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La Buona Vita Arlington

phonelady Jan 12, 2009 05:35 AM

A friend wants to go here this week - any reports? I have never heard of this place.

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  1. hiddenboston Jan 12, 2009 05:58 AM

    I used to like the place a lot several years back, but the last couple of times I went I was disappointed. I do want to try it again, but others have told me that they were similarly disappointed when they went.

    4 Replies
    1. re: hiddenboston
      GretchenS Jan 12, 2009 06:37 AM

      Ditto, liked it once or twice, then was disappointed. Nothing terrible, just didn't feel like I was happy to spend the money for what we got.

      Further east on Mass Ave, Francesca's Kitchen has zero ambience (think pizza parlor) but the man is a genius with eggplant (eggplant parm and occasional rollatini special), which comes with pasta (there is a homemade variety as one of the choices -- get it) for $8.95. He also usually has arancini (stuffed riceballs) which are fabulous. I can't vouch for anything else on the menu because I wouldn't dream of missing the eggplant.

      1. re: GretchenS
        StriperGuy Jan 12, 2009 07:49 AM

        I am a huge Arancini fan. Nice to have a source not too far from work ;-).


        1. re: StriperGuy
          GretchenS Jan 12, 2009 04:18 PM

          Well I will be curious how you rate them. His and my own single attempt at them are the only ones I've ever had and his beat mine by quite a lot. Not a fancy rendition -- everything is his grandmother's recipe -- but I loved them. Just had the eggplant parm for take-out and it was as luscious as ever....

          1. re: GretchenS
            StriperGuy Jan 12, 2009 04:28 PM

            Galeria Umberto in the NE does a big hearty version and Teatro does a nice small version as part of their app. plate. I'll report back.

    2. s
      ShelT54 Jan 12, 2009 07:25 AM

      La Buona Vita was ok, though fairly undistinguished, the couple of times I was there. If you're looking for Italian in the neighborhood, Ristorante D'Olivio is pretty decent and the prices not too out of line.

      2 Replies
      1. re: ShelT54
        tweetie Jan 13, 2009 04:50 AM

        Is the eggplant always on the menu at Francesca's or is it a special? This place is in my neighborhood but I've never tried it. Eggplant parm is one of my favorites so I must make a visit. Thanks for the tip.

        I would pass on La Buona Vita, by the way.

        1. re: tweetie
          GretchenS Jan 13, 2009 08:35 AM

          As far as I know the eggplant parm is a standard menu offering. The eggplant rollatini is a special but he has encouraged me to call ahead and he will make it (I assume a day or two ahead). My friends have started to buy the eggplant parm by the catering tray and keep portions in the freezer at all times!

          He closes early Saturday night (7PM I think?) and is closed on Sunday, BTW.

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