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Looking for great food outside of Boston

Hi, my husband and I moved to Natick last year (about 20 miles west of Boston). There are a lot of chain restaurants out by us which isn't so great. While we love going into the city, the parking situation is less than ideal in Boston. We'd love to find some more "gems" in our area (doesn't have to be in Natick but maybe nothing further than 20 minutes away/easy to get to w/ easy parking). We love American, Italian, Mexican, Chinese, tapas, etc. So far Maxwell's is the best we've found out by us but we're looking for other special spots! Casual, not too much $, just good food, ambience, and maybe even romantic. :) Thanks foodies!

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  1. Sichuan Gourmet, Uncle Cheung's, Dosa Temple

    4 Replies
    1. re: Luther

      ditto to sichuan gourmet and uncle cheung's

      1. re: galangatron

        also Red Pepper, a little further down rte. 9 is a worthy (if a little inconsistent) sichuan place. but when its on, BOOM!

      2. re: Luther

        Dosa Temple -- in Somerville? Or is there a Metrowest one?

      3. Stone'sPublic House, Oregon Club, Red Rock Grille

        1. At the high end, you're within 20 minutes of Lumiere in West Newton and Blue Ginger in Wellesley. I don't particularly love Blue Ginger, but I'm in the minority on that one. For a little less money, there's Alta Strada in Wellesley. I don't enjoy the room itself, but the food has always been good and it's a decent value.

          I'd also echo Luther's suggestions of Sichuan Gourmet

          1. In addition to the excellent recs already posted, I'd add Sel de la Terre in the mall (of all places....), and Tomasso Trattoria in Southboro (20 minutes west of you on Rt 9). Also, the little tuscan market next to Tomasso is a gem, and owned by the same folks that run the restaurant.

            1. slozier, I live a bit farther west, and I sympathize...there's really a shortage of special places in these 'burbs.

              Sichuan Gourmet is definitely a good choice. Also Red Pepper, a little farther west is good authentic szechuan. I like Uncle Cheungs too.

              Sel de la Terre in the Natick Mall is not bad. and it doesn't feel like a mall restaurant at all.

              Ditto Lumiere for high end dining, its terrific and easy to get to. You can also get to Waltham relatively quickly, which adds a lot of other choices. I like La Campania for high end Italian. and I like Solea for tapas. Il Capriccio is pretty good too, also upscale Italian.

              Some people like Viva for Mexican in Wayland. I have to admit, we went once and were unimpressed. But I did like the ambiance and the service, would give it another try.

              Tomasso's, in Southborough is another possibility.I hesitate to recommend it...for years it was a go-to place for us, but then the quality and service slipped, and the prices stayed very high. We stopped going. But they have a new chef as of last week, so maybe it gets another shot. I just wish they would train their waitstaff how to handle a good bottle of wine. The winelist is still excellent. but when the waitress shakes up the sediment in the bottle while decanting it ...pouring all the sediment in to the carafe and the glasses, well, it really spoils things.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ChinaCat

                Sad to hear about Tomasso's, but hopefully the new chef will make a difference. I agree, too, that I've yet to have anything close to proper wine service west of 128!