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Nantucket birthday

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A little early, but I am trying to plan ahead. I am taking my husband for his birthday to the island over Labor Day weekend. I have on my list:

Black Eyed Susans- For one dinner and some breakfasts
Slip14- For lunch on a nice day

What I need is a good rec. for THE birthday dinner. So far the possibilities I see are:

Center Street Bistro
Sfoglia
Fifty-six Union
Lola 41

Which would you choose for the main dinner (or not?)

Thanks

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Lola 41
15 S Beach St, Nantucket, MA 02554

Sfoglia Restaurant
130 Pleasant St, Nantucket, MA 02554

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  1. It all depends on what kind of experience you want, because they all have good food.

    Center Street Bistro- one of my favorites. I am going there this week. It is tiny (six, seven tables?), so it is intimate. Excellent food, and BYOB only.

    Sfoglia- very good Italian. NOT a red sauce joint. Out of town.

    Fifty-six Union- also very good. Quite lively, fun bar crowd, too. Great food! Good wine list, too.

    Lola 41- a real scene. Yes, the food is very good, but it's loud and crowded and dark.

    They're all good, just very different. I probably wasn't very helpful in narrowing it down for you! I think they all have websites if that helps at all.

    -----
    Lola 41
    15 S Beach St, Nantucket, MA 02554

    Sfoglia Restaurant
    130 Pleasant St, Nantucket, MA 02554

    6 Replies
    1. re: ciclista

      Sorry I wasn't more specific, of course the food is #1 priority, but it's a special birthday, so a loud place would probably NOT be on my list.

      The menus all look great, but from your input, it sounds like Center Street Bistro!

      Thank you!

      1. re: dennisl

        if you want the best and want to splurge, go to Company of the Cauldron. A Zagats 28 rating I believe. Check the website....they do one meal each day and the website tells you what it is + a week ahead.
        Toppers @ Wauwinet used to be one of the best but I think it has gone downhill a bit. Still capable of being amazing though. I personally really like Cinco. Sfoglia can be good but they are kind of pretentious and act like they are doing you a favor. The Pearl is really good too.

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        Company of the Cauldron
        7 India St, Nantucket, MA 02554

        Sfoglia Restaurant
        130 Pleasant St, Nantucket, MA 02554

      2. re: ciclista

        I agree with your view of Lola. It's tiny, loud and overpriced, even by Nantucket standards. That said, our meal was quite good.

        1. re: invinotheresverde

          Re: Company of the Cauldron...it's one of my husband's favorites, but I just don't dig the format. Everybody in the restaurant is eating the same thing, meaning, everyone at my table. I feel like I'm at an upscale banquet/wedding.

          I, too, have gotten serious attitude at Sfoglia. Several times. But the food is that good that I still go back. The Pearl is really good, but really $$$. Same with Topper's. They are both a BIG splurge (for me).

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          Sfoglia Restaurant
          130 Pleasant St, Nantucket, MA 02554

          1. re: ciclista

            That does sound like an odd format to me as well, and I like trying my husband's choices, too!

            We won't have a car, so though the menu at Topper's looks good (and Sfoglia) we may just skip them. The Pearl looks good, but no prices on the menu, which of course means $$$$.

            -----
            Sfoglia Restaurant
            130 Pleasant St, Nantucket, MA 02554

            1. re: dennisl

              by Nantucket standards the Pearl is about average price wise. Generally, unless you are getting take-out and you want a halfway decent dining experience, it's gonna cost ya on ACK.

      3. Have you considered American Seasons? It has a cozy, romantic atomosphere and yummy food. No car needed.
        http://www.americanseasons.com

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        American Seasons
        80 Center St, Nantucket, MA 02554

        1. I would say 100% Company, they post the menu for each night at the beginning of the week so you can go the night that looks the best to you. The Galley is also amazing and romantic and beautiful (and expensive of course) and right on the beach. I've never eaten at American Seasons but their pastry chef did my wedding cake and it was the most delicious cake and combination of flavors (cranberry filling!).

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          American Seasons
          80 Center St, Nantucket, MA 02554

          4 Replies
          1. re: julieapfel

            I will look at The Pearl again, I'm not too concerned as to the cost, as long as it's worth it.

            Galley Beach looks good, too, right up his alley on the beach.

            Too.Many.Choices!

            Thanks!

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            Galley Beach
            54 Jefferson Ave, Nantucket, MA 02554

            1. re: dennisl

              if you are looking for romantic atmosphere, American Seasons is not the place. It's personally the loudest restaurant I have ever eaten in....something more about the acoustics of the place than the crowd. I second the Galley recomendation although they need new wine glasses....last time they weren't quite the skimpy "red sauce Italian" type glasses, but they were close.....maybe by now they have new ones.

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              American Seasons
              80 Center St, Nantucket, MA 02554

              1. re: MacshashRIP

                Yes, the Galley has Reidel or Spiegelau-type glasses now. Since the renovation, I think. Seasons is pretty loud (all hard surfaces, I guess) and really, really dark!

                1. re: ciclista

                  Not just dark, but it felt like dining in someone's carport. And I remember there were like checkerboards on the tables. Which is fine, but not for a special dinner.

          2. What about 21 Federal. I was there several years ago and it was excellent.

            And Chanticleer. Have they both gone down hill.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Littleman

              21 Federal has gone waaaay downhill over the past few years. I love Chanticleer for a glamour lunch. I wouldn't spend the money for dinner. Jean Charles Berruet sold the Chanticleer some 5-6 (?) years ago, and it is currently run by the folks who own the popular Black Eyed Susan's (but they don't own it).

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              21 Federal Restaurant
              21 Federal St, Nantucket, MA 02554

            2. My favorite special occasion restaurants on Nantucket are, in order:

              1 - Company of the Cauldron
              2 - 21 Federal
              3 - Boarding House

              Oran Mor is also nice.

              Company of the Cauldron has one menu for the night, true, but if you call ahead they will accomodate reasonable changes. (Like if you are vegan, or don't eat seafood, etc.) It also has candlelight, and often a harp player at dinner. This place is one of the most romantic places I've ever been to.

              Center St. Bistro is great, great food, but it's extremely small and casual. I love it for lunch. For a special birthday dinner, I don't think so.

              The Boarding House is downstairs from The Pearl, and it feels more like Nantucket. The Pearl is like Miami meets Nantucket, which I find a little odd.

              As an aside, someone named American Seasons, and I would absolutely exclude that. It's ok, but way too casual. It's kind of like a pub in a residential neighborhood.

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              21 Federal Restaurant
              21 Federal St, Nantucket, MA 02554

              Company of the Cauldron
              7 India St, Nantucket, MA 02554

              Oran Mor
              2 S Beach St, Nantucket, MA 02554

              American Seasons
              80 Center St, Nantucket, MA 02554

              Center St Cafe
              140 Center St, Shelton, CT 06484

              1. All of these are good suggestions all I would add is to stay away from Corazon del Mar. We ate there in June and had one of the worst meals in memory and paid through the nose for it.

                3 Replies
                1. re: SteveDson

                  Interesting.... I like Corazon del Mar. We all agreed it is even better this year than last year. And I did not feel violated when the bill arrived, like I often do here. The arepitas de Nora are excellent. No, it's not as cheap as a taco stand in ________ (fill in the blank of any California or southwestern city), but we're not there, we're on Nantucket! Steve, what made the meal on of the worst? Just curious.

                  1. re: ciclista

                    We had the gauc and chips which was actually good (aside from the spider that came crawling out of the chips) but it was the baja fish tacos and the soft shell crab taco that were the true offenders. The fish tacos were incredibly bland and had a stale taste - that left my mouth covered in a mealy oily sensation. The crab taco was overwhelmed by the charred tortilla and had no crab flavor. The cerviche was also a disappointment - presentation wise it was a glop of an unworldly bright green color - and also had none of the what I call the "brightness" of a delicious cerviche. Now, I know well that Nantucket is expensive but there was no value received for the money spent - which I feel I did get spending as much or more at other restaurants on the island. The service was also a little shoddy but whatever.

                    1. re: SteveDson

                      Since posting the above reviews I've spoken with the owner and she is such a gracious and nice person that I am going to give her restaurants another try. I really felt she cares and wants to constantly improve her restaurants and that is a cool thing.

                2. Just saw your post, dennisl, and realized that you're a woman. I read "dennis" made assumptions, sorry.

                  I have to agree with the others who recommended Company of the Cauldron and Oran Mor. CoC is probably best if you want a romantic meal. I am a man who is not usually won over by harp music, but this place is the real deal for romance.

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                  Company of the Cauldron
                  7 India St, Nantucket, MA 02554

                  Oran Mor
                  2 S Beach St, Nantucket, MA 02554

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: crabby_cakes

                    No worries, I picked my name in a split second and didn't have time to get creative!

                    I think I've settled on Galley Beach because he would definitely appreciate the view and loves seafood (not that you can't get it anywhere on the island.)

                    I'm deciding we need another 'good' dinner because of all the suggestions, so I'm still looking, thanks.

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                    Galley Beach
                    54 Jefferson Ave, Nantucket, MA 02554

                    1. re: dennisl

                      It's a nice view. Report back on your meal. I'd love to hear how you like it and if you haven't noticed, we're a little short on information on this board. Many questions, few answers.

                      By the way, I'm sad to report that I might have to rescind my Oran Mor suggestion. It's been good in previous years, but our meal there tonight was very uneven, including some issues with severe oversalting and uneven salting.

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                      Oran Mor
                      2 S Beach St, Nantucket, MA 02554