91 Winthrop St, Cambridge, MA | Directions 0213842.372419 -71.120946
Neighborhoods: West Cambridge
Best wine and dine in Boston area, atmosphere fun and inviting! – I've had the good luck to experience Upstairs on the Square three times this month. I've been so thrilled with my time there, I had to write. I watched one of the Red Sox games at the downstairs bar and had some artisan beers I'd never tried before that were priced better than commercial beers. The bartender was friendly and attentive. Dinner a week later upstairs in the Soiree Room with my parents for moms birthday was one of the best meals I've ever experienced. To start the wine director came over to help us choose the perfect wine for our meals and it was very reasonably priced and the best! We ordered off the menu, although we were tempted by the vegetarian tasting menu. We all devoured our beautiful dishes that tasted equally grand. I started with the salad of baby roasted beets. It had a passion fruit sauce and arugula with a horseradish panna-cotta. YUM! My entree was the trout dish that was served with the freshest baby sprouts, from local farms. I love that I can come to a restaurant in Cambridge that is on the Green wave. The waiter, who was exceptional, told us how they are becoming green. Switching to recycled materials, whenever possible. The wine list is becoming bio-dynamic/ organic/ or sustainable, and the kitchen, whenever possible is using local, organic meat and produce. Dessert had seasonal favorites, along with classics like profiteroles. We had the apple strudel and they wrote a Happy Birthday message and gave a candle to my mom. My latest visit was for brunch. They were so busy, so we waited a little to get in, but it was worth it. I enjoyed decadent French toast and I love the MEM tea selections they carry. Brunch was in the Monday Club Bar, downstairs and the service was great, we saw lots of different faces, helping us, but we were never for want. A manager stopped by to check on us and invited us to their Thanksgiving pris fixe menu. We'll be there! I can't wait to go back!
Best Atmosphere! – Upstairs is like No. 9 Park's cooky Cambridge cousin. Sort of like No. 9 on magic mushrooms. The decor is so cool, unlike any other restaurant in Boston. The mismatched color schemes, funky chandeliers and rustic wood accents creates a chic-watermelon-in-the-jungle vibe (if that makes sense). It was pricey but worth it because I had a great time and the food was pretty darn good. I compare it to No. 9 because many menu items are similar - salads with farm fresh eggs, lardons everywhere, gnocci, weird cocktails, etc. I'm no food critic, but I was satisfied with every thing I ate (hot dates, yeah!). No doubt, this one is in my top 4 faves.
Elegant Atmosphere, Delicious Food – The decor at Upstaris on the Square is wild! The interior colors are bold and exotic animal prints are carried throughout the design. When I took my girlfriend for her birthday, we sat in the Monday Club downstairs and our table looked out onto Winthrop Park in Harvard Square. It was a Friday evening. The whole dining room was full and yet we enjoyed the bussling about of the prompt waitstaff. There was even a piano player adjacent to the fireplace who played requests. For a starter, we tried the almond-stuffed dates. They were awesome! My new favorite comfort dish is the roasted red pepper soup and my girlfriend loved the frise salad. The soup was mouth-watering and anchored with a touch of cream, while the frise salad came with a poached egg, lardons, home-made croutons, and fresh field greens. For our entrees, we tasted Fernando's shrimp scampi and the seared ahi tuna. Fernando's scampi was better than my mom's. Sorry mom. The sauces and sides for the tuna dish--almonds, peas, and olive tapenade-- highlighted the fresh flavor of the seared tuna steak. We were very impressed with the kitchen's creativity and also the plate presentation. To finish, my girlfriend and I shared the Affogato dessert--a perfect choice on her part. I can think of no better way to end a meal than with hot espresso poured over home-made ice-cream with home-made amaretti cookies on the side. Or home-made mint chocolates...drool drool drool. I have to go back! The food at Upstairs is sooo delicious! I highly recommend this restaurant to everyone.
Overpriced Mediocre Food – I have eaten at Upstairs on the Square several times over the past 3 years. My first experiences were pleasurable-great staff, excellent food, fun atmosphere. Over the past 3 years, as the prices have gone up, the food quality has gone down, it's not terrible, but I have had better for similar or less price. Since my last not-so-great meal I have limited my visits to drinks only. However about 2 months ago my boyfriend and I paid $40 for two Irish coffees and officially have declared, Never Again! I am not cheap when it comes to food, but that is simply uncalled for. Plus, we waited about 15 minutes for our check.
Great Cocktails, Miserable Brunch – I really wanted to like this place but after several experiences I am left with very few positive things to say. The cocktail menu is inventive and the bartender experienced. It is a great place to come for a unique, admittedly overpriced, cocktail. The woman who runs/owns the restaurant is very friendly and made me feel comfortable on all occassions. That said, the brunch menu is extremely limited and the service mediocre. I ordered the Huevos Rancheros which, for $15, should be more than two tiny poached eggs on top of a scoop of black beans floating in liquid. It was just plain gross. We had to ask for coffee repeatedly which is the downfall of any breakfast establishment. Overall, is just feels like this place is past its prime and needs to be skaken up a bit. It has potential.
Love <3 – This place is great. The decorations are great - the food is great - the service is great. Great!!
Don't walk - run away from the soiree room! – Where do I begin? The tasting menu with wine pairings - the food was miniscule, uninspiring and our wine glasses only a fourth full. I am not one for large portions, but even I left barely satiated. We were served by a 15 year old - I really believe he was 15 and that clumsy and unknowledgeable. Our bill was at least $130 per person. I love fine dining but next time I will stay in the South End.
Hated it! – I have to say I'm very disappointed with Upstairs. It used to be my favourite restaurant, especially when it was located on Holyoke Street.
I went for Restaurant Week last week for lunch and was horrified at how the service has gone down even more than the last time and the food was nothing special. It used to be outstanding in my opnion and it didn't come close , yet again.
We we'ren't seated at the reseravtion time. We sat for at least 20 minutes and we weren't acknowledged by the waiter. I finally asked the host for the waiter. The waiter then came to the table with attitude and stared at us and I just coud'nt believe how rude he was. No apologies. I asked are you ready to take our order and heis response was 'that's what I'm here for". What is that!
He changed his tune once he realized we werent' going to stoop to his level of rudeness!
I really wanted to let the waiter know how much I disapproved, but my guest who is in the restaurant business suggested we not go there!
I guess the powers that be at upstairs probably don't care about negative reviews, but they should. They won't get my business anymore! Step it up Upstairs!
Nice space – I'd have to agree that the food is mediocre and overpriced. I think you're paying for atmosphere and ambience. They should pay as much attention to the food as they did to the decor. I do have to say, the desserts were outstanding, even though we waited a good 30 min. for them. The servers are another story entirely. They are the most pretentious waitstaff I've ever encountered. You'd think that someone trying to earn tips would be a little nicer.
no way – The wine selection was mediocre at best. The food was nothing to write home about. Our group of four asked the waitress to evenly split our final bill (not an outrageous or unusual request). She proceeded to charge one friend the full price of the meal, me 3/4 the price of our meal, and so forth. When we tactfully pointed this out to her and asked her to remedy it, she said she didn't know how and generally acted like a flake for a full 15 minutes. Finally she had enough sense to get a manager to help her. He was equally rude and entirely apologetic - as if it were our fault she mis-charged us. And then there's the tacky pink decor...
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