Explorateur Cafe, Restaurant & Bar

4.3
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340 Reviews
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$30 and under
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French American

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Pre/post Theatre
Explorateur is our interpretation of a community-focused, all-day-dining, European café, bar and restaurant. It is French in name and Californian and French in its passionate approach to dining. We present "Things we call French" dishes at the core of our menu and compliment them with Californian inspired new world dishes that we think you will love. Whether it's exploration of food, travel, or culture, there is an explorer in all of us. Welcome to Explorateur.
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What 340 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.2
service
4.2
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
83% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
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F
Orlando
2 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 3service 3ambience 5

Food was cold. Service was good. Atmosphere is exceptional.

AC
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very good food at a reasonable price. Perfect pre-show restaurant.

JN
New England
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 2ambience 4

I took my family for lunch before we went to see the Lion King. We had a delightful time. Food was good. The restaurant was very busy which resulted in some service delays.

OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

My daughter and I had a wonderful brunch before a college open house. Excellent quiche and salad for me, and she LOVED the burger and fries. Nice cafe latte as well.

c
New England
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 4

We really enjoyed the dinner at Explorateur. We were a group of 5, with 2 major Francophiles. Clever menu, lots of choices even for the 2 pescatarians in our group, who both had the Chèvre Omelette. Service seemed a bit slow, apps came before drinks, but it was very busy at the time.

ES
New England
1 review
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Great after-theater casual dining experience. Hostess seated us quickly, waiter was prompt and attentive, food was excellent.

M
New England
2 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

Food was not that great. My husband and I had the steak frites. The meat was tough and the fries barely warm.

N
New England
12 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Some dishes were not great at all (the dry omelette, the really dry raw charred broccoli), others were wonderful: the cauliflower and escargot we had for starters, the Caesar salad, the burger. Beer and wine lists were great, the drinks super.

M
Miami
5 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Clean, fun, good food, and powerful Bloody Mary - great way to start a Saturday. Right across from park, so have a hearty b'fast then take a beautiful walk thru the gardens.

SV
Nashville
14 reviews
Dined on September 13, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 5

The service was great but the food leaves something to be desired. My friend got the French onion soup and it had clearly been microwaved because it was cold inside but super hot on the outside. My pork was overdone to the point that it was hard to chew. We didn't say anything at the time because, to me a restaurant that nukes their food isn't a restaurant to be trusted with food in the first place, so I didn't want anything else coming from the kitchen.

JB
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Nice combination of cool style and comfort with great brunch food!

CB
New England
5 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and great staff... first time there. It was quiet for a Thursday evening, but everyone was really nice and the food was very good.

M
Dallas
22 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We went to Explorateur Cafe for brunch on a Sunday while visiting Boston. The service was excellent and the food very good. The only complaint was the Breakfast Sandwich was served on a hamburger bun. It would be better to have options of different types of breads. But overall both meals were very good.

OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Very nice, good food. After they got busy the servers were overwhelmed

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great and our server was amazing. Erick was wonderful. My friend and I will dine there again because of him.

N
New England
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great option before a movie or show. Lots of variety and price points on the menu. Wish the drinks were a little less expensive.

TM
Chicago
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 2ambience 4

Very disappointing experience. Have been there before and enjoyed the meal, but this one was a complete dud. Food was undercooked and poor cuts of meat were used for the steak frites, especially for the price. The service was slow, some of the drink orders were wrong, and when we asked for condiments, we'd get the smallest possible container. The staff had language issues that served to compound and frustrate the situation even more. I'm more than willing to deal with servers with limited English skills and/or accents, but they employ some folks who seem not lack even rudimentary English language skills. This is not a knock against them. They were earnest and trying their best, but the restaurant management should really work with them so that they understand menu items and liquor types, etc., at the very least. I cannot recommend this restaurant based on our experience.

B
New England
2 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

The food was decent, but service was extremely slow. Granted it was between showtimes at the Opera House, but we waited 25 min. for our first drink, and again almost as long for our 2nd. They should be better prepared for this rush period.

OT
New England
3 reviews
Dined on June 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brunch was great. The Croque Madam was delicious. Even though the restaurant filled in quickly right at open, the service and timing of drinks/food was impressive.

KF
New England
1 review
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Location is great and I love the ambiance. Prices are expensive though.

DS
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

The noise level (high) is the only reason I gave this lower ratings.

I
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The waitstaff was friendly and helpful, the food was delicious They recommended a big comfortable booth for our group, and helped the different group members find eachother and the right table as we all arrived separately. Very pleasant place! I plan to go back again soon.

l
New England
1 review
Dined on May 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second time eating at Explorateur for brunch and it was great again. Ambiance is modern and warm. Food was delicious. Our server suggested a specialty spiced coffee with milk and honey and it was delicious. I will definitely be back!

OT
Jacksonville
4 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Food was fantastic. Ambience was ok, the entrance is the cafe and it was hard to lose that cafe feel even in the restaurant.

VS
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great! Yummy French onion soup.

J
New England
15 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

The decor was nice, up beat. The wait staff was very good. The tomato soup with Meyer lemon was delicious. The entrees however were very ordinary and over priced for what we got. My duck leg and thigh was still cover with the thick white fatty skin. The white color made me think it was a white sauce. No, it was skin I had to pull off.
The bean and carrot mix the was on was poorly seasoned, uninteresting. My friend’s pasta and shrimp dish was very blah, minimally seasoned.
The lemon tart with fresh red raspberries was very pleasant. But over all the dinner was not worth the price.

PH
New England
9 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We enjoyed Explorateur & staff was very accommodating to get us to theater on time.

DJ
New England
2 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great cosy place. Can do quick take, sit down dinner or drinks at the bar. Nice bistro ambience and great food. Splurge and get the doughnuts :) and a bellini.

CP
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 1

Was excited about another dining option in the Theatre District in Boston. Overall, I would not go back. Highlights: Coffee was extraordinary, dark and well made iced Americano and almond-milk cappuccino. Water who took out order was kind and attentive. Food came incredibly quickly--would have liked to finish our salad before the entree came. Arugula salad was delicious. Down side: Space felt like an upscale Denny's, with formica-topped tables that were way too close to each other. We couldn't hear ourselves over the two women who were next to us. And we watched a very confused server keep delivering the wrong food to table after table. Burgers were two tiny overcooked and greasy patties. Fries nothing special. To be fair: the egg dishes and pancakes that were delivered to other tables looked amazing, so perhaps that's the way to go.

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Not much of a sense of urgency from the staff. There’s something to be said for a relaxed atmosphere and pace, but waiting for 10 minutes for (empty) wine glasses after our guests arrived is unnecessary as our server and the back waiters floated around. Also, switching out cutlery between courses would be less awkward than putting dirty cutlery back on the bare table. GF crackers for the cheese board would be a nice addition. Second time in though and otherwise enjoyable!

AL
New England
2 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Ambience is pretty great. Food 4/5. Service 4/5 would like to come back and check out the bar later

m
Charleston
45 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really good place for casual or formal meals. Service and food were quite good without being excessively expensive.

JH
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The donuts were amazing! A must order. The coffee was exceptional!

JS
New England
7 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 5

Great food and a fantastic room but this restaurant always has mediocre service. People are always pleasant but disorganized and slow.

m
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Everything on the menu sounded wonderful, it was hard to choose! Our party ordered the salmon, a pork tenderloin special and the Steak Frites. No one was disappointed. The pricing was a little high for these dishes, but I know we're in Boston, so maybe it was reasonable? Drinks were a little expensive for nothing very special. The coffee is tasty, but the latte drinks seem to be a little watery from the steaming of the milk. Funky (in a good way) vibe with diners in the cafe and students studying/collaborating in the front section. Bartenders were friendly and the waitstaff accommodating.

PA
New England
3 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We ordered the Escargot Fricassee for the table were amazed by the flavor and the hand stretched bread balloon was a first experience for all of us. Delicious. I would go back over and over and get the Duck Cassoulet. Others at our table ordered the Bistro Burger with the egg and were so pleased.

KB
New England
5 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Friend get together

DD
New England
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 3

I grew up in Chicago and have been in Boston for 14 years so my standards are high.

Service was terrible--waited 30 min for the food; received free dessert (they misheard one of the desserts) and then they said they had no remaining forks and brought us plastic cutlery!

Food was good (espresso rubbed steak frites; cod) but nothing exceptional. For that location, and price range, I expect much more.

KM
New England
3 reviews
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Nice French bistro with buzz and student energy. Great pre theater meal with prompt and attentive service, and good menu. Food honest and well prepared.

GB
1 review
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A restaurant I will definitely return. to. Excellent service, great food, and all around great atmosphere. Loved the menu selections as well.