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Feb 5, 2010 08:30 PM

Mare or Antico Forno for Boston Marathon

I am a Chicagoan visiting Boston for the marathon, and I was wondering whether you would recommend Mare or Antico Forno (or neither) for a pre-marathon meal. I'm looking for great Italian food (pasta and seafood in particular) on the light side (unlike most people, I don't like eating huge meals the night before a race) at a restaurant that takes reservations.


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  1. 1 for Mare, nothing light about Antico Forno. Are you set on the North End?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Beachowolfe

      Nope- I'm not set on the North End. I'm staying at the Marriott in Copley Square, and I'd be willing to travel 15 minutes or so by cab.

    2. I find the atmosphere of Mare to be too contemporary for me. Antico Forno is a regular stop on my rotation especially for the chicken parm. I would agree though that most dishes are on the heavier side. Maybe if you went with the mussels fradiavolo that would work. It's not on the menu, but if you ask they'll make it and it is really well done. Other than that you could do a search on this site for the North End and see what else sounds. good. They're are a ton of opinions about restaurants in the North End.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Pegmeister

        I have fallen Antico Formo's mussel dish. (Cozze Piccanti) That and some bread is a great meal for me. We learned a new mussel eating technique from the woman at the next table. She would free the mussel, spoon in some sauce and slurp it like an oyster. It was perfect for this dish because the sauce was so good. Photo here.


        1. re: BostonZest

          Love the article and the photos. I go to Antico Forno fairly frequently and was so pleased when I asked them if they would do this mussel dish. Not only were they accomodating, but the mussels were as good as what I prepare at home, and I most often prefer what I prepare at home. Antico Forno doesn't always get a lot of love on this board, and I understand that. My first visit I was totally underwhelmed yet I'm glad I returned especially since they expanded.

      2. Skip them both and hit Prezza or Marco.

        1. Go to Galleria Umberto on Hanover St. in the NE and chow on pizza, orancini (rice balls), calzones, pretty much everything on the menu, and you'll leave with a carb filled high and money left in your running shorts.

          1. I love the linguine with clams at Antico Forno; it's the only thing I order there. It's not heavy at all.