Boston Restaurant Blog -- October, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Jamaica Plain tends to be one Boston neighborhood I find myself in a lot these days, whether it be for walking in the Arnold Arboretum, having a drink at Doyle's Cafe, or dining at any number of spots along the main drag and beyond. JP has a lot of restaurants, including one fairly new place that I have been trying to get to for awhile now--the Robinwood Cafe and Grille on Centre Street. Well, we finally checked it out over the past weekend, and while it was not a stellar experience as far as food is concerned, I rather liked the place and wouldn't mind heading back there at some point.
The Robinwood Cafe and Grille is located along a stretch of Centre Street that is perhaps a bit more residential than commercial, as it is a little north of the main business district and just south of Hyde Square. From the outside, the restaurant has the look of a greasy-spoon diner, and in a way, that's what it is; the interior includes a counter with seating, a small grilling area behind the counter, a rather worn out tiled ceiling that tends to be sagging in spots, fluorescent lights (some of which are on--they are off in the part of the dining area that has hanging cylindrical lights), and a wooden floor that ups the noise level a bit. The space does have some nice touches, with the aforementioned hardwood floor looking shiny and new, the hanging lamps adding a bit of warmth to the dining area to the right, and the tables being spaced apart enough so that you don't feel squeezed in.
We arrived at the Robinwood Cafe and Grille toward the late morning and ended up having several breakfast items. The bagel was a little on the soft side and didn't have a ton of taste, while the corned beef hash seemed like it may have come out of a can (though it was nicely salted and cooked just right). The Grecian Delight omelette was fairly good, but the order was messed up, as a request was put in for no onions and it came to us with a lot of onions, some of which seemed almost raw. The home fries were pretty tasty and were served as round slices rather than diced potatoes, but again, some of the onions mixed in seemed close to raw. The scrambled eggs were light and fluffy and the rye toast was fine, though the coffee was harsh and bitter. Our server was very friendly and made sure to keep checking back with us to make sure everything was ok even though she was hustling from table to table throughout. Prices were downright cheap, with our bill being a good amount less than I thought it would be. The clientele appeared to consist of locals and regulars, with the workers seeming to know at least a few of the patrons fairly well.
I can't say I was overly impressed with our breakfast at the Robinwood Cafe and Grille, but I would like to try the place for lunch and/or dinner before forming more of an opinion on it. I do like the overall feel of the restaurant, as it is a totally unpretentious spot that wouldn't seem out of place in a small town two or three hours from Boston. If I get back there again, I will be sure to post an update, so stay tuned....
If you would like the address for the Robinwood Cafe and Grille in Jamaica Plain, here it is: Robinwood Cafe and Grille, 536 Centre Street, Jamaica Plain, MA, 02130. Phone: (617) 524-7575
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