Food & Drink in Ashland

$20 for $40 Worth of Vietnamese Food at Pho Dakao

Pho Dakao

Framingham

$40 $20

(12)

Vermicelli plates, spring rolls, and sizzling Mongolian beef are just a few of the hallmarks on this authentic Vietnamese menu

$15 for $30 Worth of Asian Fusion Cuisine at Gourmet Garden Restaurant

Gourmet Garden Restaurant

Hingham

$30 $15

(5)

Gluten-free and diet-conscious Asian fusion dishes flavored with fresh produce and herbs rather than MSG

Brazilian and American Dinner for Two or Four at Extravaganza Brazilian American Pizza & Bar (Half Off)

Extravaganza Brazilian American Pizza & Bar

Framingham

$30 $15

American and Brazilian-style entrees, burgers, and specialty pizzas, whose toppings include calabresa sausage and malagueta pepper

Pizzeria Cuisine or Family Dinner with Two Large Pizzas, Two Salads, and Two Garlic Breads at Deli Max (Up to 53% Off)

Deli Max

Natick

$10 $5

New York–style pizzas come topped with steak tips, banana peppers, scallions,

American Meal for Two or Four at Pantry Restaurant (Up to 45% Off)

Pantry Restaurant

The VERVE-Crowne Plaza Hotel

$71 $39

(40)

Americana in the form of a bacon burger made of scallops, 10 oz. aged striploin, and grilled salmon with risotto verde and lemon crema

Prix Fixe Mediterranean Dinner or Lunch for Two at Zem Han Mediterranean Restaurant (Up to 46% Off)

Zem Han Mediterranean Restaurant

Northborough

$71.65 $39

Kebabs of thyme-marinated beef, fall-off-the-bone lamb shanks, housemade baklava, and other Mediterranean specialties

$20 for Two Groupons, Each Good for One Large Pizza with Up to Seven Toppings at Papa John's (Up to $43.64 Value)

Papa John's

Multiple Locations

$21.82 $10

Hand-tossed thin- or original-crust pizzas with thick cloaks of sauce made from California-grown tomatoes and up to seven toppings

Beer- or Wine-Making Supplies, or Beer- or Wine-Making Class for One or Two at Strange Brew (Up to 51% Off)

Strange Brew

Marlborough

$30 $15

(10)

Stock up on malt, barley, or other brewing essentials, or take a class on the basics of making your own batches of beer or wine

Sushi and Asian Cuisine at Sake Hana Asian Cuisine & Sushi Bar (50% Off). Two Options Available.

Sake Hana Asian Cuisine & Sushi Bar

Westborough

$30 $15

(23)

Chefs sear steak hibachi-style and fashion lobster and spicy snow crab into specialty rolls; local ingredients are used whenever possible

One or Two Dozen Cupcakes or Two Vouchers for Coffee and Baked Goods at Stella's Custom Cakes (Up to 50% Off)

Stella's Custom Cakes

Stella's Custom Cakes

$18 $9

Flavors ranging from a strawberry cake with vanilla buttercream frosting and a lemon curd filling to a marble cake with coconut buttercream

$12 for Four Groupons, Each Good for $5 Worth of Food and Drinks at Sudbury Coffee Works ($20 Value)

Sudbury Coffee Works

Sudbury

$5 $3

(32)

Rich, imported coffees roasted on site, including more than 50 custom flavor blends, paired with fresh pastries, soups, and sandwiches

American and International Cuisine at Prezo Grille & Bar (38% Off). Two Options Available.

Prezo Grille & Bar

Milford

$40 $25

Upscale restaurant serving an eclectic menu of brioche-bunned burgers, Asian salads, Italian cuisine, and fresh seafood

One or Two 12" Pizzas or One-Year Around the World Pizza Membership at Foodee's (Up to 46% Off)

Foodee's

Milford

$18.59 $10

One-year memberships get you a pizza per month inspired by different regions, such as the greek pizza, taco pizza, and reuben pizza

Dinner for Two or $11 for $20 Worth of Brunch at Harvest Cafe

Harvest Cafe

Hudson

$39.85 $19.99

Butternut squash ravioli with amaretto cream, baked mac 'n' cheese, and salmon benedict with mimosas round out the menu of comfort food

Indian Dinner for Two or Four with Appetizers, Bread, Entrees, and Dessert at Savoring Indian Cuisine (Up to 51% Off)

Savoring Indian Cuisine

Maynard

$68.70 $34

(24)

Chefs grind their own spices to add fresh flavor to meats, seafood, and vegetables cooked in a tandoor oven

Dinner for Two or More or Four or More at Link Café & Bar (50% Off)

Link Café & Bar

Sheraton Needham Hotel

$50 $25

Refined American cuisine such as fig and goat cheese flatbreads paired with wines that earned high scores from Wine Spectator

$20 for Two Groupons, Each Good for $20 Worth of Mexican Food at Ixtapa Mexican Grill and Cantina ($40 Total Value)

Ixtapa Mexican Grill and Cantina

Multiple Locations

$20 $10

(70)

Pan-seared chicken wallows in mole sauce, and tropical tidbits such as mango and avocado grace fish tacos and other dishes

American Dinner for Two or Four or Brunch for Two at Twelve Fine Food & Spirits (Up to 50% Off)

Twelve Fine Food & Spirits

Bellingham

$40 $20

(8)

Margherita flatbread pizzas, seafood chowder, spinach salad, and lobster ravioli; cinnamon french toast, and biscuits 'n' gravy at brunch

$25 for $50 Worth of Fine Italian Cuisine at Incontro Restaurant and Lounge

Incontro Restaurant & Lounge

Franklin Town

$50 $25

Upscale yet homey restaurant inhabiting a renovated mill serves traditional seafood, veal, and pasta dishes as well as wood-fired pizzas

50% Off Pub Fare at Cole's Tavern in Franklin

Cole's Tavern

Franklin Town

$30 $15

Guests enjoy burgers, sandwiches, and salads while lounging at the bar, in the dining room, or on an outdoor deck with courtyard views

Dining for Two or Four at Social Restaurant & Bar (Up to 37% Off)

Social Restaurant & Bar

Newton Corner

$62 $39

(49)

Grab a drink and relax with friend over a round of appetizers like Brie fondue or lobster roll sliders then enjoy steak, pasta or seafood

Shabu-Shabu Cuisine for Two or Four, or Japanese Cuisine for Four or More at Tokyo Japanese Steakhouse (50% Off)

Tokyo Japanese Steakhouse

Newton

$40 $22

(16)

Shabu-shabu consists of thinly sliced meat and vegetables boiled and served with dipping sauces; also try the sushi and hibachi dinners

Sushi and Pan-Asian Dinner Food at Sushi Box (Half Off). Two Options Available.

Sushi Box

Waltham

$30 $15

(104)

Eatery praised by the Boston Phoenix cooks up Korean-style beef ribs, pad thai, and specialty sushi rolls

Italian Meal for Two or Four with Appetizers and Entrees at BonCaldo Restaurant (Up to 43% Off)

BonCaldo Restaurant

Norwood

$53 $30

(45)

Wood-fired cuisine from all 20 regions of Italy, served in an opulent, yet cozy dining room

American Cuisine for Dinner for Two or Four at Lafayette House Restaurant (Up to 45% Off)

Lafayette House Restaurant

Foxborough

$50 $29

(36)

Lafayette House Restaurant established in 1784 offers handcut filet, fresh seafood, and house specialties in a cozy, colonial atmosphere

$17 for $30 Worth of Sushi, Noodle Dishes, and Hibachi Food at Edamame Japanese Restaurant

Edamame Japanese Restaurant

Watertown

$30 $17

(28)

Chefs build unique sushi and sashimi dishes as hibache chefs put on dazzling culinary side-shows

$30 for $50 Worth of Italian American Dinner for Two or More at The Talk. Two Options Available.

The Talk Restaurant

Downtown Watertown

$50 $30

(110)

Chef Billy Holt prepares housemade pasta, steak, and seafood served in elegant dining area with black-and-white photos

$12 for $20 Worth of Mexican Food at Ixtapa Mexican Grill & Cantina

Ixtapa Mexican Grill & Cantina

Multiple Locations

$20 $12

(184)

Sauce-smothered burritos and enchiladas add to a menu of authentic Mexican cuisine whose recipes hail from Guadalajara

Hibachi and/Or Sushi Dinner for Two at Ruyi Restaurant (40% Off). Two Options Available.

Ruyi Restaurant

ruyi restaurant

$50 $30

(55)

Hand-rolled sushi, Japanese teriyaki, and marinated chicken, steak, or lamb seared at tableside grills

Italian Cuisine at Peppercorn’s Grill & Tavern (38% Off)

Peppercorn's Grill and Bar

Worcester

$40 $25

Italian eatery serves not only chicken parmesan and pizza, but also burgers, steak tips, lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, and Wormtown Brewery beers

Dick Doherty's Beantown Comedy Escape Standup Show for Two or Four at Park Grill & Spirits (Up to 52% Off)

Dick Doherty's Beantown Comedy Escape

Dick Doherty's Beantown Comedy Escape at Park Grill & Spirits

$46 $22

Top national and local standup comedians stir up laughs

$20 for Four Groupons, Each Good for an All-You-Can-Eat Taco Bar Lunch at Mezcal Cantina ($43.96 Value)

Mezcal Cantina

Mezcal Worcester

$10.99 $5

(34)

At the lunchtime taco bar, guests can order as many tacos as they can eat with their choice of ingredients

$24 for Two Groupons, Each Good for $20 Worth of Lunch at Caffe Espresso Trattoria ($40 Total Value)

Caffe Espresso Trattoria

Beaver Brook

$20 $12

Italian favorites such as steamed mussels in garlic wine sauce, genovese paninis, and grilled shrimp cavatelli with broccoli

Prix Fixe Upscale American Meal for Two or Four at People's Kitchen and Citizen Wine Bar (Up to 43% Off)

People's Kitchen and Citizen Wine Bar

Central Business District

$70 $40

(60)

Wine pairs with upscale American eats including sweet-pea soup with pork belly, seared cod with lobster butter, and stuffed sole

Italian Cuisine at Viva Bene Ristorante (Up to 53% Off). Two Options Available.

Viva Bene Ristorante

Viva Bene

$50 $25

(68)

Chefs cook Italian and Mediterranean specialties such as seafood fra diavolo, filet mignon in cognac-dijon demi-glace, and gourmet pizzas

Hookah at Electric Haze (Half Off). Two Options Available.

Electric Haze

Worcester

$30 $15

Hookah in flavors such as include kiwi, jasmine, chocolate mint, peach, and watermelon

$12 for Four Groupons, Each Good for $5 Worth of Smoothies and Juices at Nu Cafe ($20 Value)

Nu Cafe

Worcester

$5 $3

(41)

Neighborhood cafe serves fresh smoothies, juices & coffee drinks with free Wi-Fi; craft beer, wine, & made-to-order food served after 5 p.m.

$15 for $30 Worth of Italian Cuisine at Chiodas Trattoria

Chiodas Trattoria

Franklin Plantation

$30 $15

(14)

Authentic Italian dishes such as veal parmigiano and lobster ravioli crafted from generations-old recipes

$30 Worth of Pizza, Burgers, Sandwiches, and More at Grill on the Hill

Grill on the Hill

Green Hill Park

$30 $15

Classic American cuisine—from flatbread pizzas to lobster-roll sandwiches—served on a patio overlooking a glassy pond

New American Dinner for Two or Four at Masona Grill (Up to 43% Off)

Masona Grill

West Roxbury Center

$78 $49

New American cuisine with an international flair, such as semolina-crusted calamari with pickled hot peppers, arugula, and plum tomato sauce

Anderson Comedy Presents The Gas at Great Scott (Up to 55% Off)

Anderson Comedy Presents The Gas

Great Scott

$10 $5

Friday-night comedy shows host standup by local comedians

Tea Tasting for Two or Four at The Cozy Tea Cart (50% Off)

The Cozy Tea Cart

Brookline

$40 $20

Tea-tasting session allows two or four people to sample a variety of teas

Hookah, Snacks, and Drinks at Sheesha Lounge (Up to 56% Off). Four Options Available.

Sheesha Lounge

Allston

$40 $25

(60)

35 flavors of tobacco, plus sweet snacks such as cheesecake and baklava

Breakfast or Dinner Crepes with Drinks for Two or Four at Paris Creperie

Paris Creperie

Coolidge Corner

$33.50 $24.79

(423)

Sweet and savory crepes prepared in the Parisian tradition pair with smoothies, Nutella chocolate drinks, and leaf teas

$16 for $30 Worth of Asian Fusion Food for Two or More at Gari Japanese Fusion Restaurant

Gari Japanese Fusion Restaurant

Coolidge Corner

$30 $16

(183)

At a fusion restaurant under new management as of June 2013, chefs whip up signature sushi rolls and pour Thai sauce over angel hair pasta

$15 for $25 Worth of Tex-Mex Cuisine at Patron's and Sunset Grill and Tap

Patron's and Sunset Grill and Tap

Multiple Locations

$25 $15

Adjacent restaurants have something for everyone, from juicy burgers to spicy tacos

$12.50 for $25 Worth of California-Style Mexican Food for Two or More at The Burrito Company

The Burrito Company

Woonsocket

$25 $12.50

Owners Denise and Anthony handcraft burritos, tacos, and other California-style food from fresh veggies, seasoned meats, and housemade salsa

American Food at Grumpy's Restaurant (48% Off). Two Options Available.

Grumpy's Restaurant

Bellingham

$40 $21.99

Cuisine includes clams casion, buffalo chicken pizza, and burgers with toppings such as bourbon sauce, sautéed onions, chili, and honey ham

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, or Overnight Dinner at Patriots Diner (Up to 60% Off)

Patriots Diner

Woonsocket

$15 $7.50

(25)

Royal-blue booths and vintage hanging lights recall a ‘50s diner; the menu includes sandwiches, all-day breakfast, and center-cut pork chops

$15 for $30 Worth of Chinese and Japanese Food at Fusion Taste

Fusion Taste

Arlington Center

$30 $15

Menu blends Chinese and Japanese specialties, from black-pepper beef to sushi

Dinner with Appetizers, Soup, and Sushi at Takemura Japanese Restaurant (Up to 51% Off). Three Options Available.

Takemura Japanese Restaurant

Harvard Square

$42.85 $21

(144)

Sushi chefs craft everything fresh; original rolls include the deep-fried pumpkin roll and the grilled-salmon roll

Four-Course Dessert-Tasting Menu for Two or Four at Finale Desserterie (Up to 52% Off)

Finale Desserterie

Multiple Locations

$60 $29

(907)

Chocolate-dipped strawberries start off a sojourn through such desserts as apple a la mode and a chocolate plate

Tacos, Enchiladas, and Margaritas at José's Mexican Restaurant (Up to 51% Off)

José's Mexican Restaurant

Cambridge

$35 $17

(327)

Classic Mexican dishes include a kaleidoscope of tacos, tamales made by the chef's mother, and specialty margaritas

$15 for $25 Worth of Japanese Food at Shabu & Mein

Shabu & Mein

Cambridge

$25 $15

Tabletop stoves let diners cook their own shabu shabu hot pot meals and ramen or let cooks do the cooking for shumai, gyoza, and ramen

Indian Meal for Two or Four at Passage to India (Up to 52% Off)

Passage To India

Porter Square

$51.86 $25

(110)

For 25 years, this Indian restaurant has embraced millennia-old techniques to craft classic northern and southern Indian cuisine

$22 for Four Groupons, Each Good for $10 Worth of Mexican Soul Food at Beantown Taqueria ($40 Value)

Beantown Taqueria

Cambridge

$10 $5.50

Chile relleno with egg-battered poblano pepper, tacos with hand-made tortillas and cilantro, and deep-fried chimichangas

Sushi and Asian Fusion Dinner for Two or Four at O Sushi Restaurant & Bar (Up to 35% Off)

O Sushi Restaurant & Bar

Cambridge

$40 $29

Appetizers such as sake-steamed mussels precede dragon and california rolls in a "Boston Globe"–lauded restaurant in Harvard Square

Brazilian Barbecue Dinner for Two or Four Adults at Midwest Grill (50% Off). Two Locations Available.

Midwest Grill

Multiple Locations

$30 $15

(299)

Waiters rotate around tables with unlimited servings of beef sirloin, brazilian sausage, and lamb at the churrascaria

Upscale American and Italian Food at Bondos Dining (Up to 44% Off)

Bondo's Dining & Takeout

Marshfield

$40 $24

Chefs use local ingredients and produce, including from an onsite garden, to craft upscale pastas, salads, and entrees

ComedySportz Boston at Davis Square Theatre, August 8-November 29 (Up to 50% Off)

ComedySportz Boston

Davis Square Theatre

$30 $15

Live_logo

Two comedy teams compete against each other with improvised games called by a referee during family-friendly shows

American Cuisine for Two or Four at East End Grille (47% Off)

East End Grille

Somerville

$30 $16

(62)

This joint offers locally sourced ingredients to create food like sweet chili shrimp flatbread, barbecue pulled pork, and steak tips

Indian Meal for Two or Four at Diva Indian Bistro (Up to 63% Off)

Diva Indian Bistro

Davis Square

$67 $27

Samosas packed with minced lamb and spices precede lamb curry, chicken dosas, dishes baked in clay tandoor oven, and vegetarian entrees

$34 for a Three-Course Prix-Fixe Italian Meal for Two at LaStoria Trattoria ($55 Value)

LaStoria Trattoria

Stoughton

$55 $34

(43)

Enjoy two dishes each off the tasting menu, featuring items such as veal parmesean and eggplant rollatini, followed by a dessert to share

$24 for Four Groupons, Each Good for $12 Worth of Cafe Food and Drinks at Yes, It's All Good ($48 Value)

Yes, It's All Good

Located inside of L.A. Fitness

$12 $6

Specialty health-conscious, fruit-based shakes such as Blueberry Bonanza along with wraps, salads and egg white sandwiches

Italian Cuisine at Pastalina's Restaurant (Up to 50% Off). Two Options Available.

Pastalina's Restaurant

Medford

$50 $25

(56)

Flavorful dishes from southern Italy's Avellino region include pasta, chicken cacciatore, and veal saltimbocca

Italian Food for Brunch, Lunch, or Dinner at Cafe Piazza Dolce (44% Off)

Cafe Piazza Dolce

Winchester Town Center

$40 $25

(33)

Chef presses fresh pastas, hand tosses wood-fired pizza & grills salmon for dinner & serves brunch dishes such as gourmet paninis

Handmade Biscotti at Two Papas Biscotti Company Online or at Mundy's Gift Shop (Up to 50% Off)

Two Papas Biscotti Company

Mundy's Gift Shop

$30 $15

Handmade and hand-cut biscotti in traditional Italian style come in vanilla almond, limoncello, cranberry walnut, and other flavors.

$15 for 3 Groupons, Each Good for $10 Worth of Hamburgers & More at Stack-a Burger ($30 Value)

Stack-a Burger

Burlington Mall

$10 $5

Chefs grill fresh burgers and all-beef hot dogs and ladle on toppings such as baked beans and sauerkraut

Frozen Yogurt, Smoothies, Peets Coffee, or Personal Pizza at Fruitberry Frozen Yogurt & i-Pizza Cafe (50% Off.)

Fruitberry Frozen Yogurt & i-Pizza Cafe

Crossroads Plaza

$5 $2.50

Yogurt comes in 16 flavors and more than 50 toppings, whereas pizzas are made in front of you and come with a choice of organic crust

$15 for Two Groupons, Each Good for $15 Worth of Pub Cuisine at SideBar Food and Spirits ($30 Total Value)

SideBar Food and Spirits

Downtown

$15 $7.50

(158)

Downtown pub with TVs, arcade games, and a jukebox dishes out food such as burgers, wings, sandwiches, and brick-oven pizza

$33 for the Boston Beerathon for Two on Saturday, September 6 ($65.28 Value)

Boston Beerathon

Multiple Locations

$65.28 $33

Beerathon event with 26 featured stops includes live entertainment

Ballpark Concessions for Up to Two or Four from Boston Event Specialists Outside of Fenway Park (50% Off)

Boston Event Specialists Outside of Fenway Park

Intersection of Yawkey Way and Van Ness

$20 $10

Find these food-cart concessions at every home Red Sox game

"Bye Bye Liver" for Two at Hennessy's on August 1–September 26 (Up to Half Off)

"Bye Bye Liver"

Hennessy's

$40 $20

(10)
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A troupe performs an interactive comedy show inspired by drinking, barhopping, and male-female relations

2-Hour Dinner Cruise Sunday–Wednesday, or 3-Hour Dinner Cruise Thursday-Saturday from Odyssey Cruises (40% Off)

Odyssey Cruises

Boston

$112.53 $68

(53)

The Odyssey I glides across Boston Harbor during elegant evening cruises, complete with a three-course meal and live music

Upscale American Dinner for Two on a Weekday or Weekend at Ecco Restaurant and Martini Bar (Up to 40% Off)

Ecco Restaurant and Martini Bar

East Boston

$81.50 $49

(147)

Plates of goat cheese and beet salad or grilled-eggplant caprese paired with pan-seared salmon or braised short rib

Standup Show for Two at Nick's Comedy Stop Through December 6 (Up to 52% Off)

Nick's Comedy Stop

Nick's Comedy Stop

$45.70 $22

The intimate 30-year-old venue hosts both emerging and established comedians

$40 for One-Hour Chocolate-Tasting Course for Two at Gourmet Boutique ($80 Value)

Gourmet Boutique

Back Bay

$80 $40

Held on Sundays and Mondays, tastings include nibbles and knowledge about where chocolate is sourced, how it's made, and how to read labels

Southern Cuisine at Savvor Restaurant & Lounge (40% Off). Two Options Available.

Savvor Restaurant & Lounge

Downtown - Leather District

$25 $15

Eatery dishes out southern and Caribbean small plates such as shrimp & grits, fried catfish, cornish hen & waffles, and macaroni and cheese

Turkish Cuisine at Saray Restaurant (50% Off). Two Options Available.

Saray Restaurant

Coolidge Corner

$30 $15

(92)

Lamb, seafood, and vegetarian entrees come together in Turkish menu of kebabs, salads, and soups; full menu is valid for lunch option

Select Local Merchants

When it comes to food, Tomasso Trattoria is a champion of the locavore and farm-to-table trends. The restaurant fuels its fresh Italian dishes with meat and produce culled almost exclusively from New England–area farms. The same, however, cannot be said for the wine. To enhance the feeling that its guests are dining on the Amalfi Coast or the banks of a Venetian canal, Tomasso maintains a wine cellar populated chiefly by Italian vintages representing every region of the country. Every bottle on the list is available for purchase at the adjacent partner shop, Panzano. In addition, wine director Shaun Snow teaches classes for foodies who want to learn about Italian wine customs without having to interview a Sicilian grapevine. The eatery’s menu changes weekly to adjust for seasonally available ingredients, but its commitment to quality never wavers. Chef Josh Brown and his staff make the pasta fresh daily, and gluten-free pasta is available on request. Guests can dine and drink in any of four spaces decorated in rich red and yellow hues, including a bar area lined with leather booths and a more rustic alcove with mottled walls.

154 Turnpike Rd
Southborough,
MA
US

Krua Khun Yah's vast lunch and dinner menus encapsulate the many and varied flavors of Thailand's culinary history with dishes such as massaman curry, tamarind duck, and Bangkok beef. Chefs willingly adjust the spice level of dishes based on how many ounces of sweat bead on customers' brows from just the smell. Authentic ingredients include rich coconut milk and native chilies, and fresh ingredients come from local farmers' markets. Meals are also cooked in pure vegetable oil to bring out each flavor, coaxing any shy ingredients out of hiding.

325 Pond St
Ashland,
MA
US

Steeped in centuries of rich tradition, Italian cuisine relies on quality ingredients and simple preparations to yield beautifully bold flavors. Since 1983, the chefs of Nello’s Cafe have drawn on such traditions to fill their extensive menu with Old-World staples such as lasagna and seafood diavolo, which they serve alongside burgers and other American fare.

300 Eliot St
Ashland,
MA
US

Ken's Steak House is an improbable success story. Ken and Florence Hanna opened the Lakeside Cafe in 1935, the throes of the Great Depression. Bite by bite, they built a loyal base of customers (who always just called the eatery "Ken's"), and after five years, the restaurant took up residence in a small diner on Route 9, then known as Starvation Alley.

But Ken dreamed of a day when the grimly named strip would flourish. Today, it's known as the "Golden Mile"—and Ken's Steak House itself has mushroomed. The kitchen still serves the salad dressing recipes created by Florence Hanna—now a national line of salad dressings—and Ken's son, Timothy, and his wife are in charge.

Chefs broil and fire-grill prime cuts of steak, marinating the chateaubriand's center cut roast tenderloin in a reduction of port wine, or infusing the 8-ounce filet mignon with the earthy smoked notes of the warm cedar planks it's served on. Seafood options nestle up against their turf counterparts, including bacon-wrapped scallops, a full pound of lobster stuffed with crab and shrimp, and pistachio-crusted Atlantic salmon. Chicken and pasta dishes round out the menu, and diners discover Italian influences and plenty of seafood-pasta plates. The rustic wood paneling harkens back to Ken's Steak House's roots, and the upscale fare and soft light cast from chandeliers make the spot an ideal choice for an anniversary dinner or a piñata's last meal.

95 Worcester Rd
Framingham,
MA
US

“It’s the next best thing to having Greek friends who put a spit in the yard come Easter,” proclaims The Improper Bostonian of Aegean Restaurant. The glowing review should come as no surprise—for one thing, Aegean’s founders Nicholas and Toula Ntasios hail from Greece, and for another, they've been working at it for nearly three decades. In 1972, the pair left their small village to chase after success in America. Their gamble paid off in 1980 when they opened the first Aegean Restaurant. As locals discovered the strip-mall eatery, a spot as deceivingly nondescript as a fortune cookie that contains the president’s phone number, business went from sparse to thriving. In the three decades since, Nicholas and Toula (eventually joined by sons Arthur and Chris) have drawn customers not with glitzy marketing campaigns, but with authentic, personalized food. The Improper Bostonian deems their braised lamb “especially worth the trip,” but Mediterranean influences shine through most in seafood dishes, such as the charcoal-grilled, lemon-kissed swordfish steak.

257 Cochituate Rd
Framingham,
MA
US

The staff at Tropical Café patrol the restaurant’s perimeter constantly, spears in hand. They’re not on guard duty, though. Rather, they’re servers, carving off portions of freshly roasted Brazilian barbecue. They stop at every table, offering their savory cargo to diners who have flipped their personal dining card green side up, indicating that they might be in danger of consuming plant matter from the extensive salad bar if more meat does not arrive soon.

The taste of culture doesn’t stop at the barbecue, however. Tropical Café fills weekends with live musical performances of South American and Brazilian folk music. Wednesday evenings are devoted to karaoke, the classic contest made more interesting by participants who sing with mouthfuls of meat.

85 Hollis St.
Framingham,
MA
US

Ashland Scene