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1950's appetizers

Shrimp cocktail, definitely. Mom made ours with those itty bitty north Atlantic shrimp, pre-cooked and frozen of course, thawed and dumped into the cocktail sauce (made of ketchup, lemon juice, and prepared horseradish). Spooned onto Ritz crackers and devoured.

Aug 20, 2014
Bivalve88 in Home Cooking

Best Asian restaurants in Newport/Narragansett area

You won't find good Vietnamese in the Narragansett area. Seven Moons has the capacity for your party, is a bit underwhelming in terms of inventiveness (maybe I just go there too often) but has an extensive pan-Asian menu. Chinese, Thai, Japanese, and some Vietnamese dishes are represented there. I believe they do cater. They were my first thought when I read your posting.

There are a couple of Thai places in Wakefield, Luk Thai and Sa-Tang. They look to be pretty small, and I haven't tried either of them, but friends have had good experiences.

Sunrise is in Middletown, a good 40 minute drive from Narragansett and a $4 bridge toll to boot (each way). It's a formica table kind of place and very small.

If you're open to Japanese/hibachi, Kabuki and Shogun are good choices in the Narragansett/Wakefield area. Kon Asian Bistro in East Greenwich may also be an option for you. It's a 25 minute drive or so from Narragansett. Chinese/Japanese food with hibachi.

Good luck!

Vienna for 3 nights

Sturmi, is there a reason why you recommend lunch over dinner at Hollmann Salon? It looks perfect for our family, but we would only be able to do it for dinner.

Jun 27, 2014
Bivalve88 in Europe

Kid friendly restaurants

We took our chowpups, aged 11 and 10, to NOLA for Jazz Fest last year. Domenica was a big hit with them. Enough of an experience for the parents (great cocktails) with delicious pizza for everyone.

College Inn was also a hit all around. Great service, felt like a real NOLA institution. Food wasn't cutting edge or anything, but everyone left happy.

Dat Dog on Magazine was a favorite stop, especially after getting soaked in the rain at the zoo. If you get down the other end of the street, try the macarons at Sucre on Magazine.

We meant to try Magasin for pho, but just ran out of available meals.

Cafe du Monde for beignets is not to be missed.

Have a wonderful time!

Jan 15, 2014
Bivalve88 in New Orleans

Your Dining Wish for 2014

My wish is for a good Vietnamese restaurant to open in EG or North Kingstown. I would be there every week.

Does anyone know what happened to Tomas Ribeiro Dao?

I used to be able to get a delish Portuguese Dao from Tomas Ribeiro in my local store. They haven't carried it in a while and the clerk I spoke with doesn't know why. I haven't seen it anywhere else. Does anyone know if they're still making wine? It was my go-to bottle for a number of years and I've just finished off my last one...

Nov 05, 2013
Bivalve88 in Wine

Silliest/most useless wedding gift you received?

As for most useless, that would have to be the fish steamer - for steaming a whole large fish. I don't think I've ever taken it out of the box in 19 years, but can't donate it to an auction-type sale because it was a wedding gift.

Sep 25, 2013
Bivalve88 in Not About Food

Rhode Island clamming question?

For shellfish area closure info, check out

Make sure any clams you harvest get on ice quickly and stay cold if you're going to try to transport them. Once you get home, try closing any that are open. If they don't close on their own, toss them. They're dead.

Be respectful of any aquaculture grants. These guys have a hard enough time making a living without someone tampering with their animals.

Also, be aware that a bed may be closed to shellfishing because of toxic chemicals in the mud or water. Bacteria may not be the problem and no amount of cooking will remove PCBs from a clam. Respect all postings.

20 Railroad Street-Great Barrington

That's a funny comment, AikiLou. That happens all the time and we are still so surprised when it does.

20 Railroad Street-Great Barrington

jon, I believe the point is that the parents shouldn't have to be told to attend to their screaming child. They should have managed their dining experience according to what their child could handle.

My two chowpups were recently toddlers, and I would never EVER let them ruin anyone else's dining experience with crying, never mind screaming. It's not the other diners' fault that I chose to take a toddler out to dinner. It was my responsibility to make sure that said toddler did not disturb the other diners' evening. That meant paying attention to each chowpup, making sure they were rested and in a good frame of mind, keeping our dinner plans to just an entree, making sure we had toys and/or coloring materials to keep the child engaged. And, yes, take the pup for a stroll if needed. We did this many times, and even took dinners to go when it was clear that a chowpup couldn't keep it together.

Self-absorbed? Definitely. Paying more attention to their own enjoyment than the state of their child and how that child's behavior affected others qualifies their behavior as self-absorbed. If you want to let your child scream at the table, stay home.

Looking for breakfast, south of Tanglewood (Lenox, MA) area

We had a great breakfast at Haven Bakery and Cafe in Lenox. Delicious french omelets, perfectly done. Highly recommended.

Church St. Cafe in Lenox - recent dinners there?

I have to agree with rhoneranger. Went to dinner at Church Street Cafe this past Thursday. I have a cow's milk allergy, and usually a restaurant will be able to make up a dish without butter for me. The waiter sheepishly told me that they make everything up ahead of time, so I would have to pick a dish that didn't have any butter in it. I ended up with steak frites (sauce on the side) that was very good but not outstanding.

Alta and Nudel looked very good, but we had the chowpups with us and picky pup couldn't find anything on the menus that appealed. Maybe next time.

Honeymoon in Newport

Bouchard's is great for a high-end meal. We were underwhelmed by the Spiced Pear - although it was a few years ago - and even the White Horse Tavern disappointed us the last couple of times. 22 Bowen's never disappoints, if you're in the mood for steak.

For low-key Mexican in a cool, funky old space, try Perro Salado. Great food and cocktails.

New in FQ in past year or so

Sylvain's is wonderful. Best of our recent trip to NOLA. I posted a review in May.

Jul 15, 2013
Bivalve88 in New Orleans

What would you bring home from Vienna/Prague/Budapest as gifts??

Thanks, all, for the suggestions! We will be coming to Central Europe :-) to sing Dvorak's Requiem, so Strumi, I like your suggestion of classical music CDs. Is there a preferred shop in Vienna?

Paprikas are on my list, cmc2, thanks for the suggestion.

klyeoh, that market looks wonderful. Just the kind of place I could get lost in for a morning.

Any suggestions for Prague?

Jul 15, 2013
Bivalve88 in Europe

What would you bring home from Vienna/Prague/Budapest as gifts??

Today is one year from our departure date for an 11-day musical tour in Vienna, Prague, and Budapest. I've been lurking on this board for a while and am compiling an impressive list of restaurants to try to hit in between rehearsals and performances.

One thing I love to do when travelling is shop for things to bring home. I have never traveled before in eastern Europe.

If you had an extra suitcase to fill, what would you bring home for friends and family?? And where would you shop??

Jul 12, 2013
Bivalve88 in Europe

Summer Time ...What's your drink??

It couldn't be easier. I buy a tub of crystallized ginger (usually from Whole Foods bulk bins). Dump it into a very large jar. Empty in 750mL of plain vodka, saving the bottle. This last batch was Absolut - very yummy. Cover tightly and let it sit on the counter for a few weeks, then strain out the ginger and refill the vodka bottle with your infused liquor. Add a pretty ribbon (yellow). The ginger-lemonade seltzer comes from the regular grocery store. I think it's Polar brand. The drink is also good with regular lemon seltzer over lots of ice.

Jul 10, 2013
Bivalve88 in General Topics

Summer Time ...What's your drink??

Home-infused ginger vodka with ginger-lemonade seltzer.

Favorite Breakfast Tacos

Does the Donut 7 on Burnet still do breakfast tacos? They were a serious guilty pleasure of mine for many, many years. They had someone make them and deliver them each day in a cooler. Sooooo good.

Jun 05, 2013
Bivalve88 in Austin

Cape Cod, Here We Come!

+1 on the Ocean House. We also had a good lunch recently at the Brewster Fish House.

What did your Mom always have on hand, that you NEVER do?

Tang (for when the oj was gone)
Nonfat dried milk (for when the milk was gone)
Puffed rice cereal and/or puffed wheat (ick)
Wonder bread
Chicken livers every week
Instant coffee
Canned peas
Canned salmon

May 21, 2013
Bivalve88 in General Topics

Any memories of "poor people food" from your childhood that you still crave?

Oddly enough, for us it was shellfish. Lobster, crab, and oysters. Growing up on Cape Cod, you could just walk out on the flats and eat you up some oysters (or have a buddy dive for your lobsters). It's what we ate when we couldn't afford a pizza or a chicken. You'd think I'd be tired of shellfish by now, but I still can't get enough.

What is your absolute favorite dish from your cultural heritage?

On my dad's side, we're 100% New Brunswick Acadian, so my faves are:

poutine rapee (not the french fry dish, but a pork meatball surrounded by shredded and mashed potato and steamed)
sugar pie

On my mom's side, we're German and Irish, so my faves are:

corned beef and gahbage (my dad's name for New England boiled dinner)
soda bread
brats in sauerkraut

May 21, 2013
Bivalve88 in General Topics

Lunch in Newport

West Deck, The Mooring, and Clarke Cooke House all spring to mind. I personally don't like Flo's Clam Shack in Middletown, but lots of my friends do and it meets your criteria as well. The Black Pearl has outside seating in the summer.

What TV/movie/book restaurant would you want to go to? What place would you avoid?

I would go to the Danish back beyond for "Babette's Feast", definitely. The ramen shop in "Tampopo". +2 for the shop in "Chocolat". Tita's kitchen in "Like Water for Chocolate".

I would also avoid Mel's Diner (with or without Flo), the French restaurant in "Meaning of Life" as well as the country house and its salmon mousse, and Amy's Baking Company.

May 17, 2013
Bivalve88 in Not About Food

New Orleans in August (seeking advice)

Yes, has a beta release of the app to tell when busses/streetcars are about to arrive. Most of the time it's accurate but we found some buggy behavior around the 11 Magazine line. Mostly helpful, especially if you're about to stand out in the heat for 25 minutes.

May 17, 2013
Bivalve88 in New Orleans

What TV/movie/book restaurant would you want to go to? What place would you avoid?

I agree with the Whistle Stop Cafe, but would probably avoid it on barbecue day...

OPEN TABLE - Who likes it??

I love Open Table and use it frequently, especially when travelling. If no tables are available for when I want, I will call the restaurant directly. Gotta love those 1,000 point tables, too.

Brewster Fish House is BACK!

As to portion size, I was really focusing on the serving of the good stuff - the fish. Mom's salmon was maybe 3 oz on a lot of spinach. I got 4-5 scallops and a lot of fries - certainly more fries than I could eat. DH and older pup's fish was a bit more generous at 4-5 oz. Everything tasted delicious and we all enjoyed our meals. For lunch portions, I would still call them modest. Certainly not skimpy, but modest. No fillets hanging off the plates and mounds of fries was really what I was trying to get across.

Sounds like I need to try the cioppino the next time!

foodie parents, semi-foodie teen, picky tween - suggestions?

I would second the suggestion for Dans Les Landes. I have a picky chowpup myself and she loved it. Galettes at Little Breizh Cafe in the 6th are good, as well. You can search for "chowpup" on this board and read our trip reports.

May 14, 2013
Bivalve88 in France