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Aug 24, 2009 08:00 AM

THE LEDGE -- It's Not an Upscale Sonny's

It's Alba with TVs!

We ate there on Fridat night. Place was packed. Luckliy we scored some seats at the bar.

The beers on tap provided a lot of variety. Fully stocked cocktail bar. Wine list didn't impress me much. $7 for a glass of Mezzacorona which sells for 10.99 a 1.5 liter bottle.

Bartenders were fabulous and friendly.

Described as upscale pub grub, the menu has a few sandwiches on it, inlcuding a $11 burger. Flatbread pizzas, steaks, salads, mac and cheese, short ribs, pork chops.

The prices are reflective of the upscale atmosphere. Apps $5-10; burger was $11; steaks $25. You can end up spending a lot of dough here.

I had the onion soup and the wedge salad. The soup was terrible and tasted like a mix. The salad was excellent. Sort of deconstructed, but really crisp and bacon-ey.

My DC had the burger which was very good. The fries tasted very potato-ey but were limp.

Glad to see this addition to the nabe. It has a much friendlier vibe than Ashmont and it has loads of TVs. Not sure yet if the food merits the prices, but we'll absolutely be back to see.

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  1. Thanks for the update. I planned on stopping there on Saturday, but ended up at Sonny's for a steak & cheese.

    1. Another thanks for the update - I've been meaning to check it out and would love to find a regular pub in the area. Too bad about the wine and food issues -there are enough places with those problems already.

      8 Replies
      1. re: chowfamily

        The prices are too high for it to be a regular place for me, unfortunately.

        Stick to the beer and avoid the onion soup and you'll be fine.

        1. re: C. Hamster

          I had this fantasy of Fat Cat's approach to food, great beer and decent wine, in a bigger venue with no lines, lots of TVs, and come hither unlikely dream pub.

          1. re: chowfamily

            From what I've seen, there's much unusual at Ledge for beer. Stella and something called LedgeBrew is as esoteric as the tap selection currently gets..........

            BTW, way too many flat screens.

            1. re: Smokee

              Actually, the beer selection isn't as extensive as I thought it would be. In fact, Ledge doesn't seem to be over the top on anything. It's a very predictable place for Dorchester. I doubt it will make any adventurous eater's, or drinker's, top destination list. Also, I was told by a bartender that LedgeBrew is actually Miller High Life. You won't see anything from Stone or Russian River Brewing companies there. And the short rib arancini is just north of OK. Let's call it an upscale Blarney Stone for now.

              1. re: Guinness02122

                @Guinness. I agree. (I meant to say there's not much unusual as far beer.)

                BTW, is there any place in mass that serves Russian River beers?

                1. re: Smokee

                  Sorry, Smokee. I had it in Colorado (or maybe it was N. Arizona). I believe Deep Ellum in Allston had Pliny the Elder last April. I guess I went overboard on my point!

                  1. re: Guinness02122

                    And here I was contemplating leaving work before noon................

              2. re: Smokee

                The beer selection is sort of pedestrian. Long Trail Ale, Stella, Blue Moon, etc.

                But there is variety

        2. Trip #2 was last night. We got a table in the bar area at 6:00, but by 6:30 it was 25 min wait.

          The service was horrendous. We waited for nearly 15 minutes totally unattended. We finally asked the hostess if we had a server and she embarassingly said yes and spoke to a waiter who had been staring at us for quite some time but hadn't made a move to help us. He finally brought water and left without taking drink orders. We flagged him down again 5 min later and ordered both our drinks and our food. Drinks took another 10 min to arrive because he forgot about them (we saw them sitting at the pass).

          I guess we were lucky because he dropped his tray on another table and only a few minutes later dropped it again at the same table showering them with shards of beer bottles and glasses.

          The food was uneven. We had steak pizza and chicken pizza. Both were good, although the chicken one occasionally tasted like a mouthful of rosemary. The sweet potato fries we ordered as an app were deleived with dinner but were very good. The chicken sandwich was horribly dry and overcooked and the bun was very stale. It definitely would have been sent back but we had been there for a long time and were due at The Blarney for trivia at 8. The fries were requested well done and were normal and crispy instead of limp and greasy.

          Bill was $75 without tip.

          Got to the Blarney and discovered they have a $5 menu which was flying out of their kitchen. Also spoke to a friend there who said that she and her friends had had a similar terrible -- and almost absurd -- experience with the bumbling waiter.

          IMO the jury is still out on this place. We'll definitely give it another try or two, though.

          6 Replies
          1. re: C. Hamster

            I had planned on going there tonight, but given the lousy reviews I think I'll hold off. It's so disapointing, Abby Park, Wharf 88 and the Ledge, three new places and none of the reviews sound promising.

            1. re: Pegmeister

              I'm not giving up on it yet.

              They do have lobster mac and cheese and lobster ravioli (I thought of you when I saw them!).

              It's new and I'm sure has some kinks to work out. But at that price point I expect more than I am getting.

              So go and eat at the bar. Avoid bespecticaled waiter guy at all cost.

              1. re: C. Hamster

                I think I'll give it a few more weeks. Just as an FYI though, Sonny's had lobster mac & cheese this past Sunday and it really was good. Not as good as Fat Cat but I was happy with it.

                1. re: C. Hamster

                  Forgot to ask, are they open for lunch?

                  1. re: Pegmeister

                    I think they do serve lunch. When Sonny's offers mac and cheese as a side it's surprisingly good. Will have to check out the lobster.

                    1. re: C. Hamster

                      There's so much feedback to give them yet there's no way to get it to them since the website isn't developed. I can't say there is anything truly professional about the place except the structure. I don't have the heart to tell them to their face that many things need to improve. I imagine I'd get the "if you don't like it then leave" answer. Just the opposite is why places like Townsend's are successful. You can see they care deeply about the product. Like other successful neighborhood restaurants the staff is very knowledgeable and attentive, nothing is rushed. Of course, the food and drink are excellent and the owner is buzzing around the dining room, bar and kitchen continuously probing customers and staff. Maybe they're not quite Hungry Mother, but they're very good. Unfortunately with Ledge, I think they slapped a staff together and started operations without really getting everything down. A particular lady bartender on the patio gave me some very flip answers to questions on opening night. Common sense says to treat every customer with respect, ESPECIALLY ON OPENING NIGHT! I couldn't help but peg her as a barely 21 year old who still lives on Savin Hill with her parents, and she got the job because she knew the owners. Yes, the structure and patio are nice. And yes, most of the staff are very friendly. In the end though, you need to receive some value for your money. Maybe the owners aren't familiar enough with the restaurant biz, or maybe - cynically speaking - they're in to make a quick buck. And finally, what's with the plastic cups on the patio?

            2. I went to The Ledge today for lunch. When we arrived, we were greeted by a no-personality hostess. We asked about sitting on the outdoor patio and with a huff, she escorted us to the back stating that there were no more tables in the shade. That was untrue as the table had an umbrella and the sun was not an issue. I ordered a pina colada, which wasn't up to my standard, but wasn't horrible either. We ordered calamari and chicken wings for appetizers. While sitting on the patio, many bees were hovering around our (and others) table. It got to the point where we couldn't eat and had to move indoors. We also had ordered a margherita pizza and for dessert a four-nut brownie sundae. The taste of the food was good and we're planning on going back. We're definitely going to sit indoors.

              1. So I just went to Ledge last night for dinner and I could not agree more with the comments on this thread. I live in Lower Mills and had (like everyone in the area) been anxiously awaiting it's opening. However I only just made it to the restaurant last night due to a 3 week vacation and crunch at work preparing for said vacation. In the intervening time we had actually heard rave reviews (my husband works at the Dorchester District Court and apparently everyone there has been talking about it since it opened) and seen that they appeared to be quite busy, so I was expecting it to be great. In retrospect I can only conclude that the crowds were due to the significant pent-up demand for a decent restaurant in the neighborhood and that the reviews were due to low standards reinforced by the lack of decent options in the area.
                Went for dinner at around 7:30 last night- wait was half an hour for a table but we were lucky to get seats at the bar. (However the place was nearly empty by 8:15). After getting seats at the bar we debated whether to eat at the bar or wait for the table with just drinks. The bartender was very friendly and suggested eating at the bar because, he said under his breath, the service is sort of slow in the dining room. I appreciated his candor, and he was a likeable guy throughout the evening and provided great bar service, but it just seemed like something you wouldn't hear at a place with a higher level of professionalism.
                Ordered a glass of sangria, which was a mistake- it's really a wine cocktail/spritzer, it's not even made in advance, just by the glass with wine, booze and soda. I had retreated to the Sangria in the first place out of disappointment with the wine selection (C Hamster, I had noted the exact same thing about the Mezzacorona).
                We were only interested in a quick bite so we skipped apps and went straight for the meal- got the chicken pizza and the fish and chips. Again, same comment with the fries- they had good flavor but were not nearly crispy enough. Fish was good. The pizza also tasted good (didn't have any problems with rosemary) but was unexciting. My problem was less with the execution of the food than with the menu. It was just really derivative. It was like they took the menu from an Applebee's and just changed some of the words. "House-made tartar sauce" instead of the jarred version, "pulled roasted chicken" instead of grilled chicken, that sort of thing. Don't get me wrong, I prefer homemade sauce to the jarred stuff, but they're still just serving pizza, burgers, chicken sandwiches and steaks at prices that make me expect a little more.
                I too agree with the lament about the lack of a website to provide constructive feedback. I am still excited with the addition to the neighborhood because I think it will liven things up a bit-- and their planters out front look terrific-- but I doubt I'll be spending many evenings there myself.