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Jul 1, 2009 12:15 PM

Nice Early Birthday Dinner Before Sox Game

My boyfriend and I are coming to Boston for his birthday at the end of July. The focus of the trip is going to the night games, but I would like to take him somewhere nice near Fenway for early dinner the day of his birthday. We're from New Orleans so used to good food, but want something totally different than we can get down south. I've never been to Boston so I'm feeling overwhelmed. Also I'm a pescatarian (he's complete carnivore). The boyfriend's main concern will be getting to the game on time. so preferable somewhere that starts serving dinner around 5. Thanks!

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  1. Maybe The Elephant Walk? French/Cambodian menu, casual elegant setting, easy walking distance from Fenway, plenty of fish and even vegan options, not expensive. Dinner starts at 5pm.

    Did you try searching the Boston board? You might imagine it gets asked from time to time.

    Also, knowing your budget helps.

    1. the area around fenway isn't really a fine dining destination and most of those sorts of places don't open until 5:30 for dinner.

      i'd skip that neighborhood entirely and head to neptune oyster in the north end. casual vibe, but killer seafood, especially oysters and lobster roll. (NOT the gulf oysters you're used to.) it's open from 11:30 on everyday, so go for late lunch/early dinner, and hop on the t to kenmore for the game.

      1. A popular spot nearby is Eastern Standard. Get a reservation soon, as it will be packed on a game night. There are a large number of reviews here and lots of people who have been many more times than I ever have, but it remains a favorite for me and my family who are huge Red Sox fans. We have vegans, vegetarians, meat and potatoes only types, non drinkers and complete booze hounds. All seem happy at Eastern Standard whenever we go. You'll have a short walk to Fenway.

        1. Thanks for all the great recs! I will try to search the boards more when I have more time. Also, no price range, just looking for good food, fun atmosphere.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Alexis Butler GWU

            Neptune Oyster is amazing, and captures well New England eating (Boston's version of Cochon?). That said, it's not close to Fenway. If you're looking for something close, Eastern Standard is definitely your choice. Elephant Walk is good, but not not appropriate, I think, for what you're trying to find.

            1. re: GyroBall

              at neptune they can avoid the fenway crowd mayhem, have a leisurely late afternoon feast, hop on the t and be in kenmore in under 10 minutes.

          2. Trattoria Toscana is very close to Fenway and has wonderful, fresh Italian food. I don't think they take reservations and it is small, so I this may be dicey on game day. Worth a visit!

            Church has great drinks...haven't eaten there. They do take reservations and it is also very close to Fenway.

            You cannot go wrong with Elephant Walk!

            Enjoy...who are you rooting for?

            2 Replies
            1. re: pesto

              Thanks for all the great suggestions! I think I will try to make a reservation for Eastern on the birthday night and try to grab lunch or dinner at Neptune on our other day there.

              I'm a first-timer, so I'm going with the BF's team, the Sox.

              1. re: Alexis Butler GWU

                Eastern Standard is a good, fun option, but be aware that it'll be a) packed with Red Sox pre-gamers and therefore b) LOUD.

                If you can't get a reservation or want quieter/slightly more upscale without too going very expensive or far away, Petit Bistro Robert (authentic French bistro) is a good option (entrees ~ $20) and also in Kenmore Sq. Given that you live in New Orleans, though, I wonder if you've had your fill of French food?

                If possible, I'd urge you to spend some time in the North End. Hanover St (the main drag) is packed with fantastic, neon sign adorned restaurants (all of them packed), and Cafe Vittoria, Mike's Pastry, and Modern Pastry are probably the 3 most iconic dessert places in Boston (once again, they will be packed).

                Beyond Neptune Oyster I'd specifically recommend the Daily Catch -- their squid ink (black) pasta is just delicious, especially when ordered aglio olio (chopped calamari and garlic). Expect a 20-40 minute wait outside, but if it's a nice night that can be part of the fun.

                Petit Robert Bistro
                468 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215

                Daily Catch
                323 Hanover St, Boston, MA 02113