Cafeteria in Back Bay serves it up right!


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I’m baaack!!! And with a vengeance… I think I have finally shaken off my lame-o, non-posting, rut and have gotten back on track — starting with date night this past Friday night. We hit up Cafeteria in Back Bay for a few cocktails and dinner.

I had bumped into the owner of Cafeteria a LONG time ago in Starbucks in West Roxbury. Being the nosey person that I am — when I overheard him talking about “his” restaurant — of course I had to introduce myself. I’ve been wanting to try out the place since then (especially because it seems to be a popular joint for the Hollywood set when they are in town)… but never got around to it until now… and what a pleasant surprise!

They had just switched their menu over the week we went… so we opted for some seasonal drinks to get us started. I had the Spiced Bourbon — bourbon seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg and fresh citrus juice ($11). I don’t love bourbon, but I wanted something “seasonal”… so this seemed like a good fit. It was poured with a heavy hand and had a great warming effect from the spices. I had two of them. They were good. I was buzzed.

spiced bourbon

The Husband went with the Gloucester Street (which they are on the corner of), which was a combination of gin, St. Germaine and Sauvignon Blanc ($12). It was fresh, fruity and crisp… without being too sweet or too strong. A really nice drink.

Gloucester Street

For apps, we started with the Fried Calamari — served with marinara sauce and a lemon aioli ($9.5). The calamari was perfectly fried, tender and a bit salty (which I love). We were essentially fighting over the bits and pieces left at the bottom of the cone… it was THAT good.

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Their entire menu is very “comfort food” focused right now… and I’m not a really comfort food person. I don’t eat red meat, I’m not a big fan of mac ‘n cheese and I can take or leave other “feel good foods” as well. So I had a difficult time choosing what I wanted. So, against my norm… I opted for something I would have NEVER expected myself to get. The Roasted, Organic, Spring Chicken— served with mashed potatoes, an au jus and a horseradish/cabbage slaw ($22).

So why was this something I would not have normally ordered? Well, if you know me… I RARELY and I mean rarely ever order chicken in a restaurant. And, I can honestly say that I have NEVER ordered chicken served on the bone — EVER — in a restaurant. Really. NEVER. So this was a huge step outside my comfort zone for me.

IT WAS AMAZING. I even ate every single ounce of skin that bird was covered in. I haven’t eaten chicken skin in years and years. It was so fricken delcious, I haven’t stopped thinking about it since. I didn’t want to (because I’m selfish), but I even let the Husband taste it and he agreed. Delicious. The mashed potatoes and au jus were incredible too and the horseradish slaw completed the meal with a nice Fall punch of flavor.

spring chicken

The Husband on the other hand, LOVES comfort food… so he went with the Meatloaf — covered in a spicy ketchup, served on top of mashed potatoes and served with the same gravy as my dish ($16). The verdict? He did everything except lick his plate clean to scarf up every last bit of food. He wanted me to taste it too… but I had to draw the line somewhere.

meatloaf

We would have ordered coffee and dessert, but we were both too full from totally housing the dinners. For a place that calls itself  “Cafeteria” and serves up comfort food at a reasonable price, the abience was cool, chic and trendy. We were definitely impressed.

Overall, the service was decent — our server was sort of a cross between a surfer dude and college jock — so he wasn’t the most articulate, but our food came out fast and he was very attentive.  They also serve paninis and pizza, so you can easily have dinner there for a pretty cheap price. We’ll definitely be going back.

Cafeteria Boston on Urbanspoon

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