Great meal at Bina
I've read the old posts about Bina, but I don't understand why it is so empty when I've gone (twice). Maybe the day after Thanksgiving isn't a big night, but I would've thought people would be out on the town looking for some food they didn't make. I think the food is really amazing. Last night we had stuffed squid and the sweetbread dish to start, both delicious. Then my friend had a pasta dish (think the name means handkerchief, but I don't remember it - is it malfetta?) which she loved and I had veal cheeks with polenta. Both were solid hits, for us. On the one hand it is great to go in on a Friday night at 7:30 and be seated, but I worry they'll go out of business!
581 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02111
I suspect part of Bina's problem in attracting and keeping a loyal audience is a revolving door of chefs in its short life. The current one is number four or five since it opened, each one has put a different stamp on the menu, and it's expensive. I imagine a lot of the Theatre District custom it hopes to attract might be bled off by the brand-new Salvatore's down the street (which I don't think much of, but is undeniably much cheaper).
re: MC Slim JB
also they seemed to get out of the gate on the wrong foot with service/attitude issues and a very high price point right when the economy went crashing down. the room also lacks "warmth". the style, while stunning, feels more new yorkish to me and i don't really care for the starkness.
that being said, i have always had very good food there.
the owners are smart business people and not working on a shoe string. that being said, i wonder if the original stumbles mean that locals won't venture back. much like rocca never really got back on its feet. we shall see.
I have to say that I think the food at Bina under the current chef is some of the best in the city right now. I was in the night before Hurricane Irene, and again last Sunday night. The dining room was empty on both nights, however, I was blown away by the food. I had the best tripe dish I have ever had there on the last trip. I have been telling everyone I know to give them another try. On this past Friday night, walking past Bina from Chinatown around 7:30, the dining room was again deserted. Its a real shame.