When I first moved to Boston post-college one of my friends started a rec league softball team. After several key victories we celebrated at Sports Depot on Cambridge St in Allston. Back in May my favorite dining out blog, Grub Street, reported that Sports Depot, this place housing some of my best Boston memories, would be closing it doors after 22 years. It was a dive, but it was our dive.
In the same announcement it was revealed that Pizzeria Regina would take over the space, but maintain the sports bar feel. Yesterday, the newly named Regina Pizzeria at the Depot opened its doors and tonight, its second night open, I went with three friends to check it out.
When we got out of our cars in the parking lot we were greeted by two smiling, charming parking attendants who handed us each a carnation and held the front door open as we walked in. Quite a start!
We were seated immediately in a nice, comfortable booth with views of about six televisions. We craned our heads in every direction trying to take in the new atmosphere. The restaurant is mostly red and white - red and white lighting, red and white checked table cloths, red and white menus . . . you get the picture. The bar is pretty cool looking but feels like it belongs in a dance club.
The menu was absolutely huge! It has pages upon pages of appetizers, salads, pizzas, calzones and sandwiches. We decided to start with the Caesar salad. Though I had seen it pass by on its way to another table and thought it looked great, it turned out to be a disappointment. There was no creamy dressing, minimal parmesan cheese and stale croutons. Caesar salads are definitely hit or miss and this was a big miss.
For dinner we split two pizzas. One with spinach, broccoli and tomatoes and one with breaded eggplant, red onion and ricotta cheese. All four of us agreed the pizza was exceptional and had incredibly delicious crust. I can honestly say this is some of the best pizza I've ever had. I also appreciated that all the vegetarian pizzas were listed on their own section of the menu, making it easy for us to decide what to order.
Given that Regina has maintained the sports bar components (huge bar, televisions everywhere) I can see this developing into a place where families come to watch games. You wouldn't normally sit down and watch the Patriots at a pizza joint, but they kept the word "depot" in the name, so maybe it can maintain the sports bar legacy.
Regina Pizzeria at the Depot does not offer delivery, but you can order take out. I highly recommend the pizza and the staff are ready and eager to meet and serve their new patrons.
Though I am still mourning the loss of Sports Depot, if it had to go, I'm glad it has been revamped into a place with absolutely killer pizza. Welcome to the neighborhood, Regina.