Wednesday, March 12, 2008

RESTAURANT WEEK 08: Boston's turn


Unlike New York City, with our cadre of very now/very booked-up restaurants, Boston extends their Restaurant Week to include Sundays. Thus intrigued, I hopped the Chinatown bus for the weekend to see what was popping on both sides of the Charles.

Sunday brunch we opted for Dante Restaurant in Cambridge. For once I thought here is a restaurant named only for its acclaimed chef Dante de Magistris, and not after Dante the poet. But no, they went there. We indulged in the $20 restaurant week "Inferno Brunch:" assorted breads, arugula salad with lemon, capers and cheese, blueberry polenta pancakes, and the classic eggs benedict. Also worth noting is that they served Lavazza coffee--a bonus which instantly makes me take the place to heart. Altogether, Dante was a pleasant and filling brunch with a great view of the Charles. But coming from NY where brunch rules, it's hard to impress me and I found myself longing for the unlimited cocktails of Nero.

Dinner took a more traditional turn, as we passed the colonial row houses of Beacon Hill for our anticipated meal at the Beacon Hill Bistro. Like Dante it's within a hotel, which is perfect for me because it happens that hotels are another of my obsessions. Our choices from the $33 restaurant week dinner menu were:

  1. Salade Pois Chiches a la Provencal with olive oil, poached tuna, and pink cara cara orange (Xy had the Salade Saucisson with housemade sausage, fingerling potatoes, and shallot vinaigrette)
  2. Newburyport Skate Wing Meuniere with ratatouille and pistou (Xy had Lemon and Rosemary Chicken Fricasee with hand-cut egg noodles)
  3. "Award-winning" chocolate macaroons (Xy had the Clafoutis of pineapple)
For me, skate wing is an immediate attraction on a menu. I can't help but order it...and savor it...and rave about it to the next table, all the while trying to remember what the hell skate is. The courses were very good, but again nothing extraordinary or even exotic enough to be worth our stumbling through ordering with correct pronunciation. Our drinks were another story: an excellent/ perfect/ simply heavenly Dirty Martini for Xy, and a heady Brandy Alexander for me.

I think it's fair to say that I get weird over Restaurant Weeks. The release of reservations on opentable for the meals makes me anxious for days. It even brings me to do crazy things like fly back from Boston an hour before work on Monday. But that's how I roll.

2 comments:

Radio Girl said...

1) Thank you for referring to me as Xy
2) It's about time I find a place that can make a dirty martini right!
3) Does Skatewing swim or walk? Hmmm??

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