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Nov 6, 2010 11:54 AM

Looking for feedback on Deuxave

Wondering if anyone has been...would love your thoughts, if so. Have friends coming in a few weeks - would take them to Island Creek but we can't wait for them and are going next week. Would go to Towne but no one is making it sound so appealing. Thinking about Deuxave...Thanks! GF

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  1. We went and will wait for a while before going back. I don't know if it is opening jitters- we were there very early on.

    It was like watching a little girl trying to look grownup in her mother's gown and high heels. It made me uncomfortable.

    Lots of hard sell, "Our Tuna is flown in from Hawaii each day." " You MUST try the foie gras." Butter served in the wrapper so you will understand that it is better butter than you get at other places.

    My duck confit did not have a nice crisp skin. (I'll admit, I'm spoiled by Hamersley's version.) And, there was too much going on with every dish. My husbands halibut was over-crusted - he called it "choking."

    Maybe they will settle, in but at this point the food is simply not worth the price. They may have to find a new price point to fit the skill level.

    The other problem is that Island Creek is now open and has set the bar very high for all the new places in this area. We've been back to Island Creek and are planning a few more visits with friends.

    I know that some other people from the neighborhood have been here and they have liked it. So maybe it's me. Could be the perfect place for a different customer.

    At this point, if I were in your shoes, I would be planning two visits to Island Creek.


    4 Replies
    1. re: BostonZest

      Thank you so much for your great review/thoughts. My restaurant pet-peeve is feeling uncomfortable (i.e. little girl dressing up)...we will wait to see what others have to say before trying and will head to Island Creek.

      1. re: BostonZest

        The Boston Phoenix just gave Deuxave a horrible review and only one star. I've been wanting to go there, but based on the reviews I'm reading, maybe not.

        I also read that the executive chef Chris Coombs is only 26 years old, and was apparently on an episode of the Food Network's "Chopped." Several people commented that he was full of ego, extremely arrogant, and a terrible loser.

        Perhaps this young fellow is in above his head at Deuxave?

        1. re: onthehalfshell

          Saw the episode last night. He certainly isn't short on confidence.

        2. The dissenting pro-reviewer opinions are also in: Devra gave it 3 stars, Schaffer a B+.

          I've only been once, but I really enjoyed it, thought the food was very, very good (they definitely work hard on pretty platings), the service just fine (not pushy at all), the cocktails pretty good (there's an attractive small bar up front), the wine list well-curated and not too gouge-y, the desserts really good (it has its own talented pastry chef), and the dining room lovely.

          Nadeau ran into a string of technical errors (underdone legumes, oversalting, etc.), and I think he dislikes sorta-precious attempts at French-ish food, but I had none of his bad luck. The chef is indeed young, ambitious and fame-chasing enough to go on Chopped!, but I judge on the food. (He does a nice job at dbar in a much more relaxed, Franklin-ish idiom, too.)

          I'm going back soon.

          1 Reply
          1. re: MC Slim JB

            I concur with Slim.

            I've been to Deuxave only twice, once just wine and appetizers at the bar, a second time for the whole treatment. Thoroughly enjoyed the food both times. In fact, I like all aspects of Deuxave, except that name.

            I thought Devra's review was a little gushy, but not far off--it really is a good spot with huge potential if the chef and FOH keep at it. Conversely, this isn't the first Nadeau review where I am left wondering if the restaurant somehow wronged Nadeau's family.

          2. made up name. made up food combinations. chef is totally overreaching. food is highly mediocre. our waiter was nice, the kitchen was very slow. Will not be going back

            1. Funny, this place seems to polarize. I've been a few times now and have really enjoyed it. One person's ambitious and mostly successful is another's precious and overreaching. Most people like the atmosphere, regardless. It is not cheap, but it is in Back Bay.

              BoMag just panned it, which is weird: you don't often see Kummer and Nadeau in negative unison against First and Schaffer.


              10 Replies
              1. re: MC Slim JB

                expense is one of the least important factors. I will gladly pay for clios, also in the back bay also not cheap, but their food is excellent, and the unusual ingredients are incorporated into a whole, (as in the whole is greater than the sum of the parts) not dabbed on the side as some sort of weird contrasting element.

                1. re: ls27

                  Like I said, polarizing. But Clio is rather more expensive.


                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                    I'm a big fan of the place. I think that several of the dishes have one or two more ingredients/flavors than needed, and a few overwrought platings, but I think the food is excellent overall, and a darned good value for the level of food.

                    Personally (not so much objectively, perhaps), the wine list is fab.

                    Plus, the place really looks sharp. Love the ambience.

                    1. re: Jolyon Helterman

                      Does anyone remember the name of the upscale market that this place was in the '80s?

                      1. re: Billie Jean

                        I remember in college in the 90s there was a place called Baci's in that location. They sold coffee, food, wine. Owners were NOT nice.

                          1. re: Billie Jean

                            J Blinder's ??? and Sage's were across the street during those year on the east side of the block. There was a liquor store on one side and a market on the other the west side. I don't remember the name but it was a neighborhood place with a family name on it IIRC.

                            After years empty it came Baci, Seasonal Table (How I miss that wonderful shop!) and then Panificio.

                            1. re: BostonZest

                              It was indeed a Bildner's, back before the chain overexpanded and went bankrupt. Seasonal Table was run by Laura Brennan, who later opened Caffe Umbra; I liked both of those a lot.


                              1. re: MC Slim JB

                                Seasonal a.k.a. Unreasonable table.

                                Sage was a very convient market option for the neighborhood.

                            2. re: Billie Jean

                              When I lived in the building in the very early 80s it was White Hen Pantry!! LOL

                    2. A little addition to Deuxave: they only offered us filtered water, replaced the bottle twice, and didn't tell us there was a charge. They charged us for two of the three bottles we drank. We would have had tap if we'd known.
                      Obviously this isn't unheard of in restaurants, but it annoys me, so add Deuxave to your mental list of restaurants that practice this.

                      (I also found both of my dishes underseasoned.)