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Lunch, brookline area, sit and chat?

TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 02:46 AM

I'm coming up soon for a Sox game on a Saturday, staying in Arlington. Game is at 7:10. Would like to have lunch and meander around before the game. Thinking of driving to Brookline area for lunch then driving closer, perhaps to St. Mary's and hoofing it in.

I was initially thinking of Citizen Public House, which is near Fenway. We've eaten there before, good food. But it doesn't open till 5, and I think we want an earlier lunch. If we get going later though, we may end up there.

Ideally would like a casual spot, GOOD food, where we can sit around and chat for awhile.

Came up with some possibilities online, what do you think? Do you have others? Perhaps a spot with great thin crust pizza and Italian? (Non sushi/seafood)

The Publick House
Pizzeria Dante
Bottega Fiorentina/Bottega Capri (Did these two places once have the same name?)
Barcelona Wine Bar


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  1. m
    marketpeach RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 04:31 AM

    What about The Abbey in Washington Square? Not usually too busy around lunchtime with tasty food and drinks. Not Italian, though they do have a daily changing flatbread special which is generally yummy and their delicious bison bolognese is on their lunch menu. Definitely prefer their food to the food at Publick House across the street.


    1 Reply
    1. re: marketpeach
      TrishUntrapped RE: marketpeach Sep 10, 2013 04:50 AM

      The Abbey sounds great!

    2. Berheenia RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 05:19 AM


      4 Replies
      1. re: Berheenia
        TrishUntrapped RE: Berheenia Sep 10, 2013 06:54 AM

        O'Leary's seems like it would have a fun vibe.

        1. re: TrishUntrapped
          Berheenia RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 12:24 PM

          As a former regular I'm a wee bit prejudiced but it really is an Irish pub where you can linger for hours over an inch of Guinness or a soft drink with a book or friends, and you might make some new ones there. The standard fare is well prepared. I don't know who is cooking these days but have never had a bad meal there.

          1. re: Berheenia
            C. Hamster RE: Berheenia Sep 10, 2013 01:36 PM

            Admittedly, I haven been in a few years

            Sounds like Ill have to stop by again.

            1. re: Berheenia
              maillard RE: Berheenia Sep 10, 2013 01:39 PM

              I've been a regular at O'Leary's for 7 or 8 years. The food used to be very good for a pub, but I've found that it's gone downhill a bit the past few years. Very sad. I still go, but have dinner there far less often. The fish and chips is still excellent, though, as is the service.

        2. a
          addiez RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 06:35 AM

          Otto!! Amazing pizza. The one in Coolidge Corner is great to sit.

          1 Reply
          1. re: addiez
            TrishUntrapped RE: addiez Sep 10, 2013 06:49 AM

            Otto looks good too!

          2. k
            Klunco RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 06:45 AM

            In addition to the Abbey, I've always found Matt Murphy's a perfect place to pass a few hours.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Klunco
              TrishUntrapped RE: Klunco Sep 10, 2013 06:54 AM

              Matt Murphy's looks good too. I see they don't take credit cards and I'm footing the bill for several of us, so if we go there I better bring a lot of $$$.

            2. C. Hamster RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 11:24 AM

              Bottega Fiorentina is tiny and not really conducive for chatting.

              O'Leary's is pretty run of the mill

              If you are considering Matt Murphy's you might also like a few other spots in that neighborhood: Orinoco; Sichuan Garden and Family Restaurant.

              Cognac Bistro on Harvard near CC is a nice place, too

              2 Replies
              1. re: C. Hamster
                Allstonian RE: C. Hamster Sep 10, 2013 11:29 AM

                Based on the hours posted on their website, Cognac Bistro is closed between 3 and 5.

                ETA: It looks like the restaurant is closed during that 2-hour block but the bar is open.

                1. re: Allstonian
                  C. Hamster RE: Allstonian Sep 10, 2013 11:32 AM


                  Thats a great place to chat and chew ....

              2. f
                fara RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 10, 2013 06:08 PM

                Great pizza-Otto's.
                It seems like you like pubs and Reagle Beagle is always a good bet if you're in the mood for a pub.
                I would not go to Bottega for pasta. Really you are better off at Ottos' if you want something Italian-ish. You can hang out there for a while.
                At St Mary's there's Sichuan Gourmet.

                1. TrishUntrapped RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 11, 2013 07:40 AM

                  Lots of possibilities! Thanks for the suggestions!

                  1. t
                    teezeetoo RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 11, 2013 06:35 PM

                    Fireplace Grill is my first choice for a "sit and chat" lunch in Brookline - inside or outside, great salads, good bar, and inviting. Cognac Bistro is my next "go to" for Brookline lunch of the "have a drink and talk" kind.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: teezeetoo
                      BobB RE: teezeetoo Sep 12, 2013 04:36 PM

                      I second (or is it third?) Cognac Bistro. Plus their lunch menu offers a to-die-for croque madame. Best I've tasted this side of Paris.

                      1. re: BobB
                        TrishUntrapped RE: BobB Sep 12, 2013 08:41 PM

                        On Cognac Bistro's website it doesn't look like they serve between 3 and 5. That may be an issue for us this go round. A lot depends on how quick everyone is ready to go on Saturday.

                    2. c
                      cmc2 RE: TrishUntrapped Sep 13, 2013 02:06 AM

                      matt Murphy's. Great amazing Irish food - the brown bread is to die for as are the soups, plowman's lunch, etc.

                      I am less crazy about the fish and chips there.

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