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Date night restaurant in Cambridge

Hello,
I live in the suburbs and am going to a show at the Middle East in Cambridge next weekend for my husband's birthday. I really don't know Cambridge well at all- any restaurant suggestions? Nothing tooooo fancy/expensive, but someplace fun & nice considering we have 2 babies and don't get nights out very often. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
Kate

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  1. Rendezvous - right next to the Middle East - for a right adult sit-down dinner.
    Green Street Grill is more casual.
    Both within walking distance and close to the muni garage on Green Street.

    1. Fun and kind of nice but casual is City Girl Cafe a short walk from Central Square. Plough and Stars up Mass Ave. also may fit the bill.

      Rendevous is amazing but expensive.

      You could also try to make it a bit more romantic and see if you can get in at Bondir. It's a bit pricey but if you do it right can still be a great value.

      6 Replies
      1. re: cbcpapa

        Guess it depends on your definition of "tooooo expensive" which I reserve for places like Salts and Craigie, in that neighborhood.

        I like City Girl a lot, but disagree that it is appropriate for a birthday dinner away from the kids. Not special occasion-y enough.

        What about Central Kitchen? Have not heard that place mentioned in ages on these boards. That's a notch down from Rendezvous.

        1. re: Bob Dobalina

          Central Kitchen is good, but just about as expensive as Rendezvous these days. Last time we were in there my wife and I looked at the prices and laughed ($28 steak frites for example).

        2. re: cbcpapa

          I guess it depends on how far the OP wants to go and how much time they have before the show. Inman isn't necessarily that short of a walk from the Middle East (approx .8 mile). And if they decide to drive up there parking isn't as convienent. But if they are willing to go up there that opens up a slew of restaurants. Kendall is a little closer to the Middle East (approx .5 mile). Parking is easier than Inman, but still not that short of a walk if you have time restraints.

          In Central:

          Rendezvous: Western Mediterranean- http://www.rendezvouscentralsquare.co...

          Green Street: Local inspired American- http://www.greenstreetgrill.com/dinne...

          Baraka: Algerian-Tunisian - http://www.barakacafe.com/menu.html

          Inman:

          The Druid: Irish Bar- http://www.druidpub.com/menu.html

          East by Northeast- Chinese-style- http://exnecambridge.com/about/

          Muqueca- Brazilian inspired seafood- http://www.muquecarestaurant.com/menu

          Tupelo- Southern Inspired Comfort Food- http://tupelo02139.com/

          East Coast Grill- Seafood- http://eastcoastgrill.net/wordpress/w...

          Kendall:

          Area 4- Gourmet pizza and other local inspired American- http://www.areafour.com/storage/menus...

          http://www.areafour.com/storage/menus...

          Hungry Mother- Southern Inspired. More high end than Tupelo http://www.hungrymothercambridge.com/...

          Oleana- Easten Med./Middle Eastern- http://www.oleanarestaurant.com/eat-a...

          1. re: viperlush

            If we're looking at places down the street, maybe The Cellar as well? I've only done take-out from there myself, but I've heard good things about them, especially the truffle fries.

            1. re: tammyh

              The Garden at the Cellar is a good place, but it does not take reservations, and may be tricky timing-wise with the concert.

          1. Hungry Mother (book as soon as you can!), Bergamot, or EVOO...none are super close to Central (maybe a quick cab ride would be needed), but I think they are all better than Central Kitchen (lately), Rendezvous, or Green Street. I also love Area Four, but it might not feel quite as 'date night.'

            3 Replies
            1. re: ginafly

              HM, EVOO, and Bergamot all have easy parking if you're driving. Street parking usually isn't too hard, but the former two have a pay lot for backup ($5 or less w/validation), and the latter has a free lot.

              In the similar vein of close-by-car-with-easy-parking, perhaps Casa B in Union Sq Somerville might be nice. See Swankalicious' post about it.

              1. re: emannths

                Ha, yeah, right...coming in from the 'burbs....of course they will have a car. =) Area Four also super easy on street parking.

                1. re: ginafly

                  Not like it's necessary because of how easy street parking is, but A4 also has a deal with their garage for free parking w/validation. http://www.areafour.com/directions/