Swan Songs

The Improper Says Locke-Ober Is on Life Support

3, 2, 1...?
3, 2, 1…? Photo: iStockphoto

OK, come on: This poor restaurant is just begging for a big-name chef to swoop in and perform mouth-to-mouth. Been-there, done-that Nancy Gaines writes the place’s obituary: “It’s in a bad location. The patrons are dying off. The restaurant has opened and closed at various points, and it has no special drawing card, like a star chef or bar scene, to attract new blood.” Someone get this place a publicist! Or a defibrillator!

Gaines isn’t the first to write a eulogy: Devra First penned a melancholy review not long ago, leading us to contemplate that the only way to make L-O less of a crime scene would be to reinstate a dress code. But maybe that time has passed (like many of the patrons).

Reports Gaines: “Indeed, on what should be a bustling Saturday at 8 pm, there are about a dozen diners: a solitary family gathering, elderly couples and four 40ish women. The empty bar has 1950s Sinatra piped in. It’s just plain dull.”

Gaines also notes that the storied restaurant lacks p.r., something we noticed when they went on a publicity spree touting themselves as the “Taj Mahal of Boston restaurants” and indulging in self-aggrandizing Tweets. If Gaines’s deadly account is to be believed, Locke Ober probably shouldn’t go the “Hey! We’re just like a mausoleum!” route.

Our bet: Someone with a big name and excess cash takes a gamble on reviving it within the year.

Locke Over: The Last Bastion of Boston’s Old Dining Scene [Improper]
Earlier: Locke-Ober: Time to Bring Back the Dress Code?
Lydia Shire, Where Art Thou?

The Improper Says Locke-Ober Is on Life Support