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Have to go to awful restaurant tonight--what should I order?

My husband has left his job and some colleagues are having a going away party tonight at Buca di Beppo. I'd never heard of this place, but the reviews sound dreadful. If we have a choice (the menu may have been selected by the hosts, so my question could be moot), is there anything that isn't huge and swimming in grease? I think they specialize in hugeness, based on some of the reviews.

Yes, we are grateful guests and the point is to say farewell, so we will certainly be kind. Just wondering if anyone else had been there?

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  1. I've been to several large dinners here and feel your pain. Some of their stuff is passable, but not swimming in grease is nearly impossible, and everything is huge. Their chopped salad isn't bad (get dressing on the side if you can). I recall they have a passable frutti de mare.

    1. Buca di Beppo serves "family style" which means salads come pre-dressed and portions are humongous. I had to go once--a friend of mine loves it--and I got some minestrone and a caprese salad. I've had worse. Yes, that is damning with faint praise. :D

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      Buca di Beppo
      233 Elm St, Dedham, MA 02026

      1. Go simple. Usually places like these are ok if you go as simple as possible with the food. Maybe spaghetti and meatballs and a Caesar salad.

        3 Replies
        1. re: hiddenboston

          A reviewer on Yelp ordered the spaghetti, then complained about having to eat it for three days! LOL. I may have to pass on that unless I can find a starving family to share it with me.

            1. re: coolhandluke

              That was my point. If someone on Yelp thought it sucked, it must be really horrid! But it's just one meal, someone else is paying, and I am thankful.

        2. It's not awful or dreadful at all, just not terrific. Their caprese salad is decent, their ravioli is okay. I had the chicken saltimbocca last time I was there and it was nothing special, but not awful by any means. Have some of their extremely sweet sangria.

          9 Replies
          1. re: Boston_Otter

            That's two votes for the caprese, then. I'll order that. It's hard to screw it up unless the mozarella isn't fresh or they pre-drown it in oil and vinegar.

            The sangria sounds good for such a hot day. I might try that, too.

            I just don't get the huge portion thing at all.

            1. re: Isolda

              The portions are made to serve 'family style' -- two or three entrees/salads are plenty for four or five people, easily. They're intended for sharing.

              1. re: Boston_Otter

                from the menu"At Buca di Beppo®, we serve family−style food in two portion sizes. Buca Small® feeds up to three and Buca Large® feeds an average−size country. Well, actually it serves up to six.

                At lunch we offer single-servings in addition to our traditional family style portions."

            2. re: Boston_Otter

              Agreed. I've been there once and I thought it was just fine. Portions are big because the dishes are meant to be shared.

                1. re: jmckee

                  Which ones have you had? I've only had the margherita.

                  1. re: Fibber McGee

                    I had the standard peperoni and was impressed... Thinner crust , fresh tasting topping great ratio of sauce and cheese... Honestly I would go there for pizza and salad and be very happy

                    1. re: Augie6

                      That's how the margherita I had was.

                    2. re: Fibber McGee

                      I've had the margherita and the veggie. with a glass of chianti (or two. or three) and a salad, very nice, actually.

                2. I've not been there, but eyeballing that menu, it's clear that a simple small, thin pizza with few ingredients would probably be least bad. Much safer bet than pasta.