Boston >Food & Dining > The OtherSide Cafe
407 Newbury St, Boston, MA | Directions 0211542.348211 -71.088607
Neighborhoods: Back Bay, Back Bay West
not worth it! – one star for location, but that's it. It's not just a question of staff attitude but a question of prejudicial profiling by the guy at the door. Two Spanish speaking friends were meeting me and my wife there for beers and snacks and the man at the door demanded a U.S. passport from my friends, a Massachusetts driver's license wasn't good enough!
Weird place too. The locale was half empty but they wouldn't let anybody else in unless other people left. Was there a problem with the fire marshal? Don't know. They couldn't explain it when you asked. My friends and I left in disgust and headed down to the House of Blues for the Manu Chao concert. Had a blast!
meh – so i saw the chimay umbrellas outside and knew i had to try this place out. i was told by friends its not that good, but what do they know right, i mean it has chimay umbrellas. so we get there and im instantly disappointed. small draft list, although its a good selection for the size. overpriced beer. we order nachos, im hungry but already wary of this place so im unwilling to commit to even a sandwich until i see the nachos. good thing i waited to order lunch, or in this case not order lunch. id say worst nachos ever, but then you will just imagine sub par nachos. these were worse. small and unpleasant, and nearly cheeseless. i mean really, who cant make nachos. so we finished our overpriced beers and left, never to go back.
Hipster Hangout – Do you have a host/hostess or not? Coming to the OtherSide, I am usually confused in how to be seated there. This just might be me, but I never know to wait or sit right down.
When I finally figure out how to sit down, I dive into their menu. It's pretty extensive with many raw, vegan and vegetarian options, some gluten-free too. A lot of my friends have special diets and I was a veg for some years, so there are plenty of options for any diet.
If you can make it here before 3pm on the weekend, get some brunch. The french toast is killer and the heuvos rancheros is a crazy good combo of egg, chilli and cornbread.
On the regular menu, the mock chicken salad is healthy and surprisingly filling. Overall, I've never had a bad meal at the OtherSide.
The service can be slow and it gets real busy on the weekends.
The have a patio with one or two tables outside for warm days. Of all the times, I've been there the patio tables have been full. I'm pretty sure it would be a miracle if I ever did get to sit out there. But, if I ever do get to sit out there, I think it would be the first time I wouldn't be confused about the hostess situation.
not for everyone – The Other Side is a remnant of a time when Boston was a lot less homogenized and a lot more interesting. Yes, there's loud music. Yes, the wait staff sometimes have a little attitude. But does every place in Boston need to be like Stephanie's on Newbury? If you like a place with a little character, good food and beer with vegetarian options, go to The Other Side. If not, Stephanie's is right down the street...
Too loud; lame waitstaff – Had lunch there today with some friends. I chose The Otherside Cafe because my friends are vegetarians and there are many vegetarian and vegan options on the menu. We hadn't seen each other in a long time and wanted to catch up since they were in Boston for the day. The music was so loud that we had to yell across the table. I don't mind the vibe and I certainly don't mind loud Elvis Costello, but we had to yell across the table. When I asked a server if he could turn the music down a notch because we were trying to talk, he said: "This is how loud we usually have the music here." I told him we could not converse. He stated: "Just so you know, we will turn it down a little, but this is how loud we keep the music here." Funny, I thought restaurants were all about the customer and not the waitstaff. The food was great; service was poor (ie clearing plates before you're finished.) Skip it.
Great Hostess - Poor customer service otherwise – My wife and I went to the Otherside on 7/26/08 as we live in the city and had read about its nachos. First, let me start out with the good news: The hostess was an absolute sweetheart. My wife is 8+ months pregnant and, seeing our status, the hostess bumped us up on the waiting list and gave us a great seat on the outdoor patio. It also had a good beer selection. Unfortunately, the service was not good (although staff seemed like a nice group in general) and food was nothing special (especially the nachos that we had read about). I guess I just chalk this one up to knowing what you're getting yourself into - If you're interested in some good people watching at the expense of food and service, give it a try.
Chill out with some good food and a micro brew – I have been going to the Other Side for years and have never had a reason to complain.
Recently I showed up with a party of 14 for Saturday brunch and the staff was very accomodating and efficient. The food came out in a timely manner and was great.
I have always been a huge fan of their vegetgarian chili, cheese, fruit and yogurt plate and vegetarian burrito.
Otherside has a refreshing, chill atmosphere and if you cannot handle it you can make a reservation at Capital Grille.
Worst Service of ALL TIME. – I have eaten out all over the world, but I have never recieved such bad service as at the Otherside. Our server Taylor (Or Tyler) might be the worst server in the city. We ordered a pitcher of sangria, which took a good half hour to arrive, before we even ordered food. He then proceeded to tell us that he "dropped" a spoon into the pitcher, and dont be "Suprised" if we find it in the drink...... I kid you not, I am in no way exadurating!
It then took another 45 min. to order food, and then another 45 min to get the food. The food itself is nothing to write home about, and is easily made at home by anyone with a george forman girll and a knowlage on how to boil water.
Then to my amazement I was charged twice for our meal on my debit card, which I had to take up with Visa to get refunded.
I dont know what it is about boston but servers seem to assume they "Deserve" a 20% tip. I'm sorry but I do not tip for poor service, unhygenic food and drinks, and complete idiotic behavior!
I would NEVER recomend the otherside to anyone. The only reason to go there is to pretend you are a bike messenger and/or a supposed hipster with fake neon Ray-Ban Wayfarer's.
Just try it – These negative reviewers are crazy. I headed over for dinner last night after admiring the place from afar for the last years or so. We had 2 apps (cheese and fruit plate and antipasto) and 2 sandwiches (veritarian and turkey press). ALL were wonderful. The food was super fresh and extremely affordable. The most pleasant suprise was just how large the portions are. I usually veto "heatly" restaurants because I need two entrees to get full. Not the case here. I also have to commend how great the proscuitto was on the antipasto. For a place that touts Vegan and Raw fare the meat was exceptional. We tried a few a their extensive beer selections and a very interesting Sake Bloody Mary (huge, for those portion freaks like me).
The place was jamming, but the two cute, skinny, bike messenger-ish waiters did a great job of making us feel taken care of. The music was a little too loud but definatly quality. I like the local art on the walls and the free movie nights on Tuesdays.
They also offer free to-go coffee and tea if you bring your own mug because they can't see an environmentally sound way to navigate the take out cup dilemmia. Talk about walking the walk.
I'll be back and I'll be bringing my peeps.
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