Friday, September 01, 2006

My Dinner with Peter

My friend Peter invited me to the "soft opening" of a friend's restaurant. Except that it meant blowing off scheduled drinks with beloved husband, I was pleased to be invited. Beloved husband I and are spending ALL DAY Friday together in Provincetown, I'm hoping that will make up for it. I mean honestly, after 15 years, how much time do we really need to spend together? (I'm kidding, KIDDING people, no nastygrams please - Tommy's the best.)

Anyway, Peter retrieved me from The Boston Harbor Hotel where I was having a "let's kick off Labor Day weekend early" refreshing beverage with some of my peers (see below) and we headed off to Foxboro. Foxboro is not my first thought when heading out to dinner, but I was pleasantly surprised by the Stoneforge Restaurant. If you've spent any time in Foxboro (or had to kill time before or after a Patriot's game) you won't recognize the former Funway Café. The batting cages and golf are still there, but the restaurant is an open, elegant space, but relaxed and accessible. The remodeled space is warm with a lot of beautiful wood details.

The menu is big, and so is the bar. Lots of grilled meats & fish, a little raw bar list and grilled pizza. Yum. Love grilled pizza. The wine list covers the bases and is well-selected (to be expected from Chris Spinazzola!) I'm told the restaurant seats 400 and it seems that 100 could be seated at the bar alone! It's a huge affair, with lots of seats (and hooks under the bar for you purse, thank God.) I'm not a beer drinker, but the tap system was astounding.

The kitchen is large and open, so if you are seated near it you can catch all the action. There are video cameras that will project the hot kitchen action onto the gazillion plasma screen TVs throughout the space. The Patriots played later during dinner and as soon as the game came out, KitchenTV was officially over.

Onto the food. Our delightful server MacKenzie recommended the filet and it arrived perfectly cooked with garlicky red potatoes. I have nothing but praise for the Sugarcane Mjoito Shrimp appetizer and the bread basket contained the most perfect bread e-v-e-r. Something between a ciabatta and French, it was served warm with olive oil and parmesean cheese and was super fantastic (as in I ate the whole basket - sorry Peter!)

We admired the dessert tray, but alas - no room at the inn. Next time perhaps.
After dinner we took a look at the gorgeous Billiard Room. I'm not one for playing pool, but this billiard room is so lovely that you could hang around while others played and just enjoy the atmosphere. Lots of big screens to stay on top of the game du jour.

Owner Chris Spinazzola and delightful bride Marjorie Clapprood chatted with Peter and me about the concept and the plans for Stoneforge. Mrs. Anthony Spinazzola (Dorothy) was in the dining room, so I got to meet a legend too. Very cool.
I had a great evening, the company of a friend being key. If you are in Foxboro, stop by Stoneforge - get a bite. You won't be disappointed.

Before my adventure with Peter, I kicked off the extra long weekend with some of my peers by planning drinks at the Boston Harbor Hotel. We were hoping to sit on the water and listen to live music, but OMG - the place was totally packed. We ended up going to Meritage Restaurant upstairs - which is not exactly a downgrade, the place is fabulous. We sat a window and watched the Blues Barge (which was what we came to do anyway!) and were still able to talk. They know how to make a drink at Meritage.

The White Wine Sangria.
The Red Hat Society ladies were out too. Awesome.

It was a great way to kick off the Labor Day weekend.

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