Boston rss

Highlights from the Boston board. Restaurants, bars, food stores, and more.

Tara: Chilean Sandwiches, Empanadas in Waltham

Tara Restaurant offers a full menu of pizzas, subs, and fried appetizers, but Boston hounds are focused on the Chilean specialties: sandwiches (chacareros, lomitos, and churrascos) and empanadas (both baked and fried).

opinionatedchef really likes the fried beef empanadas, which include the traditional Chilean combination of raisins, hard-boiled egg, and olives. "The tasty side sauce really adds zest and quality flavor to them," she says.

StriperGuy thinks the baked version is "empanada perfection." It's large (about 10 inches, StriperGuy says), with an "ever-so-delicate" crust and meat filling that's not overly heavy.

LStaff also likes the empanadas, but would prefer them if they weren't reheated in the microwave. Still, LStaff says, the "salsa saves them."

Tara Restaurant [MetroWest]
288 Moody Street, Waltham
781-647-0355

Discuss: I have found my long lost Empanada – And the Waltham Mangos are IN!

The Best Italian Subs … at Burlington Market Basket?

It may sound crazy, but Swankalicious thinks that the newly remodeled food court at Burlington Market Basket has the best Italian subs in town. Swankalicious orders hers with oil and mayo, shredded lettuce, and olives, but "they'll happily top your sandwich with whatever you want, no charge," she says. "Best $5 meal you'll find in the burbs!"

powerfulpierre orders oil and hot peppers on his sub, finishing with a 99-cent espresso. Even if it's not a destination spot, Market Basket's "got the food courts and chains beat by a mile," he says.

Burlington Market Basket [MetroWest]
26 Middlesex Avenue, Burlington
781-273-3673

Discuss: Best deli in town is at ... the Burlington Market Basket

Midwest Grill a Good Source for Suckling Pigs

If you're looking for fully cooked whole suckling pigs in the Boston area, Midwest Grill, a Brazilian restaurant in Cambridge, is a great option. jeneff recently ordered two for a party, and they were excellent: "tender, falling off the bone, good flavor."

The cooked pigs weigh between 18 and 24 pounds each and cost $160, which includes a side dish of your choice from the restaurant.

Midwest Grill [Inman Square]
1124 Cambridge Street, Cambridge
617-354-7536

Discuss: Whole roast cooked suckling pig in Boston area

Tofu Alone Is Worth a Trip to East Asia

East Asia, a Chinese and Thai restaurant near the Tufts campus in Somerville, is easy to overlook, but there are a few dishes worth trying. The Buddha's Delight, for instance, features tofu with a great texture that hungrybruno hasn't had elsewhere. "It's not too soft, and just a tiny bit spongy, and it splits a lot like good mozzarella cheese," she says.

maillard suspects the tofu is house-made, in part because of another dish with the same great texture, yu hsiang homemade tofu. And even if other menu items are disappointing, maillard thinks the egg rolls and chicken fried rice are really good.

East Asia [Somerville]
868 Broadway, Somerville
617-666-8282

Discuss: Buddha's Delight at East Asia in Somerville

L’Osteria for Italian Basics in the North End

Sara22385 was looking for a midrange North End restaurant with seafood, along with solid versions of basic red-sauce dishes, for her unadventurous parents. Thanks to Boston hounds, they ended up at L'Osteria. The verdict? Exactly what Sara22385 was looking for. The scallop and shrimp linguine was loaded with seafood, the manicotti outstanding, and the red sauce fantastic. Eggplant Parmesan could have used a bit more eggplant, but overall, Sara22385 was happy with the experience. "I would definitely go back," she says.

L'Osteria [North End]
104 Salem Street, Boston
617-723-7847

Discuss: mid-range North End rec needed for unadventurous parents

Tips for Finding Deals on Good Wine

Boston has lots of options for inexpensive drinkable wines besides Costco and Trader Joe's, and Chowhounds know where the bargains are.

Bin Ends in Braintree has a knowledgeable staff and offers a limited number of wines at a discount. mwk thinks the selection of unusual liquor and craft beer is also impressive. READ MORE

Biscuits and Gravy Shine at Olde Magoun’s Saloon

Olde Magoun's Saloon is a neighborhood gem, with biscuits and gravy that are just about perfect. Two fluffy biscuits and crisp house-made sausage patties, smothered in a peppery gravy: "I have no idea how these could be made better," yumyum says.

Olde Magoun's Saloon [Somerville]
518 Medford Street, Somerville
617-776-2600

Discuss: Biscuits and gravy at magouns saloon Somerville

Photograph by yumyum

New Options for Lunch on Coppa’s Patio

Coppa in the South End now offers its full menu at lunch, welcome news to Gabatta, who recently enjoyed a meal of "excellent" small plates and appetizers on the outdoor patio. Unlike twentyoystahs, who found the food too salty, Gabatta had no problems with the seasoning. "Now that they serve the full menu during the day, I can't see dealing with the dinner rush here again."

Coppa [South End]
253 Shawmut Avenue, Boston
617-391-0902

Discuss: Coppa

Praise for Toraya’s Sashimi Bento Box

The sashimi bento-box meal at Toraya in Arlington is "really good," Ferrari328 reports after a recent lunch. He liked the fish ("really really fresh"), but also the beautifully molded rice, and he was tempted by some of the items on the specials board, including grilled octopus. "The lunch menu is quite varied and really reasonably priced," he says.

Toraya [Arlington]
890 Massachusetts Avenue, Arlington
781-641-7477

Discuss: Delicious Sushi, Odd Service at Toraya Arlington

Photograph of Toraya's sashimi bento box by Ferrari328

Juicy, Flavorful Burgers at Pigalle

Pigalle's bar menu features an Angus burger with house-made condiments, sharp cheddar, and both fried and caramelized onions. It's "super juicy" and has "great flavor," says Niblet, who tried it based on barleywino's recommendation. Niblet adds that the cocktails are "fantastic and perfectly balanced."

barleywino first recommended the Pigalle burger last year, after he tried a special "surf and turf" version with panko-breaded fried oysters. That burger is no longer available, but barleywino holds the current, more classic version in equally high regard.

Pigalle [Bay Village]
75 Charles Street, Boston
617-423-4944

Discuss: Excellent burger at Pigalle: barleywino was right!
Craigie on Main Burger Question