Grotto – Intimate Italian

37 Bowdoin Street Boston MA 02114 (617) 227-3434

*On Beacon Hill, closer to Govt. Center, off of Cambridge St

~Restaurant Week~

Seth & Ren, +3 guests

  • –Drinks–
  • Bottle of Ca’ Furlan Prosecco Cuvée Beatrice
  • Bottle of Campanile Pinot Grigio
  • Moretti Dark beer
  • –Plates–
  • FondutaFontina cheese fondue, Beef tenderloin tips, Aged balsamic, Truffle oil, Portobello mushrooms x2
  • Zuppa: Garlic soup, Black truffle, Parmesan, Toasted bread crumbs
  • Piccata: Mussels, Garlic, Lemon, Capers, White wine sauce
  • Zafferano: Crab ravioli, Asparagus, Roasted tomatoes, Almonds, Saffron
  • Pettini: Pan roasted diver scallops, “ravioli”, Leeks, Wild mushrooms, Arugula, truffle
  • GnocchiShort ribs, Mushrooms, Gorgonzola x2
  • Fra Diavolo: Butter poached lobster, Linguine, Spicy tomato sauce
  • Antra: Apple stuffed duck breast, Crispy leg, Prosciutto, Dried cherries, Potato gratin, Black truffle aioli, Madeira
  • –Desserts–
  • Cioccolato: Melting chocolate cake & vanilla ice cream
  • Tre: Ice cream: Vanilla, Chocolate, Caramel
  • Budino: Banana bread pudding, Caramel ice cream, Spiced walnuts
  • $289.97 w/tax ($71.00 in Drinks) With the restaurant week actual cost was $253.16

Ave Price/Person: Restaurant Week deal is $33.12 w/ Drinks: $50

Seth: Hooray Restaurant week! An excuse to get to a little nicer of a restaurant and not break the bank. About 200 restaurants participating all with a prix fixe menu prices at $33.12 per person. A better deal at some places than others but just needs a little research. This weeks list (with a lot of help from Makeda, thank you!) was narrowed down to the Grotto. An excellent little Italian place on Beacon Hill. This week Ren and I were joined with 3 others and made our way to a late reservation. We arrived a little early but were sat pretty close to our time. We ordered a bottle of Prosecco to start things while we hashed out what we were all going to order. We try to not repeat too many things as we always try some of each others orders. I started with the crab ravioli that came with a nice little sauce and some nicely grilled tomatoes. Bites of the fondue and mussels were quite tasty. For my entrée I jumped on the apple stuffed duck breast that was decadently wrapped in prosciutto with a cherry and truffle sauce. The duck was cooked perfectly and the whole dish was absolutely delicious. I really liked Makeda’s diver scallops that were also cooked just right and I enjoyed both my bites of Gnocchi and Lobster Diablo. Somewhere part way through the entrée round we decided on another bottle of wine. A crisp Pinot Grigio was welcomed and we moved on to the dessert round. I’m always a big fan of bread pudding and didn’t hesitate to order it here. It was pretty good though not exceptional. A pretty good meal all round. It’s a great place for a date. Nice and intimate. The server may not have been the best but I suppose you’d have to give him a little credit as it was late into the second week of Restaurant week. My favorite thing: The perfectly executed duck.

Ren: Due to the bi-annual occurrence of a Boston event known as restaurant week, though it goes for two weeks, we ended up in a small cozy restaurant by the name of Grotto. My cohort selected this restaurant for its unusually large restaurant week menu selection and they still had reservations for the night we wanted to go. We showed up a bit early in hopes that we could be seated before our reservation as the hour was late, but alas to no avail. While we waited we gazed upon their wine menu in search of our first selection. Upon seating we ordered a bottle of Prosecco  for the table and commenced with the course choosing. I settled with the cheese fondue appetizer, gnocchi and short rib entrée, and banana pudding dessert. The fondue was fairly tasty,  the only draw backs were some of the steak was slightly over-cooked and I personally thought the cheese could have a little bit of a stronger kick. My gnocchi dish that followed was a tad disappointing. The gnocchi and meat were perfectly cooked but I just felt like the flavor wasn’t where I wanted it to be and left the palate longing for something with a bit more variant in flavor. The bite of my cohort’s duck was very tender and delicious as was his scallop potatoes and one of our dining guest’s lobster dish.  During our entrées we decided on a bottle of smooth and balanced pinot gringo. I wish dessert redeemed my slightly disappointing meal but alas while the flavor was good, I’d been hoping for an actually pudding instead of the cake I received. Our server for the evening was eager but forgetful as he neglected to clear various dirty dishes of our table. All in all it was a pleasant evening with only a few minor disappointments. My favorite thing: The portabella mushrooms dipped in the fondue cheese!

Food: Seth 8 Ren 7 Food Ave: 7.5 Good food overall. Some dishes were particularly delicious

Decor/Atmosphere: Seth 9 Ren 8.5 Very cute intimate place. Seats maybe 25-30 people. Lovely place for a date

Service: Seth 7.5 Ren 6.5 Some good intentions from our waiter. Polite and came ans checked on us often enough. Seemed a bit flustered presumably from it being restaurant week. Didn’t really take dirty plates often or quick enough.

Total Average: 7.750 Good overall place. Not blown away by the food but it was all good with no real missteps. Cute place and decent service. Was a nice place to check out for Restaurant week and a place Ren was looking to get to as it’s the sister restaurant to an old employment place for her.

One bad thing: The service missteps with the plates.


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