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College Visits and 3 Days in Portland

For great dinner, you can't go wrong with Le Pigeon, Park Kitchen, Screen Door, Ox, Ned Ludd, Smallwares, The Aviary... there are a million great answers. For brunch try Tasty 'n Sons if you can handle a wait, it's well worth it (also great for dinner). For food a college student might be able to afford, try Bollywood Theater, Salt and Straw, Porque No?, Lardo, Bunk, or Laurelhurst Market, for a start. If you want some real college credibility at Reed, give Dot's a shot, but it's not haute cuisine. As another poster pointed out, there's not much near Lewis and Clark.

Jul 22, 2014
dinnerdoctor in Metro Portland

PVD/RI * December '12 * Open/Closed/Coming Soon

They opened in February under new ownership. Apparently the first couple of weeks were rough, but they got a new chef and reinstated some of the old menu. We went in early March and the place was packed, the service was attentive, and the pizza was great. The crust was probably the best I've had in RI.

Providence - lunch w/ teen and senior

Obviously this comes way to late, but in case anyone else runs into this thread: We just went to Pizzico for the first time. Not good. It's way over-priced, and the margherita pizza we got ("with balsamic essence") tasted like something from the freezer aisle steamed in a puddle of balsamic. The service was fine, for what that's worth.

Nicks, on the other hand, is great.

PVD/RI * October * Open/Closed/Coming Soon

Extremely well! Just ate there for the first time after having drinks a couple of times and it's really exceptionally good. Everything we ate was very well done, one of the few meals I've had recently about which I've got no criticisms.

The Dorrance - Providence

Sorry, this comes a little late, but it's fantastic. Pretty easily the best food in Providence; really creative, great flavors, beautiful presentation. As a bonus, the cocktails are phenomenal and the space is very well restored.

Northampton -- What not to miss?

Just to second the Gypsy Apple rec., we drive an hour for dinner there every few months and it's always worth it.

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Gypsy Apple
65 Bridge St, Shelburne Falls, MA 01370

NEW FIND IN SHELBURNE FALLS

Sorry to hear that your meal at the Gypsy Apple was anything less than amazing. We went for the first time last night and it was phenomenal. You're right about the gregarious staff and generous pours on the wine. We had mussels (breaking my vow to stop eating seafood in Western Mass after a couple of bad experiences) which were perfectly cooked in a mellow sherry cream sauce with bits of garlic that had been pan-fried _then_ sliced so they were sweet with just a hint of smokey brown on the outside edge - that's some serious investment of time by the chef! There was a great fish dish (also with horseradish creme fraiche and topped with caviar), but the steak took the cake, so to speak. A huge fillet mignon topped with mushrooms in a richly meaty demi-glace. The sauce gave the steak the big meaty flavor of a tougher cut while the meat itself was juicy and buttery without any fatty mouth-feel.

We will definitely be back, hopefully often. Since I've moved to the Berkshires, the only other meal I've had to rival this one was 50% more expensive, and 3 hours away at Hen of the Woods in VT.

great special occasion meal in western mass

I just went to the gypsy apple last night, and I have to say it was one of the best dining experiences I've ever had. The food was phenomenal, the prices very reasonable, and the owners are a blast. I can't really say enough about how great the place is. Highlights (though it's hard to pick out what was best) were probably the market fish (a blue fish last night, but changes often) and the fillet mignon in a demi-glace. (which compared favorably to the best steaks that I've had).

Updated North Berkshire Guide (Williamstown, North Adams...)

I'd second hollerhither's review of Gramercy. There are a lot of fairly positive reviews of Gramercy out there, and they may do a great job some of the time, but after my first (and last) meal there I have to put up a red flag. The service is good and the atmosphere is great, but the food was mediocre at best. Our ap came out with wilted parsley in place of the advertised chervil and a gelatinous globule of dressing that looked like a deep-sea creature digesting the "salad" (composed entirely of beets and cheese - no greens) before our eyes. The entrées were passable but hardly worth the price, and the desert featured an ice cream which our waiter helpfully pointed out that we could find at the local Stop 'n Shop™ (presumably for less than the nine dollars we paid). There was also dust hanging from the ceiling fans, not something that concerns me until it falls in my wine, but watch where you sit.