While food is obviously an important part of any dining experience, sometimes atmosphere rules the day, especially when an eatery is in such an incredibly scenic location. And such is the case with the Monponsett Inn, a spacious restaurant, bar, and function spot located between two large lakes in the tiny town of Halifax south of Boston. While the food at this spot is nothing that you can't get at any number of family-friendly restaurants in the region, it is the setting that makes the Monponsett Inn such a memorable place--and also why it is used for a variety of special events ranging from weddings to birthday parties to class reunions to fundraisers and so much more.
The Monponsett Inn is located on Route 58, which is a scenic and mostly rural road that winds its way from Weymouth down to Wareham, a few miles away from the Cape Cod Canal. And fewer parts of the road are more scenic than the stretch in Halifax that cuts between East Lake and West Lake for nearly a mile, almost feeling like a causeway in some spots. The restaurant is located on West Lake (though East Lake is literally a stone's throw away, just across the street), with the dining areas, bars, and function rooms mostly having wonderful views of the water. The interior of the Monponsett Inn is massive; tables for dining can be found along the hall-like area leading to the main room, with more seating in that room (including window seats looking out at the water) and a large bar taking up much of the space within the main area. A smaller room with a bar is off to the right and function rooms are set off in various sections of the structure. An outdoor deck out back is the place to be on a warm summer evening, as the deck's location on the east side of the lake allows for some great sunset views.
Being that it is a family restaurant and a function spot, the offerings at the Monponsett Inn are mostly familiar items that include classic American fare and some Italian dishes. A few of the dishes that can be ordered here include decent to excellent takes on fried pickle slices, beef barley soup (which is one of their soups of the day), chili, buffalo chicken dip, lemon pepper fried calamari, flatbread pizzas, Caesar salads, burgers, baked haddock, eggplant parmesan, fettuccine alfredo, steak tips, peppered top sirloin with bourbon glaze, and pork chops with maple glaze. The portions can be huge at the Monponsett Inn, with some items (such as the eggplant parmigiana or the weekend prime rib special, for instance) being enough for two or even three meals. The beer list is limited mainly to popular domestic and imported brands, while the wine list includes approximately 20 different reds and whites. A Sunday brunch is also offered here, along with an all-you-can-eat roast beef buffet on Monday nights.
While the food at the Monponsett Inn won't make you forget about some of the best American and Italian restaurants in and around Boston, it is good, solid fare that is made even better by the atmosphere of the spot, including some of the best lake views you'll find at any dining spot in Eastern Massachusetts. Add to this plenty of parking, reasonable prices, and friendly service, and you have a place that is certainly worth the relatively short drive from the Boston area, especially if you enjoy watching beautiful sunsets.
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