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Wild Blueberries or Italian prune plums?

FYI - I bought Italian prune plums at Russo's today as well as wild blueberries.

Sep 09, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Eat Local Challenge

stupiddog,We've getting meat from Chestnut Farm since about June as well. You're right the lamb and pork products are sensational (and especially the bacon!). I've had good luck with the sausage - both breakfast links and Italian - we've had a lot of house guest this summer who have all glowing scarfed them down. Some of the beef cuts are not your typical grocery store cuts and require some long slow cooking - it makes for interesting cooking. Though have made the wrong call on the long, slow vs. high fast on one or tow occasions. They are nice people who make decent product - I hope you give them another chance in the future. Too bad about the Fisher Cats, just thinking about making confit makes me salivate - call me pavlovsdog.

Aug 30, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Eat Local Challenge

If you want to be really dedicated, you could join a local CSA. My wife and I joined Chestnut Farms (http://www.chestnutfarms.org/) for our meat and eggs - all local grown, grass fed - and have been extremely happy with the quality and selection. They drop off at a number of places in the Boston Metro area. There are others that our friends joined. Check out:
http://www.nofamass.org/programs/csa.php

Aug 28, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

New to Newton/Watertown

All good recommendations. If you are looking for good take out pizza in Watertown, I'd recommend Stella's on Mt. Auburn near the Armenian markets and bakeries -very good pizza, but we've had bad luck with delivery almost every time with hour + waits, orders forgotten, etc. - it's better to pick it up. Another good choice is Pizza Roma - no delivery, but very decent pie - on Waverly at the intersection with Orchard.

Aug 28, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

An unscientific look at local by-the-glass wine pricing [moved from Boston board]

I was a wine buyer for a retail store for a number of years. The typical markup for wine in that venue is 50% over cost (though sometimes less for very expensive wines or very popular mass produced wines). This price is based on distributor's listed price, the same for restaurants and retail. However, like WineTravel noted, very often the cost the retailer could be much less if your buy into deal (e.g., buy a case stack an place it by the door, or agree to buy some other stock that is not moving for the distributer). Restaurants actually buy into deals more often as if makes sense for a restaurant wine buyer to buy 10+ cases at a time. Also, if it is a well known restaurant, a distributer will cut the buyer a deal first to be able to advertise that they supply the restaurant and second knowing that people will try wine by the glass they typically won't buy by the bottle retail and hopefully seek it out later in the retail market. I guess the long and short of this post is that eddb and WineTravel are right to suggest that you may be vastly underestimating the markup in your calculations. For example,
2005 Domaine L’Hortus Rose de Saignee $8/glass $14/bottle retail 5x8=40/14=286%
could be $8/glass $14/bottle retail = 9.25 wholesale (or less) 5x8=40/9.25=433%

Aug 05, 2007
tpapa2 in Wine

Victor's Diner - Watertown ?

I second the kudos for the Deluxe Town diner. If I were rating the H2Otown diners it would be the Deluxe Town Diner, Victors, with the NY Diner trailing a distant third.

Mar 16, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Subs in Somerville / Cambridge

If you are interested in Italian subs, I highly recommend La Cascia's Bakery in Medford (418 Main St) - share the super Italian with everything on it (extra hot pepper for me) with a friend. I know it's not in Medford but it's less than a mile from Davis Sq.

Feb 23, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Day trips from Boston with good food-wine-beer on the way?

My wife and I have been in the Boston area for a little more than a year now and would like to get to know the surrounding areas - close by and with in a few hours drive. We travel on our stomachs and are always on the look out for great food on the way. Some things we've found so far are Federal Hill in Providence, Portsmouth Brewery, Flo's Hot Dogs in York/Cape Neddick (?), and The Clam Box. We even found a GREAT Belgian beer bar called Ebeneezer Kezars in Lovell, ME.
Any recommendations would be most welcome!!

Best Dim Sum in Boston Area That No One Knows About?

Check out Shangra-la in Belmont. It doesn't look like much but the food is good.

Jan 20, 2007
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Introduction to French Wines

Sacto_Damkier, You'll notice that there hasn't been any online resources mentioned (all the book recommendations are good), because there isn't a lot of good non-subscription wine info on the web for someone wanting the basic frame to build on.

Dec 15, 2006
tpapa2 in Wine

wine with sushi?

I agree with Steve K, beer is very good. But if not, I would say jcanncuk hit the nail on the head - minerally but nothing oaky or sweet. I would also recommend a nice Loire white like Sancerre, or even Champagne/Sparkling.

Dec 15, 2006
tpapa2 in Wine

It's cold... I'm craving noodle soup take-out

The food court at the Super 88 in Alston has a number fo good options.

Dec 08, 2006
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

In search of good sushi

I have to agree. I recently tried New Ginza and have been back twice since. The food is fantastic and creative. Service is good. Can't recommend it enough. Certainly one of the best sushi places in the area.

Nov 19, 2006
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Cheap eats and good beer

Oh I'll be based in the River North area. Thanks again!

Nov 12, 2006
tpapa2 in Chicago Area

Cheap eats and good beer

Hi. I'll be in Chicago next week for a conference. It's just going to be me for at least a couple meals and was wondering about high quality cheap eats (I like everything - just tie it down) and a good place with good beer.

Thanks!!

Nov 12, 2006
tpapa2 in Chicago Area

Disappointing....B & G Oysters

bklynlinda, I hear you! I moved from NYC to Boston and had sticker shock. The cost of eating out is incredibly expensive in comparison!

Nov 12, 2006
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

What's the word on Aquavit?

My wife an I have been a number of times. Just a tip - we find that we like the upstairs cafe much better than the (more) formal restaurant - the cafe is just too much of a great value for food from the same kitchen - the formal restaurant doesn't offer that much more to make it worthwhile. I haven't experienced any rudeness described above (Sorry, Le Den - I really value the service as much as the food in any establishment - there are many places we won't go back to because of bad service despite great food).

Nov 12, 2006
tpapa2 in Manhattan

Different roast turkey recipes

I'm looking for an interesting roast turkey recipe - I try to mix it up every year. I saw a prosciutto/hazelnut recipe on another thread that looked good, but I thought I would start a specific thread.

Past years have included:

Chinese American chicken from Saveur

various compound butters under the skin - the favorite seems to have been chile-butter based on turkey recipe from epicurious.com.

Bacon, prosciutto, or sopresatta layered under the skin with various herbs/spices and oil/butter.

Any ideas would be welcome!

Nov 12, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

Oatmeal--What do you put on yours (besides brown sugar)?

Crumbled crispy bacon w/ or w/o a chopped apple
or
maple syrup, cinnamon and pinch of salt w/ or w/o chopped apple again

Nov 06, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

Starting a Cookbook Collection?

I couldn't agree more about Timing is Everything! I refer to it constantly. I can never remember how long to boil eggs or the right internal temps for roasting. I can't recommend it highly enough!

Nov 02, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

Lavender Powder?

Try a French lemon chicken recipe adding some of the lavender powder, and maybe some thyme.

Nov 01, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

Starting a Cookbook Collection?

Other off the beaten track ideas might include...

A very decent French cookbook with pretty pictures is the Paris Cafe Cookbook by Daniel Young - I even checked out some of the cafes during my last trip to Paris.

For entertaining, I often find myself referring to Penelope Casas's Tapas.

Ideas for a decent Italian cookbook for a New Yorker would include Lidia's Italian Table by Lidia Bastanich from Felidia fame and books from Mario Batali - I like the Babbo cookbook (all the ingredients readily available at Fairways)or simpler with good pic would be his Simple Italian Food - she can check out how they are prepared in his restaurants.

Nov 01, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

cold smoker

I'd be interested in how you did this. I was looking at the alton brown smoker link above thinking that it could be adapted to a two box cold smoker just putting the fan in front of a hose of some sort in one box leading to another, via a cooler full of ice.

Oct 31, 2006
tpapa2 in Cookware

cold smoker

Oct 29, 2006
tpapa2 in Cookware

What would you drink with a spicy goulash?

I would agree with HeelSoxHound, that if you are looking for an non-obvious alternative to red, I wound try reisling (maybe spatlese), gewertz, or even a gruner veltliner would be an interesting paring.

Oct 29, 2006
tpapa2 in Wine

Trickey wine pairing!

You might try a valpolecella ripaso or even an amarone. the richer raisenated undertones will certainly match well.

Oct 29, 2006
tpapa2 in Wine

Source for pink curing salt in Boston area

I've made sopressata with my in-laws in PA for years and am looking to do this on my own in MA but am having trouble finding pink curing salt. Does anyone have any sources or suggestions? I live in Watertown.

Oct 29, 2006
tpapa2 in Greater Boston Area

Fish Chowder Recipe?

Oops I just read that you can't have pork. Butter works well, just tastes a little different.

Oct 17, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

Fish Chowder Recipe?

I grew up on the coast of Maine. Here is the way we do it there (nonchef manipulated, simple, and just as good).

Render salt pork in the pot and remove when browned.

Fry chopped onions in rendered fat until soft and slightly browned. (you can add a little butter at either point to help things along).

add small diced potatos, whole milk (some people use some evaported milk or some cream in different proportions), a couple bay leaves, salt & pepper and the fried pork if you want (take off the rind before frying). - I like a little fresh thyme, but that's not that way its usually done.

Cook at medium or so, watching it doesn't burn until the potatos are almost done and add haddock or cod. Cook for a minute ot two longer and then cover take off the heat to rest and cure for an hour or so (this is important).

When ready to serve, heat thru making sure fish is cooked and flaking. Some poeple melt butter into it to make it more rich.

Oct 17, 2006
tpapa2 in Home Cooking

How do you clean your wine glasses?

I agree with RicRios that hand washing and drying by hand will do the trick. I have luck with a cotton (non-terry cloth) towel. I've also pulled them out of the dishwasher before the heated drying and hand dryed them with the same effect.

Oct 17, 2006
tpapa2 in Wine