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A.A.'s Profile

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Eaux De Vie

I seem to remember Bronwyn having some Reisetbauer selections. I I haven't been there in some time, so my info might be out of date.

May 05, 2015
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Steamed bun food truck near Chinatown T stop.

I tried Meng's Kitchen the first time last week and have been back twice since then. :) I'm not a connoisseur of bao, but think theirs is excellent and at a buck each, it's great for a satisfying lunch on the cheap. Their sandwich is good, too--- I found the pork sandwich filling less oily and with better flavor than Gene's Chinese Flatbread sandwich--- but the bao is why I keep going back.

Apr 22, 2014
A.A. in Greater Boston Area


I would suggest checking out the Union Square Donuts table at the farmer's market in Dewey Square on Tuesdays and Thursdays during the summer.

Brunch at Umami in Brookline

Just a heads-up to all that Umami now offers brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11:30 AM to 3:00 PM. Having enjoyed ourselves with a couple of great meals at Umami for dinner, my wife and I decided to check it out this past Saturday and are happy to report that Umami does brunch very well.

It was a bit early for a cocktail, but I was tempted by what appeared to be an all-new menu of brunch cocktails. We're huge fans of both the peerless hospitality and the inventive cocktails of Noon Inthasauwan--- she's what makes this very good restaurant truly special. So, when a Fernet and ginger beer cocktail caught my eye, I had to try it. I'm a fan of both ingredients, but have never mixed the two; it turns out they're a perfect pair. Spicy, good bitter/sweet balance, refreshing rather than bracing. It put me in mind of enjoying warmer weather on our back porch. My wife is less a fan than I of either fernet or ginger beer, but she tasted it, pronounced it yummy, and commented that it'd make a pleasant hangover treatment. I look forward to returning for brunch this summer to try this cocktail in hot weather--- though I expect I'll be back before then to try the others. :)

While I was sipping a cocktail that evoked a lazy summer afternoon, my wife ordered a dish perfectly suited to the grimly raw, wet weather of the present day: an Asia-style noodle soup with fresh veggies and a poached egg. I was eyeing an au gratin casserole with shiitakes, but was regretfully informed that it had been 86'd because the chef wasn't satisfied with how it had turned out that morning. No matter-- I went with the Angus burger, topped with shiitakes and an over-easy egg. Perfectly cooked to medium and incredibly tasty, if slightly messy to eat. One of the better burgers I've had while eating out in quite some time.

It's very nice to have a new brunch option in Washington Square--- particularly one so tasty and is also open on both Saturday and Sunday. We're definitely headed back.

Apr 25, 2011
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Looking for cherimoya in greater Boston area

The Whole Foods on Washington Street in Brighton often has cherimoya (usually right next to the bananas). It's a block from the B Line. I'd bet that other WF locations probably carry it as well. (It's probably worth calling ahead to make sure they have it.)

Jan 28, 2011
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Place to watch Patriot's game in the Theater District

Agreed....but first get some banh mi @ Mei Sum and take it to the Tam to eat with a beer or two while you watch the game. My experience is that it's a decent pre-show option...or the best cheapest night out in Boston! ;)

Jan 11, 2011
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Only Tools Don't Tip on Takeout, and Other Rules of Gratuity You Should Know

Wow. Never knew there were so many ways to rationalize being cheap.

Dec 15, 2010
A.A. in Features

zwack unicum

Is Zwack actually selling the new, apparently crappier Unicum (Unicum Next?) in the same bottles formerly used for the original Unicum? Can someone clue me in on how (or if) the appearance of the bottles of the original and new products differ in the States?

Oct 15, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area


I've been to Marliave a few of times in the past 6 months and I agree that the quality of both food and drink is good, and the service is friendly but slow. When my wife and I last went on a Friday evening they frankly seemed understaffed, given the crowd.

10 Bosworth Street, Boston, MA 02108

Sep 30, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Any Whole Foods better?

Haha yeah--- I hear you about the clientele of some Whole Foods locations. My wife and I regularly shop at the location on the Brighton/Brookline border due to its proximity. Given the quality of the products and the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff, the only drawback is what we jokingly refer to as the "Brookline biddies" that patronize that location. To be fair, the space-cadet factor of the clientele of that store is far from restricted to a particular gender or age range....not that that's a good thing.

Of the Whole Foods I've visited in the Boston metro area, I, too, have been the most impressed with the Fresh Pond location soley based on the produce section. Wish we could do our weekly shopping there, but it wouldn't make sense, given the distance and our lack of an automobile.

Jul 20, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Fresh red Holland or Fresno chilies

The Star Market on Beacon Street in Brookline has had Fresno chiles the last several times I've been there within the past couple of months.

Jul 20, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

In need of Back Bay Restaurant Advice

I typically think of it as a lunch place, but I think the Parish Cafe may fit the bill. Casual and on lower end of your price range, if memory serves. Their schtick is a menu of interesting sandwiches created by area chefs. (The Schlesinger is one of my favorites.) Decent bar, too. It's open until 2 AM daily (kitchen closes @ 1 AM, I think).

Jun 11, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

What's going in next to American Craft?

I care not for crazes and trends. I care only for good food. :)

I figured that Umami was just a name and not necessarily a menu theme. Either way, I'll give it a go, if only because I live in the neighborhood and like to see empty storefronts filled. (Now if only something would take the old B&D Deli spot.)

I noticed that the name of the liquor license applicant is the same as a co-owner of Khao Sarn. If it's the same person, that potentially a good sign.

Khao Sarn
250 Harvard St, Brookline, MA 02446

Apr 26, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

What's going in next to American Craft?

I was in Publick House Provisions last week when someone stuck their head in to ask the same question of the guy at the register. He was only able to indicate that he thought it was to be an Asian fusion restaurant. Based on the below link, it sounds like it will be called "Umami Restaurant and Bar".

Publick House Provisions
1706 Beacon St, Brookline, MA 02445

Apr 26, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Where's the Best Fried Chicken in Boston Area?

Thirded. Privus serves the best fried chicken I've ever had.

Mar 19, 2010
A.A. in Greater Boston Area


My British roommate used to have some every morning on his toast, but the appeal of Marmite eluded me until I tried it on a grilled bacon sandwich. The salty yeastiness of the Marmite goes well with the smoky umami of the bacon. But that's all it's good for, I'm sure. ;)

Aug 04, 2009
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Restaurants everyone seems to HATE but you love

The Publick House and The Roadhouse. They have their problems, but I still likes them. Of course, the beer is the chief reason why.

Jun 01, 2009
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Fish and Chips

Not a popular place around these parts, but I think the Obligitory F&C at the Publick House is pretty good. Haven't had it in a while.

Mar 20, 2009
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Publick House - Only for the Beer

"I don't think you will find a bar in boston that takes better care of their draft lines or serve a better quality draft product."

I firmly agree. For that matter, I think you'd be hard pressed to many better bars outside of Boston, in this respect at least.

I'm in there at least once a week, usually with my wife and we usually sit at the bar. Perhaps our experience is skewed by our status as regulars, but the bar staff at least are always very friendly, knowledgable, and honest--- they're not afraid to tell you if they think a beer is a must-have or worth skipping. They always seem to be very patient and happy to offer advice to a neophyte. (If I had to have as many college kids piss and moan at me about how the bar doesn't serve Miller Light or whatever, I'd be a damn sight less friendly and patient than the bar staff invariably is.) My service when we sit at a table is usually fine but not remarkable.

I don't think people go to the Publick House just for the food, nor would I really expect them to. People go for the beer. That said, I'd call the menu mostly quality, better-than-average bar food, though there are definitely some winners on the menu (mac n' cheese and fish & chips have always been consistently good for me). The manner in which the beer is worked into the cuisine, while not always perfect, is creative and usually works well. Their house-made hot sauces--- when they have them--- are a favorite of mine.

As a regular, I have definitely noticed sub-par quality in both table service and food a couple of times. If nights like those was my first exposure to the Publick House, I might be underwhelmed or put-off, too. But the quality and variety of the beer alone will always bring me back.

Jun 05, 2008
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Nice Bottle of Wine

I don't drink red wine often, but I've become quite fond of the Ladybug Red table wine from Lolonis. Very pleasant and to be had for closer to $12. And, if it matters to you, I realized while examining the bottle the last time I enjoyed a glass that it's an organic wine. Nice!

Apr 04, 2007
A.A. in Wine

Good Place for Sandwiches Near a Picnic Area?

It's now the opposite of picnic weather outside, but when it's nice out, my wife and I like to walk up to Coolidge Corner, grab a couple of pastrami sandwiches and root beers from Michael's, then "earn" ourselves a picnic by walking up Summit Ave. to the Corey Hill Outlook. Good food and a nice view.

Mar 16, 2007
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

South American Restaurant with Decent Atmosphere?

Doubt it's exactly what you're looking for but: Taranta in the North End, the cuisine of which is "a marriage between Southern Italian Cuisine and Peruvian Cuisine" is very good. I've always enjoyed the food, and I'd describe it as upscale casual.

Cafe Brazil in Allston is not really a hole-in-the-wall. I thought it had a pleasant atmosphere and great food.

Jan 30, 2007
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Habanero Oil? [moved from Boston Board]

Not positive about this, but wouldn't pan-roasting the habaneros first (if you can stand the heat) reduce or eliminate that risk?

Dec 21, 2006
A.A. in General Topics

Restaurant for My Birthday!

I was faced with this same dilemma recently, and it came down to Ten Tables in JP or Rendezvous in Central Sq. I went with Rendezvous, so looks like I'll find out if mine was a good choice on Friday evening.

Nov 13, 2006
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Looking for good gyros in Boston

I second Shwarma King, and also recommend Sultan's Kitchen on State St. in the Financial District. A bit more money than I'd normally spend on lunch, but well worth it.

Nov 08, 2006
A.A. in Greater Boston Area


The wholefoods on Washington Street in Brighton/Brookline has carried it for at least two weeks. It's been right on the corner of the aisle between the berries and the grapes. If memory serves, the come three per plastic package.

Oct 12, 2006
A.A. in Greater Boston Area

Seeking sources for fresh chilies

Hi all---

I'm searching for Boston area sources that regularly have a good variety of fresh chilies in stock. I'm specifically looking for fresh chilies used in Mexican and South American dishes.

I expected to not have any luck searching local grocery stores for more exotic peppers such as rocoto, mirasol, or other "aji" chilies, but I'd have thought that certain varieties, such as fresh Anaheim chilies, would be easy to locate--- not so much. I usually see only the standard jalapenos, serranos, habaneros, and (usually) poblanos.

If someone could point me in the direction of a decent supermarket, ethnic grocer, or farmer's market in the Boston area that could help me out, I'd really appreciate it. Failing that, I'd be willing to hear recommendations for a good online vendor (though I assume that would be more expensive.)


Aug 21, 2006
A.A. in Greater Boston Area