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Five Favorite Places to Eat Among Frequent/Veteran CH Posters?

Slim, I think the point is NOT to qualify here: value priced, high-end, whatever, all lumped together.
Also seems that all-timers (including defunct) would be another thread (OP specified five faves "as of this moment").
My five:
O Ya (have only been twice, but wow)
Tacos Lupita
Garden at the Cellar
Toro
FuLoon

Jan 23, 2010
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

El Pelon coming to Brookline

Does anyone know how long Jim Hoben has owned El Pelon?
Because when I was a frequent customer (at least once a week from '99 to '05), the owner was Nate Walker. Not saying it won't be up to par, but interesting information nonetheless.

Aug 03, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Food Spots Broadcasting the Tour de France

Redbones in Davis Square, Somerville, has always made a big deal out of broadcasting the race and hosting events relating to it. Not sure if they still do...

Jul 07, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Eastern Standard sub-par

Was there about a week ago and had a fair-to-middling lobster roll (it may have been a special?). Meat was lightly dressed, tasted fairly fresh but was mostly the stringier body meat, and the roll itself was awful: big and doughy, way out of proportion for the amount of meat, and not toasted or buttered. The sandwich was also also not seasoned properly. Homemade chips were good, though, and cocktails superb.

Jun 22, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Top 25 Pizza Places in USA

I have insider information that Alan Richman did indeed eat pizza at the original Regina. No information, apologetically, as to why he left it off the list.

Jun 03, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Tupelo in Cambridge

I dined at Tupelo on Friday night. Shared the grits cubes (good, but not a knockout) and deviled crab salad (very good, but so spicy that there wasn't much crab flavor) for apps. I had the gumbo as my main and thought it was good, but again, not a knockout. (I haven't done much eating in NOLA and must admit that I'm not sure gumbo is ever a knockout; seems more like solid comfort food to me, and this version was certainly solid.) Wife had the daube, and THAT was a homerun; really incredible flavor on the beef. We were seated at at table in the bar and it was too loud to stay for dessert (especially with Christina's a block away). Overall, was quite impressed and will return; I definitely want to eat my way through more of the menu. Portions large but manageable, and great value.

May 31, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Scotch Bonnet Chile Source

Monday afternoons, located in the parking lot behind the Harvest Co-op and Central Kitchen.

May 26, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Flap Steak

Whole Foods carries it regularly, both cut into tips/strips and as whole steaks.
It is recognizable by its coarse, loose grain (part of the reason it takes so well to marinades, according to some).

May 26, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Scotch Bonnet Chile Source

I know it's not open yet, the but the callaloo guy at the Central Square farmer's market has them in the summer months; inexpensive (I think I've bought bags of 6 for $2) and literally mind-blowing.

May 26, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

o ya suggestions

Hamachi with banana pepper mousse.
Lather, rinse, repeat as needed.
(And, should you need dessert, go elsewhere.)

Apr 06, 2009
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

East Coast Grill - Skip if You Like Barbecue

I'm not generally a brisket fan, and I have noticed a disturbing inconsistency regarding the regular ribs (not the wet bones) at ECG, but in my opinion their pulled pork in the best in the city. Smoky, tender, moist, and just lightly dressed in Eastern N.C.-style vinegar sauce. Haven't had the burnt ends.

Jun 25, 2008
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

sandwiches around Cambridge/Somerville for dinner...

You could pull yourself a pork (or chicken) sandwich to go from Redbones--and down a nice pint while you wait for your order to come up. You can also buy a pint of meat and make your own sandwiches at home, if that's your thing. I'm not saying it's the area's best 'cue, but even a B/B+ (about where Redbones' 'cue averages out for me) pulled pork sammy is pretty good. I'll also have to put in a word for the tortas at Tacos Lupita...

Jun 24, 2008
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

$8 Challenge

El Pelon's tacos caramelos are seared skirt steak, melted cheese, guacamole, fresh salsa, and their magnificent homemade hot sauce stuffed into two corn tortillas. Simple and sublime.

Mar 11, 2008
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

$8 Challenge

Many of my favorite cheap eats already posted, but...

Tacos caramelos ($5.75 the last time I was there, pre-fire) at El Pelon. Firey, meaty, and delicious. And you have $$$ for chips and salsa or a horchata...

A couple of slices from Brookline Spa.

Feb 26, 2008
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Clio vs. L'espalier: Boston's Best?

Can you tell us more about your expectations?
It's a rough classification, but one could say that Clio represents a more modern, globally-influenced culinary experience (lots of Asian flavors, architectural plating, a flirtation with molecular gastronomy), while L'Espalier kicks it more tradionally old school French. If it were me, I'd follow chrisinroch's lead and go to No. 9, but that's mostly a matter of personal preference—you can't go wrong at any of the three.

Feb 18, 2008
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Delivery to Union Square

I have tried the new China Delight, and noticed no improvement. That said, it's not HORRIBLE, just the typically Americanized, middling Chinese food many of us grew up on. As an aside, I was surprised to find their new bar full of patrons from Razzy's down the block—not sure that's what the owners had in mind with new bar space.

Jan 18, 2008
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Sel de la Terre - advice

Was just there again last week; I remain a huge fan of SDLT. Agree that despite the location—and plenty of out-of-towners dining regularly—this is not a touristy restaurant.

I second the charcuterie plate rec; always changing, always good. Both the diver scallop and crab cake appetizers are staples for me—nice first course portions of very carefully prepared seafood (crab cakes not too bready, and with a spicy remoulade on the side).

I have a hard time not ordering the short rib entree in the colder months—just had it last week, and it was as good as ever: tender, meaty, and rich. One DC ordered the chicken and said it was fine, if unimpressive and a tad dry in places. Wife's duck breast entree was sublime. Steak frites is a ribeye here, which is not my favorite cut for this dish, but another DC ordered it and loved it. In the past, we've also found the salmon (Scottish, I think) to be very good.

For desserts, cheese plate is always lovely and thoughtfully composed. There is also some sort of dessert sampler that is great for a group.

Dec 11, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

What do you think of the redesigned Improper Bostonian?

As far as food news (restaurant openings, chef shifting, etc.), the Imroper is a fine enough resource, no better or worse than Stuff@Night, Boston Mag, etc. (this stuff is mostly just paraphrased from press releases). Their restaurant reviewer, who did not have a column that I saw in my quick perusal of the redesigned mag, is a joke.

Dec 04, 2007
garlic breath in Food Media & News

Brookline Village Fish Replacement

Orrinoco (sp?), same owners as in the South End, is what I've heard.
Paper still up on windows, very little sign of activity inside during the day.

Nov 29, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Drinks @ Mass Ave + Rt. 16?

Rudy's in Teele Sq. isn't far from your target location; it gets mixed reviews on this board, but I think it has decent Mexican food and a nice selection of tequilas (they might, however, look at you funny if you order a martini). Sabur, also in Teele Square, might fit your needs better, and you can park in their lot.

Oct 10, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

The Independent, Somerville - worst meal in a long time

Sorry your experience was so bad.

I am a regular--drinks once a week, and dinner twice a month--and I am still occasionally disappointed by the food. They seem to hit the mark 85% of the time, but that 15% really hurts because I want it to be better. Agree that beer selection is very nice.

I think the chef is talented but a little lazy--the menu changes infrequently, and often features things way out of season (braised short ribs with mashed potato in July?), and the staff (including bartenders and servers) can be hit or miss.

Oct 08, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Doing one thing, and doing it right

Charcarero and ASSBAR immediately come to mind.

Jul 31, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Great meal at (the unjustly ragged on) Sonsie

Joanie, I have also found the food at Sonsie to be reliably good. I've heard several other chefs sing the praises of Bill Poirier, who I believe cooked at Seasons under Lydia Shire and Jasper White. I do find the scene at Sonsie to be distracting, and the waitstaff to occasionally be preoccupied with things other than service, but I've always enjoyed the food.

Jul 19, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Redbones: Harviestoun Old Engine Oil; fried oysters; portobello burger

Actually, unless I'm terribly mistaken, Ommegang Hennipin is NOT a Rogue product; the Rogues are from Oregon, and the Ommegang beers are brewed in NY.
Also, I must admire your dice at claiming that the Ipswich beers are "the best microbews ever made in New England," AND that that "the Mercury/Ipswich oatmeal stout makes all the Irish stouts taste like water." I'm not gonna pick the fights, but you have thrown down some fightin' words, my brave brother. Protect your soft spots...

Jul 17, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Fried clam confession (and a few other nibbles)

For the first 10 years I lived in Boston, I thought fried clam perfection was found only at Woodman's. After one too many bad fry jobs (and one unspeakable atrocity I saw in the kitchen--you don't want to know), my wife and I swtiched our allegiance to the Clam Box. Not impressed with a few years worth of long lines and mediocre food, my fellow 'hounds directed me to both Farnham's and then Essex Seafood...but still I was unfulfilled (under-frying, soggy coatings, clams of questionable quality). And then one day last fall, I was dragged into Tom Shea's (an old-school sit-down joint across the street from Woodman's), and, with low expectations, ordered the fried clam plate. I've been back to order the same thing three times, and in my mind, these are the best fried clams around--with an unbeatable price (I was there yesterday, and the plate was $13.95). Crispy but light coating with a crunch that holds, unfailably (okay, so I'm 4 out of 4, but still...) plump, fresh, fat-bellied bivalves--declicous. And the fries are fresh-cut (I think) and nicely fried (no rings). I gotta say, I'm a believer. Especially with Ipswich Ale on tap to accompany, and a clean (if a little outdated) dining room. Now that I have that off my chest...

Hit Cambridge 1 Fenway before the game on Thursday; the place was empty at 6. My wife and I both ordered half pizzas (only pizzas and salads on the menu, per Cambridge 1 Cambridge). I had the half lobster pizza with corn and scallions, which was tasty but not quite worth the $13--lobster meat had a chew that whispered "frozen," but did have a subtle sweetness that worked well with the corn and scallion (especially with a good glug of the chile oil they have on the tables). Wife enjoyed her sopressata pie with fontina. Both pies featured their signature "grilled," (quotes because these pies sure seem like they're baked in a very hot oven) ultra-thin crusts. Tasty enough, and fast service (there were only a few other tables at 6 pm), but somehow not as satisfying as Audobon (same ownership group, and a block away). Maybe it's the miminalist decor, but it just seemed to be without a soul.

Had an ASSBAR lunch today of their gobbler (turkey, stuffing, cranberry) and a pressed "hot" Italian cold-cut sandwich dressed with a chopped olive salad. Cranberry was the weak link; tasted like some rookie tried to "spice it up" with ginger and coriander, and it just didn't work. Italian was tasty but brought no heat. We got ours to go, but were surprised that it was packed at 12:30.

Jul 15, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Brunch at the Independent

I personally haven't tried the Indo's brunch, but I have seen that the head chef, Paul O., is there during brunch--hopefully an indication that the food is more than an afterthought.

BTW, had a smoked pork chop there recently that was top-notch; waitress mentioned that chef Paul is hooked on smoking pork, and to expect more smoked menu items throughout the summer. Count me in...

Jun 30, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

the full comp -- new boston industry-insider hilariawesomeness

Agreed; I was on board, amused, and a little addicted for a few weeks. That crazy and malicious post the other day set off major warning signals that something was amiss. Looking back, there were other warning signals that I ignored because I was having so much fun reading. It seems to be no secret who the "creative" force was behind the blog, and what their true intentions were all along. I think MC Slim chimed in with the noblest of intentions; none of us had any idea that the blog would get so freaky, mean, and spiteful so suddenly.

May 03, 2007
garlic breath in Food Media & News

old-fashioned health food stores?

Also try Cambridge Naturals in the Porter Square shopping center (the bookstore next door sells Petsie's baked goods!); I know they sell bulk herbs for tea.

May 01, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Essential Boston?

To add to the surreality (did I just make up that word?), Malcolm X, Ho Chi Min, AND Emeril Lagasse all worked at the Parker House. Talk about strange bedfellows...

Apr 20, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area

Boston's Best Neighborhood Spots

Some Cambridge joints that fit the bill are the bar at Chez Henri, Plough & Stars, Atwood's, West Side Lounge (although not sure who is cooking there now), and Green Street (also preferrably--for me--at the bar). The Independent in Union Square, Somerville, can be quite good. All are establishments with lots of local character.

Apr 17, 2007
garlic breath in Greater Boston Area