Stephi's on Tremont - Anyone go yet?
Since I've seen nothing on this board, I need to assume it's eh (I trust CH perhaps a tad too much!). Not a big fan of the other so let me know.
I don't like the original Stephanie's on Newbury at all, so it's a bit mystifying that I really enjoyed a lunch here. It's a handsome room (in that all-veneer, nothing-solid kind of way), big comfy bar seats, a complete transformation of the old Garden of Eden space, the same fine Tremont St patio. I had one of their classics, a chunky chicken salad, about a chicken's worth of meat, beautifully roasted, almost naked, with some greens and sliced tomatoes and a hunk of just-okay Irish soda bread with pretty good butter.
It still has that SoN disease: that dish would feed two people, but it was excellent in its very simple way, and service at the bar was terrific. Prices actually look a bit lower than the original. It looks to be another one of those South End successes like Stella and Sibling: there's much more interesting food to be had nearby, yet suburban hordes will line up here on weekends. Still, it was significantly better than I thought it would be; I expect to give it a try for dinner sometime.
I went shortly after it opened and it was a slight mess. The server was extremely unprofessional which resulted in the manager coming over and smoothing out a (very awkward) situation. The food was OK, but I thought it was overpriced. My DC got the seared tuna salad, which ended up being less $ than my garden salad with grilled chicken. Makes no sence...
That being said, the space is nice, they have an outdoor patio, and a decent drink selection. If someone wanted to go back, I would... but I wouldn't suggest it.
We sat on the patio tonight and had an early dinner; I thought it was very good. I had the roasted chicken, really flavorful with a crispy skin; it came with tasty mashed potatoes and roasted carrots. They also bring out a loaf of hot bread (i think flavored with garlic butter), really good. I was pleasantly surprised. We had an appetizer of hoisin chicken, served with little pancakes and i thought that was excellent too.
My guess is it'll be a hit both with folks in the neighborhood and people venturing into town to visit; it's casual and comfortable and the outdoor patio is perfect for south end people watching. Plus --lots of interesting salads on the menu and I don't think there are that many spots in the south end that offer that option --so I think that'll work in their favor too.
I went to Stephi's for lunch last week. Simply put the place is a Rip Off. Food is OK but the prices are out of whack. I had a bowl of soup (very small for $8), ahi tuna salad (big and tasty) and an ice tea...with 18% tip...$32.