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MaxEntropy's Profile

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Say "au revoir" to Rendezvous

Amen to that! It's been a fascinating ride.

about 15 hours ago
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Say "au revoir" to Rendezvous

Thanks for the refresher! I think 798 Main was still owned by Frankel? Guessing you might be a Polaroid alum?

about 16 hours ago
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Say "au revoir" to Rendezvous

Prior to Salts, the space on Main Street was Panache, which was cutting edge at the time (and to this hound, much better than Salts). I recall having to deliver a check in advance for a party of four at Panache. For a bit of interesting history see
http://events.nytimes.com/mem/nycrevi...

Google "Bruce Frankel Boston chef" for more history.

about 16 hours ago
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Say "au revoir" to Rendezvous

Well, all good things must come to an end. Boston Restaurant Talk reports that Steve Johnson is selling Rendezvous:
http://bostonrestaurants.blogspot.com...

Thanks to Steve for all the wonderful meals, both at Rendezvous and The Blue Room. I contend that his roast chicken with Morrocan spices during his tenure at The Blue Room was the best bird, ever. Hammersley's notwithstanding.

Apr 18, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area
1

Looking for replacement in Harvard Sq. for Chez Henri, Casablanca, etc.

OC - was racking my brain to try to remember the name of Voyagers - thanks. It had a nice run - who were the principals behind it?

Mar 23, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Looking for replacement in Harvard Sq. for Chez Henri, Casablanca, etc.

Ah yes, Ferdinand's! Ha' Penney shared a kitchen with Blue Parrot -or was it Ferdinand's? - at lunch they would offer a special or two from upstairs at a very reasonable tariff - hence very popular with students! I fondly remember the early days at Harvest, the great food and all the great chefs who passed through that kitchen. I still have furniture and fabric from D/R. We owe Ben and Jane Thompson a great debt of gratitude.

Mar 20, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Looking for replacement in Harvard Sq. for Chez Henri, Casablanca, etc.

I think your muffin place may have been "Mug 'n Muffin"...my hangout as well for a while. Breakfast 3 times a week right after applied math. And as other CH's have pointed out, the Spanish place was Iruna. Remember Blue Parrot and Ha Penney (downstairs from Blue Parrot)? During the blizzard of '78, Blue Parrot was not only open for business, but someone in the kitchen was a serious cross-country skier and hauled fresh produce from the wholesale market in Chelsea. And does anyone remember Oxford Ale House, formerly in the Border Cafe space?

Mar 19, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Lucien Robert

News of the passing of Lucien Robert brings back fond memories of Maitre Jacques and Maison Robert. Some funny memories, too, like the night the captain set the table aflame along with the Crepes Suzette. Never ever a disappointing experience. RIP, Lucien.

https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle...

Mar 05, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area
1

Social - Newton Cornet

Finally made it and unfortunately I now understand the lack of chatter. In a nutshell, high aspirations, poor execution. Tuna tartare featured excellent ingredients, but there was too much going on (scallions, tuna, tobiko, seaweed salad, lime/wasabi sorbet, two sauces...). Bib salad with "goat cheese vinaigrette" lacked any discernible goat cheese. Chicken lollipops were accompianied by shredded celery and carrots, a strange nod to buffalo wings that was difficult to manage. Adult potato chips oozed grease and the creme fraiche was tasteless. A fine piece of Atlantic salmon was expertly grilled, but I can't say the same for the aspargus that came with it, grilled to limp submission. The tomato bisque - lobster grilled cheese app was perhaps the best-executed plate we sampled; simple, straightforward, and tasty. Sevice was fine. My father described his first trip to France as a failed mission to find a bad Sancerre. I'm sad to report that my mission to find a bad Gruner Veltliner was successful here. The abundance of TVs gives a sports bar vibe, as does the excellent beer list. Had much higher hopes.

Jan 24, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Ribelle: Early Bird Bargain

We may be among the last Boston-area foodies to the table, but we finally made it to Ribelle for the early-bird with 4 adults and two 9-year olds. We were just going to order pasta for the kids, but we ended up getting them the special for them, too. It essentially meant the rest of us were getting 4-for-40, so we were able to sample widely. First the kids: the bolognese proved a bit challenging for them both (both are pretty adventurous), but a request for simple pasta with butter was quickly and graciously fulfilled. Now the adults: the mood brightened immediately with the cocktails. Sweetness appropriately subdued, interesting savory components. Grandpa's whisker's, with carmelized onions, seemed an acquired taste to most, but fortunately one in our party had acquired it, and thought it fantastic. The wine program is quirky but fun. The sparkling gruner veltliner was unusual and refreshing; a syrah/cab/grenache/something else blend for $26 was a quaffable bargain. The cheese toast with shosito peppers was lip-smacking (as mentioned above), my SO raved about the escarole, but the majority vote for winner was the rigatoni with octopus. The olive oil ice cream was better than we expected - we finished 2 bowls. Service: no issues. They seem to have a good teamwork ethos going. Sound level: energetic, but not off-putting. I noticed sound-absorbing panels in the roof, which our waiter said had been installed about 6 weeks prior.
Ironically we lived about 25 yards away from this place when it was possibly the worst Indian restaurant in town. Ribelle is a winner. And we concur that the 3-for-30 early-bird special is probably the best deal around.

Jan 05, 2014
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Sources for an Aquavit tasting?

Do you have a source for Kranzekage? Craving some right now.

Dec 20, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

December 2013 Openings and Closings

No! It was the only grown-up place at the Natick Collection. Sad. I guess you can't survive in a mall unless you cater to everyone.

Dec 20, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

December 2013 Openings and Closings

I'll miss both.

Julia Child was a consultant at Turner when it first opened. I lunched there whenever I was attending a convention at one of the Copley Place hotels, but not since August 2012. It was a respite from the crowds elsewhere, and the lobster roll was pretty decent.

My SO will especially miss the soups at Market. They had Jean George's knack for making vegetable infusions rich without resorting to fat. The salmon sous vide unlocked textures I wouldn't have thought possible - silky. We are popping in for one last visit on their penultimate night. After that it's back to Midtown Manhattan for our Jean George fix.

Dec 20, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Help me decide where to cry about my advanced age.

Why not O Ya? Get Mr. Swank to pony up the $$$.

You'll love Sycamore - the "boards" run toward funky. And the cassoulet has a seriously satisfying funk. Start off with Scott's "Ghost of Mary".

Dec 11, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Social - Newton Cornet

Anyone been to Social in Newton Corner? Menu posted on Open Table looks interesting.

Dec 04, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area
1

Chowhound red herrings

The Blue Room decline is unfortunate. I suspect a major cause is Nick Zappia no longer spends much time there. The opening of Central Bottle may be the reason.

Dec 04, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

State of the French Bistro - 2013?

Tempts me to opine about Sycamore. My SO was a devotee of the Ghost of Mary at Great Bay. Needless to say she was thrilled to see it at Sycamore, thanks to Scott, the inventor, landing there.

Don't want Steve Johnson to think we love him any less, though. For her 9th b'day dinner, our daughter requested Rendezvous.

Nov 19, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

State of the French Bistro - 2013?

Love Johnson's cassoulet. Also just tried the cassoulet at Sycamore. A bit drier than Rendezvous but a seriously satisfying funkiness.

Nov 18, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

July 2013 Openings and Closings

drove by this evening (11/14) and there were diners...

Nov 14, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

A tasting of local French macarons: Formaggio Kitchen, Whole Foods, Tous Les Jour, Violette Bakery

When you get to Paris, don't miss Pierre Herme.

Or you can order them online,
http://www.pierreherme.com/products.html

Nov 13, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Cook in Newtonville

Made a first visit to Cook for brunch on Saturday with SO and daughter. Called ahead for an 11 AM rez, but probably unnecessary as there were only 3 other tables occupied when we arrived. It was starting to fill when we left a bit after noon, though. Sampled the shrimp taco - fried, but light and delicate - and the lobster slider - a bit more mayonnaise than I prefer, but on a nice brioche mini-bun. I had the smoked salmon Benedict, a generous portion with tangy chive hollandaise. SO had the hash, also a generous portion with house made corned beef than was not overly salty, a plus. Sampled a couple of brunch cocktails; fresh squeezed juices provided a solid base. Service was solicitous, but still learning the ropes. Looking forward to a return trip for dinner. A great addition to the neighborhood.

Oct 06, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Lacking a "go-to" restaurant

Have to second Rendezvous. SO and I fell in love with Steve's food during his Blue Room days. He is indeed always there, and "adults are in charge". My antidote for a rough day is the chilled shellfish salad and cucumber cocktail.

Jul 30, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

July 2013 Openings and Closings

From the May 21 agenda for the Newton Licensing Commision:
NEW RESTAURANT ALL ALCOHOL, COMMON VICTUALLER AND WEEKLY ENTERTAINMENT:
Application filed by Newton Corner Restaurant Concepts, LLC, d/b/a Social Restaurant and Bar, Jeffrey Denecke, 28Gertrude Street, Watertown, MA. 02472. To be exercised at 320 Washington Street, Newton. MA. 02458. Hours of Operation from: Monday – Sunday 11:00 A.M. – 1:00 A.M. Entertainment will include Recorded Music, live Bands and 8 Televisions. 7 days. Seating (172 )

Jul 28, 2013
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area

Brewer's Coalition in Newtonville hitting it's stride

We watched the crowds descending on this new arrival for a couple of weeks before deciding to give it a try on a recent Sunday night. 4 adults + 2 kids, seated right away around 6:30. A surprisingly nice selection of craft beers, 20 on tap and many more bottled. Half price wings on Sunday are worthy contenders. Excellent kids menu, healthy options including a nice grilled salmon with rice pilaf. SO and I both had the fish tacos, a generous portion with grilled (not fried) cod, spicy aioli, outstanding. A DC had the attractive crab cake and shrimp salad, and reported favorably. Anxious to get back to try that and explore the rest of the menu. A welcome addition to the neighborhood.

Sep 24, 2012
MaxEntropy in Greater Boston Area