Boston's first celebrity-chef restaurant
Bar Boulud, Boston marks the Boston debut of master chef Daniel Boulud. Located in the heart of the trendy Back Bay neighborhood at Mandarin Oriental, Boston, Bar Boulud is the answer to the quest for a celebrity chef in this foodie-centric city (as the wait for reservations proves). But it’s not all about the chef in this warm space: Interior designer Adam D. Tihany envisioned this restaurant with Mandarin Oriental and Boston in mind. The red and gold tones reflect the Mandarin Oriental ambiance, while the open charcuterie station, wine bar and open-beam ceilings reflect Boston’s rustic charm. Enter the restaurant through the hotel or the main entrance on Boylston Street, but whatever you do, get here early — the bar scene is just as noteworthy as the restaurant.
Situated along Boston’s popular Boylston Street, and just a block from the fashionable Newbury Street, Bar Boulud, Boston is the hottest new restaurant to open in the city. Bostonians waited a while for a celebrity-chef-inspired restaurant, and Bar Boulud doesn’t disappoint. The space is separated into two sections: the bar and the dining room. The bar is the perfect place to meet for after-work drinks, pre-theater cocktails or a nightcap after dinner. Featured here is the restaurant’s extensive wine list, but you can also sip on artfully crafted cocktails, like the Dark Side, with local Bully Boy aged whiskey, Boston Bual madeira, Licor 43 and Bittermens Boston Bittahs (a chamomile-citrus combination). If you’re dining here, we suggest arriving a few minutes early to enjoy the bar scene before entering the dining room. (For a more relaxed setting, dine in the bar.)
You will be greeted at the hostess stand, and you’ll have the opportunity to check your coat and bags before heading to your table. The vaulted, open-beam ceilings and deep ruby-red chairs and benches evoke the essence of a winery, transporting you to a vintner in the Rhône Valley (one of Daniel Boulud’s favorite wine-making regions), thanks to open wine barrels, crates, casks and corks.
The impressive wine cellar carries everything from Bordeaux to zinfandels, curated by sommelier Joe Camper. You’ll find a wide selection of wines, ranging from Old World favorites to New World biodynamic blends. Camper and his team hand-pick wines from around the world, including France, Italy, Austria, Australia, Germany and the United States, though the focus is on the Rhône and Burgundy regions. If you find the list overwhelming, a wine expert is always on hand to help you find the right glass or bottle to accompany your meal. However, Camper is a champagne enthusiast, so if you’re looking to celebrate a special occasion, make sure to seek his advice. There’s also a page on the wine list dedicated to champagnes that pair well with the Boston restaurant’s seafood dishes.
Bar Boulud, Boston is a French-inspired bistro with a New England twist — think East Coast oysters meets beef cheek terrine. Chef de cuisine Aaron Chambers (formerly of Boulud Sud in New York City) and his staff created the menu, which is filled with Bar Boulud classics and a few new items created specifically for Boston. Start with the famed housemade terrines and pâté (try the Pâté Grand-Père, made with pork, foie gras and truffles), and a cheese and charcuterie board for the table. During the colder months, you’ll find heavier pasta dishes and steaks on the menu, while the warmer months spotlight native New England seafood and various lobster creations. Of course, there will always be some Bar Boulud signatures on the menu, like the burgers (a fun nod to Boston is the Departed, a beef patty topped with Irish bacon, cheddar and Guinness-braised onions) and Daniel Boulud’s famed sausages. If you’d prefer something a little lighter, order a few selections from the restaurant’s marble charcuterie counter and pair them with a nice glass of wine.
Lunch consists of lighter fare, like the niçoise salad, roasted cod and seasonal soups. Bar Boulud Boston is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and reservations are highly recommended for the latter. After all, this is the city’s first celebrity-chef-helmed restaurant.