a short walk in the other direction, and with it's large patio, it may be easy to get into. It is a bit of a splurge, but Aquitaine is practally next door and if they are both full, you can probably grab a stool at Pop's across the street.