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Eastern Standard


Nishla
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So I just got back from Eastern Standard (in Kenmore Sq), and I'm trying to figure out if there's anywhere in Boston that has a cocktail menu that is even comparable. The regular menu here has an alaska, aviation, monkey gland, sazerac, jack rose, etc. We haven't even found another place that has a bartender who knows what to do with Chartreuse.

Last week, I had a lemon/vodka/tarragon cocktail that was extremely good, so they make nice non-classic drinks too. Their food is solid bistro-style (won't blow you away, but well-made and reasonably priced). The service has also been fantastic every time we've gone, both at the bar and at tables.

Is this THE place to go in Boston for drinks? Is there another well-kept secret that I should know about?

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E/S is indeed a great place for cocktails and chow. I mean really, what can be better than classic cocktails and housemade chacroute? (Mines a Jack Rose and head cheese/chorizo, BTW)

But there's is more to Boston, and in the same vein.

A lot of the guys at E/S cut there teeth over in Cambridge at a joint called the B Side Lounge. The digs are less than posh but the menu will astound you. What impresses the most, is that B Side makes cocktailing a classless pasttime. And by classless, I mean, the great old school and boozy cocktails share the menu with Budweiser. There ain't no hierarchical structure, no one feels more or less cool by way of their tipple and Poseurs simply can't be found. Moreover, the prices are fair, and the drinks are well made. (everything is jiggered and the grenadine is concocted on premise)

When I get asked "How do we make classical drinking more approachable", I mention the B Side. There is simply no pretension about which drinks are "good" and which are "stupid kiddy drinks". Granted, Stupid Kiddy Drinks are not on the list, but all the drinks on the menu are promoted with an ecumenical, egalitarian and non-normative editorial slant. If anything, Dan Cagle goes out of his way to remind people about how free-wheeling and footloose (responsible) drinking ougtta be. There are jokes on his menu, which I now can't remember.

I guess I'll be heading to Boston on Tuesday to fulfill this report.

Who wants to join up?

myers

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Eastern Standard sure does have a great cocktail menu, as does the B side. I believe the bartendes said at E/S that they also make their own grenadine, but with orange flower water. Pretty damn tasty, I might add.

Another place to check out is Green Street, in Central Square. Dylan Black now owns that, another ex B sider, and late of Chez Henri. Very solid cocktails there also. I believe he's making his own pineapple juice. Speaking of Chez Henri, hit Scott up on a quiet night, he has quite a catalog of his own that isn't on the list, as tasty as those are.

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Cool, thanks for all the suggestions. We've really gotten into cocktails in the last year, and have been fairly disappointed with many bars in the area.

I haven't been to Green Street since it re-opened, but will definitely return soon since it's right in my neighborhood. I'll have to check out B-Side too.

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I'll have to give the Green Street another chance. I was there a couple weeks ago and both the food and drinks were quite mediocre especially considering the price tag. After one very mediocre cocktail, I switched to beer. Maybe I should have tried something else... At least they have Iggy's bread :smile:

I still think Casablanca has better cocktails than both the B Side and Green Street (never been to Eastern Standard). Another place that comes to mind for is the Independant in Union Square. Good food and cocktails.

Edited by kelly001 (log)
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Eastern Standard and B Side are both great for cocktails. I'm also very partial to No 9 Park - their bartenders also really know what they're doing.

Eating pizza with a fork and knife is like making love through an interpreter.
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We went to check out the B-side last night, and really enjoyed it. The atmosphere is totally different from E/S (more of a neighborhood bar compared to a more upscale restaurant/hotel bar), but the drinks were very well made.

I had an Emily Rose (gin, dry vermouth, apry, lemon and grenadine) and an Uptown Manhattan (bourbon, Vya sweet, and angostura bitters), and my husband had a Bijou (gin, green chartreuse, sweet vermouth, orange bitters) followed by a Creole (bourbon, sweet vermouth, benedictine and punt e mes). The manhattan was probably my favorite, but all the drinks were very good.

We also had an order of the fried calamari, which was great, although the dipping sauce had so much garlic I can still taste it this morning :shock:

Anyway, we'll definitely be back to the B-side...thanks for the recommendations!

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Eastern Standard and B Side are both great for cocktails.  I'm also very partial to No 9 Park - their bartenders also really know what they're doing.

I've never been to Eastern Standard, but I'll second the nomination on No. 9 Park. I can still taste a fabulous pear martini I had there several years ago.

Liam

Eat it, eat it

If it's gettin' cold, reheat it

Have a big dinner, have a light snack

If you don't like it, you can't send it back

Just eat it -- Weird Al Yankovic

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  • 3 months later...

Just an update here...we've been going to E/S a lot recently. While their drinks are really good, as usual, I've been particularly impressed by the food. The last few times we got the "Today's Offal", we've had:

Braised/confit cockscombs with foraged mushrooms, brioche and poached egg (insanely good).

Duck liver bolognese, in a surprisingly large appetizer portion.

Grilled beef heart with foie gras terrine, truffles, and salad (wow).

Also, all these dishes were $9!!!! This may be one of the best values in town.

Some of the other winners that we've sampled from the rest of the menu are:

Rigatoni with lamb sausage (with such tasty browned bits of pasta, sausage and cheese on top)

Beef shortrib

Glazed salmon

Pork shortrib (I think they gave me half a pig, with lots of belly attached)

Crispy skatewing (with the lightest gnocchi I've ever tasted)

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Just an update here...we've been going to E/S a lot recently. While their drinks are really good, as usual, I've been particularly impressed by the food. The last few times we got the "Today's Offal", we've had:

Braised/confit cockscombs with foraged mushrooms, brioche and poached egg (insanely good).

Duck liver bolognese, in a surprisingly large appetizer portion.

Grilled beef heart with foie gras terrine, truffles, and salad (wow).

Also, all these dishes were $9!!!! This may be one of the best values in town.

Some of the other winners that we've sampled from the rest of the menu are:

Rigatoni with lamb sausage (with such tasty browned bits of pasta, sausage and cheese on top)

Beef shortrib

Glazed salmon

Pork shortrib (I think they gave me half a pig, with lots of belly attached)

Crispy skatewing (with the lightest gnocchi I've ever tasted)

E/S is really doing their part to combat global warming, and I jsut wish I could be there more often to help out. I mean, we need to get rid of those methane/co2 belching/farting animals somehow.....

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  • 4 weeks later...

First visit to Eastern Standard tonight and most likely not the last. Was sitting at the bar and thoroughly enjoyed the bartenders. Very nice, very knowledgeable and a lot of fun to watch.

I had a excellent champagne cocktail, a pretty good Corbieres and a nice Banyuls. Prices are alright.

Food was also quite pleasant. Impeccably fresh oysters followed by the "offal of the day": grilled beef heart with endive salad and parmigiano. The heart was perfectly grilled and the salad was nicely dressed with a light hand (endives are so often served soggy). Dessert was a cherry cake and was good, if not very exciting.

Overall a pleasant experience in a place with a very good atmosphere for Boston standards.

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So I just got back from Eastern Standard (in Kenmore Sq), and I'm trying to figure out if there's anywhere in Boston that has a cocktail menu that is even comparable. The regular menu here has an alaska, aviation, monkey gland, sazerac, jack rose, etc. We haven't even found another place that has a bartender who knows what to do with Chartreuse.

Last week, I had a lemon/vodka/tarragon cocktail that was extremely good, so they make nice non-classic drinks too. Their food is solid bistro-style (won't blow you away, but well-made and reasonably priced). The service has also been fantastic every time we've gone, both at the bar and at tables.

Is this THE place to go in Boston for drinks? Is there another well-kept secret that I should know about?

My DH hails from Newton, so we get back to Boston often, but I haven't been to Eastern Standard yet.

My boss gets to check it out next Thursday night, 2/15, when we're hosting an event there with David Wondrich (author of Killer Cocktails). I'm jealous!! I can't wait for her full report (and my next trip to Boston in October).

my motto: taste, savor, share

circulation manager, imbibe magazine

celebrate the world in a glass

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