Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Mooo & Chart House

I spare no expense when it comes to birthday dinners. Usually Adam is pretty easy to please. The last two years he requested steak. I usually suggest the restaurant and he happily obliges.


Last year we dinned at Mooo.... a Modern Steakhouse located in the XV Beacon Hotel. Mooo is chic and sophisticated; with high vaulted ceilings, an elegant bar and dining room bathed in soft white and cream colors and low lighting emitting from large trendy chandeliers.
While it was a year ago, I remember the meal at Mooo like it was yesterday. (Well most of it anyways....) After a lovely hostess seated us and we ordered drinks - an Amstel Light ($5) for him and a Dirty Martini ($11) for her, we were presented with some of the most exquisite rolls I have ever tasted.
I would probably go back just for these - four glistening butterballs served piping hot in the iron skillet in which they were just baked. Each bite was warm and buttery and soft, with a sprinkle of coarse sea salt to take them over the top.
My low light setting on the old Sony Cybershot proved for some grainy photographs. I remember that being a seriously good (and large) dirty martini. We ordered the Kobe Beef Dumplings ($19) and no Adam did not choose the most expensive appetizer on the menu. These were excellent, but worth a whopping nineteen dollars!? Tough call. (Picture borrowed from Yelp.)
Mooo steaks are served a la carte with roasted garlic and bone marrow butter. It was the 12 oz Filet Mignon ($39) and a small side of Whipped Yukon Gold Potatoes ($5) for him, the Steak Frites ($29) for her. I was delighted by the act of smothering the marrow butter straight from the bone onto my perfectly cooked tender and juicy steak. Also, those Truffled Parmesan Fries were insanely good.
Not a trace of vegetables in sight because, apparently, we decided to forgo the a la carte greens this evening!
After reliving the experience and remembering how good our meal was, I now need a good excuse to re-visit Mooo.

This year, we dined at the Chart House for his 33rd birthday dinner. The restaurant often generated conversation on our walks around Long Wharf, stemming intrigue on both our parts.
Just what is this place all about, we wondered? First off all - I had no idea (until I just now hit up the website) that the Chart House is a chain! They have locations in Hilton Head and Las Vegas. I knew there was something fishy about the logo on the awning. I just knew it. The yellow fish seemed a tad out of place when compared to the historic buildings exterior, as well the interior with beautiful architecture including exposed wood beam ceilings and red brick walls lined with 17th century artwork and decor. Dinner began with some rolls. There was nothing special about them - certainly not now that I am comparing them to the rolls served at Mooo. That's no fair! Ok, Mooo or no Mooo, the Chart House rolls really were not all that good. I started with a glass of the Glass Mountain Chardonnary ($6). For our appetizer Adam chose the Steamed Mussels ($11.99) with shallots, garlic and sherry wine. I wanted to drink the sherry wine, but instead dipped my plump mussels two and three times through the flavorful broth.
Three slices of crusty bread served alongside were an excellent touch.
Adam got the Prime Rib - Chart House Cut ($24.99) for his main course. It was cooked perfectly to his liking (medium-rare - a little more on the rare side) and was rubbed with aromatic herbs and spices and slow roasted with au jus. It came with mashed potatoes. He loved it. I got the Macadamia Crusted Mahi Mahi ($29.99) drizzled in warm peanut sauce with a hint of Frangelico served with mango coulis and coconut ginger rice.The presentation didn't have that initial wow factor, however, the Mahi Mahi was well prepared, where tender flakes of the white fish with a mild sweetness graced my palate, enhanced by the tropical nuttiness of the macadamias and the smooth creamy peanut sauce. 
I'm not particularly convinced I got $30 worth on that plate, though. For the price it just felt, meh.

I was really inspired by the atmosphere of the historic "John Hancock Counting House" built around 1763. A little bit of a history lesson (paraphrased from a pamphlet I picked up.) As the city evolved the Long Wharf warehouses fell into neglect. In the 1960's the Boston Redevelopment Authority acquired the wharf with the aim of revitalization, encouraging private rehabilitation of the 4 story Gardiner building. Ongoing conservation has resulted in an innovative center for commerce and residence all preserving the look and feel of the wharf's early years. The Boston Chart House opened in July 1973, and prides itself on continuing to maintain this ideal. I'm pleased to say I've discovered what the mysterious (chain) restaurant on the wharf is all about.
So we've got a modern steakhouse on Beacon Hill and a historic steak/seafood restaurant on the waterfront. I wonder where next year will take us.....
Mooo on Urbanspoon Chart House on Urbanspoon

24 comments:

  1. I love Chart House! And your pretty shirt...you look gorgeous.

    For my next birthday dinner....hmmm...I love Petros which is a Greek restaurant near me. I wish it were a chain so you could experience it too. I know you'd love it!

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  2. I would gladly spend my next bday at Mooo :D too bad it's a bit too far away!

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  3. Nice. Those chips at Moo sound amazing - truffled parmesan?! oooh. And I love mussels, too!

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  4. I want to get to Moo! The rolls look like boobs. Sorry, that's all I can think :)

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  5. It's breakfast and I'm already drooling over those photos!

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  6. decor at chart house, rolls/dinner at moo. combine the two for 33!

    those mussels are HUGE!

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  7. yeah, ummm, why didn't amanda go home?? cooking with alch for kids? spending the $$ on sherry so her teammates couldn't? really? stop this.

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  8. I went to Mooo when I was in Boston last summer--I had heard good things, but I think that it was the name that finally decided it for me!

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  9. Hi Daisy, thanks so much for stopping by and commenting on my blog!

    Your blog looks scrumtious!!

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  10. I want to go to Mooo just for those truffled parmesan fries. Those sound amazing!

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  11. Thanks so much for dropping my my blog!.....My son and his family live in the Boston area.....we are going threr this week-end (4th 0f July) and thanks to you I have an idea of a yoummy place to eat.....blessings and hugs.....

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  12. Love this post. Boo Melissa. I'm in the TC Pool. Kenny is my boy too. And Kelly. I've never been to Chart House but I have been to Moo. Its fantastic. I think my next special occasion dinner will be right next door at Ruth Chris. I know its a chain, but I heard its amazing!!!!

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  13. Well isn't Adam a lucky guy, having such a great girlfriend! The two places look beautiful! The mussels! (((THE MUSSELS!)))

    Wow, you can get away with charging a lot for fries calling them frites. LOL.

    Maybe for his 33rd you'll go back to Mooo, if only to get the complimentary rolls and then leave. AHAHA. Is that legal?

    The other contestants definitely should have over-ruled her buying the alcohol for the children. I mean, just read that sentence back? LOL

    What I learn watching food-based reality shows is that a lot of "professional" chefs have ginormours egos. Geesh. Get over yourselves already!

    I love Mahi.

    Glad you and Adam had a good time, Hun.

    Beautiful top.

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  14. Where would I choose? Wherever you guys say!! Because after reading this post, you two sure know how to dine!! The food looks dee-lish-us and the drinks too!! Hey, if you're ever in my area, we're going out!!

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  15. so lucky to go out to all these great places! (while I'm home buring myself eating leftover pizza....hehe)

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  16. What a delicious post!! I am craving a hearty steak now!! :) Hazel

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  17. Haha, wow you do go for some serious birthday dinners huh? Those rolls at Moo seriously look like they may be worth going for alone like you said- though I'm really cheap about my restaurants, I don't think just Eric and I have ever spent over $100 and when we get close we say it was a really expensive meal haha

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  18. Nice shirt! Yeah, the Chart House is a chain, my husband worked there years and years ago, but I think they hide that fact well. I wish we had known about Mooo when we were up there last summer, I think our best meal was at Ten Tables in Cambridge, check it out if you haven't yet. I loved this post, I love food! Oh, and we often document our meals by camera, too, lol!

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  19. Wow those eats looks AMAZING!!! Drooling over here...

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  20. Wow, all sorts of delicious is going on in this post! I love that the steakhouse was called Mooo. Funny!

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  21. Going to Boston today.....since we will be staying in Copley Square we have decided to celebrate birthdays at "Who's on First".....looking forward to it......

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  22. this post made me ridiculously hungry. truffle oil makes everything better. i know i shouldn't, but i love steak... and i need to find a restaurant that serves mahi mahi asap. (meh on the mussles though, i just tried them for the first time and didn't care for the taste)

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  23. My boy has been wanting to eat at Mooo for a long time. Seeing those rolls and reading your description makes me think I'll be dining there sooner rather than later.

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  24. Wow very interesting post, all the photos are great. I like this post.

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