The Essex Street Grille is one of our favorite local restaurants, and we go there quite often. We have never had a bad meal here. It does tend to get really busy, so it isn't always someplace you want to go to if you're in a rush, but I've never had the service be so slow that it was annoying (as some other reviewers have pointed out). From time to time, slow happens - all it takes is for one key member of the staff to call in sick. Overall I've found their service to be very good and the wait staff is knowledgeable and aims to please.
They often have some interesting specials and a variety of standard offerings that are really very good. There are steaks, pork osso buco, chicken, fish and Italian dishes on the menu, as well as a variety of salads and appetizers. I'm partial to their fish dishes, but we've also been with friends who tried the osso buco and said it was awesome.
It's a great local establishment that is easy to get to. It looks like a local pub, but the food is definitely a step or two above plain old pub food for sure. Get on owner Michael's email list, and he'll occasionally send you a notice about an upcoming special event, or mail you a coupon for a discount if you visit by a certain date.