Your Rating: None
Very Good
8 Ratings

Type: Bar, Eatery

25 School St
Boston, Massachusetts, 02108-4305
United States

(617) 248-0025 | map

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Added by rousee on 04-27-2011

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8 |  Reviews: 3
Reviews by cbeer88:
Photo of cbeer88
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Visited for lunch. I must say that I was impressed. There have been a handful of recent disappointments with new Boston area beer-friendly restaurants. It seems to be a race towards who can squeeze the most money out of a keg, and Scholars is a refreshing change of pace.

Atmosphere: This place is large. Very large, especially for Downtown Crossing. The layout is similar to the Canal St Beer Works - two floors, big bar on the right when you walk in, lots of tables on the ground, big staircase in the middle taking you up to the 2nd floor with pool tables and more eating space. I expected "pub", and I got "lounge", but it fell well short of pretentious, so that's ok. Everything is surgically clean and tastefully decorated.

The service was adequate. Drink orders were promptly taken, and the waitress was pleasant. The only knock was the appetizer came out about 3 minutes before our sandwiches. This is actually a giant pet peeve of mine, and it's sad how it has seemingly become acceptable at anything less than a Michelin rated restaurant. They promptly offered to put our sandwiches under a heat lamp, but we all know that never tastes as good.

Food was much better than I expected. The menu gets a little fancier than common pub grub, but the basics are all there. The app was exquisite, sandwich very good, and portion sizes generous.

As for the beer selection... well, this is about as good as it gets for a B-level craft bar. I had a Goose Island Matilda ($8, 10-ish oz glass) and a Victory Prima Pils ($5, 12-ish oz pilsner glass). The Matilda was a hair on the high side, but everything else was in that $5 range. Lots of flagships, but good enough variety to keep you happy. No pour sizes listed, which is a knock.

Overall the prices were a bit better than I expected, and felt lunch was a very reasonable value, especially for Downtown.

My final comment is I have to wonder if they modeled themselves after Yard House. If you cut down the # of taps, you're left with a very similar restaurant. The food felt similar, tap quality similar, decor similar, etc. This isn't a bad thing.

I'll probably be back here a lot, as I work close by. In a way this is the place I kind of hoped Stoddard's would be. It's a nice alternative to Wirth's when I'm in the mood for a pint or two at lunch. Well worth the trip here if you are in the area and looking for a bite and a pint.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of American_Hawk
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.75

Photo of AirBob
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3

Photo of rjp217
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of mdaschaf
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of Jason
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of morebeergood
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

My wife and I stopped in here before dinner last night. There were two things that I noticed from the start. First, this place was a lot bigger than I was expecting. High ceilings at the front, goes way back, and has a second floor. Very spacious. Second thing was that it was very nightclub looking. It is really trying to go for the swank lounge look. We managed to get two seats at the very end of the bar. Our female bartender took our order quickly. They have a lot of national craft breweries on tap: Troegs, Widmer, Kona, Goose Island, etc. The ones you see everywhere. They also have a few locals on tap, but again, it's the ever-present Cisco, Harpoon, Pretty Things, BBC, Geary's, Allagash. Fairly decent sized bottle list. It's not the greatest selection, but for Downtown Crossing, it's a step in the right direction. I had a glass of the Duvel Single ($8), as it was on the specials list. Didn't eat here, but food around us looked like an upgrade from pub grub. Prices seemed a tad high, but it's downtown so not a surprise. Scholars is definitely a place to check out in the Park St/State St area if you are looking for a decent beer.

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Photo of rousee
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

This is another new bar in the downtown crossing area. Scholars is located in what was previously Talbots--a women's clothing store. They did open a little behind schedule but it wasn't nearly as long of a wait as some of the other new bars that have opened in the downtown area over the last couple years.

You walk in and there is a very large bar off to your right with a nice white marble top to it. A giant room of small tables is to your left and immediately after the bar, is a grand staircase that leads up to the second floor. I've been in here 3 times since it opened and each time I have opted to go upstairs as the bar up there is quite a bit smaller and just a little more comfortable feeling.

The beer selection is definitely better than average for the area and is pretty decent both in the draft and bottle department. I have had a Palm ($5), Racer 5($6) and a Radeberger ($5), so overall the pricing on the beers is pretty reasonable especially for a new place that has just opened in downtown. To view their full list of beers --just check out their website.They also seem pretty cool about letting you sample the beer before buying one.

The staff have been quite nice, professional and attentive each time I have been in here and the food has been good and reasonably priced. One of the best parts about their food is the kitchen doesnt close at 9pm like plenty of places in the area. It drives me crazy in downtown Boston that so many restaurants close their kitchen before midnight. The kitchen here is open till 1 am --7 nights a week. It does go to an abridged bar menu after 11pm but this is leaps and bounds better than many other places in the area.

They also have nice pool tables on the second floor if thats your thing. The tables are $10/hour except --$15 for peak which is Thurs,Fri, & Sat after like 7pm.

In summary, this is a great addition to the neighborhood and a place I will be hitting with some regularity as long as it doesnt get too packed. Due to its mammoth size, its going to take a lot of people in here to really make it feel too crowded.

 2,088 characters

Scholars in Boston, MA
Place rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 8 ratings
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