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Best ice cream in Boston is..


You don't have long to wait.

According to Hillards' website, their homemade ice cream is available in its North Easton store from the Friday after Easter until the end of October.

I enjoy having a sundae in their comfy "old fashioned ice cream parlor" . When I have less time to linger, I'll settle for a cone.

Can't wait for the new season to begin.

Ice cream used to be available as take-out only in their now-closed Canton store. Nor sure if it is available in the new Mansfield location.

about 23 hours ago
shutterbugRI in Greater Boston Area

Ogunguit / Perkins Cove / Gloucester

This board, Southern New England, doesn't cover northern Massachusetts or Maine.

You might have better luck with the Boston and Northern New England boards.

Best ice cream in Boston is..


Thanks for catching my slip-up.

Without the website those not familiar with Ron's (Hyde Park location) wouldn't know of its unusual set up with the ice cream counter on one side and bowling lanes on the other. I have been to parties there. What a great combination: bowling and ice cream cake.

Best ice cream in Boston is..

Here are some not great but really good ice cream venues in the South End and south of downtown Boston:

Picco, South End. I enjoyed the malted vanilla ice cream with dark chocolate chips

Ron's Hyde Park with a seasonal location in Dedham: coffee, chocolate chip, as well as ice cream cakes.

Hillarrds, North Easton. Ice cream is available the Friday after Easter though October, My favorite is coconut almond delight. Along with a vast array of chocolate candies they make their own chocolate jimmies. (The Canton site has been closed and replaced with a location in Mansfield.



Late Night Cocktails and Small Bites in Providence

It was time again to find a place for drinks after a theater performance. My DC and I like to try new venues and our first choice was the bar at Garde de la Mer in the G Building on Dorrance Street. They couldn't guarantee the bar would be open past 11:00 pm, despite the lure of "extended bar hours", so we narrowed our choices to The Grange on Broadway and Ogie's Trailer Park on Westminster both of which have late hours.

The Grange being the closer of the two was our first stop. In other lives it was the Leon's on the West Side and Turtle Soup. Being a corner lot, the space is framed by windows onto Broadway and Dean Street adding light to the mellow interior with its dark wood furnishings. We decided to stay.

We sat at the comfortable bar framed by colorful over-hanging glass bottle lighting. My DC chose the Grange's version of the rum-based Dark and Stormy with its own house-made ginger beer and some essence of vanilla A complex delicious Dark and Stormy.

I decided on Dealer's Choice giving the friendly and knowledgeable bartender latitude to rift on its house-made ginger beer. What a rift: Barr Hill gin,
ginger beer, freshly squeezed lemon juice, house bitters, Meletti amaro (a blend of aromatic herbs), Peychaud's bitters, and a garnish of lemon peel. Pungent, minimally sweet.

Though we tend to try new places, I can see us returning to the Grange should we run out of options.

Cocktails/Lunch after Event at Boston Center for the Arts in the South End.


After the Crafts Boston show at Cyclorama, my DC and I decided Myers and Chang would be our destination. Unfortunately only dim sum brunch is available on Saturday afternoon. Retracing our steps we decided to try The Beehive. Because we didn't have reservations we were relegated to the downstairs bar where the Saturday afternoon entertainment was an electric bass guitarist. The vibrations hit us at the top of the stairs and immediately we knew conversation would be all but impossible.

We ventured further along Tremont Street. Aquitane and Metropolis had waiting lists. Stephi's on Tremont didn't fit the bill. We ultimately snagged a table in the conservatory room at Kitchen, with a pleasant view of its snow-covered patio. We both ordered off the brunch menu. My DC enjoyed the scrambled eggs accompanied by french fries and two delectable slices of brioche toast. Knowing we would be having sweets later on, I opted for a classic Greek salad, with very fresh greens and moist chicken breast. Kitchen was a good choice.

We wandered for a bit along Tremont Street before stopping at Picco for ice cream sundaes. My DC had traditional vanilla ice cream while I opted for Malt Chip, a delicious malt infused vanilla ice cream with dark chocolate chips. The creamy ice cream was topped with rich Schraffen Burger chocolate sauce and whipped cream. What a way to end a stroll in the South End.

On leaving PIcco we passed Barcelona and stopped in for a peak. The beautifully appointed bar and dining area and the make-your-own Bloody Marys feature of the Saturday brunch are enticements for a future Saturday in the South End.

Table, Barrington RI

RhodeyRedHen, after reading your glowing review of Table Bistor in Barrington last year I put it on my list. This week I stopped by for lunch and it was every bit as good as you described

I love the small and intimate space with its cream-trimmed soft brown walls.

The tables and wall moldings are fashioned from wooden silos salvaged in Vermont. I was fascinated with the story of this beautifully hewn wood.

I had the cornmeal-encrusted fish sandwich, the best ever. The fresh and flaky cod was served on potato bread from Foremost Bakery and topped with greens and slivers of pickled onions, and a savory tartar sauce.. Mmmm. It was served with a basket of perfectly cooked french fries. The sandwich was quite large and I had to pace myself to finish it leaving no room for dessert. Next time I may try just their sweets with a cup of tea.

Table Bistro is a terrific addition to the burgeoning number of new restaurants springing up on the East Bay.


Table provided an opportunity to try the potato bread from Foremost Baking Company. It made a great fish sandwich. Foremost produces some of the best bread products in New England. I particularly like their croissant pretzels, a softer take on the traditional Barvarian pretzel. I had my first Foremost pretzel at the jazzy Providence cocktail lounge, The Eddy, and was immediately hooked. The pretzels are also served at the Faust Hofbrauhaus in the Dean Hotel on Fountain Street in Providence. Other venues for Foremost products are listed in the link below.

The bakery is basically wholesale but pre-order products can be picked up at the Winter Farmers' in Pawtuxet Village, Cranston. Info in the link below.

Foremost Baking Company

Japanese Bento Boxes

Croutonweb, Thank you so much for the information about the Bento box exhibit and the link.

What great timing to have an exhibit of Bento boxes in Boston this spring.

I have put it on my calendar.

Cocktails/Lunch after Event at Boston Center for the Arts in the South End.

Thank you all for the abundance of suggestions and comments.

Until I read your replies, I wasn't aware that so many South End restaurants don't serve lunch on Saturday. Many close after brunch at 3 pm and open at 5 pm for dinner. That presents a bit of a dilemma as our main focus will be on the craft show and I don't want to cut short that experience.

I have checked out all the restaurants you mentioned and am delighted that several will work: open all afternoon, offer cocktails, are relatively quiet, and have menus amenable to my not-too-adventurous DC. Whew!

Cocktails/Lunch after Event at Boston Center for the Arts in the South End.

On Saturday, March 21, I will be attending The Society of Arts and Crafts' Craft Boston Spring Show.

It is being held at the Cyclorama at the Boston Center for the Arts on Tremont Street in the South End.

Will be looking for a spot in the area to have cocktails and a bite to eat, more on the order of lunch than dinner.

Would like a venue that is lively yet quiet enough to hold a conversation.

My DC enjoys well-prepared fare but isn't overly adventurous.

Now Eating RI: 3/15


Thanks for such a detailed response. I had no idea there were so many venues for sushi in the state.

I seem to be a bit behind in experiencing the various Asians cuisines available here in Rhode Island.

Now that I have tried Japanese sushi I am thinking of Korean. In another post you gave DenDen a nice review and RhodyRedHen mentioned it as one of her favorites. I am putting it on my list..

Japanese Bento Boxes


What a fantastic link.

It was so much fun scrolling through the myriad of benton boxes. Who knew!

Easter brunch buffet

My family has gone to Four Point by Sheraton on Route 1 in Norwood for Easter Brunch buffet in the past.

The brunch was quite good and and we were delighted that there was a separate children's buffet menu which our children just loved. And the Easter Bunny paid a visit.

The adult buffet this year is $33; the buffet for children between 5 and 12 years old is $16; children 4 and under are complimentary.

We have tried many different hotels in the Boston/Providence areas over the years and the Sheraton in Norwood is one of the less expensive ones.

I particularly like hotels at Easter as the children aren't confined to a dining room. When they start getting itchy, one of us adults accompanies them to the lobby area where they can walk around without being in anyone's way.

Now Eating RI: 3/15

I tried Japanese cuisine for the first time a few weeks ago when my pre-teen guest and I went to Haruki on Oaklawn Avenue in Cranston for lunch.

My young guest chose to sit at the counter so we could watch the cooks slice and chop. It was the perfect spot for a child.

She wanted to sample the Bento boxes. Sounded good to me.

We started with miso soup which comes with the Bento lunches. It was hot and flavorful with tiny wontons.

She chose the chicken teriyaki Bento box: teriyaki chicken, noodles w/peanut sauce, sushi, wasabi, shaved fresh ginger and an orange slice
I chose a tempura Bento box so she could try tempura: chicken/vegetable tempura; sticky rice, spiced cabbage, noodles, fresh orange slice.

The chicken in each preparation was fresh, juicy, and delicious. All the vegetables were fresh and crunchy.

The wait staff was professional, knowledgeable, and pleasant.

The next week I went to Wasabi on Bald Hill Road in Warwick where my DC and I took advantage of the Sunday Sushi Happy Hour with its half-priced sushi. We snagged one of the private and cozy curtained booths that line the far wall and enjoyed a glass of Brancott, a New Zealand sauvignon blanc. A decent wine, pleasantly dry and fruity.

We shared two sushi rolls: the Fire Dragon roll with an outer layer of seared steak and an inner layer of shrimp tempura, spicy crab, avocado and the Green Dragon roll with an outer layer of avocado and fish roe; an inner layer of eel and cucumber.

For dessert we shared Tempura Green Tea Ice Cream. Fried ice cream is always a fun way to end an Asian meal.

I am too new to Japanese cuisine to comment knowledgeably about sushi but I did enjoy my meals at both restaurants.

To be sure, neither restaurant is a measure of fine dining but I did enjoyed my first samplings.

I would welcome suggestions for other Japanese restaurants in the area.

Durkee spices

That's good to know.

Could you tell us what brand names to look for?

Japanese Bento Boxes

Thank you for the tutorial on bento boxes. I had no idea they are so varied and ubiquitous.

And thank you for the Rice Barn and JP Seafood Cafe recommendations. I have put them on my list.

Jamaica Plain is well within our search area as are West Roxbury and Roslindale.

Wedding restaurant + grounds for 25 people in Southern New England?

When I think of a spectacular lawn I think of The Castle Hill Inn in Newport, Rhode Island. The expansive lawn, dotted with Adirondack chairs, cascades down to the waters of Narragansett Bay. It is exceptionally beautiful at sunset and has a lovely restaurant. It is also a tad pricey.


The Shelter Harbor Inn (Westerly, RI) is more modestly priced.


Other venues with lovely lawns and water views, such as The Aldrich Mansion (Warwick, RI), Blithewold Mansion, Gardens, and Arboreturm (Bristol, RI) ), Glen Manor (Portsmouth, RI), and Mount Hope Farm (Bristol, RI), require a caterer.





Best of luck with your planning.

Japanese Bento Boxes

Had a delightful lunch at the Japanese restaurant, Haruki, in Cranston, Rhode Island.

We tried two different Bento boxes. One with chicken/vegetable tempura, pork dumpling, sticky rice and rice noodles. The other with chicken teriyaki, sushi/slice ginger/horseradish, salad w/peanut sauce. Miso soup preceded both. Perfect for a pre-teen who was my guest

This was my first experience with Japanese food and I found it to be very well-prepared with fresh ingredients. Being a neophyte in this area I cannot comment beyond that.

I am now looking for a Japanese restaurant in the Canton/Norwood/Dedham area that offers Bento boxes. In a pinch Boston/Cambridge/South Shore will be fine.

Best Sub in RI

Clams047, I am not familiar with subs from north Jersey but here in Rhode Island I just love subs from the Food Chalet and Anthony's Old World Deli. Both are located in Warwick, about a mile from each other, close to the Edgewood section of Cranston.

The Food Chalet gets its bread from Buono's and you have a choice of roll, hard or soft. I usually order an Italian on a hard roll and love having to wrestle with the crust.

In addition to deli items, it also carries fine cuts of fresh meats, cheeses, pastries, gourmet Italian products, and a large selection of Buono bread. There are a few tables. The Food Chalet is in a strip mall on Post Road next to the United States post office and across from Aldrich Junior High..

Anthony's gets its bread from LaSalle Bakery. They make their subs on a baguette that also has a crunchy chewy texture. Here I usually get the Milano with mozzarella cheese (processed not fresh), fresh cherry tomatoes, prosciuitto, and basil. It is in the far back corner of a strip mall on Warwick Avenue near Shaw's Market on the other side of I. M. Gan Liquors.

In addition to deli items, Anthony's also offers hot Italian lunches and a BYOB dinner on Wednesday. Ii is a cute little place with posters of Italian scenes on the walls and ten or so tables/chairs. It closes at 4 p;m with later hours for the BYOB on Wednesday. Not fine dining and the Italian fare is just average, but for me the subs are just what I want.

They are both small family-run operations.

Food Chalet, 874 Post Road, Warwick.

Anthony's Old World Deli, 400 Warwick Avenue, Warwick.

Now Eating Rhode Island: 12/14

Reporting back on ice cream for Christmas pie.

The Ice Cream Barn's Cranberry Jubilee wasn't as "divine" on the apple pie as I had anticipated. The combination of sweetened cranberries and slivers of dark chocolate was too rich for the pie.

That delicious blend of flavors belongs on a cone. I hope it is still in rotation when New Barn Ice Cream opens come spring.

Fortunately I had my old standby, Brigham's Vanilla Bean, which was perfect for the pie.

Jumbo/Giant Salted Cashews

The Virginia Spanish and Peanut Company in Providence, Rhode Island, has roasted giant cashews, salted and not salt, listed on its website. It basically sells wholesale but they are happy to accommodate retail customers. I recently picked up a one-pound box of-hard to-find Spanish peanuts with the red skins for a Christmas present.

A call to their office would give you retail info.

Providence isn't exactly northern Rhode Island but if they have what you want it is an easy drive down Route 95.


January 2015 Openings and Closings

Thanks for the help with the settings. I never would have figured it out!

Now Eating Rhode Island: 12/14

Drove by The Cupcakerie on Broad Street in the Edgewood section of Cranston and was surprised to see the awning and window signage were gone. On the windows flanking the front door are large round signs that read, "Lil Rhody Pizza". I could see that work is being done inside.

Seems the Cupcakerie has shut down its retail operation to concentrate on weddings and events. The owner, Kristen, makes a truly delicious cupcake and I am sorry her baking will no longer be available to the retail public. I used to like stopping by for a single cupcake to enjoy with a cup of coffee or a dozen minis to bring to friends.

Does anyone knowing anything about Lil Rhody Pizza? The space is so tiny I can't imagine what kind of an operation it will be.

Now Eating Rhode Island: 12/14

Ice cream in December!

Made a first time visit to the Ice Cream Barn at the Baker Farm in Swansea this week on a very frigid day, 27 degrees F.

We decided to sit on the little wrought iron settee inside the shop and enjoy our ice cream, the only indoor seating.

I had a "small" which was rather large: two scoops, one chocolate chip and the other chocolate peanut butter. The chocolate chip had a multitude of tiny chocolate chips and the chocolate peanut butter had mini peanut butter cups. They were both creamy and delicious. My favorite, though, was the vanilla-based Cranberry Jubiliee, chock full of sweetened cranberries. I sampled a small spoonful and took home a pint for Christmas. I think it will be divine with apple pie. (I will have Brigham's Vanilla Bean for the traditionalists.)

My friend had a "small" hot fudge sundae with fresh whipped cream. It was huge. She said it was scrumptious.

The prices are quite reasonable given the size of the scoops: small around $3.50; the small sundae, around $5.50. Cash only.

The Ice Cream Barn uses milk from Baker Farm for its ice cream which tasted very fresh.

It is an easy drive on Route 195, five minutes off Exit 3 (Swansea Mall).


The good news is it is open until the winter solstice, Sunday, December 21st!

Now Eating - Rhode Island, 11/2014

I wanted to have lunch in Warren with a friend who is not a foodie; someplace with a bit of atmosphere where we could have a quiet conversation.

I thought about Eli's where I had enjoyed a terrific lunch a few months ago but it isn't the type of restaurant she would choose so I settled on the Crossroads Restaurant and it turned out to be the just the spot.

We sat in the Pub Room adjacent to the bar and snagged a table in front of the fire place. The room was comfortably mellow and decorated for Christmas.

We each ordered a cup of soup and half a sandwich: she, clam chowder, chicken salad, fries; I, onion soup, a Reuben, and cole slaw.

For me the food and service were decent; my friend loved everything.

There are times when going out is not about the cuisine, the chef, the service. This was such an occasion. The Crossroads Restaurant fit the bill.

West on Centre, a warning

I, too, grew up in West Roxbury and remember when a few of the options for food or drink were the Howard Johnson on Centre Street (now Hess gas station), Charlie's bar (now West on Centre) and the Pleasant Cafe. With this in mind, West on Centre was a very welcomed addition to the neighborhood.

I find the pub-like bar side a casual, comfortable, minimally loud place to stop for a bite to eat and a beer. I have particularly enjoyed the burger.

Granted, West on Centre is not fine dining but it has offered decent fare over the years. I do hope it can recoup its reputation.

Rogue Island - any recent experiences?

I had a cocktail at Rogue's Island a few weeks ago,not exceptional. The space is rather stark, not on the cozy side.

My go-to restaurant for a casual meal is Blaze on Hope Street on the East Side. I find it a comfortable space, a bit bistro-like. The food is a mix of American and global dishes (Caribbean, Asian, Indian) with a nice selection for vegans and decent wine/cocktails.


Would love to find more restaurants in Rhode Island with a cozy pub feel to them.

Best wishes!

Now Eating - Rhode Island, 11/2014

We are very fortunate here in Rhode Island to have so many really good coffee cafes: The Coffee Connection, Seven Stars, New Harvest Coffee to mention a few of my favorites. The Shop, that's its name, is one of the newer additions in the Providence area. Its owners recently left a very successful coffee cafe in New York City to begin a new venture in Providence.

The Shop is located in Fox Point, at the top of Wickenden Street near the intersection of Hope Street. It is sleek and minimalist yet cozy. A few tables stretch along the front windows on either side of the front door with padded benches along the windows and chairs opposite. A communal table and several small tables occupy the inner space. In good weather there is sidewalk seating.

The cafe serves Stumptown Coffee, a well-known and very respected coffee in the trade. I enjoy well-roasted coffee, particularly from New Harvest Coffee Roasters, and Stumptown is of that caliber. At The Shop I had a Columbian coffee that was robust and rich just the way I like it. Next time I want to try its iced coffee, "cold-brewed and served on nitro tap". The cafe offers a small but excellent array of baked goods from Foremost Bakery, Humble Pie, and a few other sources. I munched on a truly delicious chocolate chip cookie.

The Shop is a fine addition to the Providence coffee scene. I am glad I stopped by to check it out.


Sagres Restaurant

A friend who works in Fall River said renovations on Sagres are being made with a targeted opening date around the holidays. He thinks that is a bit ambitious.

I was expecting a friend to visit a month ago and asked for suggestions for Portuguese restaurants. Unfortunately the visit has been postponed but you might find the responses to my request helpful.


Sagres Restaurant

Fall River usually falls within the Southern New England Board. You are apt to get more responses reposting there.

I, too, am awaiting the reopening.