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Good, not touristy

Thanks, Kathryn.

Once Christmas is over, I'll have a bit more time to check out the media. Thanks for giving such a comprehensive list.Your point about tourists is a good one--we're not looking to be the only out-of-towners in the place!!

We'll be staying very close to the Museum of Modern Art, so are thinking of having one meal there--reviews and menu both look good.

Dec 23, 2012
phoebek in Manhattan

Good, not touristy

My husband and I are coming to NY for 3 days early in January. It's been about a decade since we've been there, but we used to be frequent visitors. We enjoy many cuisines--Mediterranean, Mexican, Thai, Italian, etc., and most especially enjoy finding excellent but little-known places that cater to "natives." We're staying in Midtown, and probably won't have time to make it outside Manhattan. Suggestions?

Dec 23, 2012
phoebek in Manhattan

8/16/10; EGGPLANT, How Do I Love Thee?Let Me Count the Ways

Baingan Bhartha at Punjab in Arlington

Aug 22, 2010
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Jose's Cambridge recent experience

That's definitely sub-par. I used to like the chiles rellenos at Jose's, and IIRC, the serving size was 2 peppers.

Jun 22, 2009
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Reservations for Taranta Friday 6/26- what should we order?

I was there a couple of weeks ago. Definitely get the mussels for an appetizer. I had the grilled trout--don't remember if it was a special that night, but it was wonderful. DCs had the tuna and the salmon--everyone was more than satisfied. Enjoy!

Jun 22, 2009
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Silver Spring recs

Thanks to everyone for these recommendations. It'll take the pressure off having to go back and forth into DC.

Jun 19, 2009
phoebek in Washington DC & Baltimore

Silver Spring recs

We'll be staying in Silver Spring for a family wedding at the end of June. Though I imagine we'll spend a fair amount of time in DC, I'm wondering if there are any stand-out places in Silver Spring itself. Our hotel is in downtown SS--Fenton St. We like many different types of food, but are not keen on steakhouses or sushi. Any info or recommendations greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Jun 18, 2009
phoebek in Washington DC & Baltimore

What do you call...?

Early-bird special!

Feb 21, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

People's weird idea of "dinner"

I won't add anything to the many good responses you've already gotten, but here's something that might make you chuckle: Good friends once invited my husband and me for dinner at their home, and when we arrived, we learned that they had made (drum roll, please) RESERVATIONS! No explanation, no apology, no offer to treat us. We were somewhat in shock, but went along with the plan.

Feb 21, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Is Craigie brunch kid friendly?

Understandably, but I think there's a difference between kid-friendly and kid-focused. If a kids' menu is what people are looking for, there are other places to go.

Feb 21, 2009
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Is Craigie brunch kid friendly?

I seriously hope not.

Feb 20, 2009
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

the friendly toast opening in cambridge!

I agree. Love the FT in Portsmouth, wish them nothing but the best in Cambridge. Yeah, it's not pristine, but better than the old Someday!

Feb 20, 2009
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Why do we suddenly need to confirm plans?!?

Yes, queencru, as it turned out, you were absolutely correct. My friend had responded by email, but for some reason it never came through. In the end, we went forward with the dinner party and had a lovely time! Lesson learned: always follow up by phone.

Feb 09, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Why do we suddenly need to confirm plans?!?

I understand that people don't always respond to emails promptly, but this person usually emails her dinner/party invitations and has internet access both at home and work. I've also tried to call, but got the message that their voicemail box was full.

Feb 05, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Why do we suddenly need to confirm plans?!?

I think that's a great idea, but I'm likely to see my friend (the wife) today, so I'm planning to be assertive and tell her that since we didn't hear from them, we made other plans.

Feb 05, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Why do we suddenly need to confirm plans?!?

Your situation seems quite weird to me. What I find difficult to deal with is what I call "noncommittal guests." Here's a prime example: We invited another couple over for dinner approximately a month ago, as that was the first free weekend for everyone. About a week after the invitation was extended, the wife says, "I think we can make it. . ." A week or so later, she says, "I think we can make it. . ." Then nothing. About a week before the date, I send an email, confirming the date and giving a time. No response. 3-4 days later, I send a second email. No response. I'm hoping that I'm correct in assuming that they're not coming, because at this point, it would be pretty difficult for me to feel anything but annoyed. Has anyone else encountered this type of situation?

Feb 04, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Bathroom Attendants

Nope, you're not unusual. I find it irritating, too. And if I don't take my purse into the bathroom, I just smile apologetically, and say, "sorry, I left my purse at the table."

Jan 28, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Funny food names

Snickerdoodles.

Jan 28, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

When a waiter asks: "How is everything?" do you ever tell him "not good?"

Years ago, I responded, "meh," and the server was really taken aback. I don't remember exactly what the issue was--nothing really horrible, I'm sure--but we ended up being comped coffee and dessert, which I thought was an incredibly generous response on the part of the restaurant.

Jan 28, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Recipe Software

Here's what I do--Rather than type in recipes, I only keep lists of ingredients as Word files--one folder for apps, one for soups, one for veggies, entrees, etc. On the ingredient list I note where the recipe is located (anything from Julia Child's books to "blue folder" ). This makes it relatively simple to plan menus and pull together a shopping list. I don't blame you for not wanting to pay for recipes you don't want!

Jan 28, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

How to tactfully avoid inviting others.

Perhaps you could enlist the help of the restaurant owners, management, etc. Let them know that under no circumstances do you want the other couple seated with you. If that doesn't work, and Mr and Mrs. Mooch still try to impose their unwanted selves on you, perhaps you could tell them that you and your fellow diners are having a confidential discussion and would not be comfortable having them there. I know it sounds harsh, but you needn't be apologetic.

Jan 28, 2009
phoebek in Not About Food

Bottles for homemade liqueur

Right on MC Slim! I wandered over to China Fair in Cambridge and found exactly what I was looking for--they have 1 L, .5 L, and .25 L sizes, all with those Grolsch-like stoppers. The bottles are from Italy, seem sturdy, and are quite attractive. Prices ranged from 1.99 for the small bottle to 3.49 for the big one--maybe not the cheapest alternative, but I only needed a few.

Nov 26, 2008
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Bottles for homemade liqueur

A great suggestion-thanks!

Nov 21, 2008
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Bottles for homemade liqueur

Can anyone recommend a place to buy a small quantity (maybe 6-8) 375 ml bottles? I've checked at the beer making supply place in North Cambridge, and the minimum they'll sell is a case of 24.

Nov 21, 2008
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Serving lamb shanks

That's what I think, too. The ones I got are not very big, but still look like a lot of meat to me. I totally appreciate the drama of serving the whole thing, but then, what do I do if someone leaves a substantial quantity?? I'm not sure I'd want to eat or serve the leftovers. . .

Nov 14, 2008
phoebek in Home Cooking

Tuna Salad Sandwiches

My friend Pamela's version--it is terrific. Water-packed white tuna mixed with a little mayo (Hellman's, I think), diced pear, and a handful of raisins. Serve with lettuce on best quality oatmeal bread. Sorry not to have measurements--we just play it by ear. . .

Nov 13, 2008
phoebek in Home Cooking

Serving lamb shanks

I just bought some lovely lamb shanks at our local farmers' market. I haven't cooked them before, but I've got lots of ideas and recipes to try. One rather elementary question looms, however. Since not everyone would be able to eat an entire shank, is it permissible to serve the meat off the bone? How do you serve them?

Nov 13, 2008
phoebek in Home Cooking

Jose's Cambridge recent experience

I don't even remember what I had the last time I was there (a few months back), but what really struck me was the relatively high price for a pretty weak margarita. I know the food is nothing to get excited about, but I'd rather go to Rudy's in Teele Square and get one of theirs--even one made with Rudy's house tequila is better.

Nov 11, 2008
phoebek in Greater Boston Area

Serving only beer & wine at a party.

Amen.

Nov 09, 2008
phoebek in Not About Food

Mama Maria booked - Taranta, Mistral or where else?

I'm so glad you had a good experience at Prezza, because that's one of my favorites. I'd also agree with Ralphie (below) that Taranta is another good choice.

Nov 03, 2008
phoebek in Greater Boston Area