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Best Bolognese in town

foodwinesong Jan 16, 2012 07:27 PM

In my search for the best Bolognese sauce in the Boston area, I keep returning to Sportello for a stunning treat. I'm especially pleased with the mix of veal, pork, and (what I believe are) chicken livers. Are there other contenders for a knock-out Bolognese?

  1. g
    Gabatta Jan 16, 2012 07:49 PM

    Via Matta

    1. c
      chowmensch Jan 16, 2012 07:53 PM

      Teatro has a great rigatoni bolognese and Prezza has an amazing gnocchi rigatoni.

      1. b
        Bellachefa Jan 16, 2012 08:41 PM

        Of the two mentioned, I prefer Teatro more then Via Matta. 1/2 order and a side salad. I will add Sportello to my list to compare. Although taking the time and offering up a bottle of red to make your own can be the most satisfying of all, but it takes 2 days!

        1. phipsi102 Jan 16, 2012 09:26 PM

          Il Casale in Belmont has an excellent Tagliatelle Bolognese, made of beef, pork, veal, mortadella, pancetta and chicken livers. Good stuff.

          1. C. Hamster Jan 17, 2012 05:01 AM

            Via Matta

            1. f
              foodwinesong Jan 17, 2012 08:15 AM

              Thanks for these recs! I've only had apps and drinks at Via Matta and will give it a try. Would love COPPA to add it to their menu. But of course, nothing compares to making it yourself. I've enjoyed making the Williams-Sonoma recipe with a slow-cooker and mixing in veal and chicken livers with the beef, pork, and pancetta. http://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe...

              1. m
                MeeshZ Jan 17, 2012 09:29 AM

                My favorites are Deuxave, dBar, Lucia in the North End, and Scampo!

                Via Matta wasn't my favorite.



                1. StevieC Jan 17, 2012 10:52 AM

                  Via Matta and Pasta Beach.

                  1. CocoDan Jan 17, 2012 11:32 AM

                    For me it's a tie: Via Matta, Teatro, and Pasta Beach. I'd try them all again,...and again,...
                    and again.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: CocoDan
                      southie_chick Jan 19, 2012 07:53 PM

                      Thanks for the "heads up" about Pasta Beach CocoDan - it's pretty close to my office so I'll have to give them a try. I always get a chuckle out of the name - I keep thinking it's named after the chick who makes the pasta! Now I just gotta keep from laughing when I order .......

                    2. a
                      AaronInBoston Jan 17, 2012 11:53 AM

                      definitely will have to try the bolognese at sportello next time we go. we had a fabolous meal there NYE, great PEI steamed mussels app and some great potato gnocchi (worth the 22$, seriously).

                      1. CocoDan Jan 17, 2012 01:45 PM

                        Now that my mouth is watering for it, I really like the version they prepare at San Pietro in Norwell. It's the closest to what I had in Italy. Don't go there often, but I'm never disappointed when I do. A little pricey for out of town, but worth it.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: CocoDan
                          Pomegranate Martini Jan 26, 2012 02:55 PM

                          Saporitos in Hull does a nice bolognese.

                        2. g
                          gltsoi Jan 17, 2012 02:01 PM

                          Sweet Basil in Needham. Hint of sweetness from the carrot and port - delicious!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: gltsoi
                            kt1969 Jan 20, 2012 10:54 AM

                            I'm a fan of the Sweet Basil version as well.

                          2. b
                            Bellachefa Jan 17, 2012 02:28 PM

                            I enjoy that with 12 replies it is all on the same verticle slant - not one bicker really, just opinions.

                            1. KilgoreTrout Jan 17, 2012 03:47 PM

                              Out of left field- Harry's in Brighton. Wild boar belly, lamb and beef. Pappardelle.

                              1. f
                                food_lubber Jan 17, 2012 06:44 PM

                                Highland Kitchen has a GREAT bolognese on their menu!

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: food_lubber
                                  bear Jan 18, 2012 04:45 AM

                                  Yes they do!

                                2. 9
                                  9lives Jan 18, 2012 06:42 AM

                                  I'm not surprised Sportello's is great. Barbara Lynch has been making this dish for years.

                                  Going in a little different direction and at the lower end of prices, Hot Tomatoes on Bedford St does a really nice Bolognese. Very convenient for DTX area workers who have a craving at lunch and no time for an all out dining experience..I do takeout. HT was owned by the Carmen people...and was a great alternative in the NE. Family disputes caused the NE store to close, recently reopened and I don't know who the current ownership is..but a very good Bolognese recipe was passed on from Carmen.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: 9lives
                                    southie_chick Jan 19, 2012 07:46 PM

                                    Hey 9, I noticed that Hot Tomatoes (Express?) opened in the North End in the old Lyndells space - have you (or anyone else) tried it yet ? : )

                                  2. h
                                    hto44 Jan 18, 2012 07:27 PM

                                    Not Boston, but the bison bolognese at the Abbey in Brookline is excellent.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: hto44
                                      southie_chick Jan 19, 2012 07:49 PM

                                      Also not Boston, but the version at L'Andana in Burlington is very good. Haven't tried it at Rino's yet, but their version of Amatriciana is probably my favorite past dish in the Boston area ....... so far!

                                    2. 5
                                      5thAndNowhere Jan 21, 2012 03:39 PM

                                      recently had Lucca's and really enjoyed it (i did not love Via Matta's) i was about to recommend the Salty Pig's and realized we had pig trotter ragout not bolognese. but that ragout was one of my favorite pasta finds in years.

                                      1. jinet12 Jan 23, 2012 11:15 PM

                                        Stella has amazing Bolognese sauce...

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: jinet12
                                          skc Jan 24, 2012 11:14 AM

                                          Outside of my house? I do like Sportello's bolognese. I'm also surprised that La Morra in Brookline Village isn't on this list. Perhaps it's off the menu, I haven't been there in a bit. I thought Davio's bolognese was flat.

                                          1. re: skc
                                            aregularjoe Jan 26, 2012 05:46 AM

                                            I'm surprised about La Morra as well, as the bolognese there is outstanding...

                                        2. t
                                          thanksgang Jan 26, 2012 05:51 AM

                                          This is a great thread. I picked up a lot of places to try. I would second Highland Kitchen and add that the sleeper for me is Pasta Market Cafe in Malden. Prisco makes one of the best bolognese sauces I have had.

                                          1. j
                                            jsimone11 Jan 26, 2012 11:15 AM

                                            Delfino in roslindale. made with mascarpone. amazing.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: jsimone11
                                              hto44 Jan 27, 2012 03:46 PM

                                              I have never tried the bolognese at Delfinos. I will be there in a couple of weeks and may just have to try it!

                                              1. re: hto44
                                                hto44 Feb 13, 2012 09:26 AM

                                                Was at Delfino's last night and tried the bolognese.......yes!....aMAZing!

                                            2. l
                                              lauralc9 Jan 27, 2012 09:19 AM

                                              It's a crime that it's all the way out in Worcester, but VIA Italian Table on Shrewsbury Street has some of the best Bolognese I have ever tried. Combine with the grilled Caesar and it is the perfect meal.

                                              And the worst? Davio's. Let me clarify - Patriot Place Davio's. Utter and complete slop.

                                              1. pinehurst Feb 15, 2012 01:37 PM

                                                I too like Via Matta and (God help me) the ancient chestnut Kitty's on Rt 28 in North Reading. Nothing fancy, but serviceable, the latter is.

                                                1. Mr. Mack Feb 15, 2012 04:27 PM

                                                  Anyone try Gran Gusto's version? Never had it myself but it comes highly recommended from a friend.

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