Boston >Food & Dining > Fire & Ice
31 St James Ave, Boston, MA | Directions 0211642.350718 -71.071609
Neighborhoods: Back Bay East, Back Bay
A Decent Place to Go If You Don't Do What I Did – I was originally going to give Fire & Ice two stars, but will add one more to it, mainly because I'm personally docking myself one star for ordering stupidly there.
First, the atmosphere: It's kind of loud, bustling, fun in a way, it's not exactly a romantic date place, but interesting nonetheless. Now to the food: The key to ordering at Fire & Ice is basically to NOT DO WHAT I DID. That is, order a select number of items and do not go overboard, as the food will turn into one big weird-tasting mess. I'm not sure why I ordered the way I did, but believe me, mixing steak, chicken, mushrooms, hot peppers, garlic, pasta, udon noodles, and chili sauce together is not a good idea, and, well, if you decide to go this route (like I did), you might as well cut out the middleman and take the dish directly into the bathroom and flush it down the toilet.
Next time I'll probably stick to steak and mushrooms.
Great place for dinner in Boston – My friends and I love to go to Fire + Ice on our girls night out.
You pick all of your own food and sauces and watch it being cooked right in the middle of the dining room.
It's a very fun place to eat, but it can get very crowded and there is often a long wait before being seated. (I think it's worth it!)
you could not pay me enough to go back there – Horrible but cheap. Air conditioning was broken and that was the least of the problems. You pick out your own food, place in a small bowl and get in line for your food to be cooked. When it's done you return to your table where your warm beverage has been waiting for you for twenty minutes. Brings back memories of the school cafeteria.
just a gimmick – went once for the hype, never needed to go again.
the giant circular grill was impressive, but that was all that there is to impress.
food... i don't know if i can even put a quantifying term on "quality." let me describe the process.
first, you try your best to pile up all different kinds of raw food on a small enough plate, coz you only have this one shot to feed yourself (unless you pay extra for seconds). the mere sight of all diff kinds of raw stuff squished together--imagine your shrimps tinted brownish red by the juice from the beef--not the prettiest.
next, you hand your plate and your preferred sauce to a cook, who spreads all your food out in a long line onto the grill. note that when the cooks are busy (cooking many servings at once), your food can easily get overcooked in this process. even without another patron in sight, i still don't believe one should cook different ingredients (beef, chicken, pork, seafood, veggies, what have you) on the same grill for the exact same amount of time. you figure the outcome when that happens.
then, the cook smothers your food w/that ONE sauce you picked, so they end up all tasting the same.
as a finishing touch, oh my, the cook literally SCRAPES the food from the edge of the grill onto your plate! some people, for some reason, may actually enjoy this sight, but it looks to me that's what people do when they scrap off bones and leftovers from the table when meal is done. it was a total turn-off, as if i wasn't turned off already by now.
what's more, you have to pay EXTRA for a second plate, which i think they could have generously included in the original price. don't be so stingy, how much does your food really cost? and how many people can actually eat over your profit line?!
Nice variety if you don't know what you want to eat – I went to Fire and Ice on my birthday with just me and my wife. I loved the concept and the atmosphere of the place. Everyone seemed like they were having a lot of fun- that said, it was college night and having turned 32 I felt like an old fogey. Even at that, I blended in with a bunch of college kids and ate my face off. The burgers were decent, but I felt the quality of the food was not always top notch i.e. red spots on the chicken, not the best cuts of meat, etc. Of course, for $20 and all-you-can-eat I'm doubtful that many of the patrons are going to complain.
It was all "fine" but nothing about it really impressed me that much. Being just two of us, we were seated around a circular couch which left one of us right in the way of many people coming and going to get more food which was kind of annoying. Oh, and we also got a pitcher of one of the specialty margarita's that turned out to be a lot of sugary water and doubtfully any actual booze in it so I would suggest going for beers or no booze at all.
Great concept..................... – The concept is great - the selection of vegetables, meats and seafoods is good, but I hate leaving a restaurant smelling like a fry cook!! The ventilation system is overworked or just plain crappy! I hated to bring my clothes into my house when I got home!
Diners build their own meals at this popular Back Bay eatery. – The Scene
This location tends to be less hectic than the original grill in Harvard Square. After filling a bowl with offered vegetables, noodles, meats and fish, diners hit the sauce station and watch their concoction cook on an eight-foot circular grill. Friendly waiters squeeze past patrons moving to and from the grill. The colorful bar produces an array of tropical drinks for the after-work crowd.
Quality is hit or miss. Veggie selection is fresh and colorful, with flavorful accompaniments like roasted garlic, pressed ginger and Mandarin oranges. Meats and seafood are inconsistent; smallish shrimp, grisly sirloin and bland scrod do not a meal make. Sauces run the gamut from teriyaki to barbecue to creamy Alfredo. Sticky rice and warm tortillas are included in the flat rate, as is a pedestrian salad bar. Super sweet desserts are usually ignored.
Fun Dining Experience – This restaurant is good for groups or just 2 people. You get to choose your own meats, vegetables and flavoring just as you like. Take a little at first to try out different combinations, or make a big plate if you know what you like. It was fun picking items you like and sampling what others brought back to the table.
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