Boston - Historically, the chain restaurant has been as much a thorn in the side of independent restaurateurs as they have been a convenient and easily settled decision for many large parties of diners. Particularly if they market themselves as a fine dining experience, and especially when they offer their own alternate takes on regional cuisine.
The total revenue of sales for chain restaurants was estimated to be $142 billion for the U.S. in 2018 alone. And while a good portion of that number is made up of both fast food and casual dining establishments, it seems that more and more consumers are looking towards familiarity when it comes to fine dining. They want name recognition and reliability. If you’re going to be spending upwards of $190 on dinner for two, you want to make certain reputation precedes value.
At least that’s what Eddie V’s is hedging their bets on when they open this Friday in the Prudential Center. A bet they’re hoping to ante up on when they open their second Massachusetts location in Burlington on July 19.
Eddie V’s describes itself as having a “charismatic vibe which draws you in and holds you close, invites you to be seen, or sit back and just savor. The finest seafood and steaks. World-class wine and service. And live jazz in the V lounge.”
In other words, a $95 raw bar with bad renditions of “Take Five” in the background. And who apparently decided to use out of work romance novelists to craft their press releases.
Among the entrees Eddie V’s promises (in addition to a world-class vibe which invites you to be seen) are Alaskan halibut served in miso sauce, bacon-wrapped filets with king crab served in Béarnaise sauce, parmesan-crusted sole, Ahi tuna seasoned with nori and served in bonito broth, and an extensive list of over 400 wines.
Don’t be surprised if you haven’t heard of Eddie V’s yet. It could be because the void they seek to fill for prime seafood dining options has been relatively well served locally by the likes of Legal Seafoods, among others. Or perhaps it’s because they were strictly a Midwestern phenomenon until 2011. That’s the year they were sold to Darden Foods of Scottsdale, Arizona who expanded the once-regional chain into 21 different locations across the U.S., including San Diego, Chicago, and Pittsburgh.
And in case you’re not keeping track, Darden Foods is the same specialty restaurant group that owns and operates Yard House, Olive Garden, Longhorn Steakhouse, and, up until 2014, Red Lobster. All names positively synonymous with high-quality food.
Eddie V’s is scheduled to open at the Prudential Center, located at 800 Boylston St in Boston, on Friday, May 10. Hours are Monday - Thursday from 11:30 am - 10:00 p.m., Friday 11:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., Saturday 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. For more information, visit https://www.eddiev.com/
Image via Instagram: Eddie V's Jumbo Lump Crab Cake