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Trendy Place for Dinner in Boston, Help

I'm going to be in town this weekend. I'm looking for some trendy restaurants that have good food, and an atmosphere. Something like a Tao in Las Vegas. I can have a nice meal, but I can also hang out there.

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    1. We certainly don't have anything like Tao Las Vegas in Boston. I personally consider that a huge blessing. I've had a lot of crappy, overpriced meals in Vegas (I usually fail in my attempts to drag colleagues and business clients to Lotus of Siam, so casino restaurants are usually the order of the day), but my dinner at Tao might be the most offensively bad I've had there. Sort of crystallizes everything that's awful about Vegas to me -- loud, fake, crass, with painfully mediocre food. (It's also the single biggest revenue generator among independent restaurants in the country, did almost $67M last year.) Blech!

      Hmmm, maybe BOKX 109? That place styles itself as a Vegas-y hotspot -- in its words, "a performance in dining". It's in Newton.

      2 Replies
      1. re: MC Slim JB

        When I used Tao as an example, I didn't really mean the place itself. I just meant a good place to have a nice dinner, that's also loungy where you can hang out that has an atmosphere.

        1. re: bjchin

          So, are you thinking about a place where you can have dinner and then linger over drinks afterward, or vice versa?

      2. I think that 28 Degrees is probably as Vegas-like as you can find in Boston. The food is just OK, but it is a restaurant/bar with the "see and be seen" vibe. It is in the South End. Have a look at their website.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Kat

          My mind immediately leapt to 28 Degrees as well.
          Of course, I have only been to Liberty Hotel for brunch, when things are much more controlled. ;-)

        2. Definitely Liberty Hotel.

          1. Second the Liberty Hotel -- that seems to be the place to be seen lately. You could hang out at the Alibi bar and then dine at Scampo. And then return to the bar for more hanging.

            1. Are you bringing a date? Because the weekend scene at the LIberty Hotel is a little crazy. Bouncers, velvet ropes, long lines, and very much a meat market-y pickup scene, not what I would call a relaxing, chill vibe. It offers some very amusing people-watching, though. The crossover traffic in Scampo's bathrooms, which are shared with Alibi, is hilarious.

              1 Reply
              1. re: MC Slim JB

                But isn't that just perfect for the Boston Tao experience? Where else is he gonna find "loud, fake, crass, with painfully mediocre food."? Well, except the food really is good.

              2. What about the Foundation Lounge at the Hotel Commonwealth in Kenmore Square? They have decent small plates (I personally liked the Kobe skewers), fun cocktails and a lounge-y vibe. Not sure what the crowd will be like this weekend (Sox are playing at home vs. the Yanks) but it might be worth a shot.

                3 Replies
                1. re: beb31

                  I also like Foundation Lounge for this type of need...also- Eastern Standard, outside on the patio- they have an amazing drink menu. Ive only been to Gaslight when it was pretty empty but I wonder if they might also fit the idea?

                  1. re: beb31

                    Sox are away in Toronto this weekend.

                    1. re: FrankieSandals

                      Thanks FrankieSandals -- no clue why I was looking at the weekend of the 27th.

                  2. 28 Degrees in the South End or Om in Harvard Square. 28 Degrees is more gay/Sex in the City, better food. Om is more trance music, Euro, very pretty inside. Both have good drinks.

                    For the Skipper to those Barbies, perhaps Middlesex Lounge in Central Square.

                    1. I went to Mistral this weekend, and it wasn't that exciting. The bar area is small, and it's mostly a sit down place. I also tried 33 Restaurant, which I thought had a lot better atmosphere, but the food was just ok. I guess I'll try 28 Degrees Next. Any more ideas?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: bjchin

                        A search of "trendy" on the Boston board brings up a long list of previous posts you can read through and pick from.


                      2. I was at a private party tonight at 28 degrees and it was great fun, but that was mostly due to the people there, all involved in the theater or aspiring to be. The passed snacks were very good, but extremely small and the wine was also good, but extremely expensive. It was not set up for dining, but I'll go back for dinner. I was surprised to see it listed as a gay destination as a bartender at a neighboring spot said that it;s a great place to meet beautiful women. I'd rather hang out at the bat at Rocca.

                        1 Reply