CH-er challenge: help calling the shot on perfect placement?
So... am hosting 3 academic colleagues + significant others (8 total) for celebratory dinner. All serious about food but budget has to be oriented more towards academia rather than Wall Street. Even better if unique, new to well-traveled folks who also frequent Boston restaurants. Limited ambient noise factor. Great/reasonable wine list. All this and still fun, upbeat place!
Might have thought Journeyman but event is on a day that are closed (as w/ Bondir). Have done similar at Deuxave but wondered if there was another option at better price point.
A subtle call to make. Thoughts?! Appreciate any input.
I think I'll need an explanation of "fun/upbeat" but with "limited ambient noise".
Since you're talking about Tuesday, that rules out Mary Chung. To the excellent suggestions here, I'd add Erbaluce, Craigie on Main (though it's on the pricey side), Trattoria Toscana (though you can't make reservations), and Coppa (though it can be noisy).
re: MC Slim JB
Great suggestions. Thanks.
Re fun/upbeat - restaurants of course have a vibe influenced by decor, setting, common clientele, etc etc. Wanted to avoid more sterile, 'library'-like, temple of food, hushed voices, but ideally also have a place where conversation is not a euphemism for shouting and only to the person next to you. This kind of event is interesting since unlike many other meals discussed on CH, these folks don't know each other that well or at all, ie spouses, don't socialize, and span multiple parameters - age, academic position, countries of origin. Hence the consult!
given my experience and those of so many recent CH posters, I think Island Creek Oyster Bar gives a fairly unbeatable evening experience. So warm and friendly w/ service, large room but not loud. Excellent food. Makes a real impression on those who eat there. Do a search and you'll see the many raves.