The Other Critics

49 Social Is a ‘Reverse Mullet"; Think Tank Bistrotheque Recalls the Bee Gees

• Devra First traverses to Downtown Crossing, where the new 49 Social just took root. It’s a “reverse mullet,” she declares; party in the front bar area, subdued dining in the rear. The bar menu seems “enticing,” but steer clear of clumpy calamari and oysters served atop a “past its prime” baguette. However, “traditional upscale comfort food” is well-executed; try the “rich” lobster ravioli. [Globe]

• Bella English checks out Dorchester’s comfy Savin Bar, which replaced neighborhood watering hold C.F. Donovan’s Pub. Here, a $10 Cuban sandwich is “to die for,” lovable chicken tostadas get a lift from hot mango sauce. Fried chicken mac-n-cheese makes the trip even more worthwhile. [Globe]

• Robert Nadeau two-stars Cambridge’s Think Tank Bistrotheque, which offers Southeastern “treats” in a subterranean lair. He takes issue with the “bistrotheque” coinage, which calls to mind the Bee Gees. Disco nightmares aside, he recommends the hake special perched atop a “buttery mess of lentils” and tips his hat to a selection of “interesting” beers and “offbeat” wines. Service is inconsistent. [Phoenix]

• MC Slim JB flocks to JP’s Robinwood Cafe, a “solid” Greek-American diner in an area where diners are an endangered species. “Workmanlike, substantial” offerings include “plate-size” pancakes and “properly cooked” eggs. We’ll skip the goopy meatloaf and opt instead for sirloin tips, a “sweet-marinated fistful of grilled flap steak chunks.” Prepare to be called “honey.” [Phoenix]

• At the Improper, B.N. Lee visits Area IV’s Area Four, where preconceived notions of “high-concept fatigue” were shattered by an “unpretentious, gratifying” experience. Vegetarians beware: Each entree contains meat. Pepperoni with mozzarella and pecorino flatbread, cooked in a wood-burning oven, is “savory.” Entree choices are thin; the heartiest choice is roast chicken served “sizzling” atop wilted arugula. Beer offerings (including local Pretty Things’ Jack D’Or) are reasonably priced; sadly, cocktails tasted “light to the point of virginity.” [Improper]

49 Social Is a ‘Reverse Mullet"; Think Tank Bistrotheque Recalls the Bee Gees