Its title may recommend red-sauce casual, but this North Square townhouse restaurant is very the contrary, concentrating on refined Italian fare: Beef carpaccio with arugula and black truffles is just a lighter spin regarding the mayo-topped variation developed at Harry’s Bar in Venice, while fresh pappardelle pasta is tossed in a hearty Tuscan-style rabbit ragu. The solution and setting—including several chandeliered dining that is private, certainly one of which seats just four—is white-tablecloth formal. It’s a method that is receding of fashion these days, it is nevertheless reassuring to revisit every once in a while, particularly when it provides Nonna to be able to break away her pearls.
For Pristine Seafood in A ocean of Pasta Neptune Oyster 63 Salem St., 617-742-3474, neptuneoyster.
Okay, so that it’s not exactly Italian. But we’d be foolish to go out of this Salem Street institution—with its sleek, brasserie-like interior, straight-from-the-water bivalves, and, yes, buttery, overstuffed lobster rolls—off a range of important North End restaurants. While other spots have dropped in the blade of a reputation—or that is good waits for a table—this oyster club continues to be consistently excellent both in your kitchen ( decide to try the comforting, seafood-packed North End cioppino in addition to sweet-savory johnnycake topped with honey butter, caviar, and smoked trout) as well as in the leading of your home.