Restaurant Aura = Gourmet meets Kid-Friendly! (BOSTON)BOSTON AND AROUND, REVIEWS & CONTESTS | Nirasha Jaganath | September 26, 2012 at 8:21 am
I had been to Aura before. I remember it fondly and better yet, so do my kids. To get me to get to the city on a Friday night is challenge. Add to that 2 squabbling kids and things get pretty stressful. So when I receive invitations I weigh them for what they are worth and when we got the invitation to the restaurant Aura at the Seaport hotel in Boston. I did not even blink. You see eating out is peppered with kiddie places to semi fancy places. Now that the kids can sit nicely at restaurants this is easier, just not so much on the budget. Also? Their attention span is not quite the same as an adult. I love to savor my meal and chat. Without resorting to electronics, the crayons can only get them so far.
Since I had been there before I knew what to expect: a gourmet meal and childcare.
The restaurant is what you would typically expect from the Seaport Hotel where it resides: fancy, elegant and what I would have called perfect date night material (or business meeting if that i more your thing). There are tablecloths and glassware and a relaxing ambience to remind you that this is no Chuck-E-Cheese (not that there is anything wrong with that but you get the picture). With relaxing lighting and a calm atmosphere you begin to realize you can relax. As you you let out deep sighs looking forward to the meal, you watch as the kids settle in. You know when you step into a fancy place and wonder if everyone will be doing the eye-roll upon seeing your kids? And then your insides twist waiting for it to actually happen to give the apologetic cursory glance or pretend to not make eye-contact? Well none of that is needed, especially at the September’s Back-to-School Fine Dining ‘Family Style at Aura!
More about this program:
Aura restaurant’s Fine Dining ‘Family Style’ at the Seaport Hotel is the ideal excuse for parents of young children to escape the house, without having to pay for a babysitter. September’s Fine Dining ‘Family Style” will allow the kiddos to enjoy making crafts with Samara Lamm of The Kids Place 4 Fun in Needham (http://www.kidsplaceforfun.com), as well as playing with lots of toys, watching a movie and kid-friendly food. Meanwhile, parents will enjoy a memorable meal and some relaxation!
I like food.I love food! I love good food! I love non-processed, clean food. I don’t really mind the fried and real butter, but I like my food to be real. Hubby and I have similar tastes and honestly it would have made sense for us to order different things and that way we can explore a variety. But I know that when hubby likes something he makes it a point to have the lion’s share and has been known to forget on occasion, so I went with my 1st choice and he went with his. Bread rolls started out the meal on a fresh and warm note partnered with rolls of butter and olive oil. There may, or may not, have been a request for an extra basket of rolls. And to be fair, it was not just the adults devouring it but the kids too. Good for me (and them) my girls are a fan of fresh bread. The AURA House Salad and Rustic Burrata made a perfect appetizer and while I love my greens, that cheese was clearly made from scratch and it delightfully showed. We chose the Wild Salmon with Risotto, Asparagus, Herbs for the main dish because since we left being vegetarian 2 years ago we promised to eat more fish. My girls are well versed in the importance of fish in their diet. Dessert? Chocolate Mousse Parfait with Cocoa Nib Crumble, Whipped Cream, Sea Salt Chocolate Chip Cookie. To. Die. For! This is the type of dessert that needs to be had at home, with the top button of your pants loosened (to make room for that entire indulgence of a meal) and watching chick-flicks with a wine in the other hand. Yeah, that good!
Not only did the wee ones nosh on our rolls but they started their meal with a Bread & Banana Plate. Then we were excited that the selection went broader than the regular spiel of chicken nuggets and decided on Tamo Fish Sticks, withGlazed Carrots, Tartar Sauce, Fruit Salad. The glazed carrots were a bit getting used to since my girls love them raw and crunchy but they were game for it and felt they liked it but loved the crunchy style more. Dessert we considered ice box pops and thought they may like the cherry flavor. Then mama had a panic button go off: did those have artificial colors on them? Sirens were sounding in my head but I figured I could ask and trust the waiter. After a quick visit to the kitchen, he confirmed that chef Robert Tobin said that only natural fruits were used. Sweet!
The Kid Activity room
We spoke about how much of a cost it is with a babysitter, and how dropping kids elsewhere just ate up our time. Recently I gave up an outing because I was not keen to spend half my babysitter time in traffic heading to an event. Frankly I like going out with my kids. I do! Also with having a child on the Autism Spectrum I am nervous about having her with others. I love that they have a room with the entire partition open so I could see my kids as I ate. This way I am not always guessing whether it is the cry of my kid, I am sure I am not the only mom who tries to figure whether it is my kid and heaves a sigh of relief when it is not. Also Samara Lamm of The Kids Place 4 Fun was fabulous with the kids and my kids were very excited to head back there. They made flower pencils, decorated journals, played with toys and there was even a bean-bag viewing area with a kid’s movie playing. My kids always choose crafts over sitting down to a movie, I must have done something right as a parent, right?
1 Seaport Lane, Boston, MA