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Mar 5, 2012 12:22 PM

Great restaurants near Copley Square?

Headed to Boston for two nights. Any great non-touristy restaurants I should try that are not too far from Copley Square? I'm adventurous, will eat anything, but prefer non-tourist trap, and not ridiculously expensive.

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  1. You should check out the Salty Pig - it's right nearby and is a unique option

    1. Michael Schlow's latin small plates restaurant Tico is fun and tasty, but as in many tapas-style places those tiny bites can add up to a not-so-tiny bill if you aren't careful.

      1. Two Chowhound favorites, Eastern Standard and Island Creek Oyster Bar, are in Kenmore Square which is walkable/short T ride from Copley. My word of caution would be to watch the Red Sox schedule on these spots. If there's a home game, I'd avoid them for the couple hours before the game. Once the game starts, they usually empty out and you'll be good.

        1. on the higher end, hammersley's, coppa, both in south end.

          brasserie jo, behind copley, is considerably cheaper and serves french/alsatian.

          myers and chang is about a 15 minute walk for inventive chinese.

          7 Replies
          1. re: hotoynoodle

            Tico is a good suggestion. For less expensive maybe Stephanie's in Newbury street. Still on walking distance

            1. re: libertywharf

              Erbaluce, La Voile, Bistro du Midi, Lucca in Back Bay.

              1. re: libertywharf

                i would rather stab myself in the eye than eat at stephanie's.

                1. re: hotoynoodle

                  Same. I was there over the summer after a looong hiatus (friends in from the suburbs could not be talked out of the idea that the patio was something special) was shocked at both the poor quality, bad service and prices. Sandwiches and salads that are the better part of $20 The drink list actually made me laugh out loud. $13 for some fruity vodka thing?

                  1. re: LeoLioness

                    oh dear, ditto with that - I was dragged there for a "girl's lunch" and Stephanie's was so dreadful that I wondered how it stayed open. and, for the record, I think there are lots of good restaurants in the Copley area: Parish Cafe and upstairs at the Rattlesnake are not expensive and are worth stopping at. Yes, it's a tourist area, No, it's not a food desert.

                  2. re: hotoynoodle

                    I'd sooner have a sex change operation than eat @Stephanies again unsedated.

                    La Voille
                    Bistro du Midi

                  3. re: libertywharf

                    He said no tourist trap. Stephanie's most certainly is that.

                    Have to confess, though, had a good brunch at Stephi's on Tremont.

                2. yeah, Copley doesn't exactly have a wealth of options. . . like most downtowns, lots of overpriced blah. sel de la terre is always quality, though. bar area on the ground level is a nice spot, as is the dining room upstairs. But I would take mkfisher's advice and make the short trek to Island Creek Oyster Bar. Wonderful space, outstanding local food experience. . .great drinks, too. Eastern standard is lively, great cocktails, and the food is *pretty* good, but i rarely go there for dinner.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: minneapolite


                    Respectfully, Copley Square is NOT downtown, its almost a mile from it. Sel De La Terre is the only place that you list that is in Copley Square and it IS a tourist trap and is frankly awful and a rip off.

                    Island Creek and Eastern Standard are in Kenmore Square, a little over a half mile away. Island Creek is good. Eastern Standard is OK, but has a lively young bar clientele and serves a few dishes at the bar until late night.

                    Eastern Standard
                    528 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215

                    Sel De La Terre
                    776 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02199

                    Island Creek Oyster Bar
                    500 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

                    1. re: aregularjoe

                      Because I am a stickler on accurate distances, I will point out that Kenmore Square is actually just a hair over a full mile from Copley Square. It is, however, a pretty quick cab ride and only two stops outbound on the Green Line (take anything but the E line.)

                      1. re: aregularjoe

                        Well, it's not Downtown-Crossing downtown, but to a lot of people that don't live in the city, "downtown Boston" means the North, West, and South Ends, Beacon Hill, Back Bay, the Financial District, Chinatown, the Theatre District, Downtown Crossing, the Waterfront / Seaport, and maybe Fenway/Kenmore.

                        Unless for some reason you want easy walking distance from Copley Square, all of these neighborhoods are a reasonable walk (for people who love to walk) or an easy cab or T ride away, so I wouldn't limit your search to Back Bay. Much of Cambridge has plenty of worthy options, too, and isn't much further time- or distance-wise away.

                        I had to entertain clients who wanted walking distance from Copley recently, so I chose Sorellina. It was a big hit, though all in (cocktails, a lot of decent wine, desserts, afters, etc.), it worked out to about $170/head. Glad I didn't have to pick up that check.