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Boho - Gone downhill?

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erintoc Jul 17, 2009 10:54 AM

I frequent the Arclight and when I discovered a new gastropub in the complex, I was thrilled. I went to Boho twice during the first two months they were open. The beer selection was wonderful. The service was never stellar, but I liked the funky decor (despite the random trees) and the food was delicious. It was the perfect stop off for dinner before the movies.

Oh, how have things changed. I'm not sure what has happened to Boho in recent weeks. But, I have been twice in the past week before going to the movies and have had two separate bad experiences.

During my first recent visit, I brought my parents there for an early dinner at 5:15 before a 6:45 movie. That gave us an hour and a half, which I thought was plenty of time to have a drink and dinner. Firstly, we were given a VERY limited menu. The only menu choices were a few salads, burger, and pizza. So, we ordered two salads, 1 pizza, and 1 burger for the table. This was not a huge order and we were literally the only party in the dining room. It took almost an hour to get our food. We had to rush through the meal and get the check before we were finished. I know that 5:15 is in between lunch and dinner service and we expected some wait, but an hour when we were the only ones having dinner in the entire restaurant? That seems unreasonable.

We arrived at 6:15 for dinner before another movie at my most recent visit. We were given the same VERY limited menu, despite it being clearly dinner time. Again, the service was very slow and we waited 45 minutes for 1 pizza and 1 salad. Our waiter seemed to disappear several times throughout our meal.

Food/Beer quality - In April/May, I thought the food quality was excellent and the beer was cold and served fast. In this past week, the pizzas were soggy and oily with crusts that were so hard they were inedible. The beer selection is still great, but it was served warm.

Service - In all of my visits to Boho, the staff has been rather inattentive. However, the length of time it takes to get your food seems really unreasonable, especially when the place is almost empty.

Needless to say, we won't be heading to Boho again. I gave this place so many tries, but between the strangely limited menu options, the lengthy wait for food, the inattentive service, warm beer, and the dip in food quality, we will likely not return. I am hoping they turn this place around, because I really enjoy having a decent place to go before the movies. For now, it is back to the Arclight bar/restaurant.

  1. yinyangdi Jul 31, 2009 05:28 PM

    I've eaten at Boho x3 = all yum

    1. burger/fries + cold beer and excellent service eventho the place as jam-packed!

    2. pork chop (x2-thick & juicy) w/mashed potatoes and crisp green beens + cold beer and basil hayden's and excellent service, not so busy.

    3. bacon/egg pizza at Sunday brunch w/coffee, not busy at all, and while my server was friendly … I had to flag down two different people to get items when my server was nowhere to be found.

    While I won't go out of my way to eat at Boho, it's nice to know that quality food/beverage can be had before/after a movie at The Arclight. Yeah.

    1. e
      ExtraCheesePlease Jul 26, 2009 01:14 PM

      I'm happy to say that Boho did not disappoint me. The place was packed when we got there at 7:15pm but they sat us immediately at one of the large booths in the back (I did request it in the reservation). The server was knowledgeable and pleasant. I did ask her about the limited menu mentioned above and she told me that they do have a menu of just sandwiches and pizzas between the time brunch ends and dinner service begins. She said that people were unhappy about it and that they would try to make it more clear.

      Ok, the food was just as good as the last time I was there. We got all our old standby like the Lemon Arugula pizza, the roasted beets, the caesar salad (yes it does need a bit more dressing), the ribs, the chickeh, the fries and the corn. Everything was cooked perfectly. I do have to say that the coursing was a bit off and we got everything almost immediately and at the same time rather than app and entree. Oh well, it was all delicious. We were too stuffed for dessert but we'll be back soon.

      1. SaltCod Jul 24, 2009 07:14 PM

        Weird. I've been to Boho about 15 times now (big beer head) and I've never been given the "limited menu". Never heard of my friends encountering it either. Unless something changed there in the last two weeks, I'm very surprised by this. If they did make some changes, they need to change them back immediately. Boho has been fantastic in the past!

        1. mrshankly Jul 20, 2009 11:52 AM

          I went there last night after a movie at 9pm and was turned away because they had closed the kitchen. While I was standing there with a friend trying to decide on where else to go, 5 couples walked up to the door and were all turned away.

          Sounds like Boho is about to be history soon just like every other restaurant has been in that same location.

          5 Replies
          1. re: mrshankly
            wutzizname Jul 20, 2009 12:05 PM

            Funny, I almost went there after a movie last night as well but checked the website and saw that they close at 10:00 on Sunday, which would have been pushing it already...apparently it would have been moot as they closed even earlier than the website claimed. Hmm.

            So weird because the location should be a gold mine and the space and original menu seemed just right for a pre and post movie spot (though a little overpriced).

            I did notice that last time I was there (about a month ago) I asked the waitress how business was and though she mostly gave me the party line, I could read in her hesitation and her eyes that all was not really that rosy.

            Alas, the Bowery remains the better Arclight choice for now. Very decent casual food and drinks -- and actually open late.

            1. re: wutzizname
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              schrutefarms Jul 20, 2009 12:31 PM

              And GREAT sliders and onion strings!!

            2. re: mrshankly
              MikeLee Jul 20, 2009 07:22 PM

              That's what I can't get. That is a prime spot. Why can't they get a good place?

              1. re: MikeLee
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                erintoc Jul 24, 2009 04:43 PM

                I agree...the location is prime and every restaurant there ends up failing . I think the space is rather large for a restaurant of this type...Perhpas that is one of the problems. I REALLY hope that Boho can turn it around though.

                ExtraCheesePlease - Did you end up going there this past week? If so, I'm curious to hear what your experience was. Perhaps it was a fluke, but closing early isn't a good sign.

                1. re: erintoc
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                  ExtraCheesePlease Jul 24, 2009 06:39 PM

                  Seeing Ugly Truth tomorrow night and have 7:30pm reservations at Boho. Will definitely report back! I'm totally curious now too.

            3. e
              ExtraCheesePlease Jul 20, 2009 08:44 AM

              I have been traveling quite a bit and haven't gotten out to the Arclight for any movies lately but Boho has always been a treat for me, especially the brunch (the pulled pork biscuits and white gravy is simply amazing). I'm sorry to hear this but I'll make it a point to go there this week and report back. Hopefully it's a fluke and they can get it back together.

              1. s
                schrutefarms Jul 20, 2009 01:37 AM

                That's too bad. I went to Boho about six weeks ago, and found the food/service to be great, along with the prices. We had the burger (GREAT), a salad that was very seasonal and farmers market fresh, and a pizza with ricotta, arugala and preserved lemon. Also, two beers and three glasses of wine. Oh, and I almost forgot, the zeppolis (which were NOT very good- I recommend the San Gennero feast), all for, with tip (and we are pretty good tippers), about $105. Which is pretty darn good. And that burger was awesome.

                1. t
                  travelingmansoul Jul 17, 2009 08:23 PM

                  Sorry to hear about bad experience.

                  I was there over a mos ago and it was quiet and service was good. food was ok. beers rock!

                  1. perk Jul 17, 2009 12:59 PM

                    I am so sorry to hear that. I haven't been there in a while, but totally agree with your early assessment. I love the Arclight, and was thrilled to discover Boho. During one of my early visits there, the chef/part owner came to the table and spent quite a bit of time with us talking about the restaurant. I would send him a note about your experience. He certainly seems like someone who would want to hear the criticisms. Coincidentally, I just heard from a friend who went to his restaurant in the valley Max last night, and she said it was empty. Maybe he's doing a limited menu at Boho for financial reasons.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: perk
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                      erintoc Jul 17, 2009 07:15 PM

                      I was thinking the same thing about the limited menu choices. I'm sure the economic situation is definitely to blame. The place has been empty for sure. I just wish the service and food quality kept up to good standards, despite the limited menu options. I guess time will tell how things work out for Boho. Still looking for that perfect pre-Arclight dinner. :)

                    2. MikeLee Jul 17, 2009 11:59 AM

                      That's terrible. I came when it first opened and the menu was wild and adventurous, they had tripe soup, oxtails and rabbit pate on the menu. Sounds like they've completely reverted to the standard bar menu.
                      Have you tried the Bowery? They had a good menu last time I was there though I was disappointed to see they'd stopped running specials.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: MikeLee
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                        erintoc Jul 17, 2009 12:44 PM

                        I had the same experience with Boho when it first opened, but they have definitely reverted back to a really bare basics bar menu at this point....at least that has been my experience in the past 2 visits.

                        I haven't tried the Bowery, although I have always wanted to...I suppose that is another option for my "pre-Arclight" dining and drinking.

                        I'm really curious to see if there is anyone else out there to have this recent experience with Boho...

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