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Family Dinner Ideas Post Marathon

Hey everyone!
I'm a Boston resident running the marathon in April. My parents are flying in and planning to take me + boyfriend and his family out for a nice dinner after the race (probably 6 or 7 o'clock). We'll be a party of 7. If it were up to me, I'd go for steak and head to my favorite Capital Grille. However, my dad is unnecessarily a little bit of a tight wad, and is balking at the idea of paying for a steakhouse dinner for 7 (guess I can't blame him, I can't afford it!). So, any suggestions where I can get a good cut of meat and still impress for not too expensive? My parents are staying at the Taj, I live in Fenway, and the bf's family will be coming in from Cohasset (although earlier in the day, they should all be around Copley Square for my finish and then drinks).
Price range of $20-$30 a person, plus wine (some flexibility). Mom has suggested Atlantic Fish but that place seems to have no appeal to me, plus it's practically ON the finish line so I'd think logistically it would be a difficult pick.
I'd really appreciate any suggestions! I'm normally really good at picking restaurants but this situation has left me befuddled!

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  1. Let's see if I have this straight. Your parents are staying at the Taj (mimium $400.00 a night if you stay in the basement). I hope Dad doesn't order a cup of coffee from room service during his stay, it's at least $10.00. Boyfriends parents are swooping in from Cohasset (top 10 highest real estate values in the state, maybe the East Coast). and Dad doesn't want to spring for a steak. I'd insist on the Capitol Grille. I'd make a decision real soon, as restaurants in this area book up real early for Marathon day. Good luck with the $20-$30 range. Let us know what you end up with.

    2 Replies
    1. re: CocoDan

      To try to help with the original question (snarky swipe at you, coco ;-)), you might be able to swing it at BIstro du Midi. They're close to the Taj, and though not quite there, close to the price range, though if you need your beef, the filet will put you over.
      It's gotten some nice reviews here, though I haven't been yet.

      1. re: CocoDan

        CocoDan, although I appreciate your snark—marathon runners get discount hotel rooms, so my parents night at the Taj was less than $200. Also, I have never known my father to order room service, or allow anyone around him to do the same. And finally, my boyfriends parents do live in Cohasset and frequently treat me to dinner at the Capital Grille, not to mention L'Espalier and Locke-Ober. The whole point of the post is that my parents would like to treat them.
        Just sayin...

      2. I would suggest Eastern Standard in Kenmore Sq. Their prices are in the range you mentioned and although it is not a "streak house" they do have a very good steak & frites on the menu. They also have a a wide selection of other choices for those who are not carnivores.

        1 Reply
        1. re: RoyRon

          Thanks RoyRon. I live just down the street from Eastern Standard so it's always a go-to place for cocktails and raw bar. I feel like their entrees can swing from delish to over-hyped depending on the night. My mom suggested it as well, it could be the winner if I can't think of anything else.

        2. I would point out that after running 26.2 miles, your "system" may not be quite in good shape to handle a juicy steak. Taking that into consideration may open up to more dining possibilities.

          That said, you might want to get out of the city center since everyone and their boyfriend's parents are going to be in town looking for a place to eat. But what about a place like Erbaluce? Or any of a number of places in the South End?

          And let's face it - treating you to Capital Grille, L'Espalier AND Locke-Ober is just showing off. ;)

          5 Replies
          1. re: Bob Dobalina

            Thanks for the rec! I'm suprised I've never heard of Erbaluce—it looks like it's worth a try. However, like many restaurants, it's closed on Monday. BAH!
            The only places I've frequented in the South End for dinner are Toro and B&G, and I didn't think either would work for this situation. I'd love to hear any other suggestions! I wish Franklin Cafe would take a darn reservation!

            1. re: ktbops

              The area near the Taj is not filled with reasonable places. But there are some possibilities. 75 Chestnut is reasonable and has a varied menu, including a couple of steaks. Davios also does steaks. Flemings is near by as well. All might make your father happier.

              In the south end, Aquitaine or Union might work well. Just about every south end restaurant serves a steak frites so that issue should be covered. All are within walking distance of the Taj.

              1. re: BBHound

                75 Chestnut is actually a really good suggestion.

            2. re: Bob Dobalina

              by sheer coincidence, I was at L'Espalier two years ago for a wine dinner on marathon day...I can tell you it was REALLY funny to see all the runners limping around...this clumsy, shuffling crowd contrasted so wonderfully with the prim waitstaff and surroundings. Bordering on comical..

              But they really looked so, so tired. I think it would be hard to enjoy a top notch meal when your body is just wanting fuel and rest. Definitely seems like you might enjoy a place that's more cozy and comforting. Maybe the south end location of Petit Robert? I also really like Estragon, but it can get loud.

              1. re: Bob Dobalina

                Having just run another marathon a month ago, I can agree on the possibility that you might be too exhausted or not otherwise able to handle a steak or a long, drawn-out meal. But if this is not your first marathon, you'll know what you can handle.

                I'll have my usual date with a grilled cheese sandwich, french fries, and a chocolate shake immediately after the Boston marathon and will barely be able to eat scrambled eggs later. 26.2 miles is FAR!

                Good luck, and enjoy the race!

              2. Pierrot in Beacon HIll could be a nice option, too.

                1. Upon finishing my first marathon I went directly home and ate about 5 pieces of pizza while sitting on the couch. It was perfect. I would have been an unhappy diner elsewhere!

                  1. Sorry kt, Just couldn't resist it. My son and his wife really like Flemming's, and I'm sure one of the reasons is because it's not as expensive as the other steak chains. It's close by and has valet parking. Good Luck and have fun.

                    1. I'm a local and have run Boston a few times. Of course, I always want to go out afterwards. But, keep this in mind, You don't want to backtrack the course for dinner. It's a logistical nightmare. Roads are cordoned off, some T stations are closed and it's difficult to cross streets. So I wouldn't recommend anything in that Copley/Kenmore area (I would say that Atlantic Fish, Abe and Louies, Capital Grille, aside from cost issues, are out because of logistics).

                      Also, Eastern Standard is really packed on Marathon day. Even with a reservation, I suspect it will be really chaotic and probably not that relaxing.

                      The South End is a great idea, but will you want to walk back to the T post dinner?

                      I do love Erbaluce and it's right on the edge of Chinatown, but not that close to the green line. It's a comfortable space and could fit the bill. If you know your stomach wants a certain thing post race (small steak, small burger, etc), Erbaluce is a place that might be able to accommodate you if you call ahead and ask if it's possible to have something like that on the menu. Their menu changes daily so the worst is that they say no.

                      My post race dinners have been Peach Farm (Chinatown), North Street Grill (when Scelfo was there), Silvertone and Marliave. I know I am missing a place or two but I can't think of them.

                      Last year's post race we hit Marliave which was perfect. There were about a dozen of us and they put us in the upstairs dining room (leaving was a drag because we had to go down two flights of stairs). But, it ended up being a great location because it was low key, the food was delicious, the wait staff were really accommodating and really sweet about our accomplishments and it was close to the T.

                      Good luck with your training.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: beetlebug

                        There's also that steak place in the Nine Zero hotel. But I don't know how it is or the price range. I'm always more focused on getting away from Copley.

                        1. re: beetlebug

                          Hey thanks beetlebug! It's great to hear that someone else was in the mood for celebrating post-marathon, all these posts about going home to hit the hay were starting to make me think twice. While I'm sure I'll be tired, I go out after my Saturday long runs of up to 20 miles, and I'm betting the excitement of the day will only add to my energy.
                          Anyway, for anyone who's curious, I made an original reservation at Pops in the South End—had never been there but was getting desperate—but just got word from good ole mom that she talked my dad into springing for Capital Grille. Hopefully after the roads open at 4:45 things will clear up a little, and we can always walk from the Taj if we're desperate.
                          THANKS FOR ALL YOUR HELP!

                          1. re: ktbops

                            Good luck with the race and be sure to let us know how dinner was (and how the running went!)

                            1. re: mizzduke

                              Yes, good luck!! I'm always in awe of you marathoners!

                            2. re: ktbops

                              By the last couple of miles, I'll I'm thinking about is a hot shower and early dinner after. It's amazing what the thought of salt fried squid or a burger and french fries will do for me. It's always fun to go out after even if it is an early night.

                              Don't forget to check the MBTA website to see if the Hynes stop will be open on that day. I know that Copley is closed. The walk over to dinner will probably feel good though.

                              Have a great training season and an even better race day.