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Cacio e pepe in Boston

Although Italians may frown upon this, I grate my parmesan, and then put it into a blender. I add hot pasta water into the blender, blitz it to emulisify the sauce. Then I pour it over my pasta.

You will have to experiment how much pasta water you want to put into the blender.

Jan 22, 2015
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Under $30 in North End?

Giacomos, check online for prices.

Jan 14, 2015
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best dishes at Barcelona South End?

I have a business party at Barcelona South End.

What are the best dishes to order?

Thanks!

Jan 14, 2015
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Jo Jo Taipei kills Mary Chung!!

I was there a couple days ago with high expectations and was underwhelmed.

Lots of dishes were overcooked, and not freshly made.

1. Pork chop with rice- Too much fried batter, and not enough seasoning
2. 3 cup eggplant- Way too soft and soggy because it's overcooked
3 Scallion pancake with roast beef- Tasted dry. Tasted like it was reheated instead of freshly made and fried.
4 Beef noodle soup- Overall pretty good, but noodles were too soft because overcooked.
5. Pan fried dumplings- not enough of a sear, bland.
6 Soft Tofu with ginger syrup. Tofu wasn't soft enough, too sweet and couldn't taste the ginger.

I read the chef is very detail orientated, so I'm surprised how these dishes came out. Maybe it was an off night or he maybe he wasn't in the kitchen.

Or did he leave again?

Dec 30, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Jo Jo Taipei kills Mary Chung!!

Where is the original chef who made Jo Jo Taipei so good?

Dec 29, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

JoJo Taipei Favorites ( not super spicy)?

Jenny, you are right, I had a better scallion pancake with roast beef at Dumpling Cafe, but the problem I have at Dumpling Cafe is consistency.

The first time I had it at Dumpling Cafe it was amazing and fresh. Another time I had it was dry and reheated. This problem happens at Jo Jo as well, but I found Jo Jo to be more consistent.

Dec 28, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

JoJo Taipei Favorites ( not super spicy)?

Scallion Pancake with roast beef. Probably my favorite dish at Jojo and this is the best version in the city!

Diced fried tofu with soy sprinkles. Sounds boring, but I assure you this dish will blow you away!

Dec 28, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best restaurants under $30 for App and Entree?

In my original post, I said no burgers, small plates like tapas, etc..

Actually Deep Ellum would work!

Dec 23, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best restaurants under $30 for App and Entree?

You mean $40 a person?

In my original question I said no "tapas" or burritos, tacos, etc..

Dec 23, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best two small plates (tapas size) in Boston under $30 total?

What are your best two small plates you can order for less then $30 total?

OK i'll start. For me it's:

Toro- Bone Marrow ($12) and half order of the Veg Paella ($17)

Sarma- Harrissa Duck ($16) and Spaghetti Squash Carbonara ($11)

Dec 22, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best restaurants under $30 for App and Entree?

Most of Eastern Standards entrees are mid 20's, most of their apps are 11-15 except the bone marrow.

Most of Daily Catch's pastas are low to mid 20's.

See how the prices have really creeped up?!

Dec 22, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best restaurants under $30 for App and Entree?

Ribelle is 3 for $35 and Grotto is 3 for $38.

OK, I said no burritos, etc.. which include pizza and burgers!

Dec 21, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Best restaurants under $30 for App and Entree?

Like I said, NO Asian restaurants like East by Northeast or Myers and Chang!
Tapas don't count!

Sorry, not trying to be difficult, I eat at Toro, Myers and Chang, Asian, etc. all time, but that's why I was very specific in my original question.

Best restaurants under $30 for App and Entree?

Seems like restaurants are getting more and more expensive these days.

What is the best restaurant you can go for an app and entree for under $30 before tax and tip? Drinks and desserts are not included.

Note, please don't include Asian restaurants, Tapas, burritos, burgers, pizza etc..

Giacomos is the only one I can think of...

Dec 21, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Is it just me, or is this really utterly ridiculous?

I was looking at the Yelp reviews, and I noticed that two reviews gave them 1 star, complaining they also got charged more then what the menu stated. One of these reviews came 6 months ago.

I wonder how many other customers got overcharged or complained?

I don't agree with the way Edelman bullied himself to the owner, but if the owner had complaints before, he should have updated the menu.

Dec 10, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

ISO fresh rice noodles in Boston

Anyone know if it's OK to keep the fresh rice noodles at room temperature for a few days? Do restaurants do this?

When I buy them at Ming's in the morning there are still warm. I don't want to put in fridge because they will get dry, and I know the trick about putting them in warm water but I don't want to do that.

Nov 19, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

best bolognese in boston area?

I've always wondered.. the ingredients for the bolognese sauce is pretty identical to Beef Bourguignon. Do you think the French and Italians copies each other?

Nov 19, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

O Ya - guess we should have gone years ago (long...and sad...)

I'm going on Thursday for my birthday, so hopefully I will have a better experience! I'll report back how it went!

Nov 18, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Oya for Birthday! Bar seats or table? Dish Recs?

I will be going with my wife. So you think sitting at the counter is better then getting a table? Just feel weird paying $200 or $300 sitting at a counter.

I'm open to it if that's what you recommend though!

Nov 07, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Oya for Birthday! Bar seats or table? Dish Recs?

I will be going to Oya for my birthday.

Any recommendation for seating? Is it better to sit at the counter or is table fine?

I know lots of sushi experts say by the time the sushi gets to a table it has lost it's ideal temperature.

What should I order? The Omakase? Set?

Thanks!

Nov 07, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Weekend in Boston...single guy looking for great food!

Forget Quincy Market, to to Neptune Oyster House, and get there early!

Nov 07, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Return to Cha Yen Thai Cookery

Eattv, I have been cooking from the Pok Pok cookbook and was wondering where can i get the dried Puya chilies?

Can you give me your rankings for your favorite and best thai dishes in Boston? I know some will be at Cha Yen Thai, but what there must be some at other places as well!

Nov 07, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Boston Magazine - Best 50 Restaurants

I was looking at my old Boston Mag top 50 issue from 2009 and it's interesting to see that a quarter of them of have closed down! In the magazine they said they combined the rankings of Chowhound, Yelp, Phantom Gourmet and their own to come up with the top 50. What do you think about this top 50 list from 2009?

Here is the list in the correct order.

Oya, L'espalier, No. 9 Park, Clio, Aujord'hui, Radius, Hungry Mother, Hamersley Bistro, Oleana, Cragie on Main,

Meritage, Salts, Oishii, Uni, Ten Tables, Neptune Oyster, Icarus, Persephone, Mistral, Sorellina,

Rialto, B and G Oyster, Troquet, Lumiere, Pigalle, Toro, Blue Ginger, Upstairs on the Square, Excelsior, Benatti,

Sage, T.W Food, Locke-Ober, Taranta, Redezvous, L'Andana, The Butcher Shop, Viat Matta, Dante, Scampo,

51 Lincoln, Lineage, Bistro 5, Grill 23, East Coast Grill, Estragon, Union Bar and Grille, Il Carpiccio, Bin 26 Enoteca, Avila.

Nov 02, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

New Strip T's Thread for 2013:Excellence and Innovation Continue

Ribelle was a monster hit from the get-go?That's weird because when I was reading interviews about Tim he said Ribelle was very close to shutting down until the Globe review came out. If it was a monster hit from the get go, then why was Tim constantly changing the menu format and offering three for $30 before 6:30? I remember seeing lots of open seats at Ribelle early on.

Nov 02, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Mei Mei Kitchen, real disappointment..

To clarify, I'm only talking about the Dinner Menu, not lunch or takeout. I have always loved the Double Awesome, or Double Awesome sandwiches, corn fritters, and magical kale. For Dinner they don't even offer the Double Awesome anymore, saying they want people to try their other dishes.

Nov 02, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

Mei Mei Kitchen, real disappointment..

Anyone go to Mei Mei Kitchen Restaurant recently?

I've been really disappointed with my meals there and feel like it's getting worse. I've been there around 7 times. The reason I keep going back is I really like the people there, the vibe, what they stand for, but the food keeps changing and it's getting worse!

When they first opened I really liked their big format 5 spheres chicken, their kung pao chicken dish, and of course their Double Awesome.

Then they got rid of those two chicken dishes. They replaced it with a 48 hour braised short rib dish. This was a very good dish but soon they got rid of it.

Then they started making fresh noodles in house. This is when everything started going downhill. The noodles were delicious on their own, but the portion were way too small for the price, and their sauce did nothing for the noodle and tasted bland.

Now they have mapo smoked beef shanks with apples which has a nice smoky taste but the thinly slices apples don't add much to it, and the rice underneath is bland. It's hard to eat the apple slices together with the meat and rice. It would have been better if the apples were cut up into small dice and the rice had more seasoning.

The carrots with seeds dish is basically roasted carrots with granola and a tiny bit of coconut milk. This tasted like a play on granola with milk and fruit, but the amount of coconut milk in the dish was so tiny, and there weren't enough berries to make the dish interesting. It basically tasted like dry granola with roasted carrots on top. Ribelle had a granola dish with herbs and berries that's out of this world. La Brasa also has a great carrot dish with mole for the same price.

Finally, the sweet corn with bone marrow is a really weird dish and not in a good way. It was basically cut up corn with a bone marrow sauce and salmon roe on top. The bone marrow and salmon roe flavors really clashed. I don't know if it's because the salmon roe was not fresh, but the bone marrow sauce amplified the weird fishy taste of the salmon roe. This is coming rom a guy who loves salmon roe and uni and buys trays of it!

I feel like they are trying too hard to be creative with weird flavor combinations, at the sake of the dish simply tasting delicious. In David Changs Momofuku cookbook, he said he had lots of great ideas for dishes, but if the dish didn't taste fantastic, he got rid of it. I feel Mei Mei needs to follow this advise!

What is going on with them? Anyone else have recent experiences at Mei Mei Kitchen Restaurant?

Nov 02, 2014
Torolover in Greater Boston Area

ISO real Mirin and real chinese wine

You can find real Mirin at Whole Food believe it or not. It has a high alcohol content that you are looking for.

A week of inspiring and disappointing meals!

Perhaps it was my fault for eating too quickly and just not used to the format. I think I went into the panic mode you talked about of trying each dish too quickly. I didn't know which dishes were hot, and which dishes were cold.

We ordered a la carte. The waiter suggested we share an appetizer, and then we each order a main course, and then share a dessert.

The amuse bouche was probably the best part of the meal, perhaps because we really took time to enjoy each dish. Around 5 small really bright fresh tasting dishes and bread sticks.

The appetizer was 7 dishes. We each got 7 of the same dishes so there were 14 dishes set on our table at once! This is probably where the panic set in. I enjoyed most of them, but some of the dishes were too bitter for my taste, I think from the alcohol.

For the main course my wife had the Langoustine and I had the duck. The Languostine was prepared 5 different ways. I had the duck which came in 3 dishes. One dish was the duck breast, one was the duck skin, and the other was some veggie with duck foie gras sauce. I had a few bites of the duck, and then went to try the langoustines. By the time I went back to my duck, it was cold. Temperature is the concern I have with so many dishes on the table.

We all shared these dishes so total I ate 8 dishes for main course.

Then we had a pre-dessert, and then the final dessert of 7 dishes, and then a couple of chocolates.

So not quite 30 courses, but around 27 tastings.

There was a table next to us that finished even before we did!

The food was executed really well, but it was not the 3 star michelin experience I was hoping for. I think the format just didn't work for me.

Oct 17, 2014
Torolover in France

A week of inspiring and disappointing meals!

Yes I read about Pierre Gagnaire and looked at photos of the dishes before I made the reservation. I came prepared, but I didn't realize that once I got them, I had this urge to try all of them before they got cold.

For example my wife had the Langoustines for the main course which was prepared 6 different ways. It came out at all at once. I felt like I had to try all the different preparations quickly before they got cold. Some of the dishes were supposed to be cold like the Langoustine tartar, but I found myself rushing to eat the other dishes that were poached or cooked medium rare. With so many different flavors, I prefer to slowly take my time to appreciate each flavor and texture.

For desserts we had 9 desserts come out at the same time. Again some had ice-cream or cream, and I felt the rush to eat them all before they melt.

Execution was well done, but from this experience, I learned that I prefer courses to come out one by one, so I could really focus appreciating one dish at a time.

We had about 30 courses and finished them all in about 2 hours. At Le Cinq for lunch we had about 8 courses and it took us more then 3 hours to finish lunch!

Oct 16, 2014
Torolover in France

A week of inspiring and disappointing meals!

The other restaurant that I really liked in Nice is Comptoir du Marché. It is the sister restaurant of Bistro D'antoine. I had to book Bistro D'antoine well in advance, but I got in to Comptoir du Marche for lunch as a walk in.

Comptoir du Marche has some of the same dishes as Bistro D'antoine. They have the beef tongue in both restaurants. I ordered The beef tongue ($13!) at du Marche and it melted in my mouth and didnt have any rough fibers. I also had the langoustine special. It was perfectly cooked and was so tender, on par with the langoustine I had at Pierre Gagniere. Highly recommend the langoustine special. Also had the scallops which are fine, but wouldn't order it again.

I had duck at Bistro D'antoine($13!!), while good, not that interesting, and not as good as the langoustine special at du Marche and not as good as the beef tongue. I also had the tomato salad which sounds boring, but it was so sweet and fresh. Mussels ($7) sounds boring but were so sweet!

Yes the croissant I had was the Ispahan croissant. I also had a really good eclair at Eclair de Genie and Angelina.

Oh I forgot to mention I also went to Chateaubriand. It was good and fun, but I probably wouldn't go back again as there are so many other places I want to try. The most memorable dish I had was the dessert made of three ingredients. Candied egg yolk, sugar, and almond powder. That was a fantastic treat!

Oct 16, 2014
Torolover in France