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Tenoch in Somerville?

Yep, I just saw this too. Explains why no work was being done inside the Kickass space. I figure that they were likely waiting on any renovations while they were negotiating with the landlord.

Whole Foods Charles River

Ugh! Thanks for the heads up! I will start checking my receipts now. My experience with the charles river WF is that at least once a month the checker is so busy gabbing with his/her fellow checkers that an item that i paid for has been left out of the bag. It is not until i get home that i discover that the item is not there (but it is ALWAYS on the receipt). The $4.00 box of crackers did not piss me off as much as the $28 container of protein powder. While the store is wonderful about replacing the items once the mistake is pointed out it is a pain to have to go back to the store and deal with it.

Tenoch in Somerville?

Yep, walked by yesterday to check things out and NOTHING has been done to that space AT ALL. :(

January 2015 Openings and Closings

Not sure when they will be opening (not likely in January) but I saw a sign this morning on the storefront 3 doors down from L'mpasta that states: "Coming soon. Cafe Lalibela," or something to that effect. This is the space that used to contain "Lalibela Cultural Gift Clothing and Variety" (which when I first saw it, had a hard time imagining how it would stay open, and was not suprised that it recently closed). So from my "extensive" detective work (ha!) appears that this cafe will be run by the same individuals (??????)

Hello Chestnuts!

Yum! That picture os delicious!

Hello Chestnuts!

Yes, we got a lot of moldy ones last year too-SUPER disappointing!

Hello Chestnuts!

Thanks, I think they were $8 at Whole Foods. Yes, they ARE a lot of work, but I think they are worth the effort (like pomegranates and artichokes).

Cookies are an ANYTIME FOOD

I second, third, and fourth Lakota. YUM!!!!

Hello Chestnuts!

Yay! I saw chestnuts for the first time yesterday at the Whole Foods market near MGH. They kinda seemed pricy but I suppose they are always kinda pricy. Nonetheless, I didn't buy them. What is a "reasonable" price to pay for chestnuts in the Boston area?

Also, how do Boston Chowhounders typically prepare their chestnuts? Last year my hubby and I did a boil and bake method that seemed to work fairly well.

October 2014 Openings and Closings

Walked by SInga Bella in Cambridge this morning and it had brown paper over the windows. Are they remodeling or out of business?

New Akai Ryu, Porter Sq.- Japanese Shabu Shabu, Sushi and More

Here is my Yelp Review re: Akai Ryu:
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We ordered the vegetarian shabu-shabu combination. Here is the rundown:

1) The Vegetarian Shabu-Shabu ($18) : Honestly, kinda disappointing. They had a few nice things on this platter (a few different types of mushrooms, 3 ears of corn, a few stalks of asparagus, and 2 small pieces of butternut squash) in addition to the usual lettuce (watercress, bok choy, napa cabbage), and broccolini. There were only 2 small pieces of silken tofu on the platter! It also came with a choice of noodles or rice. We ordered an additional tofu platter ($6) as we needed more protein and were served another 2 pieces of silken tofu, 2 pieces of fried tofu, and some tofu skin. If I were to have my dream vegetarian platter it would include more tofu from the start, a few vegetarian dumplings, and more butternut squash.

2) Broths for the Shabu ($4): We ordered the Mushroom and the Thai Tom Yum. The mushroom was earthy but quite boring to cook the vegetables in. After trying the mushroom broth once, we switched over to (and stuck with) the Tom Yum side. This broth was nice. Relatively flavorful and spicy.

3) Rice ($2): We ordered a side of rice which was $2 for about 1 cup. Seemed overpriced for the amount given.

4) The Physical Space: Nice, LARGE. The lighting was a tad bit dark for my liking but overall they did a beautiful remodeling job.

5) Service: The waitress was young and inexperienced. Kinda reminded me of my days as a waitress (I was well intentioned just not very skilled). She told us one of the broths on the menu was vegetarian when it was not and did not know if the "BBQ" sauce on the table was vegetarian or not. She was sweet though and was
obviously trying her hardest.

FInal Analysis: Would we rush back? No. Will we try them again in the future? Perhaps once they settle in a bit and hopefully make some slight "tweaks" to the menu.
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My hubby and I prefer the vegetarian shabu at Swish Shabu in Fenway.

Best banh mi in Chinatown 2014

Thanks for starting this thread! I would also be interested in hearing about the best vegetarian banh mi options in Chinatown as well.

L'Impasto, Cambridge - kudos

FYI: They are closed until August. They stated that today (Sunday) would be their last day of service until then, but when I trekked over there for bread at 5:00 pm, they had a new sign up stating that yesterday was their last day of service. I almost had a meltdown in front of the restaurant as my hubby and I had been eagerly anticipating their bread all day. Oh-well! We will be first in line when they reopen next month.

Reservation Confirmation.

Nope, not yet!

Apr 06, 2014
granolagurl in Not About Food

Reservation Confirmation.

YES, that is another BRILLIANT idea. I know Craigie and Main does this (or at least they did the last time I made reservations which was some time ago)!

Apr 04, 2014
granolagurl in Not About Food

Reservation Confirmation.

I know this probably shouldn't annoy me......but it does.

When I make a reservation for a restaurant (for example, I made a reservation tonight at Sarma), I usually get an email reminder from OpenTable and the restaurant usually calls a day or 2 in advance and leaves a voicemail reminder. Lately, I have been noticing that more and more Boston area restaurants are asking for a phone call back to confirm. This REALLY annoys me (for multiple reasons).

I TOTALLY understand that they want to make sure that the party actually shows up as table space is valuable and an empty table is not profitable. I guess in my ideal world (you know, the world in which I make all of the rules), OpenTable would send out an email reminder and there would be a button to "confirm" that you do in fact intend to show up. This could be part of the OpenTable protocol. Users would understand that if you do NOT confirm the reservation the day before by email (or call the restaurant to confirm instead if email is a problem), then the reservation will be made available to someone else. Likewise, if the reservation is not made through OpenTable the restaurant would inform you when you make the reservation that a confirmation call is expected.

I know this is a "first world problem" and really shouldn't get-my-goat everytime it happens, but it does. My poor coping is to ignore the request for a call back and hope that when I show up at the restaurant my table is still available.

Does this bother anyone else or am I the only A*&*hole on this board?

Apr 04, 2014
granolagurl in Not About Food

Veggie Galaxy--anything good to eat there?

i dislike veggie galaxy. i have been there a number of times and have found their veggie burgers to be mushy, onion rings/french fries icky, and potato salad inconsistent (sometimes tasty, other times bland and undercooked). if i am going to eat "unheatlhy" food, it better be SUPER tasty or i don't think it is worth the calories. i much prefer life alive (i ALWAYS feel healthy and happy after eating there). the vegan desserts at veggie galaxy do look good though.......

September 2013 Openings and Closings

I stopped by the Beacon Street Whole Foods today on my way home from work to check out the store and eat some free samples (gluten-free chocolate brownie bites = yum!). I am SO glad that they have a small bulk foods section (yea for being able to buy 1/2 cup of nuts or rice or.........). Also, I was super EXCITED that they sold Iggy's hamburger (sandwich) buns individually. I wish the other stores would also do this. The only potential problem is the entrance/exit area is small/tight and it took some time to get out of the store with multiple individuals slowly pushing their carts. Not a huge deal, but I imagine this might be frustrating if you just need to grab something quick and dash.

August 2013 Openings and Closings

If I can remember all the way back to this morning (it feels like FOREVER ago!), I think the "now open" was written (in lipstick? wax pen? marker?) across the front windows. About as classy as the sign. There are already 2 reviews on yelp for it so they must be up-and-running.

August 2013 Openings and Closings

My hubby and I went to eat at Beantown when they first opened. We were getting ready to order the vegetarian burrito when the customer in front of us happened to ask whether the rice (and maybe the beans, I can't remember) in the burrito had chicken broth in it. He was told "yes." We were going to live in ignorant bliss, but once we knew with certainty that the vegetarian burrito was in fact NOT vegetarian, we left. Haven't been back since. Suppose it is probably worth asking again (perhaps maybe the recipe has changed since????).

I am discovering that a lot of places actually "sneak" chicken broth in where you would least expect it. A friend of mine told me that Masala (Indian in Teele Square) uses chicken broth in their rice. I have yet to confirm this. Unfortunately (and naively) I have a tendency to believe that things are in fact vegetarian when they are marked as such.

August 2013 Openings and Closings

Cancun Taqueria is now open on Mass Avenue between Harvard and Central Square. Wonder whether their rice and beans are vegetarian as I have been craving a good burrito!

cake, cake, cake! (help needed to find my perfect b-day cake).

thanks for the b-day cheer!

cake, cake, cake! (help needed to find my perfect b-day cake).

oy vey! i was all set on getting my cake from eldo but now i have to reconsider. while i like the idea of a light cake, the idea of shortening/gelatin cream is not in alignment with my desire to eat food as close to its natural form as possible. an fruit in heavy syrup is the biggest sin known to man (in my book). blech! perhaps i will have to stop by for a taste test myself before making the bigger commitment of a whole cake.

cake, cake, cake! (help needed to find my perfect b-day cake).

oooooohhh!!!! so many options. now the trick will be choosing something. i am particularly intrigued by either a japanese/chinese cake (love the lightness factor!) and by swissbakers. anyone tried a cake from swissbakers? i do love their pretzels. what about japonaise bakery? i am a bit confused as their website has been offline for the past month and i seem to remember hearing something about them "consolidating" stores (or is this code for "going out of business?"). eldo's also looks like a viable option, although driving there to pick up the cake might kinda stink.

thanks again to all :) in my ideal world, i would buy a cake from each of the bakeries mentioned and go into the next year of my life on an eternal sugar high! wheeeeeee!!!

cake, cake, cake! (help needed to find my perfect b-day cake).

yea! thanks for the suggestions so far. i forgot to mention that my b-day is september 1st. i am wondering if local strawberries will still be around.

cake, cake, cake! (help needed to find my perfect b-day cake).


yep, another birthday is on the horizon and this year i am hankering for a cake of the strawberry-and-cream variety. no, not some low-brow supermarket version, but something made with the finest ingredients and no artificial crap. i have spent some time searching some of the major baking spots (e.g. flour bakery, tatte, etc.) and am turning up short. just for point of reference, i do NOT like the cakes at rosie's bakery, mike's pastry, lyndell's, or quebrada baking. am i being too picky? (my husband just nodded his head to the affirmative). does anyone know of any other places i could try?????

thanks a million, billion times in advance!

August 2013 Openings and Closings

I walked by Miso Market (Massachusetts Avenue-Porter Square) this morning and saw signs posted announcing that they will be closing in August. Something about the owners breaking their lease. Boo!

Rialto = boo!

There are 3 reasons we did not speak up about my dish/send it back:

1) After taking our order the waiter was not seen again until the end of the meal to clear our dishes and deliver the bill. I would have had to get up during the meal and track him down which would have been uncomfortable/awkward. Traditionally, a waiter comes by 5-10 minutes after a meal is served to "check in" and see if anything else is needed. I might have asked for some salt or additional seasonings if he had. As he was clearing our plates, he asked how we enjoyed our meal. My husband said, "Some of it was good," and we both frowned at my (still full) pasta dish. The waiter did not inquire further. He looked as if he understood that I did not like my dish and did not ask me if I wanted to take the leftovers home.

2) I don't think my post "trashes" the restaurant. We just didn't care for the pasta there. My husband enjoyed his antipasti just fine and while he found his pasta to also be bland, did eat it.

3) My husband is MORTIFIED of any type of verbalized criticism while we are eating out. He would NEVER send a dish back EVER. When I told him about this post, he said, "They didn't mess the dish up in any way (e.g. overcook it or undercook it), it was just a shitty dish." And by "shitty" he means, not to our taste. Does one send something back simply because hey don't care for it? In my husband's opinion, you just suck it up, pay the $26, and call it a day. Just because it was not to my liking doesn't mean that it is not to someone else's.


Rialto = boo!

We have wanted to eat at Rialto ever since seeing Jody Adams on Top Chef Masters. We ate in the bar. There was only one waiter working the bar area and he was rushed and distracted at best. We ordered:

Me (vegan):
CHICKPEA PASTA: peppers, eggplant, chickpeas, garlic, and saffron ($26). The pasta itself was interesting. My hubby didn't care for the texture, but I thought it was fine. What wasn't fine was the total BLANDNESS of the dish. It was boring, boring, boring. Since the pasta essentially had no taste, the sauce needed to be peppy, complex, and incredibly flavorful. It was not. I ate 2 bites and declared the dish not even worth eating. I think this is only the second time in my life that I have ever not eaten a dish that I have ordered. What a shame, especially at this price point ($26).

Him (vegetarian):
PAN ROASTED BROCCOLI: evoo, pecorino ($5) = good.
SEARED ENDIVE: pomegranate, honey ($5) = awesome.
VEGGIE PENNE: mushrooms, brussel sprouts, squash, kale pesto, parmesan cream ($14) = mediocre. Also, incredibly boring (snore!). My hubby described this dish as "pasta 101" and we both agreed that we make penne better at home.

The dishes were dropped off by someone other than our waiter and our waiter only returned to our table when it was time for the bill. We were never served dinner rolls with our meal and when I asked him about this, he told me that he could bring us some. At this point, we were already long done with dinner and plotting what other restaurant we would go to so that I could get something to eat.

If you are vegetarian, my advice would be to order off the Antipasti menu. If you are vegan, I suggest you go elsewhere.

We did see Jody Adams in person so that was pretty cool!

I have been trying to transition to a vegan diet and have been finding this REALLY difficult in Boston. I do not expect restaurants to have tons of choices for me to choose from, but I do expect the 1 or 2 choices they do have to be palatable. Particularly at a place the caliber of Rialto.

March 2013 Openings and Closings

Not an opening or closing per se, but "House of Tibet Kitchen" on Holland in Somerville has a sign in their window advertising "Business for sale."