Masona Grill

Good spice, price, and everything nice
By ROBERT NADEAU  |  October 31, 2006
4.0 4.0 Stars

Desserts, likewise, didn’t let us down. My favorite was the pear-and-ginger upside-down cake ($7). I’ve already described the pears, but here they were served on top of a rich, soft, moist gingerbread as satisfying as pudding. Chocolate pot de crème ($7) was more intense than the best mousse, since you get all those air bubbles out of the way and spoon chocolate almost as thick as fudge. Lemon roulade ($7) had a fine, delicate flavor in both the sponge cake and lemon mousse (still not much air), with raspberry sauce. And a pumpkin tart ($7) understated the spice but had pure pumpkin flavor as well as a pretty good crust.

Having tasted four excellent full dinners, am I worried about the other six appetizers/small plates and four entrées? No. But since a carpet without a mistake is an insult to Allah, I will find a fault. The restaurant’s Web site,, is mis-programmed in such a way that you have to know to click into the frame to get it to scroll down. So there.

Service was excellent and our server’s recommendations were superb, but then, so was everything else. The atmosphere was quiet on a weeknight — this isn’t a great location until you know where it is, a few corners off Centre Street, despite facing the West Roxbury commuter-rail station. The view of the station from window tables is not fabulous, either. There wasn’t any background music our night, which is fine with me, although the Nightingale had jazz to die for.

Masona is made up of two former store fronts, one of which was a coffee shop. However, both have been completely redone in Matisse maroon and a warm brown, with wood floors and some trim, red chairs, and wonderful pictures of historic West Roxbury, some blown up from hand-colored postcards. It’s always fun to see familiar streets back when they were unpaved and horse-drawn carriages co-existed with motorcars. It’s also something to see the water tower without surrounding trees.

Masona grill, 4–6 Corey Street, West Roxbury | Open Sun–Thurs, 5:30–10 pm; and Fri & Sat, 5:30–10:30 pm | MC, VI | Beer and wine | No valet parking | Some tables at sidewalk level | 617.323.3331

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