d

desuka's Profile

Title Last Reply

Local source of pastured lard?

I've gotten pastured lard from Pete & Jen's Backyard Birds based out in Concord. Not sure what retail locations might carry it closer to Boston, but it might be worth asking them.

Dec 25, 2011
desuka in Greater Boston Area

What months of the year are restaurants most likely to change/update their menus?

I hate the dead zone too. I wish I were a bigger fan of apples and winter squash. But I'm just not.

Aug 10, 2011
desuka in General Topics

What months of the year are restaurants most likely to change/update their menus?

If most changes to menus are done in response to what's in season and what's available at market, does it follow that menus are updated more frequently in the spring/summer and less frequently in the winter? Or restaurant operation-wise, do restaurants try to pace menu updates consistently throughout the year?

I feel like I have this assumption that it's either one extreme with daily menu changes, or that the changes would be made at the same pace throughout the year. Does anyone know of restaurants that update their menus more frequently in the height of the growing season and less frequently in the off-season?

I live on the east coast now having lived in the Bay Area for 10 years, so I remember well the shock of losing access to all that wonderful produce. I can't personally think of a restaurant that does this, but I also don't tend to dine out regularly enough at any one restaurant to have noticed something like that. If anyone has examples, I would love to hear it.

Aug 09, 2011
desuka in General Topics

What months of the year are restaurants most likely to change/update their menus?

I'm doing some research on restaurant operations and am trying to drill in on the months of the year when restaurants are most likely to update their menus, whether for seasonality or other reasons.

There are those restaurants that rarely change their menus aside from price updates (e.g. pizza places, delis), and then there are restaurants that change their menus daily. For the majority of restaurants that fall in between those two extremes, I'm trying to figure out if there is a pattern to when during the year restaurants are most likely to change/update their menus.

Any insights would be greatly appreciated. If related to seasonality, noting what region you're posting from would be helpful.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!

Aug 04, 2011
desuka in General Topics

Looking for a great lunch in Coolidge Corner

My favorites for lunch in Coolidge Corner are
- Rami's (falafel with hummus in pita is one of my "perfect sandwiches")
- Dorado Taco (enjoy the fish tacos)
- Genki Ya (their weekday lunch special is a real bargain, 3 rolls for something like $12 comes with soup and salad)

I go during the week as I work 10 minutes away. I can hit Rami's and/or Dorado and be back in an hour. Genki Ya is more like 1.5 hours roundtrip.

-----
Genki
398 Harvard St, Brookline, MA 02446

Aug 09, 2010
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Looking for a great lunch in Coolidge Corner

Lunch at Shiki can take a while (2+ hours last time I was there, on a weekday), just a heads up.

-----
Shiki
9 Babcock Street, Brookline, MA 02446

Aug 09, 2010
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Fresh Sardines/Brookline Family Restaurant

Rendezvous also had a regular sardine appetizer I used to get every time I went. But I just checked their online menu and it's not there anymore. I hope that doesn't mean it's gone!

Oct 13, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

My Mei Sum Failure

First of all, their tofu banh mi is outstanding, I recommend you try it! And I wanted to add that every time I've been I have never seen anyone else order a banh mi. When you first walk in, you'll wonder "do they really make banh mi here?" But don't worry -- they'll fire up the toaster for you and make one happily. They usually assemble the banh mi toward the left if you're facing the counter, where that metal cart is on the end.

Aug 28, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Shiki Kaiseki lunch

Good to know, thanks.

Jun 26, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Shiki Kaiseki lunch

Thanks for the report. I like to treat myself to the kaiseki lunch at Shiki on days I can get out of work early. The service is so slow, though, even at lunch! I had to go back out to feed the meter the last time. As I recall, the dining room was about half full with most parties ordering the set lunches. The whole lunch took just over 2 hours. I come to expect it now and make sure I have the time, so I'm not really complaining. Was the timing for your lunch similar?

Jun 25, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Board favorite restaurant veggie burgers?

All the times I went to Christopher's and never knew to order the veggie burger!

May 29, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Match Burgers and Martinis

I've been twice when others picked the place. The first time I ordered some martini off the cocktail menu and it wasn't very good, too strong. The second time I ordered some other cocktail and it was too sweet. My friend, though, ordered some delicious St. Germain and champagne concoction -- ask the server about that, it was pretty darn good. The burgers are fine, have never eaten anything else there.

You sure you wouldn't rather walk to Eastern Standard? That's what I would do.

May 27, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Board favorite restaurant veggie burgers?

I recently had the housemade veggie burger at The Druid and it was the best veggie burger I've ever had. I didn't think I liked zucchini, and there was a lot of zucchini in it, but the whole thing was delicious, lots of flavor, good texture. It also stayed together well. All in all the perfect sandwich. I eat meat, and The Druid's fish and chips are great, but I'd order this everytime I go back.

In contrast, I also recently had the vegan burger at Deep Ellum and it was truly awful. "Grilled seitan" had no flavor and strange texture. But it was the no flavor that really killed me. Never ordering that again.

I would love to hear about other great, preferably housemade, veggie burgers. I'd like to try some more.

May 27, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

best lobster roll

Got my first lobster sandwich from Alive and Kicking on Friday. It came on buttered toasted scali and was delicious. It certainly wasn't chock full of lobster, though. Decent amount of lobster, lightly dressed, flavorful meat, fresh, no celery, no lettuce, came with a bag of chips. Have no idea if it was tail or claw, I don't have enough lobster meat experience to identify. For $12.95 I'd get it again, I think it's fairly priced for how delicious it is.

May 27, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

best lobster roll

I have to agree with others that the Charlie's kitchen lobster roll had a lot of mayo and celery and the lobster itself had little lobster flavor. I'm usually all for more is better, and that price can't be beat, but I'm never getting it again. Checked off the list.

May 27, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Suckling Pig Sundays at Rendezvous

We went to Rendezvous this past Sunday -- hubbie got the Suckling Pig prix fixe (which was $42, slightly higher than the regular prix fixe price of $38) while I went with a seafood-themed regular prix fixe. The Suckling Pig prix fixe is three courses -- 2 apps and a main, no dessert. If you go with a dining companion and split like we did, it actually works out great, since two desserts is almost always too much for us. But the pacing is kind of strange. I sat there with my one finished app while he worked on his two, in succession, and I ate a lot of the delicious Iggy's sourdough. If we weren't sharing that might have been lonely for me.

On to the food itself:
Housemade mortadella plate came with 3 slices of mortadella, house mustard, some pickles, and a yummy rib chop. All very good. Salad of shaved artichoke, frisee, crispy pork skin also quite good, though I'm not sure what shaved artichoke adds except for texture (I noticed no discernible flavor and I love artichokes), and what isn't good with crispy pork skin? My crab cakes app was delicious -- two large cakes with sweet pea sauce and chili oil. Either I am mis-remembering, or this current incarnation of the crab cakes are much more generously sized than the last time I ordered them (I admit it has been a while). No complaints here.

The Suckling Pig main entree is quite a lot of meat! All preparations were juicy, tender, perfectly cooked. My favorite was the braised shoulder. Everything on the plate was surrounded by the most delicious pork broth. Luckily we had a spoon since I had ordered the seafood stew, because we drank every last drop and then soaked up the rest with more bread. The spicy seafood stew was also delicious.

Finished with the espresso semi-freddo for dessert. I love the combination of salty almond brittle and chocolate sauce. Yum.

May 27, 2009
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Gitlo's Review today in Globe

I stopped by Gitlo for the first time at 1pm today (Friday) and snagged the only open table upon arrival. I thought my timing was great, arriving just after the rush, a large party of 8 was just leaving. I was so wrong. This is possibly the worst service I've ever experienced in a Chinese establishment, and it wasn't even busy during the 45 minutes I was there.

I waited close to 10 minutes before someone decided to take my order while I sat watching 3 restaurant staff clear the table of 8 and two other tables of 2 that also left while I sat waiting. I ordered 2 items: scallop shiu mai and fried bean curd skin shrimp rolls. My shrimp rolls came out after 20 minutes (generously stuffed with shrimp and crispy skin, but not much flavor, wouldn't order again). It took another 10 minutes to get the shiu mai. After I finished the 1st course and was still waiting for the 2nd course, I sat there sort of staring/watching Gitlo and two of his staff talking amongst themselves in Cantonese at the cash register. They looked over at me after they realized I was watching them and brought me the check. I told the waitress I wasn't waiting for the check, I was waiting for my food! Confused looks as they asked about the shiu mai -- turns out it was ready and sitting to be delivered, I could see them sitting on a tray in the back. Still slightly warm when I ate them (pretty tasty but not much scallop, I'd order them again if I ever come back).

StriperGuy, I think you came in with a friend while I was eating my 1st course. You were just getting your food while I was getting my 2nd course. I think by then there were only 3-5 people still dining.

The food was good, but not mind-blowing. The service was *that* bad. And my other pet peeve about this place? Lukewarm tea that has so many tea leaf-bits floating in it that never sank that I felt I had to check my teeth after drinking it. Get a strainer!

Mar 28, 2008
desuka in Greater Boston Area

ISO a good corn muffin

The 2x I've been to Canto 6 I have not seen the corn muffin, but I'll definitely try to go on the earlier side next time and seek it out.

Nov 18, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

ISO a good corn muffin

I love the ones at Petsi Pies in Somerville (near Porter Sq). Hearty yet moist, and they have that slightly coarse corn-mealy-ness you're looking for. Not too sweet. They are filled with a bit of raspberry jam, not your "typical" raspberry jam, but a wonderful thick jam that perfectly complements the muffin. This corn muffin is so good I haven't looked for a better one since discovering it.

Nov 17, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

And What a Crawl It Was!

That's definitely the address for the restaurant in Chelsea. It's the one on the cart, and he confirmed that day.

Aug 20, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Weekend chow - Ortanique, Santarpio, Canto 6, Plough & Stars

Wow, all those tomatoes and fruit from one week's share? Which CSA are you a member of?

Aug 20, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

And What a Crawl It Was!

Thanks for the write-up, fredid. My favorite discovery of the day were the arepitas de yuca we had at our first stop, Cafeteria Tropical. These were fried yuca patties flavored with anise (I think anise oil or extract maybe because there were no visible fennel seeds in their version). Delicious! I would definitely go back to this place and get those again. Also while we were there I saw several people order a whole fried fish with a tomato-based sauce of some kind. I'd order that next time.

My other favorite was the ceviche tostada at Tacos el Charro. A very balanced ceviche, good texture and acid. Nice crunch of the tostada.

It was a wonderful 5 hours and $10 spent. Thanks to Limster for making it happen.

Aug 18, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Cambridge/Boston for the weekend

if you do go to Charlie's Kitchen, I would recommend not getting the lobster roll there. so much mayo, the bun was just a bun (untoasted, unbuttered). i wouldn't want your girlfriend to think that's what a lobster roll was supposed to be like.

Aug 17, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

YoMa menu suggestions?

I remember seeing a sign about "summer hours" and no lunch service. This was on a weekday. It made me think once the fall rolled around they might start serving lunch again.

Aug 17, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Opinions on local meat producers and meat CSAs?

I have been a happy Chestnut Farms CSA member since March. I signed up for a year at 10 lbs/month. Pickups are monthly in the lot that the Arlington Farmer's Market is located; during market season you can pick up your share as well as shop at the market on Wednesdays. Best part is that even though you sign up for a 6-month or 12-month share in advance, you pay in monthly installments when you pick up your meat. Makes budgeting easier for us.

We've gotten a mix of beef, pork, chicken and a bit of lamb (more lamb coming in the fall). I've loved the beef and pork the most and can really taste the difference. Really couldn't be happier with the whole arrangement. I have tracked what we've gotten each month and can send you the spreadsheet if you want more details. Just leave an email.

Aug 14, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Midwest Grill vs. Green Field: Which is the best Churrascaria?

Hopefully someone else can confirm, but I think Green Field is closed. I thought I saw a sign in it saying it had been purchased by "Shabu Zen, Inc." This was a few weeks ago.

I also tried Midwest Grill for the first time on a busy Saturday night a few weekends back. After waiting an hour for seats (after being quoted a 20-min wait time), we got seats in the main room (the better room for meat traffic). Had a great time -- loved the short ribs and I have to admit, the garlic bread. Who eats bread at an all-you-can-eat meat place? It was that good.

Aug 14, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Where to dine pre Pops?

I second Pan Thai for good cheap thai noodles -- especially their Seafood Basil Noodle dish. I ordered that often when I worked in the area. Also, Moby Dick's on Huntington next to Pho & I for Persian (lamb kabab, swordfish special). Always seemed deserted for lunch, but the food is good. Service not the best and I always got takeout. Slow, but mostly because it's made to order.

Aug 13, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area

Banh mi?

I've never tried the Le's tofu bahn mi b/c I love the Mei Sum tofu so much, but will try it next time I'm in Chinatown. Have you compared to the Mei Sum version? The $3 tofu bahn mi from Pho Viet in the Super 88 food court doesn't compare at all -- it was totally bland.

Aug 08, 2007
desuka in Greater Boston Area