kittychow's Profile

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Private dinner for 15 - ESK, Dante, Sorisso, Stella, Upstairs on the Square?

Looking for a private or semi-private room for up to 20 guests. Looking for something near a T station, comfortable, fun, celebratory, and for less than $100 per person. Currently waiting for quotes from Upstairs on the Square and Sorisso. I plan to contact Stella and Eastern Standard today. Any place else you recommend I consider? This is a kick-off celebration for a work project. If the budget is too low for dinner I'd consider cocktails and heavy hors d'overs. Thank you!

Aug 06, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Wisteria Cambridge updates?

I've been ordering take-out regularly for a couple months. My favorites are: spicy string beans w/pork, yellow chive ravioli, spicy house special beef combo noodle soup, and peking noodle with spicy meat sauce. I've also found that they can really satisfy my Chinese junk-food craving better than other joints in that area. Really good pu pu platter and house fried rice.

Apr 25, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

What's your favorite neighborhood spot?

I'm currently go between The Independent and Highland Kitchen. Agree that The Independent could change up the sandwiches more often, although I'd probably still cave in and go for the burger with fried egg. It calls to me in my sleep. As does the super tasty chicken at Highland.

Apr 16, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Restaurant Week(s): March, 2008. Where are YOU going?

Thanks for the correction. I was looking at list and saw "... Cellar" participating. Turns out that it's the Wine Cellar in the Back Bay.

Feb 21, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Drinks/dinner with parking/valet? (Camb/Boston)

OM in Harvard Square has valet parking. I've really enjoyed the food there. The lounge is a bit of a scene but can work depending on what you're into.

Rialto in Harvard Square is in the Charles Hotel, which has a parking garage. If you're looking for something less stuffy than Rialto you could check out Noir on the ground floor of the Charles. Great happy hour deals and a nice wine list.

Feb 21, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Best bars for dinner.

Also eat at the bar at ECG 99% of the time. Service is terrific, often the bartender will send over a few oysters or shrimp. It can get crowded but the staff there really manage it well.

Feb 20, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Restaurant Week(s): March, 2008. Where are YOU going?

Considering The Cellar since I still haven't been there. On the fence for Grotto. They have lots of options so it could be good for a small group. I'm waiting for more of the restos to put menus on the site so I can reserve for at least two meals.

I've had a pretty 50/50 experience with RW in the past with the exception of that last one, which went really well for me. Had good meals at Harvest and EVOO and terrific lunch at OM.

Feb 20, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Please post one NEW chowish find

So true, these are soooo good! Something tells me that they just might be willing to toss with pasta. Brilliant idea! I'm on a mission.

Feb 17, 2008
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Braised pork cheeks with ??

I've got some lovely pork cheeks that I'll braise in red wine and tomatoes today. Can't decided on sides for it. It's a chilly snow day here in Boston so I'm thinking hearty. Garlicky greens and wild rice with wild mushrooms. Any other suggestions?

Dec 13, 2007
kittychow in Home Cooking

Two dates: One romantic-ish, one non-romantic

It's a terrible "rut" right? I could have bigger problems, I know. Still, feeling like we need to motivate to check out new places. Maybe find some new standy-by favorites.

Dec 12, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Two dates: One romantic-ish, one non-romantic

Thanks to all. Mom has enjoyed ESK on a couple trips so I'm looking to change it up. I've been to Prezza many times and love it but not Petit Robert in Kenmore. I think I'll leave it up to her to decide. Seems like I'm on the right track though.

Hadn't thought of Sage. I'll check out the menu. It's on my "meaning to get there" list. I should have mentioned that the "restaurant rut" consists of CK, Blue Room, ECG, Carmen, ESK. Independent, B-Side... Parking is easy and food is consistent so we don't often stray, or we just don't get inspired to think of other options. We need to venture across the river into the city more often.

Dec 12, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Two dates: One romantic-ish, one non-romantic

I've got two dates coming up. One with Mom and one with my BF.

I'm taking Mom to the 4 p.m. Holiday Pops next week. She's all fired up for her big fun day and eve in the city. I don't know how long the Pops will last but I imagine we can manage a 7 p.m. reservation any place in the city. Currently considering Prezza, Rendezvous, Petit Robert, and Aquitaine. She doesn't get out for dinner often so I'd like it to be special, which doesn't require anything too over the top. Anyone been to any of the four mentioned recently?

My old man and I have been in a bit of a restaurant rut so I'm looking to shake it up a bit on "date night." Looking for lovely food, some place comfy, dimly lit, with a bar in case we want to stick around and linger. There's a few places that I haven't been to that I'm curious to check out. Those are: The Beehive, Gaslight, and POPS. Will these three fit the bill? And, what kind of nightmare will it be on a Friday around 8:30? Man has a real soft spot for steak frites, so if they're good at Gaslight they get the edge.

Dec 12, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Bukowski's (Inman)

I ran into one of the bartenders over the weekend and she told me that they discovered some pretty extreme water damage in the concrete under the coolers so they had to tear the place up. Unfortunately the permit for the roof deck is still in limbo so this bit of work is unrelated to that major expansion. Sounds like a real bummer for all the staff since the demolition and repair work was unexpected...

Dec 12, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Casual, affordable birthday dinner near Pease

Looking for some place both casual and affordable for a birthday dinner this Saturday. Party of six from all over. Was hoping to go to Black Trumpet but sounds like the crowd is looking for something more relaxed and affordable. Looking for a rec other than Jumpin' Jays, Muddy River, Green Monkey, Gaslight, and the Portsmouth Brewery. Thanks!

Nov 14, 2007
kittychow in All New England Archive

Afterburn from Hell-o-ween at ECG last night?

I totally forgot about Hell-o-ween! I can't recall but do small parties need reservations on Hell Nights or are we fine doing a walk-in? Voicemail at ECG doesn't give Hell Night reservation specifics. Thanks!

Oct 31, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Shabu Shabu in Nashua NH

Thanks for posting. I was in the area last week and saw that they were hopping. I've probably driven by a hundred times and didn't even realize San Francisco Kitchen was there... Have you tried the sushi?

Sep 26, 2007
kittychow in All New England Archive

Brazo, Portsmouth NH

What entrees did you order?

Sep 26, 2007
kittychow in All New England Archive

Chicago Chowhound - Check my work

Impressive research! You're covering some serious ground while you're here. I might come up with one alternate ofr Saturday night if you're not feeling up to the trek to JP. It's not terribly far but with several good options near your hotel you could be easily tempted to stay closer. I'm not going to suggest where because I'm more curious to see what you come up with. ;)

Sep 03, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

cheap, easy and interesting snacks

I'm having 1/2 dozen friends up to my family lake house for the long weekend. We've got major meals pretty well covered. Fortunately I have very thoughtful hounds for friends. I'd like to have stuff to snack on around. I tend to get bogged down in high quality easy stuff, like very good cheese plates, or things that take some effort to prepare so I'm a little challenged by the prospect of providing easy snacks. Looking for cheap, easy, and INTERESTING.

I'm keeping it simple one night with a greek inspired dinner. I'll have store bought hummus, dolmades, and olives for that so those easy snacks are out. I've consider homemade guacamole and salsa but have run out of ideas beyond that.

I also don't have loads of time to prepare in advance. Tonight I'll be making the trek late so I've pretty much only got the morning before they all arrive.

Thanks in advance!

Aug 30, 2007
kittychow in Home Cooking

Vietnamese cookbooks

I have her book, "Pleasure of the Vietnamese Table" and have really enjoyed it. Pho is one of my favorite foods in the world and I learned how to make excellent stock for my own with this book (although at $5 a bowl at the restaurant it's a lot easier and less expensive to pick up). I really appreciated learning about the traditional way to eat pho and it's cultural significance.

I very much enjoy the overview of traditional prep and herbs and spices. Wonderful descriptions and easy to follow.

Aug 24, 2007
kittychow in Home Cooking

La Carreta's in Nashua - Major Downhill Alert

I went on Sunday and found the bar service to be a bit of a bummer. A decline for sure. I hesitate to blame it on the gringos since it's the first time I was there with so many native English speakers working the front of the house. Our server (one of the gringos) didn't do so well with the margaritas. If a couple of ordered - say one with salt and one without, both turned up without salt. None of the glasses were full, and one person in our party mentioned it she said that since none of us want sour mix that's the size drink we get...

Salsa was as good as ever. I had the burrito chile verde and it was good - a switch from my "usual" order. Tried the tamale and thought it was pretty disappointing- really blah. No complaint with the rice and beans. I have never enjoyed the chile rellenos there, usually too greasy for me.

Any clue if there's an ownership or management shift? The folks busing tables were familiar faces but some servers and bartenders were new and more pale than the folks I'm familiar with.

Aug 21, 2007
kittychow in Northern New England

HELP! Suggestions for Peak-of-Season Summer Party?

I second, third, fourth suggestions for corn and tomato salads. This time of year I especially like beets from the farmer's market. I roast them with a little olive oil and salt pepper and then combine with raw, thin-sliced granny smith apple, teeny bit of red onion, maytag blue cheese, and oil & vinegar. mmmm

The September issue of Bon Appetit has a recipe from Stella! in NOLA for a arugula, plum salad with goat cheese wrapped in prosciutto and a champagne vinaigrette that is DIVINE!

For dessert I'd think of a parfait. See what looks good at the farmer's market. We still have blueberries and peaches here. A yummy parfait of peaches, blueberries, vanilla whipped creams with shaved chocolate blew my mind last week.

I also enjoy smallish tomatoes, cherries, small plums halved, stuffed with roasted corn and crab. It's a lovely app and really easy to put together.

Aug 21, 2007
kittychow in Home Cooking

Rest. Week overall

I only did a couple lunches this time around and had a very good overall experience (details at: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/431647). Lunch at Harvest didn't blow my mind by any means but the oysters (ordered off regular menu), service and cocktail were extremely good.

Om hit a grand slam. Great service and wonderful food. I left very eager to return for lunch again soon.

Aug 21, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Visiting Brit

How old is he? Charlie's Kitchen and Bartley's Burger come to mind for Harvard Square options. The Deluxe in the South End isn't exactly odd but it's nice kind of quirky. Pizzeria Regina isn't really odd but the service could be diplomatically described as "quirky."

Not odd or quirky in my book, but just darn good;
Neptune Oyster
East Coast Grill (go for brunch)
Eastern Standard

Aug 21, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Harvard Square RW lunches – Harvest & Om

The RW tofu dish is really good but I think General OMs Tofu on the regular menu might be the best tofu I've ever had. Something to keep in mind for your veggie friend.

Aug 16, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Black Orchid Grille Nashua, NH

Reminds me of going out for "grown up" lunch with my grandfather. Ahhh the good ole days.

Aug 16, 2007
kittychow in Southern New England

Harvard Square RW lunches – Harvest & Om

>Harvest was okay. Before we hunkered down with the RW offerings we got a dozen Wellfleet oysters that were absolutely wonderful. We also enjoyed a tasty limoncello cocktail that had me a bit off kilter within just a few sips. Onto the RW menu… I started with the gazpacho w/lump crab. DC had the corn fritter, black beans, and arugula salad. Gazpacho was fine, nothing really spectacular happening with it. I didn’t try the salad but DC seemed to enjoy the fritters. We both had the redfish entrée, served with white beans, mushrooms, corn and basil pesto. The fish was really nice and well cooked. It had a crisp buttery skin that I enjoyed very much. The other business it was served with was kind of blah. The only dessert offering was a cassis sorbet with citrus champagne gelee. This might be one of the most appealing looking desserts I’d ever seen. Gelee jiggled but was getting a bit warm and liquid-y. Three balls of sorbet appeared to have been pre-prepped as they had a re-frozen melt on them. They were freezing cold and hard as rocks, tough to spoon, and the gelee was too warm. Nice cassis flavor, gelee complimented it fine, dessert just didn’t come off very well. All in all, a lovely visit to the patio and a reminder that I should go there when it’s not RW. Our server was great, nice sense of humor and very attentive.

>Om really delivered an outstanding RW lunch today. I Started with Melon soup with smoked trout. DC had the tempura zucchini. Soup was okay, contrasting flavors didn’t really work for me. I think the melon would have been lovely on its own. Tempura zucchini was really good. Nice light batter on zucchini strips, not a hint of greasiness. My entrée was the sweet & spicy pork with black rice and bok choy. This was amazing! Wonderfully sweet, tart, spicy, tender pork belly with perfectly cooked bok choy. DC had the crispy tofu with summer veggies. She really enjoyed it and commented that it had a nice bit of heat that lingered through dessert. I tried the tofu and really liked the coconut and spice flavors. Om just seems to “get’ tofu and how to prepare it. For dessert I got the berry parfait and DC the lychee ice cream. Parfait was heavenly. Nice rich cream with black berries, raspberries, and strawberries. I didn’t try the lychee ice cream. By the time dessert turned up I was in an altered state (pork really had me swooning). This was an absolutely terrific RW lunch; very good value and nice variety of offerings. Service was attentive and gracious. Everything was clicking for them today. I got a same-day reservation if anyone is thinking of trying to fit a RW lunch into their schedule last minute.

Aug 15, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Poll: your top 3 chow eats this week (away from home)...

1. Double thick bacon steak at ECG brunch. I've had brunch there dozens of times and never tried this before. I'm adding it to my "usual" order now. Fabulous! Smokey, porky, salty and addictive.

2. Cold lobster roll at Neptune.

3. Sweet & spicy pork at Om today. Holy cow! I wanted to lick the plate... Sinfully good pork belly is served with black rice, baby bok choy, and frizzled scallions. Probably the best thing I've ever eaten here.

Aug 15, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Raw bar tonight - Cambridge??

Might be crazy to hit up GB or ESK this week with the Sox in town. I greatly prefer ESK to GB so my advice, if you want to deal with the crowds, would be to hit ESK around 8 p.m. and try to get a couple seats at the bar. Nice roasted beet salad and terrific oysters.

I'd still stick with ECG if you're looking to get the flavor a neighborhood and a nice walk. If you head there drop into Christina's ice cream next door for something interesting that you're not likely to find elsewhere.

Aug 14, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area

Summer Shack Lobster Roll

Met up with a friend at the Alewife outpost of SS and decide to go with the lobster roll since I recalled this favorable review. I was skeptical but it was really good. I really liked the cucumber and was relieved that it wasn't too heavily dressed. It's a pretty decent size too, foot-long hot dog roll. Roll was nice and lightly buttered and grilled. Fries were also very good, piping hot and crisp. I'm not a huge Shack fan so it's nice to have found a menu item that I really like (beyond the $54 2lb lobster). Jasper was there flitting about making sure diners were enjoying. This time around the Shack delivered.

Aug 14, 2007
kittychow in Greater Boston Area