We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Grown-up restaurant”
Review of Rialto - CLOSED

Price range: $30 - $80
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene, Business meetings, Special occasions, Scenic view, Large groups, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Eliot Street
Transit: Red Line to the Harvard Square T Stop.
Description: Rialto is a welcoming gathering place for the community and Charles Hotel guests. James Beard award-winning chef and owner Jody Adams embraces New England ingredients with regional Italian culinary traditions. Kitchen focus hops to a different region each month and features dishes like Ricotta gnocchi with sage brown butter and red kuri squash and our Grilled swordfish with Friulian bean stew, white wine braised cabbage and house cured bacon. Patrons enter the restaurant via a white stone path inspired by an ancient Roman road, passing by the illuminated onyx bar into the dining room. Curved banquettes and cozy nooks invite intimate conversation while pumpkin, olive and white draperies evoke the warm colors of the Italian countryside. In 2009, Rialto opened a 28-seat terrace offering guests an al fresco dining option. The Boston Globe awarded Rialto a coveted four stars in three consecutive reviews and Gourmet Magazine named it one of the "World's Top Hotel Restaurants". Rialto offers two classically elegant, private spaces, ideal for wedding receptions, business meetings, recruiting events, celebratory parties, and more.
Lebanon, New Hampshire
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Grown-up restaurant”
Reviewed November 11, 2012

Relaxed, great service, good food, no gimmicks. Liked the ability to choose half portions of some pasta dishes, nicely balanced menu.

Visited November 2012
Thank ParisRepas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

224 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Grand Island, Nebraska
Level 6 Contributor
652 reviews
396 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 371 helpful votes
“Had higher hopes”
Reviewed October 29, 2012 via mobile

Read good reviews for Rialto, but our food experience was disappointing. Service was nice, atmosphere cozy like a big home, wine list ok but 200% mark up on moderate wines. The bean soup, octopus terrine, and antipasti plate were a great start. Fantastic Parmesan-rosemary breadsticks and a great, fairly priced 2007 Casanova di Nero Brunello di Montalcino were also quite promising. But rabbit ravioli with an overwhelming lime-pepper sauce was an odd mismatch, a mediocre steak, and a dry and bland chocolate-hazelnut tart were also letdowns. Had this been a small city restaurant somewhere else, the food would have met expectations, but for Boston, this is a shortfall. Considering we paid $45 round trip in taxi fares from downtown, it was doubly disappointing.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank mingfatsai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“vastly overrated”
Reviewed October 29, 2012

I live in Cambridge and have eaten here many times for work-related meals. Each time I wonder why people rank this restaurant so highly. I think it has a nice interior but the food is mediocre. The only dish I've enjoyed is the grilled clam with andouille sausage appetizer. Frankly, I would head to other better, and cheaper!, places first: TW Food comes to mind. Oleana. LA Burdick for chocolate. Or a splurge downtown at Oya or Clio.
Bon Apetit!

  • Visited June 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank SEM02139
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, MA
Level 5 Contributor
80 reviews
53 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“One of my favorite restaurants in Boston / Cambridge”
Reviewed October 26, 2012

A wonderful special occasion restaurant. The food is uniformly good, the location is great and we have always had good service. My wife and I have been going to Rialto for years and have only good things to say about it. I would particularly recommend the duck (it is rendered, so not too fatty), the steak, the garlic clams and the chocolate souffle (which is perhaps the best that I have ever had). Definitely worth a trip.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Rockdog33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
240 reviews
187 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 137 helpful votes
“Wonderful time despite snobby women at front desk”
Reviewed October 17, 2012

We ate in the bar lounge area. They have 10 or so nice little tables (try to get one of the two booths if you can -- they're roomier). The lighting is nice and it's stylish and lively but casual here. If you go on Monday night, you can eat great oysters for $1 each. And there's a $10 burger night one other day in the week. The selection of wines by the glass is great. And the bar menu has some really delicious options: seasoned fries, duck sandwich, pasta with creamy pesto sauce, great burgers.

Tip: Park at the Charles Hotel and they'll validate your ticket at Rialto -- the cost will be $10. And they don't accept reservations for seats in the bar lounge area (eating here is a much better value as the bar menu has many tasty choices that are less expensive than the restaurant menu).

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank wellheeledboston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Rialto also viewed


Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing