Post Theater (Matinee) - Drinks/Meal - Boston

So we are heading to Pippin this weekend for a Saturday Matinee (2pm show time). Looking for recommendations for an after show dinner/drinks spot. The show is at the Opera House.

It will be an early dinner since we will be going once the show lets out and we are comfortable “winging” things without a reservation and sitting at the bar if available. I was thinking of hitting up Liquid Art House, since it has been on our list of places to try and seems to go with the whole “art/theater” theme of the day, but I was curious if anyone had other suggestions.

We are new to Boston (live in the burbs) and have only been here for about 7 months. Downtown we have been to: Peach Farm, Neptune Oyster House, Q hot pot. . . . Durgin Park (because don’t you have to go at some point) … . . . the Salty Pig when dropping friends off at the train station . . . . The squealing Pig (seems to be a pig theme) after the Museum . . .

So we are looking for something walking distance from the Theater (not afraid of a good walk) and i think something that is very "if you live here now, you have to go to . . . " type places. Open to types of cuisine for sure (from fancy to local tavern type places). We haven’t been to the South End yet (doesn’t seem like that far of a walk) and really have only walked around the Back Bay . . . just feel like we need to get out to downtown more (have spent more time exploring the burbs and neighborhoods around downtown so far).

Any places you would say a “new local” has to try at some point?

Asian fusion spots are big here - Meyers + Chang is a hefty walk but Shojo wouldn’t be too far - and another new hip spot is Yvonne’s, though it’s very hip so maybe not what you’re looking for. My two go-to pre-theater spots are Sip and Teatro, both of which are very close by. It sounds like you’ve seen some of our hits already. Impressive list!

Thanks for those recommendations.

Yvonne’s - what does “very hip” mean when you’re describing it? Crowded? New? Insufferable 20 somethings? Hipsters/lumbersexuals? Just curious, don’t know much about Yvonne’s.

I’d say it is a little bit of all of that, but probably not at the time you’d be going. We saw more girls night out groups than anything. Yvonnes is definitely trying to be a big scene, and the menu reads like every bad cliche of what is annoying about current restaurant trends. The crowd progressively got more douche-tastic as the night went on.

I went in with very low expectations but actually enjoyed the food very much. Drinks and service were up to par as well. I will post detail about the food when I have more time. I didn’t particularly care for the scene on a Saturday night, however it should be fine for an early dinner for your purposes.

I’d second the Teatro recommendation.

We enjoyed an early dinner at Yvonne’s at the Library Bar (in a separate room from the main bar and dining room). But you can’t go wrong with Liquid Art House in my opinion.

+1 on Shojo. One of our favorite spots. Fantastic cocktails.

Bogie’s Place, the hidden tiny speakeasy steak house in the back of JM Curley, is right around the corner. Intimate and dark. Good food and a fun time. Reservations required.

Townsman is also not very far from the Opera House. Exceptional, edgy dishes and a fun atmosphere. Great cocktails. It gets crowded so reservations are recommended.

If you’re not afraid of walking, you could hoof it over Beacon Hill and go to Poe’s Tip Tap Room.

Jacob Wirth’s is close by if you haven’t been. One of the oldest restaurants in Boston. (If not the oldest, now that Locke Ober is gone.)

Agree the hip factor somewhat obscures the surprisingly good food at Yvonne’s. We had an amazing Christmas Eve lunch after the Nutcracker early matinee. Some good craftwork behind the bar as well. Go early to avoid the scene.

They all sound great. Hmmmm - going to be a tough decision, but great to have a few options in case one is very crowded/etc. I’m not sure what time the show is over so opening times may play a factor too. Maybe drinks/apps at one and dinner at another - we will have to talk it over.

enjoy!

So I have to report back - with my head hanging down in shame . . . because we went rogue and even with all these great suggestions (which I WILL still use for future downtown excursions) . . . I ignored all your wisdom . . … and was left disappointed.

Before the theater we went to Marliave for lunch. It has been around so long that we decided we needed to say we’ve been. I have to say, we very much enjoyed our lunch. I had the ravioli - which were very nice, a little over sauced for my taste but that is easy to fix with ravioli by just shaking them off. My S.O. had the omelet. I have to say, it has been YEARS since I’ve seen an omelet cooked so well and “old school” - not a hint of color anywhere, soft and cooked through, and not “oily” with too much butter to keep it from sticking to the pan. I was really impressed.

Then after the theater we did go to Liquid Art House. I was VERY disappointed. While I’m still adjusting to the price point of dining in Boston in general, LAH was ridiculous - and the food wasn’t good. Just to list what we had - cocktails: The Ponte (a rye and cognac drink), the cocktail of the day (a blood orange mojito), and a caipirinha. They were fine, nothing special, nothing great but fine. I expected better for $18 (or so) a cocktail. The second Ponte came out with the wrong garnish and actually tasted quite different from the first. I think they either made the Rob Roy from the menu or started making it and switched. We did send it back, they remade with only a little attitude of “it’s going to taste the same but I’ll remake it” under the breath.

For an amuse bouche they offered a lobster bisque (free, so should you really complain about free?) - it was a very solid lobster stock but was so reduced and salty that I couldn’t eat it. It would have made a great bisque if it had some cream in it, which would have also helped to cut the saltiness. They had a special that evening of hamachi collar - it was good, not great, but good. We also had the gnocchi with sea urchin. The sea urchin was undetectable in the cream sauce and the gnocchi were about the size of a dime and dense and chewy. For $18 I think you got maybe 8, dime sized gnocchi and no visible or taste-able sea urchin . . . We also had the Iberico Bellota - which of course tasted great (one of my favorite things) but for $24 (I think) it was a few poorly shaved pieces on a plate . . . maybe I’ve been spoiled from having it in Spain but still . . . for $24 come on put a little effort into it.

So while the room was beautiful and we enjoyed the bar space - and I enjoyed the art (if I had the wall space I would have bought one) - and the servers were attentive and pleasant (other than the one bartender’s moment) - the food was very disappointing and very overpriced. So we won’t be back.

I did see on another thread that Saturday night at Yvonne’s already had a line by 5pm, so maybe we should have tried that.

Teatro looked great from the website - will have to get there.

And Shojo has been on the list for a while . . .

So just goes to show - don’t ask for advice and recommendations and then ignore them . . . serves me right . . .

Thanks for all the input - my list of places to try just keeps growing!

1 Like

Gee, that’s really too bad that you had such a disappointing experience, but I guess that’s the only way that you could have known, right? Thanks for the detailed report. It’s very helpful for future reference. It doesn’t sound like a place I want to visit, especially at those prices.

My husband and I went to a show at the Wilbur on Thursday night and ended up at Jacob Wirth’s beforehand. It was our first visit and we enjoyed it. There were no open tables so we ended up at a large communal table and were quickly joined by several other diners. It was fun to chat a bit, but it wasn’t too intrusive and we also had plenty of privacy. Our grilled, smoked brat and red cabbage sandwich was tasty as was the German potato salad. I was in a wine mood and had to chuckle at the wine selection. Cabernet, merlot, malbec and a couple of others. Completely generic and my malbec pretty much tasted that way. My husband enjoyed his Harpoon chocolate stout. The bill was around $40. Definitely not a fine dining experience but we were glad we finally went since it’s such a Boston institution t’d would probably head back for a quick bite before a show.

We do really like Teatro and thought about heading there, but were concerned that they would be slammed with the pre-theatre/after work crowd.

Absolutely. We are both glad we went, we had heard a lot about it. But we won’t be back. Thankfully I have a long list of options now :wink:

1 Like

Sorry to hear about your experience at LAH. While I can’t say it is a candidate for value, our experiences have been the polar opposite when it comes to the food. In 2+ decades of restaurant week excursions, theirs was the absolute best we have encountered (and that’s a good time to visit if the tariff offends…)

So to help redeem myself - we went to another show and this time went to Shojo for drinks and a bite before the show.

The drinks were great and interesting. It was early for dinner so tried 2 bao which were both very good. Thanks for the recommendation.

If anyone hasn’t been it is a bit of an anomaly for Chinatown (at least for where I’ve been so far). It is a much more updates space - but a very young “hipster” vibe. They were playing 90’s gangster rap, a large cinder block wall along the back with an anime/Godzilla style comic strip mural, darker lighting … we enjoyed it but not sure what we were expecting. We’ll go again.

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold