Fat Hen only has about 12 tables and no bar, but because it’s a little tough to get to East Somerville, it usually isn’t too hard to get a table here. That’s a great thing for you, because this is an excellent Italian restaurant with a limited menu of small-plate pastas, antipasti, and entrees that look like they belong on the cover of a food magazine you’d flip through at the airport but not buy (think rainbow trout with baby turnips and house-cured bacon). It’s a sleek, minimalist space, and a meal here kind of feels like dining on the set of a Scandinavian police procedural, and for just $55 you can do a four course prix-fixe meal.
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Mamma Maria provides the best combination of North End atmosphere and Italian food that was actually made with a little effort.
Bar Mercato is a Downtown restaurant with a menu that works for a lot of different situations.
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