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Legal Seafoods (sigh)

I've enjoyed Legal Seafoods and have been a supporter on Chowhound but I've recently had enough truely bad experiences to lodge a complaint here.

First, do after work oyster deals mean that the purveyor gets to serve bad oysters? This happened to me at the Prudential Legal Seafoods around a month ago, I'm still arranging my attitude and haven't ordered oysters since.

Second, does eating after 1pm guarantee second rate cooking? Twice in a row at the "upstairs" Legals in Copley Place I've left feeling depressed at going there at all:

"soft shell crab sandwich" - couldn't they at least try to cook it fresh or at least warm the thing by frying or sauteing? I actually got a cold soft shell crab for my sandwich two months ago.

"fried oysters" - since when are fried oysters ideally in 50% batter,, oily, not crunchy - hidden by soggy shitake mushrooms and a flavored mayo, on a bed of red cabbage. Throw it all out and give me the oysters crunchy and light!

Lastly, I don't like ice cold beer -- especially with fresh clams and oysters... and please try to bring it with a beer mat (a paper napkin if you must).

I did have some very nice oysters and fried clams outside at Legals Harvard Square last summer.

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  1. Went to lunch at the Legal's in Cambridge which was the first time I had been to a Legal's anywhere ever. I was shocked at how expensive the overall menu was. I had the tuna burger which was fine, ok fries that were a little greasy, but not awful. I guess for the business lunch crowd, it fits the bill.

      1. re: AaronInBoston

        In the business, wouldn't go near a Legal or recommend it to anyone. But have now been twice to Legal Harborside and they nail it.

        1. re: typhoonfish

          also in the business (lifer), and was distinctly underwhelmed by the harborside food. pretty much what i expected, so i don't need to go back. since this was supposed to be roger's new marquee restaurant, i had hoped for better. why, lol, i can't say. it really is always a matter of execution since all the locations start with good product.

          1. re: hotoynoodle

            SRSLY, it's Legal Seafoods. They sold their souls years ago.

            1. re: StriperGuy

              sg~ lol, i KNOW, but am down in that neighb a lot so thought i'd give it a shot. i know, i know, lol.

              not worth it for anything but oysters. and the place has lines like other operators dream about. sigh.

          2. re: typhoonfish

            Agreed. One of my favorite meals ever was at harborside.

            For the other sites...they don't screw up lobsters. Anything else is dicey.

        2. I stick to the oysters (always well-shucked, never had a bad one, including at happy hour) and the simple grilled fish (usually bluefish). Not a huge sample size, and usually the Kendall location, but it's fine for what it is. I agree with Bob that the prices are generally too high--there are plenty of other places in town that'll serve you a better meal (seafood or otherwise) for those prices.

          1 Reply
          1. re: emannths

            I can't remember the last time I had a bad oyster previously.

          2. The Prudential location is horrendous. Avoid it at all costs. The Park Plaza location is dismal, too.

            The food is cold/burned/underseasoned/greasy.

            The Prudential location's service is aggregious. Was told that it was a training location.

            1. I would never go to any of the locations you mentioned. The Kendall square location always did a good job for me, sorry to hear things maybe different now.

              Legals harborside is good, the view is mostly of Logan and not downtown.