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Erbaluce, Bondir or somewhere else for an anniversary?

s
Scharn Aug 30, 2011 06:48 AM

Hi,

I cannot decide where I would like to take my girlfriend for our anniversary this weekend...

I am looking for a classy, romantic place that makes me look good, but that does not bankrupt me. (so no Park No.9, I would like to spend something below $150 incl. drinks for 2). Something organic/artisan but with starched tablecloth and chandeliers would be ideal =)

Erbaluce and Bondir seem interesting as they appear to really respect the ingredients. However, I would be open to any other location, ideally not that far from South End (yes i know, bondir is in cambridge). I also plan to have drinks at "Drink", so maybe if there is some good restaurant there could be also be an option. Briefly I thought about reserving grotto but I am uncertain if it is anniversary-ish enough, might just be a too casual place.

Thanks much!

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Drink
348 Congress St, Boston, MA 02210

Erbaluce
69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

Bondir
279 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139

  1. j
    jajjguy Aug 31, 2011 02:40 PM

    Both are wonderful, and overall it's a toss up.
    I'd give Bondir the edge on atmosphere. It's cozy, warm, and charming, while Erbaluce is a bit larger and less beautiful but still quite nice.
    Both have excellent food that has made me scratch my head and wonder in a good way. Bondir is country french-inspired and leans heavily on animal fat, in an artful and yummy way. Erbaluce is lighter, less fat and salt, more herbal and veg flavors -- but they don't skimp on meat or volume, and you will leave full at either place.
    Bondir's wine list is minimal, well chosen in a functional way but not a showpiece and, while not expensive, not especially good value either. Erbaluce has an extensive and super interesting list of obscure Italian wines covering the full range of prices, so if wine is your thing (as it is mine) that gives Erbaluce a big edge.
    Either way, you win. Enjoy.

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    Erbaluce
    69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

    Bondir
    279 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139

    1. b
      beforesunrise Aug 30, 2011 04:59 PM

      My husband took me to Bondir for our anniversary and it was perfect. Cozy, romantic and intimate with excellent service and attention to making our experience wonderful (as well as fantastic food).

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      Bondir
      279 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139

      1. h
        hckybg Aug 30, 2011 09:14 AM

        Erbaluce is very nice, but I'd pick Bondir every time. Great room, super cozy and a bit romantic, a very innovative menu (and you can order half portions so you can try lots of things). Bondir is in a category of its own for me right now, the best of its type in the area. But I'm less convinced you will be able to get a reservation on such short notice, so hopefully you will be that lucky.

        4 Replies
        1. re: hckybg
          s
          STL BOS Aug 30, 2011 09:25 AM

          I agree on Bondir rec, and it would be well within your budget depending on wine choice.

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          Bondir
          279 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139

          1. re: hckybg
            Small Plates Aug 30, 2011 12:39 PM

            Third for Bondir. Erbaluce is nice, but the romance factor goes hands down to Bondir. We go regularly because it is so close, and I am wowed each time. The half portions make it affordable. The menu is posted daily on the website, so you can get an idea of their food. Sublime, really.

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            Erbaluce
            69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

            Bondir
            279 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139

            1. re: Small Plates
              s
              Scharn Aug 31, 2011 02:40 PM

              so bondir it is, i just reserved a table for friday night :)

              1. re: Scharn
                h
                hckybg Aug 31, 2011 06:33 PM

                Have fun! I enjoyed my dessert there, so perhaps you will too. I'm glad you were able to get a reservation. Be sure to check out the gorgeous espresso machine.

          2. d
            Duster17 Aug 30, 2011 07:05 AM

            I think Salts is a great anniversary spot.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Duster17
              chefematician Aug 30, 2011 04:53 PM

              Salts is a wonderful suggestion. I had a lovely anniversary dinner there last year and wrote a lengthy review of the meal here on CH. The atmosphere is definitely worthy of a special occasion and the food is fantastic. I think it's a little under-rated on this board, or maybe just not suggested very often, but it's a great choice for an anniversary.

              Bergamot and T.W. Food are also worth looking into, as they seem to fit your budget and other specifications.

              I've been to Bondir, and I really enjoyed all parts of the meal...except dessert. I think the chef did a great job respecting the ingredients in each savory course, but the dessert course was disappointing to me. If you and your GF don't plan to order dessert then this might be fine. The atmosphere is definitely romantic, albeit a bit rustic feeling. I've never been to Erbaluce so I can't comment on that suggestion.

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