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Big Momma's Profile

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Best Local Brews you can't get anywhere else, and Best Lobster Mac&Cheese

It's worth a visit for the lobster mac and cheese, but I can't say much about anything else on the menu. I think we tried nachos one time and the food I've seen waitstaff carrying looks good. The food is adequate. But the mac and cheese, a glass of wine and the view are nice combination on a stormy Sunday.

Feb 20, 2013
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Best Local Brews you can't get anywhere else, and Best Lobster Mac&Cheese

The Red Parrot in Hull has the best lobster mac and cheese I've ever had. It's not just the mac and cheese (which is great) but the quality of the lobster. It's truly outstanding. We try lobster mac and cheese almost everywhere we see it on the menu.

I am also a fan of the Fat Cat's lobster mac and cheese, but given a choice, Red Parrot would win.

Feb 19, 2013
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Where to eat in Revere

I think you're talking about Renzo's (brick oven place). I've been there several times and never had a bad meal. The pizza is great, as is a shrimp app we've tried, and a few other meals as well. Great people watching, and great 80's music for us people of the older persuasion, too.

Sep 12, 2012
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

"Familymoon" in Miami

Thanks very much!

Aug 17, 2011
Big Momma in Miami - Fort Lauderdale

"Familymoon" in Miami

My husband and I are taking our four children to Miami (two his, two mine, from previous marriages) to celebrate our wedding next week. They range in age from 12-19, and a few of them aren't adventurous eaters at all. The rest of us are foodies. I'm trying to find restaurants that will please us all, but the foodies don't always want to eat at the type of placeswhere a burger is readily available. On the other hand, we adults don't want to do chain food, period. We are from Boston.

What are some good, but fun places for the six of us? Despite the chain factor, I figured Joe's Crab Shack and Benihanas would please us all, but casual dinner or lunch place suggestions would be appreciated as well. We may ditch the kids one night for a romantic meal, and suggestions for that meal would be great, too. We'll be in the North Beach area.

Thanks very much.

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Joe's Crab Shack
4402 N University Dr, Lauderhill, FL 33351

Aug 12, 2011
Big Momma in Miami - Fort Lauderdale

south shore girls night

I've been to Alma Nove, Alba and Fat Cat (often) and of the three my pick would Fat Cat if your party is less than 6. Alma Nove, while beautiful, has some service issues and for the prices, I don't think the quality (or quantity either, for that matter) are there. Alba would work nicely if you want a more formal outing but as a fan of the Cat I'll say it's a more laid back, casual atmosphere, but it is small and if you want a table for 6 you'll need to get there early as they don't take reservations.

Tosca in Hingham would work nicely, too.

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Fat Cat
24 Chestnut St, Quincy, MA 02169

Oct 07, 2010
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Brunello in Somerville, Great Find!

I received a groupon offer for Brunello in Somerville and after researching online reviews (all positive) decided to give it a try for my son's high school graduation celebration dinner. I wanted to try something new but didn't want to venture into Boston. I am so glad I tried Brunello. Diners were my son the graduate, my mother, and me.

The decor is beautiful. The space feels intimate, yet it's spacious. The menu is very well balanced, and the prices are quite reasonable. We dined early and the restaurant was quiet, but it's got a great vibe. You'd never know sitting inside that you're in Somerville, and from the outside you'd never guess how attractive the inside of this restaurant is. The staff is friendly and seem to be very happy to be there.

The food was outstanding. For starters we were served house-baked bread with basil pesto and it was delicious. The meal was well-paced in that we were asked for our appetizer order first, and our entree order a short while afterward. Before we received our appetizers the chef sent out an amuse bouche of mussels steamed with vegetables and wine. The flavorings were perfect, and didn't hide the delicate taste of the extremely fresh mussels.

I had the french onion soup and it was very good. My mother had the house salad, which was a base of extremely fresh mesclun mix, your usual salad vegetables, olives, etc. with a basil vinagrette (sp) that might have had a hint of honey. There was no iceberg lettuce in sight, and while I do like iceberg, it belongs in a wedge with bleu. :)

Entrees were filet mignon served in a brandy sauce, and pasta prima vera. The vegetables were a perfect al dente, as was the pasta. I don't recall from the menu if the pasta was home-made, but I believe it was. I wish I had sampled more, but I was too busy digging into the filet mignon. It was perfectly cooked for me, the sauce was delicious, and it was served with fingerlings and grilled asparagus. My bone of contention with fingerlings is that they are often pre-cooked, dried out and non-edible at most restaurants but that was not the case here. The meal was wonderful. I am not very knowledgable in the area of wine, but I did enjoy the suggested pairing with my filet, as my mother did with her pasta, and they were perfectly matched.

For dessert we all shared a slice of decadent chocolate cake with chocolate ice cream, compliments of the house and served with candles in honor of my son's graduation.

Jaime, our server, was perfect. He made our celebration of a great day, and a great meal, all the better. He was attentive but never intrusive, and he's very knowledgable about the menu.

The restaurant has ample off-street parking, which is another plus.

I am a regular at the Fat Cat in Quincy, and I've been looking for a "Fat Cat " type of place in the North Shore area, where I live. I think I've found it. I'll be back to Brunello often. I hope the restaurant does well, because they're definitely doing things right. I can't wait to try the patio on a nice evening.

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Fat Cat
24 Chestnut St, Quincy, MA 02169

Jun 13, 2010
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Provincetown recs - help!

I'll second Jimmy's Hideaway for dinner. It's a restaurant I won't miss when I'm in Provincetown. The food, hosts and ambiance are outstanding. I like the seafood at Fanizzi's but I've never had a lobster roll in Ptown. Bayside Betsy's is another favorite of mine.

Enjoy!

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Bayside Betsy's
177 Commercial St, Provincetown, MA 02657

Jun 05, 2010
Big Momma in Southern New England

Jimmy's Hideaway or Mews?

You can't go wrong at either place. I've eaten at Jimmy's and the Mews in the past month and both are still wonderful. While I enjoy both, I am partial to Jimmy's.

Jun 23, 2009
Big Momma in All New England Archive

Dinner with Teens in BU Area

Thanks for the earplugs tip, I'll definitely do that. I already did enough damage to my ears in my concert-going youth, I'm not going to lose any more hearing on the Jonas Brothers!!!

Feb 28, 2008
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Dinner with Teens in BU Area

I'll be driving and just getting to that side of town from north of Boston is going to be tough. I'm hoping to park once and leave the car for the night.

Feb 28, 2008
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Dinner with Teens in BU Area

Thanks, it looks like Brown Sugar will be a good choice. I'd do Super 88 but since we're going to a Jonas Brothers concert with a few thousand screaming teenage girls, cocktails are definitely in order at this dinner.

Thanks again!

Feb 28, 2008
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Dinner with Teens in BU Area

A friend and I are taking our 13yo daughters to a concert at Agannis Arena and would like to take them to dinner first. I was thinking about going to Brown Sugar, but haven't heard anything about it. What would you recommend? These girls will adventure outside of burgers and chicken nuggets.

Thanks in advance.

Feb 28, 2008
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Small Function in Dedham, Norwood, West Roxbury?

I'm looking to have a dinner function for approximately 40 people in September and would prefer to avoid hotels. I haven't dined in the area in years. What would you recommend?

TIA

Apr 18, 2007
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Great little WAKEFIELD restaurant -- can't find thread

How do I find this place? I can't find a decent gyro anywhere in Boston.

Mar 23, 2007
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Good Dinner in Woburn

We'll be in Woburn with two teenagers on Sunday and hope to find a decent dinner. It doesn't need to be fancy, just good chow. Does anyone have a favorite place in
Woburn?

TIA

Feb 14, 2007
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Salem Wood Cafe, Malden -- Was I Dreaming, or Were Those Steak Tips...

We've eaten at the Salem Wood twice in the past month and the meals have been very good and so reasonably priced I never can believe it when I get the check.

The first time we went I had the surf and turf and while the steak tips were good, they weren't the best I've had. The baked stuffed shrimp that came with it were delicious. Last night I had the shrimp scampi and it was very good; the pasta was perfectly al dente. I can't say I've had fresher shrimp anywhere.

My son is a chicken tender "connoisseur" and said they were the best he's ever had, and ordered them both times we went.

Both times we went my daughter had the chicken and broccoli with garlic and olive oil on the homemade fusilli. It was delicious. My husband has had both the seafood alfredo and the tortelli? (lasagna type dish) and they were great.

As appetizers we had the crab cakes last night and they were very good with a nice red pepper sauce. My daughter ordered the garlic rolls and she said they were great. My son is also a fan of mozzarella sticks with marinara and he loves them. I have to say here that the Salem Wood's red sauce is the best I've had in any restaurant, including the few places I've tried in the North End. I am well-versed in Italian cooking and red sauce is something that makes or breaks it for me as far as my judging an Italian kitchen's abilities. My husband is native Italian and he loves the food there. That's rare for him.

Each dish comes with a very fresh salad.

The rolls are served hot and the service is very down-home and unpretentious. Eating at the Salem Wood is like going to your aunt's house for dinner.

It's not just the quality of the food either, but the quantity. We brought most of our food home because it's just so much. There's nothing like nice leftovers for lunch!

We left at 8:30 and they were turning patrons away at the door in order to maintain a level of service because the waits were getting long. The kitchen was backed up and the hostess and server kept apologizing for the waits. It was worth the wait.

We spoke with the owner last night about take-out and she explained that the kitchen is tiny and that her son and daughter-in-law are the only chefs and that aside from the dishwasher they can't fit any more personnel in the kitchen, so there's no plan for take-out service at this time, though if you call at a slow time they'll try to accomodate you. It's amazing to me that two people in the kitchen can serve as many tables that they do and maintain the level of quality food they put out.

Jan 13, 2007
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

New Pressed Sandwiches Location Downtown X-ing

I really wanted to like this place. I wanted the turkey sandwich with swiss rather than brie. They assemble the sandwiches in advance so this was a special order. They forgot the rest of the ingredients in the sandwich (spinach, red peppers) which I couldn't see until I got back to the office. When I opened the sandwich there was one (1) slice of turkey in the sandwich. For the same $6.30 I can get a better sandwich at Sebastians.

Jan 09, 2007
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Hard Rock Cafe, how bad is it?

Hard Rock was as I expected. Mediocre food but not very expensive. Service was excellent and a bunch of the servers got together and sang happy birthday to my son and gave him a complimentary hot fundge sundae. Despite the food my son and daughter loved the Hard Rock and it was perfect for a teen's birthday dinner.

Nov 27, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Hard Rock Cafe, how bad is it?

Thanks for the burger advice. Good thing I love my boy because I surely wouldn't go there otherwise. He'll love it though, so it will be worth it.

Nov 25, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Hard Rock Cafe, how bad is it?

Bleh, as I expected. Thanks.

Nov 25, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Hard Rock Cafe, how bad is it?

My son turns 15YO tomorrow and we're spending the day in town. This is probably the "coolest" place to take him (in his eyes) since he plays guitar but is the food actually edible? I'd much rather spend my dining dollar elsewhere but it's his day.

Nov 25, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

First time going to Locke-Ober

Thanks everyone, it's great to get different opinions. As far as snobby service, I can't wait! I haven't had truly snobby service since dining at the Pillar House. Having kids really does put a cramp into your food budget and restaurant style.

Nov 10, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

First time going to Locke-Ober

I'm going to splurge and take my mother to dinner at Locke-Ober for her birthday next week. I've done a search on the forum for general reviews. Can anyone recommend favorite dishes? I'm disappointed that hearts of palm are no longer on the menu!

TIA

Nov 10, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Private Dining for 12

Thanks!! A friend just got me private dining at Via Matta.

Oct 31, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

Private Dining for 12

I need private dining accomodations for 12 on Thursday night. Davios is booked and Legal's won't return my calls. I've done a search and I've tried Au Jour d'Hui and they don't even answer the phone.

Italian would probably be best. Do any upscale restaurants in the North End have private dining accomodations?

TIA.

Oct 31, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

House Warming appetizers

Here's another favorite of mine. It's easy and you can make the bread filling a day or two in advance (stored separately-stuff the bread just before baking). It's requested by a lot of friends when I ask what I can bring to a function. It's always one of the first appetizers that vanishes.

Artichoke Cheese Dip in a Bread Bowl

1 10 inch round loaf of bread, sourdough(or whatever you can find)
1 can artichoke hearts
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup jack cheese, shredded
1 cup mayo
1 clove garlic, minced (I usually use more)
1 onion, chopped fine (about 1/2 cup)
1 cup parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Hollow out the bread, and save the pieces for dipping. Chop the artichokes and mix all ingredients together and put into bread. Put top back on bread. Wrap in foil and bake for 1 1/2 hours until done.
Use french bread slices and tortilla chips for dipping.

Oct 22, 2006
Big Momma in Home Cooking

House Warming appetizers

I love open houses and with some planning, they can be easy to do. I like to make things that can be pretty much prepared before the event and then thrown together at the last minute. An antipasto is ideal and can be a beautiful "centerpiece" to your buffet table along with a nice cheese platter and assorted breads.

Here is a recipe I love because I can make the topping for the brie a day or two in advance and then just stick it in the oven before the guests start to arrive.

1 large brie round
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes
1 cup fresh basil
1 cup fresh parsley
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil

Chop sun dried tomatoes, and cover with hot water for 15 minutes.
Chop basil and parsley.
Mince garlic.
Drain tomatoes well, squeezing out excess water.
In saute pan, heat olive oil and saute tomatoes 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add garlic and continue to saute, stirring constantly.
Add balsamic vinegar, basil and parsley.
Stir constantly for 1 minute and remove from heat.
Remove as much rind as possible from brie.
Put in an oven-safe dish, cover with tomato mixture and heat at 350 degrees until bubbly.
I serve this with crackers and crostini.

Oct 22, 2006
Big Momma in Home Cooking

Looking for a "colonial" place in Boston for chowing

I would avoid Union Oyster house except for cocktails and an appetizer. I took a bunch of out-of-towners to Union and was embarrassed at how bad the food was. The old-world ambience is nice though. If you go, ask for the Kennedy booth.

I second Durgin Park if you want to stay in Boston. I haven't had the turkey dinner and doubt it's wild turkey but I've never had a bad meal there. The fish dishes are always outstanding and colonial period dishes are represented to an extent.

Sadly the Oliver Wight Tavern at Sturbridge Village closed last January. They did have some nice colonial period dishes.

I'd also recommend Locke Ober if it's in the budget, but you wouldn't be getting colonial-inspired fare.

Oct 21, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area

shameless cry for ideas: lunch in downtown x-ing

Try the Herreras burrito cart outside Macys. Great steak burrito or Mexican rice bowl.

Oct 19, 2006
Big Momma in Greater Boston Area