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Which Boston-Cambridge restaurants have been around since the 1980s?

If I wanted to take a trip in the wayback machine and revisit Boston in the 1980s, where should I dine? I'm not talking OLD like the Union Oyster House, just kind of go-go, stockbroker 1980s.

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  1. when you say stockbroker 80s, do you mean expense-account kinds of places? old-school fancy like maison robert and locke-ober are both long gone. restaurants with expensive, inventive food that dragged boston out of the culinary dark ages, like jasper's and biba, are gone as well.

    there are plenty of scuzzy college hangs like maryann's, grendel's and t's pub that remain, but even places like the bristol lounge and ritz have been remodeled and the menus totally changed.

    hammersley's opened in the late 80s, but never had that kind of vibe.

    6 Replies
    1. re: hotoynoodle

      Not stockbroker 1980's, but Mary Chung's in Cambridge and Il Panino in North End have been around since then.

      1. re: Uncle Yabai

        Mary Chung's closed for a while, then reopened a few doors down.

        1. re: chuck s

          Didn't Mary Chung's start out on Main Street, where Royal East is now?

          1. re: Allstonian

            I think I remember MC as being across the street on The intersection of Mass/Main.???

            1. re: 9lives

              Google is my friend - I was thinking of the long-gone Colleen's, which *was* in the Royal East space. There is a connection, though: Mary Chung worked at Colleen's, and took a number of recipes with her (including the suan la chow show) when she opened her own place.

              1. re: 9lives

                Right, where the blood testing lab is now, between the McDonalds and the couple of restaurants in the plaza built out from the detritus of the gas station.

        1. re: Luther

          Started in 1981, IIRC. I have a cookbook signed by Chris Schlesinger where he noted 1980, but I recall pointing out to him the year was 1981.

        2. The Border Cafe has been open in Harvard Square since the late '80s.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Kat

            Yeah, the Border Cafe opened in '87, as I recall. Too bad they took my favorite dish of theirs (it was fried catfish in a pungent brown sauce) off the menu.

            1. re: Kenji

              That was my favorite too! I think it was the catfish Meuniere.

          2. the Harvest, Marliave, Casa Romero, Hungry I, Sol Azteca,
            Sakurabana, Ristorante Lucia

            3 Replies
            1. re: opinionatedchef

              those places have been open a long time but were they ever places that catered to expense account guys looking to blow a wad of bonus money?

              1. re: hotoynoodle

                Harvest may have been.As a college senior, I was told I needed to pay $20 in 1977 to go to a dinner with some college professors. $20 was so out of sight for me then. Harvest was the only fine dining spot in Cambridge at that time. And into the early 80's at least.

                1. re: Madrid

                  Yep, the Harvest is the first place that comes to mind. I was part of the Harvard crowd back then, and it was the go-to place for all of us for special occasions.

            2. Swank, are you looking for restaurants that havebeen in biz since the 80s or places where the financial industry crowd used to go in the 80s?

                1. re: Science Chick

                  Isn't that more of a mid-1990's vintage? Maybe early 90s?

                  1. re: Uncle Yabai

                    The new Improper Bostonian has an ad for Grill 23 (on page 17) celebrating their 30th anniversary. That makes the start 1984! BTW in the ad, the white haired gentleman in the lower right is Ken Himmel, the owner and also the owner of Harvest and Post 390.

                    1. re: BBHound

                      Yeah, I definitely remember going there in the peak of the 80's yuppie fervor. I moved away from 1990-1997, so I knew it had to be somewhere there in the 80s.

                  2. re: Science Chick

                    Before Himmel there I think there was a triumvirate that owned Grill 23? I recall a very dapper GM who moved on before they were linked with Harvest, but can't recall a name.

                  3. The Vault, although not the same.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: trufflehound

                      Great sliders- seriously - basic, fresh, and tasty - consistently good (not a destination item, however...)

                    2. When I think of the '80 in Boston I immediately think of Faneuil Hall. Those places would fill up with the younger financial guys. On the weekends, if you weren't heading north or south, it was brunch at Crickets. Later it became the East Coast Grill. The Beacon Hill Pub on Charles St was popular as a local hang out and late night burgers.

                      Business dinners usually meant Lock Obers or Jaspers. Corporate dinners often ended up at Davios or the North End. High end dates or dinners with visiting parents was usually at Maison Robert or the Hungry I.

                      Going out with friends usually meant Faneuil Hall, Newbury St or Harvard Square. Fridays in the '80s was popular with the newly legal. Sonsie didnt open until the early 90's but that was huge hit. The Boathouse in Harvard Square or the 11th chapter in Somerville was for drinking and meeting the opposite sex.

                      22 Replies
                      1. re: foodieX2

                        Late 70's, early 80's my buddies and I used to hit what we called the '4 corners' at Faneuil Hall, Houlihans and Lily's at one end, I can't recall the 2 at the other end.

                          1. re: Veggo

                            In Fanieul Hall, Seaside later Kingfish Hall was a big hangout. Cricket's, now Anthem, Lily's

                            1. re: Veggo

                              I found a website of this architectural firm that worked on several restaurants in Boston in the 1970s and 1980s. Check out Cricket's...such a 1970s fern bar.

                              I don't remember the Copley Court at all, I can't even picture what is there now.

                              http://www.rfarchitects.com/hospitality/

                              1. re: latertater

                                Thanks! Cricket's was the fourth corner!

                                1. re: latertater

                                  Arne's? Copley Court? Kowloon Café?

                                  All in Copley Place?

                                  I don't remember anything about them ....

                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                    I googled Arne's and found a copy of The Phoenix from October 1984!

                                    With ads for Rudy's, Mississippi's, The El Phoenix, S&S, Five Seasons in JP among lots of others.

                                    Also Marliave and Trident and lots of Thai and Sushi places.

                                    Complete with a Robert Nadau review of a sushi place.

                                    http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid...

                                    1. re: C. Hamster

                                      Ha! "Copley Court" was the landscaping alongside the long escalators from the street entrance on the corner of Huntington & Dartmouth, where the Westin is. Overblown name and concept for some interior landscaping.

                                      I believe the Kowloon Cafe space was later occupied by the Chili's, next to the movie theater which is now Barney's. Arne's became Turner Fisheries, I think? Is that where the Fogo de Chao is now?

                                      1. re: Allstonian

                                        The picture of Copley Court on that firm's website doesn't look anything like that. It has a table service restaurant and elaborate landscaping. And marble floors. Could be the middle of Copley Place with the fountain?

                                        And from the pic Arne's doesn't look much like Turner Fisheries. It does look a lot like Legal though.

                                        Kowloon was probably Chili's, though.

                                        Hmmm.... except did Chili's become Legal?

                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                          I think you're right, although I don't remember that arcade at all, or a cafe in the middle of that area. Was it on the upper level, maybe? I honestly can't quite make sense of those pictures, and I used to know Copley Place pretty well.

                                          1. re: Allstonian

                                            Im having the same problem. They don't look familiar at all and I Ive been in and out of there a lot since it first opened.

                                            The café thingie looks round, which is why I thought it might have been on the first floor. But I don't remember anything like it in there.

                                            1. re: C. Hamster

                                              You guys are all confused. "Copley Court" was on the second floor, above the cinemas. It was a promenade with an atrium in the middle, and some fancy-ish restaurants around it. There was (is?) a Legals up there now, and maybe a couple others?

                                        2. re: Allstonian

                                          Fogo de Chao is where The Palm used to be.

                                  2. re: foodieX2

                                    sonsie has been open less than 20 years, so very late 90s, but your list made me remember lily's at faneuil hall.

                                    1. re: hotoynoodle

                                      According to google Sonsie opened in 1993 so to me that's early '90s. I remember heading there after work almost every Thursday night. We thought we were sooooo cool. Rent controlled apt in Harvard Square, money to burn and the world was ours for the taking, LOL.

                                      http://www.bostonmagazine.com/2006/10...

                                      1. re: foodieX2

                                        lol, ok i stand corrected. i worked with that article's lily in another place too. :)

                                        1. re: foodieX2

                                          still not the 80s the OP is looking for...

                                          1. re: kewpie

                                            Hence the words "when I think of the 80's in Boston". But thanks for your comment, added so much to the conversion! :)

                                      2. re: foodieX2

                                        I was in law school in the very early '80s and we headed to Faneuil hall a lot. But that was cause we were poor and drank kamakazis

                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                          I worked for DEC in the very early 80's and we headed to Faneuil Hall a lot. But that was to pick up chicks.

                                      3. Café at the Ritz (now Taj) was a place for "power breakfasts".

                                        1. you would definitely dine at Brandy Pete's for lunch and drinks.maybe even on Broad St.

                                          Besides that, you'd have dined at Maison Robert/Ruth Chris

                                          Locke Ober and club Yvonne's/gone

                                          Schroeder's/aka Radius/ gone

                                          Night time..Biba has to top my list/Bistro du Midi, Capital Grill on Newbury

                                          Clarke's, Vault

                                          Fancy and casual bar at Meridien/Langham

                                          Hamersley's was a groundbreaking great restaurant but never an FD hangout.

                                          Marliave for a nice lunch if you didn't want to go LO $

                                          Harvest, or anything else in Cambridge was not really a "stockbroker" hangout, more Harvard faculty...occassional field trip to Harvard Sq.:)

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: 9lives

                                            Cap Grille in Boston didn't open until the early 90s.

                                          2. The great hotel expense account restaurants have all turned over, shuttered, or moved. (Juliens, Seasons, Ritz, whatever was in the Charles, et cet.). Same for the independents: Locke Ober gone, Espalier in very different digs. Hammersley's is the exception: opened in the late 80s and in the same digs.

                                            I would suggest the most appropriate place would be the Palm in One International Place: the lobby of that tower was Boston's signature over the top homage to the Age of Greed, and the Palm has taken over half of the it, and it's one of the few places around that has that old vibe. (Hint: get the seafood; the calamari and the crab cakes in particular.) That way, you get to connect ages of excess a generation apart.

                                              1. re: black_lab

                                                Wall St area of NYC has long been the largest financial center.but Boston was also thriving inthe 80s. The tech industry and Rt 128 were a big part of the boom and bust.

                                                Fidelity,Putnam, Mass Financial,Eaton Vance were all based here and most of the big banks were well represented.

                                                1. re: 9lives

                                                  DEC and Wang were huge area employers then - I worked for DEC. Both are gone now.

                                                  1. re: 9lives

                                                    There was BOB (First National Bank of Boston), BNE (Bank of New England), and Shawmut National Bank. Also the Colonial Funds and Scudder Funds. All absorbed into larger conglomerates now, of course.

                                                    1. re: 9lives

                                                      Sure, I had an uncle with Paine Webber, which still had a large presence in Boston at that time. Was Boston arguably more significant to the financial services world in the 80s? Probably. However the type of scene the I think OP is fantasizing about just wasn't really apparent here.

                                                      1. re: black_lab

                                                        that flashy culture didn't really come to boston until the late 90s and early aughts.

                                                        burned in my brain at one of my sommelier gigs: a table of 8 buying almost my entire allocation of araujo cabernet with dinner (among other conspicuous consumption markers) and the host loudly proclaiming, "i can't imagine making any more money."

                                                        dunno what fate handed him in the crash?

                                                        1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                          Actually, the brief flare up of flash died in the early 1990s recession, which was a depression locally (the opposite of the recent recession). In the early 1990s, downtown was so dead that you could get parking for $12/day in the new PO Square garage and it didn't fill. That's when expense account lunches died locally. And it transformed the restaurant scene; at first, great devastation.

                                                          1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                            Oh no - I worked in the brokerage biz in the late 70s early 80s (and also moonlighted as a cocktail waitress in Kenmore during the same time) and I will say that there was no bigger flash time in my experience partying with stockbrokers than there was in the early 80s. I shudder when I recall some of the debauchery. Seaside was a fav haunt, the restaurant in Government Center - forget the name, was huge as was Dini's, the Fatted Calf, Lily's definitely... at night it was Magoo's, Jason's. the Fan Club... yikes!

                                                            1. re: Small Plates

                                                              Jason's and the Fan Club..a real trip back in time..:)

                                                              1. re: Small Plates

                                                                Wow, lot's there......Seaside especially. Cityside too, yes?

                                                                1. re: Science Chick

                                                                  I mentioned Seaside upthread.

                                                                  My perception was a 30ish crowd hung at Seaside.

                                                                  Cityside got more of a 21ish crowd.

                                                                2. re: Small Plates

                                                                  Haven't though of Dini's in years! Never ate there, but we always had Dini's pens lying around -- some from my dad's infrequent business dinners, some from clients at my sister's travel agency. I was still carrying a gold Dini's pen well into the 90's. (And I still have several lobster-headed plastic stirrers from Anthony's Pier 4 and Hawthorne-by-the-Sea!)

                                                                  1. re: brandywiner

                                                                    I have good memories of Dinis. When my mother would take me to Filenes Basement, my father, who worked on Beacon Hill, would meet us at Dinis for lunch. I liked to look at the tropical fish tanks. It was the first place I had fried shrimp.

                                                                      1. re: BostonZest

                                                                        We always sat in the small long section to the left of the dividers after you walked in the front door. That section is shown in the 2nd postcard. Thanks for posting them!

                                                              2. re: black_lab

                                                                Paine Webber is still in Boston as a part of UBS.

                                                                I'm not going to re argue the NY vs Boston,whether it be restaurants or financial industry.

                                                                Boston had it's scene. NY had it's scene.

                                                                OPasked for Boston restaurants from the 80s that go go stockbrokers went to.

                                                                As to Boston's significance as a financial center today, depending on the industry, say biotech and it's funding for ex, Boston or more accurately Cambridge, MIT and Kendall Sq are extremely
                                                                Significant.

                                                                To put some food content up, Blue Room in Kendall (which wasa wasteland then)as post 80s but a fantastic restaurant, great, innovative food. 1 of the first places in towns that had a dining counter overlooking the kitchen.

                                                                1. re: 9lives

                                                                  wasn't there a daily catch at Kendall for a while, when the Legal there opened as well, in what had used to be .... nothing?

                                                                  1. re: Madrid

                                                                    I don't recall a Daily Catch but I could be mistaken.

                                                          2. Frank's steak house in Cambridge, further out Jimmy steer in Arlington.

                                                            1. I remember Serendipity was a popular spot for expense account lunches.

                                                              1. I remember an anniversary dinner at Morton's in the 80's. We were the only non corporate diners. I was the only woman who wasn't wearing a ton of make-up and we were probably the only couple. We beat it out of there and went to a bar.

                                                                1. I'm thinking more like Cheers-era Boston. Combat Zone-era Boston. Boston-the-band-era Boston. Doesn't have to be Bright Lights, Big City. Just a different time and place. The days of Chet and Nat, Baybank, and the "Spirit of America" jingle. Boston moves to the Herald!

                                                                  26 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                                      had my first-ever sushi dinner at genji! had quite a few first dates there with inappropriately older men for spendy sake and sushi!

                                                                      seems like we have 2 threads going : 1 for spendy joints where guys in sharp suits dropped lots of dough, most of which are long gone and another for places that simply still exist.

                                                                      1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                        "inappropriately older men" ...that's funny! And can only be spoken by an "inappropriately younger woman"...:)

                                                                    2. re: Swankalicious

                                                                      Gyuhama on Boylston, but long gone. Division 16. A moment of silence.

                                                                      1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                        My first date with Ms 9 was at Gyuhama.

                                                                        Loved Division 16.

                                                                        1. re: 9lives

                                                                          I worked in Copley in the 90s and spent many a Friday night at Gyuhama and once saw John Kerry there. Man, he's tall!

                                                                            1. re: poundcake

                                                                              I used to see him at the 29 Newbury bar back when he was between wives.

                                                                              1. re: Schnowzer

                                                                                he took me on a date to biba once. yes, between wives. :)

                                                                                  1. re: Madrid

                                                                                    nope, but did get the potato/caviar pizza. :)

                                                                                  2. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                    I wonder if I know you - he dated several girls I know, in between wives. ;)

                                                                            1. re: Swankalicious

                                                                              so stockbrokers, strippers and hairbands didn't run in the same circles back then.

                                                                              the combat zone bars are gone.

                                                                              cheers was a tv fiction.

                                                                              chet and nat didn't go out all that much.

                                                                              1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                In my Swanky experience, they did, Hotoynoodles!

                                                                              2. re: Swankalicious

                                                                                Hasn't Daisy Buchanan's been around forever? I remember it being where mundanes would go to score. Foley's downtown is where I go for nostalgia fixes.

                                                                                1. re: nsenada

                                                                                  That was for last call, I don't recall anything about food..:)

                                                                                  1. re: 9lives

                                                                                    pro baseball players used to go to daisy's. not exactly mundane.

                                                                                    i had friends who worked there and one afternoon a guy came in and shot up the back bar with a gun.

                                                                                    1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                      ...and Daisy Buchanan's is closing soon anyway.

                                                                                      1. re: kimfair1

                                                                                        Both Eater and the Globe report that it's not closing, just changing owners.

                                                                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                          joe cimino sold the daisy's building and the one next door.the bar will close after sox season and most likely become a retail store.

                                                                                          1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                            I haven't been there in 25 years and don't care .. but ...

                                                                                            "George Regan, a rep for Daisy’s owner Joseph Cimino, said that the restaurant will continue to operate, despite the April sale. “The building has been sold, but Daisy’s is not closing,” he said. “They will continue to serve their hot dogs, hamburgers, and Chardonnay.”

                                                                                            But maybe just through the fall ....

                                                                                        2. re: kimfair1

                                                                                          Wow. End of an era. You know you're in a classy place when the urinals are solid stainless steel.

                                                                                          Although I'd rather have a Daisy's hot dog than ever waste my money again at the Italian place upstairs. Ciao Bella? Something like that.

                                                                                          PS Boston the band was big in the 70s. And sucked.

                                                                                  2. Toscano's on Charles Street from the early 80's. Grill 23 no doubt the 80's.

                                                                                    1. Newbury St Steak House. Brownies at the door on your way out.

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: jjbourgeois

                                                                                        We lived across the alley from Newbury Steak House the night it burned.

                                                                                        I smiled at your answer because it was a place my Uncle John loved and I used to take him their on our days out together.

                                                                                        Penny
                                                                                        http://www.bostonzest.com/

                                                                                        1. re: Jpan99

                                                                                          Harvard Gardens and The Sevens (is that still there?) but that was more young doctor/nurse set not, stock broker.

                                                                                          1. re: hyde

                                                                                            Sevens is still there, but I remember it used to have LINES to get in. No more.

                                                                                          2. re: Jpan99

                                                                                            stockyard has been sort of done over.

                                                                                            1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                              Yeah it's not bad but it's not the same. Though now that you mention it, it does have more of an appropriately dark/flashy vibe now.

                                                                                              1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                Yeah, Stockyard, Harvard Gardens, Toscano... not really sure if they count, although technically they certainly were around.

                                                                                            2. There was a place on Boylston in the 80s that we used to go to - I forget if it was called the Half Shell or the Clam Shell - complete with nautical decor (ship wheels, nets, bouys, etc.).

                                                                                              1. Don't really know the stockbroker side, though I do remember a great sushi place around State St-Atlantic Ave. I'll add No-name, Black Rose, Regina Pizzaria, Addis (Ababa - Central Square), Redbones (+ lots of other classic old ones that I never went to).

                                                                                                @cuevamanos

                                                                                                30 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: steinpilz

                                                                                                  I think that was Tatsukichi, on the stretch of State where Harborside Inn is now.

                                                                                                  One of, if not the first Japanese restaurant in Boston.

                                                                                                  Raw fish was considered very adventurous back then.

                                                                                                  eta..correct spelling on Tatsukichi

                                                                                                  1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                    Tatsukichi - I worked there - all Japanese staff but me who was hired to sling cocktails to American bizmen.

                                                                                                    1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                      You probably served me.

                                                                                                      Tatsukichi was never a big drinking spot for me but as a young (er) adventurous diner/aka chowhound, I was fascinated with Japanese food.

                                                                                                      1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                        There was another pioneer sushi spot on West Street which was great...maybe where Fajitas and Ritas is now? Can't remember the name....

                                                                                                        1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                          There was Sakura Bana behind Franklin Street in an alley that ran into Broad...

                                                                                                          1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                            I think Sakura Bana was always on Broad.

                                                                                                            Nara was the place in the alley. Real hard to find..behind what is now the Il Panino steak place.

                                                                                                            Rumor was there were services besides sushi up stairs but I don't know if they were true. I remember trashing a tie and dress shirt by dropping the nigiri into the soy sauce dish at lunch. Fortunately I kept a change in my office.

                                                                                                            Benihana was in Park Sq, where the Legal Seafood is. They opened Benisushi; which was 1 of my "go to" spots.

                                                                                                            1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                              wasn't benihana more like where finale is?

                                                                                                              the legal's location is all relatively new construction.

                                                                                                              1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                Finale is in the Park Plaza Building

                                                                                                                Legal's is in the Motormart garage

                                                                                                                1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                  Found a blast from the past

                                                                                                                  Says Benihana was at 201 Stuart, which is Legal Seafoods now

                                                                                                                  Alfie's

                                                                                                                  255 Tremont Street

                                                                                                                  Athens Olympia

                                                                                                                  51 Stuart Street/426-6236

                                                                                                                  Benihana of Tokyo

                                                                                                                  201 Stuart Street/542-1166

                                                                                                                  Cafe Rouge

                                                                                                                  Boston Park Plaza Hotel
                                                                                                                  426-2000

                                                                                                                  Delmonico's

                                                                                                                  Lenox Hotel/536-2200

                                                                                                                  The Fan Club

                                                                                                                  77 Warrenton Street/357-5050

                                                                                                                  The Fox & Hounds

                                                                                                                  Boston Park Plaza Hotel
                                                                                                                  426-2000

                                                                                                                  The 57 Restaurant

                                                                                                                  200 Stuart Street/423-5700

                                                                                                                  The Houndstooth

                                                                                                                  150 Boylston Street/482-5884

                                                                                                                  Jacob Wirth

                                                                                                                  31 Stuart Street/338-8586

                                                                                                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                    Ha! Thx for posting that list.

                                                                                                                    The BeniSushi was an addition to Beninaha. They took a portion of the restaurant and put in a sushi bar..separate room and entrance on Charles St South.

                                                                                                                    The 57 was a great spot. A little out of my price range at the time. Real special occassional place.

                                                                                                                    I remember seeing Natalie Jacobsen and Chet Curtis eating there at a prime seat by the pool and being very thrilled..:)

                                                                                                                    1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                      Did you ever make it to 29 Newbury? I went there several times in the early/mid '90s.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Alcachofa

                                                                                                                        I wasn't a regular but I'd occasionally stop in.

                                                                                                                        Best restrooms on newbury st.:)

                                                                                                                        1. re: Alcachofa

                                                                                                                          We went every once in awhile and thought it Ok+

                                                                                                                          I know it's gone, but when did it close ?

                                                                                                                          1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                            Gone? Are you referring to 29 Newbury? I believe it is still open.

                                                                                                                            1. re: Alcachofa

                                                                                                                              I walked by last night. It was open.

                                                                                                                              They've been around a long time.

                                                                                                                              I remember eating there once and it was ok but no reason to go back for the food.

                                                                                                                              Ocassional martini at the bar.

                                                                                                                              Main reason to go is the outdoor patio. Order min food to sit there. Nice spot to sit and watch the world go by but keep your food expectations to the low side.

                                                                                                                              Now there are a lot of outdoor spots on the street. Back in the day, there weren't so many

                                                                                                                              1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                Tnx Hounds

                                                                                                                                I thought it closed a long time ago ...

                                                                                                                                1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                  I think you're right. Then it reopened under new ownership. At least that's what I was told a long time ago. We can remember have very nice lunches and dinners there back in the late 70's (?) or early 80's (?).
                                                                                                                                  I do remember the last time we went there it was not very good at all. Too bad!
                                                                                                                                  Used to Enjoy,
                                                                                                                                  CocoDan

                                                                                                                    2. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                      lol, i know where they are now but after lots of years and all the cocktails in my bloodstream back then my memory may be a little flawed. :)

                                                                                                                      1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                        Bring back Buzzy's! Bring back Buzzy's!

                                                                                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                          lol. the owner of buzzy's cashed out for a mint as part of the liberty hotel project.

                                                                                                                          1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                            Mass General gave him "an offer he couldnt refuse" so, good for him.

                                                                                                                            I will give him props for trying to bring in some decent food into what should have been declared a CDC Superfund site where the original Buzzy's closed.

                                                                                                                            1. re: hyde

                                                                                                                              he became a very enthusiastic wine collector and offered me my first taste of screaming eagle cab. :)

                                                                                                                  2. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                    Yes - sorry - you are right. Nara! i was conflating the two.

                                                                                                              2. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                Tatsukichi is still around, just not in its usual place: http://www.shinjuku-tatsukichi.com/

                                                                                                                The obvious question would be, are they related? The answer is very much yes, same owner.

                                                                                                                1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                  A guy named Mike Connolly and his wife were the owners. I do not think they are the current owners. They were partners with a Japanese restaurant of the same name.

                                                                                                                    1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                      The owners of this resto - http://www.shinjuku-tatsukichi.com/ - were partners with the Connolly's - they were not the "owners" per se. In fact, when Mike no longer wanted to operate, the restaurant simply closed.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                                        Interesting. I thought the Japanese partner (a guy I believe was named Sunamura-san) decided to bail out once the Japanese bubble imploded and the number of Japanese heading to Boston declined dramatically. Either way, it closed in the mid-1990s after it had gone downhill for years. But in its day, it was the real deal, at least for Boston.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                          That is true. I was there from day 1 - the staff all came from Tokyo, where they were employed in the sister restaurant. The food was top notch. And because I was so young, in 1979, it was my first exposure to sushi. What a treat to be able to watch these masters first hand. There was also a silly Americanized restaurant downstairs called Foreign Affair.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                                            I remember the downstairs being a karaoke bar, as close to a mama-san bar as the law would allow. Seiji used to hang out there regularly.

                                                                                                                            A couple of the old-timer staffers from Boston still worked at the one in Tokyo until recently. The one in Tokyo has also undergone some changes (for the better). it started small, in 1975, and grew with the bubble, taking up more space and at some point occupying two floors of a building and a couple of branches. Then things went south for everybody and retrenched, ending up with a small space in the same location. But it has just recently moved to a much better and bigger space. The branches are still around. Crowded as hell, always.

                                                                                                          2. L'Espalier certainly dates back to the '80s, although in those days it was up on the 2nd floor in a space on Boylston between Arlington and Berkeley. The Harvest (in the old D-R building in Cambridge) actually dates back well before that, into the early '70s -- I believe the '80s were years of decline there.
                                                                                                            I believe 29 Newbury dates back to the early '80s -- maybe not what you are looking for, but as I recall there were usually a lot of new money types sloshing about there.
                                                                                                            So many places I enjoyed in those days are long gone: Apley's, C'est Si Bon, Cafe Budapest, Henri IV, ...
                                                                                                            Ou sont les neiges d'antan?

                                                                                                            1. Davio's on Newbury was purchased by Steve DiFillipo in 1985:

                                                                                                              https://davios.com/bos/about/history

                                                                                                              also see Ciao Bella. Not sure when it opened, but it has been there at least twenty five years.

                                                                                                              Ciao Bella
                                                                                                              Fairfield and Newbury Streets
                                                                                                              Back Bay
                                                                                                              http://www.ciaobella.com/index.html

                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                              1. re: latertater

                                                                                                                ciao bella was closed quite awhile. is it back open? eh. not for long.

                                                                                                              2. A couple more.....
                                                                                                                Sweetwater Tavern (first business to brave and rennovate that alley!)
                                                                                                                Montien

                                                                                                                1. Here are some more suggestions:

                                                                                                                  Dali (1989)
                                                                                                                  Papa*Razzi (1989)
                                                                                                                  Skipjack's Back Bay location, 1988
                                                                                                                  http://www.skipjacks.com/index.cfm?pi...
                                                                                                                  &
                                                                                                                  Sunset Grill and Tap, 1987

                                                                                                                  The following are from the 1970s, but were popular in the 1980s:

                                                                                                                  Casa Romero
                                                                                                                  Sol Azteca

                                                                                                                  1. All the places that were in the lower level of the Vendome - one began with an F - the other was called something Dartmouth. Then there were the two or three iterations of the place that is now the Cactus Club.

                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                                      Not to mention the famed SPASSO! That was early 90s - it was cramped but a lot of fun.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                                        I loved Spasso and they had one of the best things I ever ate in Boston. They had this thin crust pizza called Funghi with a mushroom sauce. It was so good. I also remember having penne with sun-dried tomatoes there which I had never had before...this was about 1992. Thanks for the reminder!

                                                                                                                        1. re: latertater

                                                                                                                          The penne with sundried tomatoes - did it also have olives? Because I ordered it (or that funghi pizza, which also had pine nuts) every time. The pasta dish was called Salvia. We had great food and great fun there.

                                                                                                                    2. What was the name of the place where Cheers is now on Beacon? We went there all the time in the 80s. I am totally drawing a blank on the name. I have not been to Cheers, so I may be messing up a bit, but it is not the space below street level but the space above. Bar was on the left.

                                                                                                                      I remember Houlihan's as the first place I ever had nachos. Probably 1982 or so. And I remember when Grill 23 opened. That part of town was still seen as not too cool and even somewhat dangerous, but the real estate was so cheap there.

                                                                                                                      Thanks for the memories.

                                                                                                                      10 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                          Downstairs was the Bull Finch.

                                                                                                                          Main floor was Hampshire House which had a beautiful bar area and "nicer" restaurant. It's now available for private functions.

                                                                                                                          Upstairs was a semi private club called Quaffers that was quite the hangout on weekends.

                                                                                                                          There was another popular spot, Gatsby's? Maybe? Iit was where the Heritage is. It had a door on Boylston and went all the way through to Park Sq. This is back in Hillbilly Ranch/Playboy Club time and pre 4 Seasons/Heritage and Park Sq was more Combat Zone light.

                                                                                                                          1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                            Thanks, all. It was definitely the Hampshire House where we hung out for a couple of years in the early 80s. Great times.

                                                                                                                            1. re: mvi

                                                                                                                              Got married in the Hampshire House in '95. Nice room, great staff, food was quite good, valet parking. Would recommend without hesitation.

                                                                                                                              She still looks great.

                                                                                                                            2. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                              Yeah, we went to Gatsbys frequently - it was owned by Joe Cimino as well. it was a mainstay of the pilot/flight attendant crowd and always crowded and fun. I was young then (21 or so) and those were good times! :)

                                                                                                                              1. re: Small Plates

                                                                                                                                Loved the F Scott connection..:)

                                                                                                                                I think the airlines put a lot of flight crews up at the Park Plaza, so Gatsby's was a natural hangout.

                                                                                                                                1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                  This is the thread I was hoping for! Thanks, aged Hounds!

                                                                                                                          2. re: mvi

                                                                                                                            Anyone remember The Charles? It was where 75 Chestnut St is.

                                                                                                                            That or Another Season were my main dinner date places when I tried to behave like a grown up.:)

                                                                                                                            1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                              Another regular hangout with Gerry and the Labadinis. Tuesday nights were our reg. Lots and lots of fun.

                                                                                                                              1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                Yes, I went to the Charles a couple times before it switched. Just for drinks, believe it or not.

                                                                                                                                I much preferred the burger on the bar menu at 75 Chestnut when it was a "fancy restaurant" than the burger they serve now. Not sure why they switched it up.

                                                                                                                              1. Some bygone places I remember from days of yore, mainly because I had relatives who entertained on business there: Icarus (which had three homes over the years), St. Cloud (near where Aquitaine is now, I believe), Another Season (now Lala Rokh, I think), Rocco's (Transportation Building, where PF Chang's is now, I believe), Rarities (Charles Hotel), Maison Robert (now Ruth's Chris), The European (North End), Chez Jean (later Chez Henri), Cornucopia (originally on West Street, bad once it moved near Faneuil Hall), Jasper's (Waterfront), Seasons (Bostonian Hotel), Anthony's Pier 4, Jimmy's Harborside, the old Ritz-Carlton Dining Room, The Colony (Boylston Street, Back Bay), Colorado Public Library (Brookline Village), the original Davio's Cafe (Brookline Village), Panache (now Craigie on Main).

                                                                                                                                I also own a copy of Robert Nadeau's book of compiled reviews from 1978, an incredible time capsule. He'd already written a few hundred full-length reviews by then, for Boston After Dark and then the Boston Phoenix.

                                                                                                                                http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                36 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                  I thnk I remeber St Cloud's as being on the corner, where I think a bank is now..same building but a few doors away from Aquitaine. Loved that place..very innovative.

                                                                                                                                  Loved Rocco's and Jasper's/now Billy Tse's. Roccos had that great view of the Park Plaza building, which was modeled after the Flatiron building on 23rd ST in NY(so I heard).

                                                                                                                                  I loved Cornucopia on West St. They moved to the big place on Atlantic where Joe's on the Waterfront is..not very good.

                                                                                                                                  I bet that Nadeau review book is a lot of fun to look at.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                    St Cloud was indeed where the bank was. Wonderful memories.

                                                                                                                                    I loved Cornucopia when it was on West Street; the move to a too big place was fatal.

                                                                                                                                  2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                    One small correction - Panache was in the space that's now Salts. La Groceria was in the space that's now Craigie on Main.
                                                                                                                                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9728...

                                                                                                                                    I bet that Robert Nadeau book is a fascinating read!

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                      My first experiences with fine dining were Panache (loved it, my first confit of quail, and you're right Allstonian, it was the Salts spot), and Allegro in Waltham. I took a first date to Allegro at the height of "nouvelle cuisine": I had the surf and turf which was (literally) a piece of veal that measured about 1" by 3", a lobster claw (the cutter, not the crusher), and a few shavings of zucchini!
                                                                                                                                      I had fun, though.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: justbeingpolite

                                                                                                                                        Allegro had a branch on Boylston St.where the Cactus Club is now located. It had a wine by the glass program which was previously only offered in hotels with an International clientele. I am surprised that no one here has mentioned the Polonaise which is where the the 2nd. floor of the Rattlesnake is now.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: postemotional1

                                                                                                                                          Thank you for the reminder! I had forgotten the name of the Polonaise (I only ate there a couple of times). That space was previously occupied by L'Espalier (I remember going to L'Espalier there in the 1979-1982 time frame, and Polonaise in 1983-4).

                                                                                                                                          There was also a high-end Indian place across Boylston, same block, but I can't remember its name.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: justbeingpolite

                                                                                                                                              mantra was in the wasteland was on temple st. and opened in 2001.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                Yes, Mantra was an early entry in the "ladder district" revival, well after the 1980s.

                                                                                                                                                The main thing I remember on that block of Boylston (between Arlington & Berkeley) in the 1980s was the Magic Pan.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                  The magic Pan was on Newbury and Berkeley, I believe.

                                                                                                                                                  Then it turned into a terrible Italian place.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                    Oh, I think you're right. I had a mental image of it one block over, sort of where the Au Bon Pain (?) is now.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                      I had a job interview at the bad Italian place and I recall sitting outside on Newbury, Im pretty sure.

                                                                                                                                                      I don't remember what the Starbucks/Berlitz/ABP "used to be"

                                                                                                                                                      I don't recall what parish café used to be either

                                                                                                                                                      Despite the fact that I started working around there in '84

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                        Yep, as soon as you posted I knew I was wrong. But it can be easy to transpose those abnormally (for Boston) parallel blocks on the old mental map, you know?

                                                                                                                                                        I'm not convinced that the Parish space was a restaurant before it was Parish, but I don't recall anything more specific than that either. I worked a ways up Boylston, across from the Pru, from '85 to '99; the earlier part of the 80s I was on Lincoln Street in the Leather District and we ate in Chinatown, or (when celebrating completing the end-of-month shipments) at Jacob Wirth.

                                                                                                                                                    2. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                      Milano's was the "terrible Italian place".

                                                                                                                                                    3. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                      Your Magic Pan recollection reminded me of The Proud Popover (!) in Faneuil Hall.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                  Pondicherry was the high end Indian place you recall. I was a server there and cut up Tandoori chicken tableside. Lauriat's Books was next door. The slot is now occupied by Au Bon Pain. Back then, in 1980, Au Bon Pain's main business was selling baguettes to restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                    I believe the name of the Indian resto on Boylston (I think where Au Bon Pain is now, near Berkeley) was Pondicherry. And I remember moonlighting there as a waiter for a brief period back in the day. Brief, because wasn't a very good waiter and I had sense enough to quit!

                                                                                                                                            2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                              Great memory! I enjoyed dinner at Another Season numerous times, a nice easy walk after a martini at the Ritz bar, early 80's.
                                                                                                                                              Question for anyone: wasn't there a pretty good restaurant I think in the Sheraton, run by a Hungarian woman?

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                Are you thinking of Cafe Budapest? In the Copley Square Hotel, actually, on Huntington Avenue at Exeter Street.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                  Yes! Thanks! I'm enjoying this stroll down memory lane.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                    How could I forget Cafe Budapest! My parents loved it and we went often when they came town.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                  My parents still have a couple of Boston dining guides from around 1970. They're a hoot, not just for prices but also for things like dress codes (they point out where men *don't* need to wear a jacket) and descriptions of "exotic" food.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                    Acckk! How could I have forgotten Cornucopia. That was my go-to spot! Thanks, MC!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                      I just looked and Odette Bery's Another Season cookbook is still available on Amazon's used book section. I'll bet the Brattle Bookshop has a copy or two as well.

                                                                                                                                                      Yes, it was were Lala Rokh is now.

                                                                                                                                                      Penny
                                                                                                                                                      http://www.bostonzest.com/

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: BostonZest

                                                                                                                                                        I have a copy of the book.

                                                                                                                                                        I was friends and neighbors with Odette and liked Another Season a lot.

                                                                                                                                                        I hadn't seen her for years but ran into her at Savenor's on Charles St a few years ago

                                                                                                                                                        she had left the restaurant biz and was doing something food related at Wellesley College.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                                          Edwin Land took me to lunch at Another Season. It was clear they knew each other well, but I also got the impression that Odette worked for him at one time, perhaps executive chef at Polaroid headquarters?

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                            You go girl (or boy)! Name dropping with true panache (798 Main Street).

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                                                              Sorry about that. Genuinely interested to know if Berry worked at Polaroid, though.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                https://www.google.com/#q=odette+bery...

                                                                                                                                                                Here's a google link.

                                                                                                                                                                I vaguely remembered a history of a Cambridge connection.

                                                                                                                                                                She was the chef at the Orson Wells Theater restaurant. I don't know of any Polaroid connection but I imagine Land could have known her then. She was friendly with Julia Child, Jack Savenor, Lydia Shire, Jasper White, Chris Douglas and several other prominent and future prominent local chefs. It was a pretty tight community.

                                                                                                                                                                There's also a story about a meal she put together for a 26 yo Steve Jobs.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks. Adding "Polaroid" to the query doesn't pull anything up, though I have a strong sense there was a connection. Land was not unknown around town, though, so it's possible the connection was formed at Another Season. He was an early backer of Michela Larson.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                                                                                    My husband was a cook at the Orson Wells and later his brother but they don't remember any women in the kitchen. It went out of business right after they left. There was a union action and being Cambridge in the 70's what can I say.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                    Don't worry lah. I usually don't name-drop on sites such as this one not because I don't like to to toot my own horn but because I don't want to be found out.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                            Rocco's had these lovely wrought ion chairs, win backs shaped like suns, moons, etc. I inquired about where to get some. They wouldn't say, but offered to import some for me. I bought 6 of them - nice complement to a glass-top table. A niece has inherited them.

                                                                                                                                                            St. Cloud was at the opposite corner of the block where Aquatine now resides. And Jasper's - who would have predicted back then that Jasper White would foist "Summer Shack" on us?

                                                                                                                                                            I wonder where the furniture from Icarus ended up? Perhaps not Stickley, but there were some nice arts and crafts pieces in that room.

                                                                                                                                                            While I'm asking, what happened to Tony Ambrose (Ambrosia on Huntington)? And the tuxedoed matre'd fom the European?

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                              tony had a place in hingham for awhile but now does catering.

                                                                                                                                                              that maitre d' was a hoot. think he is still alive?

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                Hard to imagine. He seemed ancient to me at the time.
                                                                                                                                                                Although he had an imperturbable dignity that gave the place character.

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                              My memory of dinners at St. Cloud (in the St. Cloud Building which now houses a bank), Icarus (when on Appleton St.), Maison Robert, and also the old L'Espalier are crystalline. In those days, I dined at those sort of spots only when my parents were in town (and paying). My first "fine dining" experience with friends was at Rocco's. The decor was wild. And I remember the amazing dishes served at those restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                            3. Scotch N' Sirloin
                                                                                                                                                              Aku Aku on Comm Ave
                                                                                                                                                              Stocks & Bonds where Starbucks is now on State St

                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Fox41992

                                                                                                                                                                I miss Scotch N' Sirloin. Anybody remember Hermitage, in the old ICA? Caviar 'n vodka was definitely for the expense account crowd.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                    I remember Ciro & Sal's, but what/where was Boracchi's? That doesn't ring a bell at all.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                      It was a Charlie Sarkis restaurant, as I remember, on Boylston St. sort of across from the PRU. He also had Boracchi's Villa in Dedham in front of the Holliday Inn on Rt. 1. The in town restaurant was very good with formal tuxedoed wait staff and caesar salads made at the table by Mario the head waiter.
                                                                                                                                                                      Really enjoyed (from what I can remember),
                                                                                                                                                                      CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                        Huh. When was that? I worked on Boylston across from the Pru from about 1985 to 1999.

                                                                                                                                                                        Was it a predecessor of what's now Atlantic Fish Co, maybe?

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                          I'm not sure that it was that far down Boylston St. I want to say it was between Hereford and Gloucester. This has to be in the '70's. They had a second floor lounge with a male pianist that sang show tunes. And as I recall, he was quite good. The one in Dedham became J.,C, Hillary's.
                                                                                                                                                                          CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                            Ha! I found it. It was Boraschi's, in the space that is now Abe and Louie's (right next door to Atlantic Fish, as a matter of fact, and between Fairfield and Exeter.)

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                              Good work. I thought it might have been that. I just didn't remember that it was that far down Boylston. Makes sense though, as A&L has the second floor I was talking about.
                                                                                                                                                                              CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                                And it. too, became a JC Hillary's, before it turned into Abe & Louie's.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                  You probably know that JC Hillary's was one of Charlie Sarkis' early ventures in Boston, long before A&L.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                    Right - and Boraschi's was his first, as CocoDan mentioned above. CocoDan had mentioned that the Boraschi's in Dedham became a JC Hillary's, and I pointed out that the one on Boylston Street did the same.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                I hated that place. The owner wouldn't seat a party because one of the women was wearing a pant suit. Nasty old chauvinist.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                            May Charlie continue with a healthy recovery. A true gentleman who never smoked or drank, and he never cursed on a golf course.

                                                                                                                                                                          3. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                            Ciro & Sal's is still open in Provincetown but I haven't been there in years. We found other places we loved more.

                                                                                                                                                                            Penny
                                                                                                                                                                            http://www.bostonzest.com/

                                                                                                                                                                          4. re: CocoDan

                                                                                                                                                                            Ciro (sp) and Sal's was a take out or more accurately "get taken out" by the parents spot.

                                                                                                                                                                            They are still open in Provincetown. I haven't eaten there in more than afew years but real cozy room. Website says "since 1956."

                                                                                                                                                                          5. How about Trader Vic's in the Prudential... I think near the Sheraton. The Mills Falls in Newton and Baileys Ice Cream Parlor.

                                                                                                                                                                            9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: catsmeow

                                                                                                                                                                              For some reason, I thought the Trader Vic's was in the Park Plaza, in the space that later became a Legal and is now an M.J. O'Connor's.

                                                                                                                                                                              http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                I think you might be right. What was the tiki place behind the Sheraton on the bottom level facing Huntington and Dalton? I picture a big grass roof entrance.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, MC Slim JB you are correct. The Sheraton had the Kon-Tiki in the slot now occupied by the sidebar. Kno-Tiki featured Tiki drinks and food with a carcinogenic amount of Red Dye #2. It was far from a yuppie place. Apley's at in the Constitution Room slot was the Sheraton's fine dining market venue.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Romanogli's Table in Quincy Market would today be called a "foodie" place as the Romanoglis' had a PBS cooking show. MC, you would have gone there back in the day before going home to watch the MOVIE LOFT.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: catsmeow

                                                                                                                                                                                  There was a Bailey's in Wellesley town center. Across the street was a Bel Canto. Remember those?

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                                                                                    I remember Bel Canto as being quite good. There was one at the Pru or somewhere else downtown,and also one in Brookline, perhaps where Zaftigs is now.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                      I believe there was one on Charles street, maybe where figs is now? I remember going there with a date.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: purple bot

                                                                                                                                                                                        Yes, I think this is correct. The Bel Canto in Wellesley also became a Figs.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                                                                                      I remember Bel Canto in Lexington.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Has anyone mentioned the Japanese restaurant that sat on Newbury Street for many years? The space is the current home of, ahem, Cafeteria. Might be the first place I had sushi in Boston, a frequent first-date choice. Can't recall its name now.

                                                                                                                                                                                    http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                    21 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                      Other than Genji, which I mentioned above?

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                        I knew that wasn't it, so I flexed some Google-fu and came up with it: Miyako.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Every one of its successors has sucked: Saffron (the Indian fusion place from the Kashmir folks), INQ (the place run by that fraud/criminal who finally got caught in Brooklyn -- Google "busted chef" and "montauk grifter"), the comically-awful Roscoe & Luigi's at INQ, and now CafeTeria.

                                                                                                                                                                                        http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                          Yes that was it. Great spot for lunch. Everything in that space since has been sub par since Miyako closed in the mid 90s.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                            Wow, I remember Miyako! Didn't it also have a prior location in Kenmore Square, a smaller space, hmmm, I guess around where ICOB is now? I recall going there on a date in the late 80's.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: purple bot

                                                                                                                                                                                              There was a sushi restaurant in Kenmore back then, but it was farther east than ICOB, near where Petit Robert is now IIRC.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                i thought mississippi's was down that way? (sandwich joint) near what used to be the deli-haus?

                                                                                                                                                                                                there was that sushi place near uno's forever though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bailey's sure did have some delicious hot fudge.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Anyone remember dining at Joyce Chen's in the early 1980s?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Swankalicious

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I was taken to Joyce Chen as part of a group of women first year students at Harvard in 1973. At least I think it was Joyce Chen. The over the top first year student angst conversation was much more memorable for me than the food. I stayed away from that group after that, and then remember going to the Yenching in Harvard Square when it first opened. That food was much more memorable. It's changed so much over the years. There was a horrible Chinese-American place around forever in the space now occupied by Cambridge One, I think.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Elsie's of course was there as well as Tommys Lunch and Grendel's and one of the first frozen yogurt places. I doubt stock brokers went to any of these in the 80's, however. And Cardullo's, where I could sample all kinds of cheese I'd never heard of. I was amazed coming from NC to see people eating ice cream on the street from Bailey's and elsewhere even during snow. That sealed the deal for Boston for me, along with people speaking many different languages.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yenching - loved it. A cup of hot-and-sour soup and one time through the lunch buffet for less than $4. It was one place I could reliably find my thesis advisor, and it's where I learned to use chopsticks - Perhaps the most useful skill acquired in grad school? Brigham's served a double-dip cone for 35 cents.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                        You're thinking of Young & Yee, which was preserved in aspic until it was replaced by Cambridge 1. The Cambridge 1 sign is original from the building, as it used to be a fire station, and that was the #1 Cambridge unit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Swankalicious

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Joyce had her "Small Eating Place" on Mass Ave, where a Thai restaurant stood for many years afterwards, and then some MIT facility. I think that's part of the block being redeveloped which used to house the Mandarin (great hot and sour soup) and later the All-Asia Cafe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yep - Maluken. I spent many a night there, before hitting the Asian nightclubs (Europa and Club Nicole).

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: digga

                                                                                                                                                                                                          The Club Nicole was run by Igor the Giant. After Nicole he opened up another place around the corner from the big Bertucci's in Stuart street (or around there), but don't know what happened to him. He used to hang out quite a bit at Il Panino in Mass Ave, now sadly gone and a great spot in its day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Coming full circle to Odette Bery and Edwin Land, Il Panino was where the Orson Welles Cinema used to be, and where Bery was the chef at the goofy restaurant there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Misssissippi's was in Brigham Circle. We used to get free lunch from the pharmaceutical reps, but we insisted they not get lunch there because it wa so awful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: kimfair1

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I used to live in Brigham Circle around that time, and it was slim pickings for sure where food was concerned. Groceries? The hideous and filthy Calumet Market right in the circle. Restaurants? The only tolerable options were Sparr's soda counter or Subs -n- Such (right beneath my building...lucky me!). Bars? Winnie's Pub on the corner of Tremont/Wigglesworth boasted 75cent Carling Black label on tap, and you could always bring in a pie from Tremont House of Pizza. We watched the whole '86 series at Winnie's.....

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Forgot completely about the Calumet, my word that place was foul.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: kimfair1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yeah, I used to go over to Star at the Pru and schlepp my groceries home either on the T or via cab. Osco's Drug was next door, and they sometimes had better food than Calumet!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                When I was in school around 1980 there was a wretched 4 br apartment on Wigglesworth near Huntington (near an Arby's?) that about a dozen guys lived in. Great parties at The Wig.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I used to walk past all those gorgeous but dilapidated brownstones on Wigglesworth and think "someday someone is going to fix these and they are going to be worth $$$$"........

                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: purple bot

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I think it was in Coolidge Corner where the Regal Beagle is.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I remember a downstairs place that had the wall paintings to prove why it was called Yellow Submarine just over the bridge in Fenway area on Beacon St. Great tripping grounds. Oh and also Sol Azteca down the street, one of the first Mex places in Boston we're talking 30 plus years ago and still there last I looked. Further up the street in Kenmore, I remember India Quality being an upstairs tiny hole in the wall talk about intimacy excuse me is this the kitchen or the bathroom? (you couldn't get up without asking someone to move) and a closet bisex bathroom behind Shawmut Bank until the whole block burnt down and they moved to the new location.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Here are some I remember from circa 1980 (I'm that old? OMG):

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cafe Florian on Newbury (loved the beef salad)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      The English Room on Newbury (cheap, not too cheerful, mediocre grub, mimeographed menus, coffee jello)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ken's Deli at Copley Sq (gimme a Monte Cristo and a Bass Ale at 1 AM please)

                                                                                                                                                                                                      One last memory: Ritz Bar, New Year's Eve 1980. Waiter slowly and methodically turned bottle of Piper Brut with hand in slush for 5 minutes, then a whisper as the cork dislodged at the stroke of midnight. Most magical NYE ever.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      29 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: marais

                                                                                                                                                                                                        When Ken's at Copley closed I feared that our license as a "city" would be revoked. Remember the balcony, suspended by some dubious-looking slender shafts?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Another late-night haunt in that era was King Bagel on Harvard Street in Brookline.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Fond memories of Kens - back to the early 70's. It worked on a college budget.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                            My husband, (then 18yr. old boyfriend) and I felt like the world had opened up to us when we discovered Ken's salads, bagels and beer for a Sunday late lunch. We still reminisce about what a delight it was to leave our sheltered southeastern Mass. town to head into the city for a treat. (The drinking age really was 18 in the early 70's for those of us old enough to remember.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I do not remember a balcony ...
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Perched over the outdoor seating?

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                It was inside. They had second floor seating, some of it overlooking the main floor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Please excuse my typing (iPad) - not just mangled French!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Was Ken's not where Vlora is today?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My memory is shot

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    slightly west from there. There's a thread on city-data that suggests it was 565 Boylston. I'd have to go there to check my points of reference to confirm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I think it is where the Pizzeria Uno is now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: latertater

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pizzaria Uno is way down the street. Ken's was across from Copley Square.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Speaking of Uno's...before it was in Kenmore, that was a restaurant called Key West, IIRC

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Key West was a FLA theme place that offered conch served in a shell. They were open in 1984-1985. A fun place that played the Squeeze SINGLES GOING STEADY incessantly on the sound system. quite a hangout for servers back in the day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: postemotional1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              (Warning: new wave nerdery. The Squeeze compilation was Singles: 45s and Under. Singles Going Steady was the Buzzcocks compilation. Both albums are basically perfect.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Jenny Ondioline

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm glad you cleared that up, or I would have had to!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Squeeze is good for making tip money. Especially "Black Coffee in Bed". In general, white guys singing in their normal registers is not good for business in a beverage environment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Jenny Ondioline

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  All the songs from that Squeeze album are on my iPod

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    i've got squeeze AND the buzzcocks on mine. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I had always recalled it as being downstairs where Vlora is now. But it was probably where Wendy's is now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There was also a Montillio's bakery on the block.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            vlora was a chinese place, with a man's name?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It was not a Chinese place when I first came to the nabe in the mid 1980's (I dont think) but then became at least 2 or 3 different Asian places.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              One was "fancy." A hangout for JH bigwigs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Was that Bernard's, before they moved out to Chestnut Hill?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  There was a place downstairs - outdoor stairs - called Mr. Leung's, which I believe had the same owner as Bernard's. I quite liked the place - more formal than Bernard's.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yes, thank you! That's the space that is now Vlora.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The Secretary of State's office has it at 549. Which would be approximately where Vlora is (545)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Not that I'm obsessing about this or anything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That is Ken's By George (stairs descending to a basement restuarant - where Kaya was for a while). Ken's was directly upstairs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            4. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My boyfriend was the host for the balcony back in the 60's I was jealous as he got to eat and I didn't. I was a starving art student and he was ivy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I was gaga over my girlfriend at the time so I extracted the square root of her phone number on a napkin at Kens. 355-1742 was the number, 1884.6065 the square root, before the days of calculators. A bit nerdy and I got funny looks from my waitress.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. re: marais

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Cafe Floria had a manager named Ed who always kept a supply of PARIS MATCH, ILLUMO VOGUE and other European magazines on hand. Hsi dog would wander around. good times.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          4. Now the memories are becoming less specific to the stockbroker set, I would be remiss in failing to note that 224 Boston Street in Dorchester is still much with us, but was a signal marker of the late 80s in this city: the shift away from the fortress-like neighborhood mentality, and the advent of new neighborhood oriented dining in unexpected places.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Best thread ever. Many fond memories of Haymarket, which didn't actually have any hay but any given day had the ripest best ready to eat fruit and veggies at a fraction of the mainstream price.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Ora Moose

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Back in school I used to go late in the afternoon when they were starting to pack up. They would often sell you a crate for the price of a pound.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. The F&T in Kendall Square. A great old dump of a diner, a real fly-in-amber kind of place, people smoking and drinking Bud longnecks along with their lunches. Could have been 1939 in there but for some of the clothes on the patrons.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                On further research, I see from old photos that it the signage listed it variously as the F&T Restaurant, Deli, and Diner, three distinct areas of two adjacent structures.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I just remembered over the weekend: Club Cafe. The first time I went there was for lunch in the restaurant. It was the first time I ever saw hummus on a menu and tried it. This was 1988.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I was also walking along Gainsborough Street past Our House East which proudly says on the awning: Since 1981. Thought of you guys.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Our House East
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.ourhouseeast.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    They moved the F & T diner to an empty lot elsewhere (elsewhere in East Cambridge or Somerville) for a while, but then I lost track of it. Anyone know if it's still around?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yikes! Now that's a blast from the past. The "diner" part of the F&T is now the entrance to the inbound track of the Red Line Kendall Square.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        No kidding? I've never looked at it closely. Any markings to indicate it's history?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'm pretty sure there is a commemorative plaque on the site that was put up by Jerry Lettvin and Sam Keyser at some point a few years back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I didn't mean the F&T building remains as the entrance (a la Out of Town News) but that was the site.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Am going to research this as a tribute to Jerry!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: pocketviking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Haven't had time to track down the F&T plaque, but here's a link to an article that ends with a dirge for the F&T by the late, great Jerry Lettvin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              http://newsoffice.mit.edu/2003/fandt-...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This was a dump that everyone went to after the bars closed
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Back in the days when they closed at midnight on Saturdays. That's how old I am. Horrid coffee and nasty waitresses. They refused to serve us food except for toast which they probably spat on. But it was the place to go after Buzzy's closed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Deli Haus

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Betty's Rolls Royce

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The original Flash's Snack N Soda

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pewter Pot

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wursthaus

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That place on Comm Ave that showed movies (double feature!) with cheap beer and food and free jarred jalepenos to snack on

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Hammond

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Tam

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        63 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Was the movie place Frank & Stein's? I recall that being in Allston about where the CVS at Comm and Gorham is now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I remember The Hammond well, but not it ever serving food. Bumper pool and nicotine reek.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh man, now you're talking. Frank & Stein's was on Mass Ave, roughly where the Tower Records/Virgin Records/Best Buy/whatever it is now is. Before that, it was the Kentucky Tavern, where The Friends of Eddie Coyle was filmed. Great movie.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The place on Comm Ave with the movies was "Play it Again Sam's" - at least it was in the 1984/5 timeframe. I lived two blocks up the hill on Comm, and was a regular. It may have been Frank & Steins before that - the name's familiar, guess it could have been after.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: NE_Wombat

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In the late 70's (I know...) it was called something else.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It was a good place to hang out with the guys. If you wanted a "nicer" place to take a date, there was the place on the other side on Comm, and in-bound just about to Harvard Ave - "My Apartment". A dim place, with fairly cheap drinks and couches. Of course, there was always "Great Scott"....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I honestly couldn't decide whether NE_Wombat meant Our House (now Shanghai Social Club) or was facetiously referring to entertaining at home.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I loved that place. They showed the Wizard of OZ.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: hotoynoodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I managed Our House 86-88. We were a little more expensive than the other Harvard and Comm. places.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: postemotional1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            i was drinking in there then, for sure, even though i was under-age. :). lived in the hood.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            also was an "extra" in a movie that was filmed there one afternoon. no idea what became of the footage or the project, lol. ahem. everybody was fully-clothed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: NE_Wombat

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Play it Again Sam's sounds right, thanks

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        man, the movie houses alone!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Abbey,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Paris (the last single screen movie house in the city),
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        70mm projectors at the Charles,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Cinema 733, double features for a buck, upstairs from Pauls Mall/ Jazz Workshop,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Exeter Street Theatre

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That was a long time ago

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: hyde

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Don't forget the Orson Welles on Mass Ave in Cambridge...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And the Galeria in Harvard Sq, stayed open through the 90s

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jajjguy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Actually, the Galeria was the name of the mall. The theater was called the Janus. I remember seeing its (I think) very first feature, "A Boy and His Dog".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Orson Welles' became Eugene's which closed in 1981 following an attempt to unionize. The 1977 film BETWEEN THE LINES although set in Boston features scenes filmed in the Orson Welles. The Orson Welles and Eugene's were both owned by Fred and Molly Hoagland who founded CVS/Consumer Value Stores. The Hoagland's also owned 33 Dunster St. which became the Dunster Brew House.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Frank N, Steins was in the slot that became Tonic. Frank N' Steins offer $1 movies in the era just before VCRs became cheap. Frank N' Stein's became Play It Again Sam's. It was across the street from Our House (West).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I wasn't a huge fan of the music at The Tam, but loved the dinner specials they would offer before the music got underway. Certainly the area doesn't lack for great food at this point.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There was a club on Comm Ave near the BU west campus dorms that showed movies during the day. In the same block as Ellis The Rim Man.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There was also a German place further west on Comm Ave - can't recall the name.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Wursthaus - what can you say? A place with character and characters. Part of Harvard Square that has long been sanitized away.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Pewter Pot being in Harvard square?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I was quite young and so loved the toasted blueberry muffin topped with fresh blueberries and whipped cream.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yes but am I confusing it with Mug N Muffin?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                There were both - see my other post.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Among other places - they were a small regional chain. (Not to be confused with Mug 'n' Muffin, which was a DIFFERENT small regional chain that also featured muffins along with a full menu and a faux-colonial theme...)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Here's a funny article from the Harvard Crimson from 1976:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                http://www.thecrimson.com/article/197...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And a more recent one from the New England Travel News blog:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                http://newenglandtravelnews.blogspot....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  thanks. I do not remember the faux colonial costumes at Pewter Pot, and then I got relocated to the Radcliffe quad in 1974. I also don't remember mug and muffin coming in. But wasn't one of the first frozen yogurt places on Brattle as well, next to what used to be Cappy's shoe repair and near Touraine department store?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  There was also a gourmet store of sorts up near Radcliffe/Harvard Law school just short of Porter Square that sold whole coffee beans. My then boyfriend/now husband and I were so thrilled to get fresh ground coffee beans and brew in our Chemex back in the dorm. I think it was called the Country Store or something, and I think I remember hearing years later that the husband of the wife/husband owner team murdered the wife.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That was the Cambridge Coffee Tea and Spice House, in where Super Fusion/Addis Red Sea are now. The murder does not ring a bell.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I just did a search, and yes, the Cambridge Coffee Tea and Spice house was there at 1759 Mass Ave. It was 1989 when the owner's son (name of store changed to Country Store at same address) was charged with murdering his daughter, not his wife.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.thecrimson.com/article/198...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Murder reminds me of the incident at Chef Changs in the late 80's (?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I think might have been earlier than the late '80s - if it was the incident I'm remembering. We used to have the "Chang's or Chow's" debate every weekend starting in the mid-80s, and I think it happened before that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: NE_Wombat

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I think you are right.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Someone I knew lived in the apt. building in the middle of the block and was a witness to the "getaway."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thought that was like "87 but probably earlier.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sorry to correct you but the murder was at the Thai place up the street not Chef Chang's. We were reminiscing about it up thread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Feel free to correct me whenever. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I lived around there and don't remember any Thai place.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              There was definitely a shooting at Chef Chang's. Maybe not a murder, but I thought someone died.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Sorry but had a senior moment about Chef Chang's- my husband remembers the incident. To chime in with Slim it was the Pattaya incident I was thinking of and the thread was a reference to the Beacon Street Tavern aka Mission Cantina being in a bad luck spot. Both incidents have been rehashed at the bar at O'Leary's so many times I am having trouble keeping them straight. Maybe it wasn't a senior moment but a too many white wines moment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1989 : Mrs. blank who worked as waitress at the Thai Pattaya restaurant, was fatally stabbed there around 10:45 p.m. Sunday night. Her husband, Mr. blank 35, who is a chef at the restaurant, was also stabbed in the attack, but he survived, the detective said.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Was Pattaya where Beacon St tavern, etc. was?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I remember it when it was Brown's, a popular lunch spot for the silver-haired locals.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And the Japanese place on the corner was Taurus pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    After it was Brown's it was a Thai place that I liked, then a pseudo Italian place that was awful and finally Beacon Street Tavern which we loved when Jerry was running it. I don't know about silver haired locals lunching but all the regulars at O'Leary's used to drink at Brown's. I believe Brown's license got transferred to O'Leary's along with all the regulars. I had a lot of dental work done in the adjacent office building in the early 80's and my husband preferred the bar at Brown's to the waiting room.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I don't remember that place's Thai phase which surprises me because I love thai food and went to Chef Changs and Busy Bee all the time and to a massage place in the middle of the block which would have been right by it. I remember all the subsequent iterations, though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      O' Leary's was called Browns for awhile after the original Brown's closed, I'm pretty sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "my husband preferred the bar at Brown's to the waiting room" Don't we all! :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, Chef Chang's Place both preceded and survived Pattaya for many years. I remember getting my first Peking duck in Boston carved tableside by the Old Man.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I remember the murder. Some people referred to the place as "Killer Coffee" after that. A shame really, because it was a pretty nice place. It hung around for a while, in half the space, before going out of business. I believe they roasted the coffee on site.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Stride

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                it was a nice place, and the only place to get whole coffee beans in the area around 1975-77 (unless we missed something). And spices! It hung around for a long time and became the Cambridge Country Kitchen by the time I got back here in the late 80's. Sad that there is no place in Cambridge for spices now, except Formaggio, which I love, but is so expensive. Sorry, I go to Christina's all the time, but having the spices and whole coffee beans was such an innovation in the late 70's.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The 1975-1977 window was the beginning of the Coffee Connection, which opened its first outlet in the Garage (Mount Auburn block between Boylston and Dunster) -- the first food outlets there on the first floor were the original Coffee Connection, the original Formaggio's, Baby Watson Cheesecake, and an ice-cream place called Cibo. As long as we've downscaled the nostalgia from the haunts of new-money financial types, don't forget the old Spaghetti Emporium, which then became 33 Dunster Street, and is now the original location John Harvard's Brewhouse (and all of them decorated with the same 1970s-celebrity fake stained-glass windows).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  On Eliot Street near the old train yards there was the Hungry Persian downstairs, La Pinata upstairs-- proceeding down Mount Auburn one passed the Blue Parrot and Ferdinand's (where students took their parents to dinner when they came to town), and of course Cronin's (I arrived too late for the original location of that one, alas). Later on that location became the Swiss Alps, I think.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    At that time, I worked/hang out at the Million Year Picnic, which started as a cubbyhole in the Garage, mover to a larger location, also in the Garage, then moved to 99 Mt. Auburn, where it is now (though it's moved within that building since I left town).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I never thought I'd like cheesecake till I tried a free sample of Baby Watson's. Wonderful stuff, although I came to prefer Rowinsky's.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I used to run errands to the Coffee Connection occasionally, although my caffeine fix came in the form of Mountain Dew, the elixir that got me through college and grad school.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      When Starbucks bought Coffee Connection, they promised to keep the stores intact. A year later when they closed them or converted them to Starbucks, I began a one-man boycott. Clearly I impacted their growth - imagine where they would be today if I hadn't?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Years later George Howell opens a shop walking distance from my home. I can't say he's made amends, but it's a start.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Actually had some decent meals at Spaghetti Emporium back in the day, but consistency wasn't their strong suit. And I fondly recall eating at Blue Parrott shortly after the Blizzard of 78. Someone in the kitchen was a cross-country ski enthusiast, and skied to Chelsea to the produce market. No vehicle traffic in Cambridge save for the National Guard, but Blue Parrot had fresh salads.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I went to the Coffee Connection on their fifth day of business. A visit that changed my life, and my addictions. After leaving Boston for jobs, I received coffee from the Connection monthly shipping to Texas, Montana, and four places in NC. Upon my return, I so enjoyed getting fresh coffee more regularly. Sadly, our relationship had to come to an end when the Green Mermaid took over.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: smtucker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          George Howell is back to roasting and brewing - check out George Howell Coffee on Walnut Street in Newtonville. I guess the non-compete agreement he signed with Starbucks when he sold Coffee Connection has expired.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh yes. I know this.... my sister worked for him for a bit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: smtucker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ah, the Mocha Java French press at CC. A thing of true beauty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: smtucker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I would never visit Harvard Square in the 80s without stopping at the Coffee Connection for a drink and beans to take home.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I remember the store's decorations of colorful Mexican art (Howell had tried to make a living selling this, as I recall) and a gorgeous brass-plated Povoni espresso machine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Kenji

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                That art was very psychedelic and may have enhanced various coffee "trips". It was collected by the owners IIRC. I am not a coffee drinker and don't smoke. So when I went there with friends I realized the the function of coffee and cigarettes. It was to make them instant geniuses full of incessant spew on their various exotic theories and plans. Some get this with alcohol. Some others get this w marijuana. Some get it w all three.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, the path to wisdom is (was) via strong Coffee Connection coffee and cigarettes! Amazing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A Starbucks is there now? Or an Au Bon Pain?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: lastZZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Starbucks bought Coffee Connection 1993 or 94. The Harvard Sq location is still a Starbucks. They had a Clover machine there for a while, which made it worth an occasional visit. Anyone know if the Clover is still there?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jajjguy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I still have my "co-branded" Coffee Connection and Starbucks mug.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: lastZZ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I must have missed the coffee variety favored by your friends.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Anyway, yeah, the former CC spot is now occupied by a Starbucks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I worked at the Coffee Connection in Harvard Square for a couple of years in the mid-80s. Even though I was nearly 30 at the time, it was a major formative experience in my life - I learned so much, not just about coffee, but about working as a server and being a member of a team.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Besides coffee and other beverages, they had a nice range of sweets in a cold case at the front, and a tiny kitchen that turned out a very small and decidedly idiosyncratic menu - I remember ratatouille, I think tuna melts on good rye bread, a couple of salads, and the "granola special" - granola topped with plain yogurt and house-made fruit salad, at a time when it was really hard to find any restaurant in the area serving plain yogurt. Among the desserts, I particularly loved the gingerbread, which was dense, moist, and very dark (served with a dollop of unsweetened whipped cream, which was a novelty for me at the time), and the strawberry dacquoise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Whenever Marc Maron has Boston-area guests on his WTF podcast, talk often turns to his years as a barista at this Coffee Connection. The line I most remember went something like, "I'd get in there every morning ready to go and I'd have a great attitude and by the third customer, I'd be like, 'Well, what does THIS asshole want?'"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jenny Ondioline

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Working the take-out counter could be trying, but I loved waiting tables there for the most part, and it taught me that I *was* capable of doing customer-service work that didn't make me want to kill myself (or my customers), as opposed to working the counter at Gnomon Copy and later Copy Cop.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Allstonian-didn't know you were a Coffee Connection server.....you probably served me my first ever French press of Celebes Kalosi!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        oh wow that Celebes was great coffee! I purchased a French press before then, but the French press service with varietal coffees was so special. I also love the limeade there. Sad when Starbucks bought them out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ha - Celebes was always my favorite of their coffees, too!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I remember realizing why fresh-squeezed orange juice is generally so expensive, because we hand-squeezed it by the glass with one of these http://www.webstaurantstore.com/nemco..., and it was shocking how many oranges it took to fill even a small glass!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Allstonian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I recall a very decent Sacher Torte...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yes indeed! Although too often it was on the dry side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I think there was an orange pound cake as well, baked in the same bundt form as the gingerbread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. re: johncb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Formaggios' used to sell slivers of cheese and day old bread for .25 and I indulged in them when I hitched through the Boston area in 1977.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Madrid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              He actually murdered his daughter. The wife continued to run the place after the husband went to jail. I always thought that must have been very hard to do, since the whole neighborhood knew her story.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I worked at the place on Comm Ave (for about 3 weeks before I got the coveted job at the Ark - LOL) that showed movies - and I can't think of the name of it. Some kind of Casablanca reference. AHHH - Play It Again Sam's!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Well since we are way off topic regarding the OP I'll throw out the Ding Ho in Cambridge and Play it Again Sams on Allston. Both had terrible food but amazing comedy. Spent many a night at them with both friends and colleagues. Probably the most memorable was Bob Goldthwaite dissecting a herring on stage and seeing a very young Stephen Wright. Then there were DJ Hanard (later Hazard), Chance Langton, Lenny Clarke and Denis Leary. And of course Kevin Meaney!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We saw a double header of Bobcat Goldthwait and Stephen Wright one night at Play It Again Sam's. My college aged palate thought the burgers and beer were fine in both the comedy club and the movie part. My roommate was a bartender at Our House (Our House East was near Northeastern where I went to college). The couches at Our House were truly nasty. Shanghai Social Club was a big step up. I also spent an inordinate number of Sundays at the brunch at DE Blakelys there on Comm Ave in Allston, as well as countless numbers of fried eggs over corned beef hash at The Deli King where the McDonald's is at Comm ave and Harvard.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: kimfair1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Our House in Allston (and probably the East one as well) had pretty good loaded waffle fries that I loved in my twenties....not sure how I would feel about them now, but it was waffle fries, cheese bacon and sour cream. Pretty heavy stuff...but tasty, like white trash poutine!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Another slightly off topic is The Turtle Cafe in Inman Square. Anyone remember this place? It was way ahead of its time- very eclectic food and decor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Also in Inman was the Cajun Yankee.....first canjun restaurant to make it to the Boston area and superb, IIRC

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Science Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I concur, Cajun Yankee was excellent!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Also the original Legal Seafood, of course. Loved the little hand-written numbers on pieces of cut-up index card they assigned you before sending you to the bar upstairs. The player piano, and for some reason the Bloody Mary's made indelible impressions. Curious, isn't it, that the Park Plaza Legal opened just days after the fire at the Inman Square location, with the entire staff from Inman Square. Hmmm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And Ryles used to serve a mean Boursin-stuffed burger.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MaxEntropy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Anybody remember if the Inn Sq. Mens Bar served any food?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: folkface

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Not in my recollection but I wasn't going there to eat, lol!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Turtle Cafe, in the space now taken by East Coast Grill, was chef owned by Odette Berry and was the first 'gourmet' restnt in boston i think- c. 1970. She later went on to chef own Another Season on Beacon Hill, where Lala Rokh is now. Odette was quite a talented pioneering woman. Last I knew, she was chefing at Wellesley College's Davis Art Ctr. cafe; but i'm guessing she may finally have retired.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. Forgive if off-topic, but nothing cured a hangover like a grilled cheese and raspberry-lime rickey from the Travis on Newbury.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. o