mikeinboston's Profile

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Market Basket-Items no longer carried?

Kate's line is also available at Shaws, Star, Stop and Shop and Whole Foods.

Where to find/buy Crabapples?

There is a crabapple tree right by the Southwest Corridor Park (headed towards Back Bay) at the Massachusetts Ave T station. As I walked by today, one elderly lady was hiking another onto her shoulders so they could harvest the tree.

Buy a Chicken Pot pie or 8

Are there veggies in their pie or just chicken meat and gravy?

What kind of vinegars do you keep on hand?

I was planning on making some fresh herb vinegars to use up the bounty from the garden. Any suggestions for a good quality mass market white wine vinegar? I plan to use apple cider vinegar with the stronger herbs like sage, but wanted something lighter for the more delicate flavors. Thanks!

Sep 07, 2014
mikeinboston in Home Cooking

Texas Roadhouse

There is one just outside of Boston. It is insanely loud and the have a "forced fun" routine they make the waitstaff do - line dancing in the aisles and such. There are peanut shells everywhere - sort of like the old Ground Round chain.

The steaks are fine, nothing out of the ordinary. Sides are also serviceable. We haven't found any of the appetizers worthy of a re-order, ditto on desserts.

Near us, you can call ahead to be put on the list, the often run a wait and this can help cut the time down.

Sep 06, 2014
mikeinboston in Chains

McDonalds Pickles/Gherkins. Tastes good or not?

Have removed them since I was a child - could never understand the pickle love at McD, but also know I am in the minority.

Sep 06, 2014
mikeinboston in Chains

Shaw's > Star

They have added Starbucks at the Morrisey Blvd store adjacent to JFK.

Buy a Chicken Pot pie or 8

I know that Katz's Bakery in Chelsea also features Chicken Pot Pies - I have not tried their version. Any reports from others who have?

Ben's Kosher Deli from NYC coming to Boston

Wondering if anyone had an update on Ben's Boston area plans?

Shaw's > Star

I have given up trying to figure out the Shaws/Star logic, but I visit at both the Fenway and South Boston stores - prices are still not in line with Stop & Shop, but utilizing the circular, you can get some good buys. I have also noted that the staff in both stores seem to be going out of their way to be helpful and cheerful - after running the misery gauntlet at the South Bay S&S, it's almost unnerving to have someone smile at you or say "thank you" after your purchase.

Low-carb lunch options downtown

thumbs up on chicken and rice guys food cart - that garlic mayo is redonkulous!

Alternative to Market Basket for cheap lobsters

Shaws/Star has chicken lobsters for $5.99lb this week (thur Thursday)

Outdoor brunch this weekend?

Henrietta's Table at the Charles Hotel serves breakfast and lunch on Saturday with seating in the courtyard.

Chicken salad

Both Stop & Shop and Shaws/Star were also making an in-store chicken salad with leftover rotisserie chickens that was superior to the usual offerings (I find Willow Tree Farm too sweet and with that "wood chipper" texture) . It seems to have disappeared in both locations near me in Boston. Shaws/Star sometimes carries a Cape Cod Chicken Salad that has dried cranberries in it.

Boston's Best Toast?

I received a Breville Mini Smart Oven for a holiday gift and I can tell you its a great toaster and a helluva toaster oven, so much so that as I am single, I haven't once turned on my regular oven since arrived.


Prime Rib in Fairfield County CT

Just a suggestion, I used to work at a steakhouse and occasionally we'd have a guest call ahead to be sure we had R/MR Prime Rib for him. We would note his reservation and let the kitchen know to hold an order back. If the entree is the goal of the visit, let the restaurant know and see if they can accommodate your request. They want you to have a good time.

What is your favorite frozen chicken pot pie?

If you are in New England, check out Willow Tree Farm's frozen pot pies. Exceptional for a supermarket product.

Feb 20, 2014
mikeinboston in General Topics

Target/Super Target Yays and Nays 2014

The Archer Farms frozen pizzas are actually quite good in a pinch. Often on sale, worth buying a few when they are.

Jan 25, 2014
mikeinboston in Chains


I had a bacon cheese burger at the Harvard Square store - it may have been the combo of the bacon and cheese slice plus some grill seasoning, but that burger was SALTY, and I rarely am freaked out by salt.

The hand cut fries were fine (I actually didnt mind the commercial crinkle cuts at the other stores), but the seating is a fiasco - the food was ice cold by the time we finally got a table.

Cheapest Supermarket in Back Bay / Columbus

Also investigate PeaPod from Stop & Shop - you can order online and have it delivered to your door. Prices are somewhat higher than in the store, but there are good deals to introduce the service and it can be a lifesaver as long as you plan a day or two ahead for what you need from them.

Gluten-free dining in theater district?

Davios has a GF menu as well. Not too far from theater district.

Local food market pet peeves, or worse!

I am consistently amazed that they dont have a person to bag items when you use the self serve lane at Stop & Shop (or at least the Greater Boston stores). They seem to assign just one person to those lanes who is usually chatting with coworkers and generally ignoring people struggle to unload the cart, place the items on the belt in a way the machine can register them, pay and then bag. They only seem to spring into action when the automated cashier gets confused - but other than that, 100% useless.

If the customer is saving them half the labor cost, the least they could do is position one or two people to lend a hand across the lanes - and bonus, the lines will move faster thereby encouraging more folks to use self checkout and eventually saving even more in labor.

Who makes your favorite cheese fries?

No chili, but Kelly's Roast Beef makes theirs with cheese sauce and bacon bits. Available as small or large portion. Best eaten there, does not travel well.

Starbucks + La Boulange [moved from San Francisco board]

It was my understanding that Starbucks partnered with a number of regional commercial bakeries to produce items based on Starbucks' recipes. I dont think there was a sole supplier, but a consortium of them under contract.

I am curious if they will hold over the Cranberry Bliss Bars. Tooth-achingly sweet, but they've become a bit of a holiday tradition at our house.

Oct 22, 2013
mikeinboston in Chains

Saugus, Mass

+1 on Victor's. Owner is super-sweet. On my second visit she remembered me and snuck a brownie into my bag.

When did you last go to the Hilltop in Saugus?

A little over 10 years ago, I ate there on a Saturday night and the following morning, went to the hospital with chest pains from a blocked artery. While I dont blame the lobster pie directly for the MI, I could never bring myself to go back.

As others have noted, in it's heyday, it was the bomb.

Olive Garden's "Buy one - take one" promotion

It's the old joke, two elderly women sitting around the pool at a resort. The first one says: "The food here is terrible." and the second lady replies: "I know, and such small portions!"

See's chocolates at Jordan's Furniture in Reading

Don't know about other See's Candies, but this makes sense as both See's and Jordan's are owned by Warren Buffet/Berkshire Hathaway.

Ken's Kickin' Chicken now open in Lynn

Thanks bluesjack. I only raised the website issue as I live in Boston and wanted to know more before I drove out to Lynn or Salem. I'm always on the look out for a good pot pie, but prefer no veggies, so I was unsure if they have items like that.

I agree with the other comments: superior food always trumps a splashy website. Simple is better. Give me the address, the hours and a PDF of the menu and I'm happy.

When I have a trip to their vicinity planned, I'll give them a call to find out the specifics.

Ken's Kickin' Chicken now open in Lynn

That is the craziest business website I have seen in a while. Always on the look out for a good pie, but there's about 15 active links on the site that contain zero information. No menu, no prices, just screen shots of an iPad screen over and over.

Thought I'd click through to contact them and found this: "Thank you for shopping at Brand Name Electronics. To help us maintain a high quality of service, please provide us with feedback by filling in the information below."

Please tell me the pies are better than the website? :)