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37 Bowdoin St, Boston, MA 02114-4201 (Beacon Hill)
(617) 227-3434
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Ranked #132 of 2,779 restaurants in Boston
Certificate of Excellence 2013
Price range: $31 - $40
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Special occasions
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night, Dessert
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: Beacon Hill
Cross street: Cambridge
Transit: T Stops are Park and Government Center.
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133 reviews from our community

86% Recommend
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Falls Church, Virginia
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2014 NEW

Known for the 3 course meal for $40 - What a value! We had dinner and opted NOT to have the three courses as the portions were quite good sized and so dined a la carte which is also a very good value. The chef has some good twists on Italian classics. Try the pasta with pancetta, peas and mushrooms... More

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Santa Barbara, California
2 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

I tried this place on a visit from California based on the location and good reviews. I was very pleased. The service was wonderful, everyone I interacted with was professional and very nice. I don't love overbearing service and they give you your space but are very aware of your needs. I went by myself and wished my boyfriend was... More

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2 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014 via mobile

Forget reservations for this hole in the ground. They don't seem to know how to honor them. Also lacking is general sympathy for their customers. Run by nasty "child" servers serving greasy,heavy food this place is a broken operation. Save your money and go anywhere else.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Wolcott, Connecticut
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014

I don't even know where to start... This was probably one of the best meals I've ever had. My boyfriend took me to Grotto for Valentine's Day and we both ordered off the price fixe menu... $38 per person. It includes an appetizer, main dish, and dessert. I had the spinachi salad as my appetizer, the short rib and mushroom... More

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New York, NY
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014

I was cold during the entire meal. Half of the restaurant gets a draft from the door during the winter. The service was terrible. The food was ok. Salad was good. The steak tips for the fondue were very rare. Short ribs with gnocchi were great. Spaghetti and meatballs was very peppery and not very good. Deserts were very good.... More

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Waltham, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2013

What a charming (very) little bistro in Beacon Hill! We were welcomed in from the cold and snow and ushered to a cozy booth by friendly and attentive staff and the meal followed that path as well. From the simple bread and delicious oil (with olives, no less) and the carrozza appetizer salad to the perfectly plated pasta with lobster... More

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Batavia, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2013

Excellent Italian food away from the touristy North End. Very cozy and charming decor. We thoroughly enjoyed the fonduta, gnudi and parmigiano. The gnudi is ricotta dumplings served with spinach and mushrooms - it was amazing and I can't wait to go back and have it again! All of our dishes were beautifully presented and delicious. Next time we are... More

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Needham, MA
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2013

Grotto is tucked in almost underground on Bowdoin Street just down from the State House. It's small (intimate), but truly excellent. The food is delicious and varied -- from classics like Chicken Parmesan (the chef's unique take on it) to duck to venison (superb) to their signature Gnocchi with Short Ribs. The portions are ample but not extreme, but make... More

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Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2013

loved the atmosphere, great low lighting. Tables are very close together but the lighting made it not feel cramped. Amazing, authentic food, great service, interesting wines. I loved this place!

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Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2013

Normally, the prix fixe menu is the best deal in restaurants that offer it; you usually get more bang for your buck. At Grotto, though, the portions are so massive that you're probably better off ordering and entree and starter a la carte. One of the reasons for that is the incredibly high quality of the bread that comes before... More

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