TASTE / DINING OUT / NEW YEAR'S EVE
As we get closer to New Year's Eve, now is the time to plot astrategy for celebrating the arrival of 2007. Will it be bay scallopsceviche matched with champagne and a view of fireworks on the Commonat Troquet in the Theater District? Or maybe it'll be crab cakes withMoroccan spices and Latin swing at Rendezvous in Central Square? Orperhaps prosciutto-wrapped squab with truffled polenta at Quince,celebrating its first eve in Needham?
Wherever you choose to mark the changing calendar, there's plentyof food and festivities out there to choose from.
In what could be a mini-trend, some restaurants are choosing amore casual way of celebrating the big day. Rather than a prix fixemenu with timed seatings, they're featuring a la carte dishes withextra frills for revelers.
Rendezvous is offering its winter menu plus dishes such as wildmushroom risotto with shaved white truffles; skillet-roasted lobsterwith chives and chervil butter; and grilled cumin-rubbed lambporterhouse with roasted eggplant. A DJ will spin jazz, Latin swing,and soul through the evening, and there will be wine and champagnespecials. The menu entree prices range from $22 to $26. 617-576-1900. rendezvouscentralsquare.com
Troquet is offering its menu a la carte or for its regular five-to seven-course tasting menus, $85 to $100 respectively. Some of thedishes planned are Alaskan king crab prepared three ways and pan-roasted veal chop. The second-floor dining room has a view of theCommon, where fireworks will be displayed at 7 p.m. 617-695-9463.troquetboston.com
Blu in the Sports Club/LA will also add specials to its regular ala carte menu Dec. 30 and 31. Some of the dishes will be foie grastourchon with poached kumquats; poached lobster with truffledspaetzle; and a chocolate flight from light to dark, frozen to hot.The specials range from $10 to $38. 617-375-8550. blurestaurant.com
Pigalle near the Theater District will have two dinner seatings,with such dishes as hazelnut goat cheese crab cake with champagnevinaigrette; phyllo-crusted diver scallop with parsnip raviolis; andcassoulet of confit duck, braised lamb shank, and homemade sausage.The earlier seating, $95 each, is a four-course meal; the second addslive music to the four courses at $130 each. 617-423-4944.pigalleboston.com
Dante in the Royal Sonesta, Cambridge, also plans two seatings.Each dinner features four courses, and prices go from $90 to $125.The second seating includes a champagne toast at midnight. The menuwill include caviar and Kumamoto oyster with potato cannelloni; beeftenderloin 'Wellington'; and a chestnut and pistachio semifreddo. 617-497-4200. sonesta.com/Boston.
Craigie Street Bistrot near Harvard Square will go all out with afive-course early menu for $90 and a seven-course late dinner at$140. Dishes include a creamy soup of oysters and oyster mushrooms;maple and truffle-glazed organic pork belly; and boudin noir-stuffedquail with smoked farro risotto. Chef/owner Tony Maws will throw anight of chef's whim on New Year's evening, cooking without a menu.617-497-5511. craigiestreetbistrot .com
La Morra in Brookline will offer a four-course menu of suchItalian dishes as handmade pasta with butternut squash, roasted pear,and taleggio cheese; wood-grilled rack of lamb; and spit-roastedsirloin for $85. 617-739-0007. lamorra.com
Rialto in Harvard Square plans an early seating of five coursesfor $95, and a later one of seven courses for $135. Some dishes willbe magret duck in prosciutto with Macomber turnip and mustard fruits;wild mushroom agnolotti with stracciatella and slow-cooked tomatoes;and espresso-pistachio pave with blood oranges. Live music anddancing will be featured at the late seating. 617-661-5050. rialto-restaurant.com
Harvest, also in Harvard Square, will offer a four-course dinnerfor $69. Some of the dishes will be crispy lobster with mashedparsnip and beurre rouge; halibut with sunchokes, oyster mushrooms,and sea urchin sabayon; seared loin of venison; and vanilla beanbuttermilk panna cotta. 617-868-2255. harvestcam bridge.com
Meritage in the Boston Harbor Hotel will offer five courses for$150. Some dishes will be golden potato and melted leek soup; pan-roasted Arctic char with baby white turnips; and five-spice braisedbeef short ribs. 617-439-3995. meritagetherestaurant.com
Mantra downtown will offer a $95 four-course dinner with suchdishes as tandoor-fired stuffed quail with Indian balchao sauce;oyster-stuffed grilled filet mignon; and lobster with criminimushrooms and Chablis cheese sauce. 617-542-8111. mantrarestaurant.com
Sel de la Terre plans a $95 six-course dinner with foie gras andbraised veal sweetbread boudin with confiture of prunes; sugarpumpkin soup with butter-poached Maine lobster; seared Tasmanian kingsalmon with blood orange mojo; and braised beef short ribs with blacktruffle potato-leek nage and root vegetables. There will be live jazzand fireworks over the nearby harbor at midnight. 617-720-1300.seldelaterre.com
East Coast Grill & Raw Bar in Cambridge will offer a four-coursedinner for $58. Some dishes will be blue crab and chili bisque;grilled cowboy steak with lime-cumin butter; and pepita-crusted redsnapper with mango-ancho sauce. 617-491-6568. eastcoastgrill.net
L'Espalier ups the ante with an eight-course dinner for $195.Dishes will include caramelized foie gras torchon with Armagnac-soaked prunes; and tenderloin of beef with Perigord black truffle andpommes puree. 617-262-3023. lespalier.com
Excelsior in Back Bay offers a $110 tasting menu in addition toits a la carte selection. Some special dishes will be wood-grilledquail salad; seafood pan-roasted in champagne; and roasted ribeye oflamb with Kalamata olive salsa. 617-426-7878. excelsiorrestaurant.com
If you're thinking of a suburban feast, Tuscan Grill in Walthamplans a $65 prix fixe in addition to the a la carte menu. Some disheswill be wild mushroom ravioli with sage and brown butter; wood-grilled veal chop with gorgonzola Chianti butter; and pepper-crustedskirt steak with cranberry port reduction. 781-891-5486.tuscangrillwaltham.com
Quince Bistro in Needham will offer a $75 prix fixe with suchdishes as sauteed sweetbreads with foie gras sauce; sauteed scallopswith oxtail and porcini ragout; roasted monkfish with lobster bisque;and grilled rack of lamb with lentils and lamb shank daube. 781-449-0022. quincebistro.com
Coriander Bistro in Sharon plans a luxe prix fixe for $100 withsuch dishes as seared foie gras and Dijon-style sweet breads; lobsterthermidor; bistro-style porterhouse steak with marchand de vin sauce;and warm pear tart. 781-784-5450. corianderbistro.com