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suggestions for fun, off-the-beaten-path Berkshires dinner?

After a week of enjoying fine dining around the Berkshires (Nudel, Mezze, Bistro Zinc), we're looking for something a little more casual and fun (but still delicious!). Any suggestions for a hidden gem in the area that will be a little more relaxed (and more off the beaten path)? All cuisines are fair game. We're in west stockbridge, but willing to travel. Thanks!

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  1. Your post makes me nostalgic for Helsinki, which used to be in Great Barrington. Good Scandinavian-influenced cuisine in a funky but cosy setting. Tea was one of their specilaties. They also had live music, and their calendar of musicians was often more interesting than ones in Boston. They moved to Hudson, NY to become Helsinki Hudson. Have not been to the new location. The menu looks like it has moved away from Scandinavia, and the space looks much bigger and more polished.

    Lots of good food in Great Barrington. Babalouie's is good for pizza. The Mexican place on the way to Stockbridge would be fun. I've had some decent meals and good beer at Barrington Brewery, and I've heard good things about Brick House Pub in Housatonic.

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    Barrington Brewery and Restaurant
    420 Stockbridge Rd, Great Barrington, MA 01230

    Brick House Pub
    425 Park St N, Great Barrington, MA 01230

    1 Reply
    1. re: czarp

      Sorry, but I'd definitely skip Baba Louies (not what it used to be) and Barrington Brewery. Neither is anything exceptional (if even any good) nor out of the ordinary.
      Rouge is excellent and a bit more casual. You might try the Rt. 7 Grill in Great Barrington; decent food, attractive but very relaxed atmosphere.

    2. We like La fogata in Pittsfield, Columbian food, more urban than Berkshire.

      1 Reply
      1. re: magiesmom

        I second La Fogata...excellent food and beers from all over South America.

      2. I think you would enjoy the Dreamaway Lodge up in Becket. Years ago, it was a family owned(Mama Fresca) inn and restaurant. Dylan, Baez, (Rolling Thunder Review) and other such musicians would stay there in the 70s. About 7-8 years ago, Danny Osman bought and renovated it. Amy, the chef is really, really good...she is a Berkshire native and at one time had a bakery in Lenox and then did a good deal of free lance cheffing. And there is generally live music on the weekends. In its day, back in the day, as it were, it was legend...

        6 Replies
        1. re: AikiLou

          I am amazed you say the chef is wonderful, It is certainly off the beaten path, but the food is IMO mediocre at best and the music too loud and bad.

          1. re: magiesmom

            I DO disagree...Amy Lovelace has gotten many accolades over the years. As for the music, nobody is obligated to stay for that. And, it is a fun place.

            1. re: AikiLou

              Aikilou, I totally agree w/ you. We've always had a good meal and the atmosphere is extremely relaxing. Check the Dreamaway Lodge's website for more information.

              1. re: AikiLou

                except if you are still eating because the service is so slow...

              2. re: magiesmom

                Have to agree with Magiesmom on both La Fogata and Dreamaway. The latter is great for a mellow vibe but the food I've had there was quite forgettable.

              3. re: AikiLou

                I love the Dreamway Lodge! The food is okay...not by any means awful but the atmosphere MORE than makes up for it! Make a night of it! Fire outside....fairy lights, eclectic
                furnishings and a great staff.

              4. Hah! Just came up with something (I KNEW there was something --)
                We went for the first time recently to Mission Bar and Tapas on North Street in Pittsfield. Informal, yes. Casual, yes. Delicious, YES.
                At night there's music, but mjoyous says it doesn't begin until 7 pm, and in any event, maybe you'd like to come for the music.
                Tapas, small plates, interesting food, fun place! We liked it a lot, and we're fussy when it comes to delights of the table.

                1. We always go to Truc Orient, aVietnamese restaurant in West Stockbridge. Nicest people in the world, very low key and a fun atmosphere. Very reasonable prices as well. They have all kinds of asian gift items for sale as well.

                  3 Replies
                    1. re: magiesmom

                      Amy Loveless used to prepare the delicious food at the lunch cafe of The Mount. You should call to see if that's still the situation. I believe, however, that you have to buy an admission ticket which is not unworthwhile if you have never been. For local color at breakfast, Jill's in Lee (in a mall at the bottom of the main drag ( the end closer to the Mass Pike.) It's better than Joe's, but not as fastidious as Martin's.

                      1. re: magiesmom

                        Had the chance to go back this week. Do try the eggplant appetizer, and leave room for the absolutely wonderful lemon mousse - best we've ever had. We also appreciate the great value on the house wines, which are quite good and run about $10 for a half a carafe, perfect for 2 who are driving home.

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                        Truc Orient Express Harris
                        PO Box 321, West Stockbridge, MA 01266