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A Little Bit About a Lot of Things

A lifestyle blog with a focus on my food adventures

I had been reading GREAT reviews for this place (Boston.com and a so so review from the Herald). I went here in the beginning of January. When I booked on Open Table the only choices were 5:30pm and 8:45pm. We chose 8:45pm. My sister in law was taking a cooking class at a well known restaurant in Boston and heard from the chef that Market was reserving prime time reservations for people in the business (meaning, people who were going to review the restaurant and create hype for it). I feel like the true test for a restaurant is having great service all the time. It’s easy to have everything perfect when you know that you are being critiqued.

We arrived at 8 after some shopping, thinking that perhaps they could seat us early. The hostess said that seating us early wouldn’t be a problem and if we wanted to sit in the bar for a drink she would come and get us in about 15 minutes. The bar area is dim and seductive. It has long flowing sheer curtains and couches to lounge on. There was a good mix of people at this time of night, international businessmen, young professionals in sport coats and attractive looking females. We had a pricey drink at the bar and the bartender was friendly enough. At 8:45 we stroll into the restaurant to see what the situation was. There were about a half dozen open tables. We were wondering why we had been forgotten at the bar and the hostess was not at  all apologetic. We get sat at a two top right next to the hostess stand. The restaurant is dim with modern decor. The noise level is quite loud and we have to raise our voices to compete with the noise from  bar from outside and the tables around us. A food runner comes over to tell us that the waiter will be right with us. We wait for 10 minutes for the server to arrive. We place our orders. I get the soy glazed short ribs with jalapeno apple puree and rosemary crumbs ($24) and my dining companion chooses the slow cooked salmon with mashed potatoes, Brussel sprouts and truffle vinaigrette ($23). We also order a side of roasted cauliflower with pistachios ($6). Someone came around with bread on a tray and asked which kind of bread we would like. It was the kind of thing where you  felt awkward asking for two pieces. My dining companion and I were catching up  and as time goes by we are looking at our watches, wondering why 45 minutes later we still don’t have our entree. The manager comes out and apologizes that our entrees are taking so long and leaves us a peace offering in the form of rice cracker crusted tuna with citrus-chili emulsion. The tuna was delicious (although a bit too salty for my taste), the rice cracker crust was surprisingly good. While it was a nice gesture my problem is this, you should have offered to comp one of our meals instead of bringing us something we didn’t order. He mentions that our dinners are on their way out, and two minutes later they arrive. If he was going to bring us a free appetizer, it should have been 30 minutes ago. The short rib is good, perfectly cooked and it just falls apart. Pistachios are very ‘in’ these days. The cauliflower and pistachios were good but nothing to write home about. My dining companion enjoyed the salmon. We order the green apple crisp with the cinnamon ice cream. It arrives in a cast iron dish (which seems to be very ‘in’) and is wonderful. The crispy topping makes the dessert, the apples are crisp and the ice cream is quite good. This is by far the best part of the meal. While the food was decent, I thought that the $70 price tag for the two of us to eat was a little steep-considering the bad service. While some people would be tempted to tip less, I have been a waiter-they get paid minimally and depend on tips, I tipped the full 20%. I’m tempted to return to see if the service has improved…

While the reviews I had read were amazing, my friends who had been there also reported a less than fantastic time. So it seems that for the reviewers the food and service is outstanding, but if you’re an average joe-and if you can get a table-you’re treated like a second rate citizen.

A final note: the restrooms are located in the hotel lobby and if you look closely at the wallpaper in the back of the stall (at least the ladies room)-it’s a mosaic of eyes…sort of creepy….

Market by Jean Georges

100 Stuart St. Boston, MA 02116
www.marketbyjgboston.com

(617) 310-6790

Hours: Breakfast: Mon.-Fri., 7-11 a.m., Sat. & Sun., 8-11 a.m.; Lunch: Mon.-Fri., 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; Brunch: Sat. & Sun. 11:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; Dinner: Sun.-Thurs., 5-10 p.m, Fri. & Sat., 5-11 p.m.

Market by Jean-Georges on Urbanspoon

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