There's a new and growing restaurant culture in Boston — and it represents a dramatic departure from the so-called fine dining tradition.
The trend has been underway for years, now. The latest sign: Locke-Ober, the landmark Boston restaurant that served high-end cuisine to the city's elite dating all the way back to 1875, finally shut down last month. It joined a number of other fine dining establishments that have closed their doors in recent years — from Jaspers to Excelsior and Aujour d'hui at the Four Seasons.
In their place, a growing number of more casual neighborhood restaurants, gastro-pubs and trattorias — from East Cambridge to Boston's Seaport District — serving up sophisticated ethnic food to a new generation of hip, casual diners.