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Jan 4, 2012 12:12 AM

Green Street Grill: Opinions and Favs?

The last thread on this place was May 2011. Many posters were complaining about a decline in food quality.We have not eaten here for maybe 15 yrs. What do you think of the food here lately? Fav dishes on this menu?
The octopus app and clam stew look really appealing. Thnx much.

Green Street
280 Green St, Cambridge, MA 02139

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  1. Last time I went I got the lamb skewers. I enjoyed them, but didn't find the food exceptional. The bacon double cheeseburger is my favorite thing on their menu of the dishes I've tried.

    From my experiences, I would say the kitchen is aiming for solid, somewhat basic, neighborhood restaurant-type dishes and mostly hitting that mark. I still see it as more of a place to get good drinks than noteworthy food.

    1. I love Green St, but mostly because of the Tres Leches cake. I've been a couple times and while I remember the meal and drinks being delicious, I couldn't tell you what I ordered, except for dessert.

      1. If you last ate there 15 years ago, it was probably in its old incarnation as a Caribbean restaurant. Chef Mark Romano has since moved on to Highland Kitchen.

        Green Street food these days is solid but I agree that the cocktails are the main reason to go.

        3 Replies
        1. re: dfan

          it was actually john levins, the opening? chef who went on to a small place in Arlington a few yrs ago and now...? (so maybe it was 20 yrs ago...)

          1. re: opinionatedchef

            it was never the same after levins left, it was good, but man, he could blow the doors off.

        2. Cocktails and beer selection are good. We have never gone there specifically for dinner, usually just snacks at the bar or taco night. The best is when they have one of their beer and taco specials. I know that you are a fan of the La Verdad fish tacos. Green Streets grilled fish taco is better than el Pelon and about the same as La Verdad's. Sorry I don't remember the kind of fish.The fried fish taco is boring, but still tasty. Other things that we have had and enjoyed are their bread, the burger, chips and dip, their fry of the day (which was a salted cod fritter/croquette), fried yucca, and steamed mussels. The cheese plate was boring, but not bad. I've never been wowed by the food, but I've always left satisfied.

          3 Replies
          1. re: viperlush

            I've never been wowed either. I view it as pretty decent for food, with some inconsistency of quality across the menu (gems and stinkers), inconsistency of execution from visit to visit, and prices that are a few dollars more per dish than I would like to pay. When I want to go out to a place in that style, I'll choose Highland Kitchen every time for food and leave happier and with more money in my wallet - Green Street's drinks are much better, though, because the HK crew doesn't measure, and when it gets busy, they get sloppy. I still love the place, the crowd, the bartenders, and the owner, but I don't make Green Street a dining option very often.

            1. re: DoubleMan

              One thing that I really love about Green Street is that they don't save the upstairs tables for those who plan a full meal. I hate trying to find a bar where I can sit and enjoy a conversation with people. Green Street doesn't mind you ordering just drinks, a couple tacos, or something more while sitting at a table. We went to brunch @ HK for the first time New Years. Enjoyed the food, happy that we tried it, but decided that we are more satisfied by what we have in our neighborhood.

              1. re: viperlush

                I think this varies depending on time of day/night; we've been turned away from the dining area a few times because we only intended to order drinks. I think that they keep the dining area for diners only during peak hours, then open it up to everyone a bit later on in the evening.

          2. Love the bacon double cheese burger, love the chips and dip, have enjoyed the octopus too. Be sure to ask about the offal of the day if you like such things. The cocktails are great -- be sure to ask for the big menu if you are a cocktail weenie, to see all the offerings, not just the edited list on the drink menu they will give you.

            One thing I do not enjoy is there is a funky smell in there every time I've been. It's a slightly sour sewage smell that once you notice it is hard to ignore, especially while eating. Sorry to bring that up, maybe you wouldn't have noticed it, but I wanted to give you fair warning to take a handkerchief with a little dab of essential oil in case it bothers you too.

            5 Replies
            1. re: yumyum

              Thats weird. I've never noticed that smell there. But I have frequently smelled sewage over @ Kendall by Hungry Mother, CBC, etc.

              1. re: yumyum

                I'm glad someone else mentioned the weird smell - I've also noticed it several times, especially in the dining area (less so at the bar). I wonder what it could be...

                that said, I really like Green Street. The drinks are (broadly speaking) not as recherché as some of the other craft cocktail places around town, but the quality is top-notch, the value excellent ($7-9 for almost all cocktails, as opposed to $10-12 and up at comparable places), and the vibe unpretentious. The food is not quite as consistent as the drinks, nor is it as good a value - but if you pick and choose you can do well, especially with the snacks and appetizers (I like the yuca) and the burger.

                1. re: zach272

                  I've always found that odor reminiscent of cat urine and found it worse in warmer weather. I only get it by the door. But oh yes, I have noticed it (as have the people I was wirh).

                  1. re: zach272

                    WHat are some other craft cocktail places you like?

                    1. re: fr1p

                      I tend to do most of my cocktail-ing at home these days, and I wouldn't call myself an connoisseur by any stretch... but off the top of my head, I've had good drinks in the recent past at Drink, Rendezvous, Island Creek Oyster Bar. I haven't yet been to some of the new craft cocktail places that are getting a lot of buzz on this board (e.g., Hawthorne, Brick & Mortar). I'm sure other posters/past threads will have plenty of recommendations to offer...