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Sweet Thyme Bakery, Lexington Center, not to be missed!

Thanks for the comparison! My DH and I would definitely head to Sweet Thyme for a tryout.

As for CC, Noriko told me that it was exhausting to run the place. It is too bad that the location did not attract more of the crowd taking the bus at the depot in the morning. There was parking behind CC, but it wasn't obvious. The things that I miss most are the cakes I would order from her and the Milk Tea Pudding. I am certainly hopeful that Sweet Thyme will fill the void.

Sweet Thyme Bakery, Lexington Center, not to be missed!

And Caramel Milk Tea!

Sweet Thyme Bakery, Lexington Center, not to be missed!

Have you been to the late (and very much missed) Cafe Cakes? If you have, how does Sweet Thyme stack up? It seems very much in the same vein. My husband and I miss Cafe Cakes very much and would love to know of a good substitute and by all indications, this bakery may be IT! Now if only Sweet Thyme has Milk Tea Pudding.........

Yazmin's Cafe Madrid-Chelmsford

No, but I did walk in and it smelled awesome! Next trip......

Yazmin's Cafe Madrid-Chelmsford

It was almost strange to find this little restaurant in the strip mall just before the parking lot to the Radisson in Chelmsford. We passed it while on our way to a children's holiday party and thought we would drop by after the party. Our 2 year-old was hungry and agreeable after the party, so we had lunch there. It was a nice atmosphere, with well-spaced tables. Bright and airy feel to it. It seemed to have opened recently with a bakery in the same strip mall area.

We all had a round of orange juice and they gave my DD a nice kid's cup, which was a pleasant surprise since most places looking that nice don't usually cater to kids. They had a breakfast menu, which included the usual eggs, waffles, etc. But the lunch menu was a great mix of tapas, salads, sandwiches and burgers. The flavors were not Spanish, but appeared Cuban, including some plantain tapas and a Cuban sandwich we did not try this time. We ordered tapas: Croquetas de Pollo (chicken croquettes), Gambas al Ailljos (shrimps with garlic), spinach and cheese empanadas, Tortilla Espanol (spanish 'omelette' with potatoes) and Madrid Soup. Everything was fresh and wonderfully flavored. The croquetas had shredded chicken that must have been chopped up after shredding. The texture was great and not stringy (which you can get with shredded chicken). I must admit I ate it so fast, I only know that the balance of flavors was great! And the outer crust of the croquetas was perfectly crunchy, balancing with the soft, shredded meat within, and did not have a trace of oiliness. The Gambas was a plate of about 8 large shrimp with just enough garlic and chilli peppers. The shrimps were fresh, which we could tell by the nice bite. DH used their awesome bread (pillowy soft on the inside, with a nice crustiness on the outside, served warm in the bread basket) to sop up the garlicky shrimp juices.The empanadas were FILLED with a mixture of spinach and cheese, though I did wish for a little more cheese. The empanada dough was thin and perfectly fried, giving the right amount of crunch to chewy ratio. Again, there was not trace of oiliness. Our least favorite dish was the tortilla and I liked it, but did not love it. Nice mix of egg and potatoes, but I did want more chopped onions in the mix. Most of the tapas dishes came with a little salad of chopped cucumber, onion, mango, etc on a bed of lettuce. Lastly, the soup was a brilliant, brothy mix chock full of chicken, pork, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, zucchini, onion.....served with a slice of their awesome bread. Looking around the other tables, I could see that the salads and other dishes were a nice portion. Even though our tapas were not the small plates you get in Spain, they were also not the huge American portions. If I head out in that direction again, I will definitely drop by to try more dishes. It seems like a family friendly place (as we were paying we saw a family with a disabled child being seated and they seemed to be well accommodated by the wait staff), and given the food, I hope they will get good patronage.

Cafe Cakes' last day!

I spoke with Noriko and she said she was really tired and wasn't looking into opening some place new. Adding that she needed a break. I remember when she closed her store in Belmont. She was still keen on opening somewhere, but I think she is really exhausted from running the operation herself this time around. I have a third of her raspberry champagne cake left and I am definitely savoring EVERY bite!

Cafe Cakes' last day!

if you want your fix of milk tea pudding or curry chicken sandwich, it may be already too late. Hubby and I went to Cafe Cakes in Watertown today and it is their last day. I managed to squeeze in a birthday cake order earlier this week, though I didn't know they were closing. It's sad........where am I going to have milk tea pudding again? The beautiful, clean, light cream atop of the smoky Earl Grey infused pudding....... However, I do wish Noriko the best in her future endeavors. It too bad another wonderful local bakery is closing. Noriko's unique pastries are going to be missed........

Looking for restaurant for my daughter's first birthday

We did our daughter's first birthday at a local brunch place, The Spot Cafe. We often go there for brunch and know the owners well, so they planned the whole luncheon for us. Adult food for the adults, and waffles, pancakes, fruit and other yummy items for the kids. Though we didn't have the whole place to ourselves, we decided to have lunch at 1:30pm, when the brunch/lunch rush was almost over. It's not a big place, and we took up 80% of the place. The owners were extremely accommodating and the price was extremely reasonable.

Perhaps you should look at a place like The Spot Cafe, that serves brunch and see if they'll do the same thing 'Spot' did for us. Everyone we invited had a great time and loved the food. Especially the kids who all got waffles or pancakes with bunny faces made of whipped cream and had chocolate eyes.

Good luck!

wedding planning? need ideas for catering!

Try Tiger Lily Caterers ( Granted, I have been out of the wedding planning thing for a little bit, but Tiger Lily was amazing! Our wedding guests are still talking about the food more than 5 (6....7...?) years after the wedding. We had to cater to kosher, Asian and vegetarian tastes, so we were very finicky about the food. Tiger Lily came through with flying colors. They are a little expensive. I think their minimum starts at $85pp for a wedding now, but they are worth every penny. They have a tasting, for which you have to pay, but it is a really wonderful, private dinner. My husband wanted to get me another tasting dinner with them after my Ph. D. graduation, but they only do tastings for potential clients. I believe they can work with most sites, but they are located in Beverly. Good luck!

Empanada Dough

If you are up to traveling a little, La Chapincita on Moody Street in Waltham has 2 different types of dough, either for frying or baking (in the freezer section). I usually buy the ones for baking and they are quite good. Fill them, pop them in the oven at about 350-375, and you'll have a great empanada in 15-20 minutes.

Mr Pollo Mario, Betos/Peaches and Cream, Baan Thai, Grafton Street

Nah! My bro is special. Can't ever replace his taste buds. Wish I could 'hold the fort', but I don't go out as often as he does, or know as many people. It's hard when you have a baby......

Anyway, try out Baan Thai and do ask them to make it the Thai way, ie spicy (if you like it that way). Hope you'll like the place.

Mr Pollo Mario, Betos/Peaches and Cream, Baan Thai, Grafton Street

Limster's sis here. I don't think my bro has ventured to Erawan. Baan Thai is really very good. They have some of the Americanized versions of Thai food to fit the person on the street. But if you get down to their Thai food, it's authentic and delicious. Haven't been to their dinner in a while, but as my bro commented, the dim sum is worth the trip out to Waltham. Sorry, bro! Hope you don't mind me replying in your stead! =0)

Spot Cafe Watertown

I'm glad someone finally posted about 'Spot', as a group of us calls it. The lunch stuff is good, but the brunch items are the real gems. We particularly like their Belgian waffle, which is wonderful with fruit and cream on the side. Wouldn't want to soften the the waffle's perfectly crisp exterior with the toppings. The owners are lovely people. Very friendly and obliging when you ask for something out of the menu, like poached eggs. Hmmmmm.....might have to make a run there tomorrow.

Baby friendly restaurants near Watertown

This is probably pretty ambitious, since our kid is only a week shy of 2 months. But DH and I have brought the youngster and another couple with their 9-month old to Sichuan Gourmet in Framingham and had a somewhat positive experience, where patrons had young children running around and the restaurant accommodated our strollers. Any suggestions for similar restaurants (any cuisine), particularly around Watertown and surrounding neighborhoods?

Belmont breakfast and/or coffee shop?

You have a few choices:
1. Andros Diner just a couple of blocks from Waverly Square on Trapelo (going towards Beaver Brook Reservation and McLean Hospital). Nice little diner. But I live in Watertown (6 blocks away) and I'd rather go to Deluxe Diner, Spot Cafe or Cafe Cakes in Watertown.
2. Vicki Lee's in Cushing Square ( I find VL's a little too expensive for my taste, especially just for a spot of coffee or breakfast.
3. Cafe D'Or just off of Cushing Square (442 Common St.). This is a cute little Lebanese place that serves up breakfast as well. The Lebanese food is very good, but I have yet to try the breakfast.
4. Select Cafe on School Street (283 School Street) going away from Waverly Square and McLean Hospital. This cafe has wonderful sandwiches on really nice baguettes, lovely omelettes and tasty quiches.

If you are willing to drive a few more blocks, Watertown has many breakfast offereings especially in Watertown Square. But I hope my suggestions suffice. Enjoy!

where to buy glass bottles

I've gotten bottles at the kitchen store next to the Concord Cheese Shop (downtown Concord) that I use for infused liqueur. These are nice bottles with a swing arm and a plastic/rubber seal. Also, the crafts store A. C. Moore carries some bottles as well, but these have a cork seal.

Number 9 Park???

My DH and I were just there last Thursday. DH enjoyed his sweetbreads app. and I really liked my ravioletti with fresh ricotta app. The pasta was appeared to be made in house, and was perfectly done. The fresh ricotta filling was creamy and lightly salted. We overheard the table next to ours that they really loved the gnocchi with prunes, which I believe is No. 9's specialty. For entrees, I tasted my DH's veal shank and I thought it was awesome! Fall off the bone and they give you a little spoon for the marrow. Yum! Enjoy your dinner there!

Molana (Persian) in Watertown Review.

There's definitely lamb on the menu. One of the lamb dishes I love there is a lamb shank that falls off the bone. And if you think the lamb is good, the rice is even better. The lamb is accompanied by this dill, fava bean rice. Unfortunately, the rice you describe is not served at Molana's. Or maybe I haven't been going there long enough. =) However, I have to say that the different ingredients they use with their rice (like sour currents, for example) and the quality of rice (single grain, but fluffy) make their rice very good. Better than other Persian places that I've been to.

A couple JP notes

I don't think Cha Fahn went out of business. A few of us wanted to head over there for tea last Saturday, so I went to their website for hours. Apparently, Cha Fahn is undergoing renovations and will come back with a new menu. So, I guess we'll have to wait it out.

Select Cafe in Belmont?

My husband and I haven't been there terribly recently. Perhaps 2 months ago. I love this little place for their omlettes, quiches and sandwiches. They always have fresh, tasty food and pretty much everything is made to order. The owner is really friendly and there is usually only one waitress. I adore their pesto, mozzerella, tomato sandwich. The bread is good! They also do dinner, but the menu is limited to 2 dishes and usually comes with salad. But the dinner protion is rather large. I believe it's BYOB as well. If you are close by definitely drop by for breakfast/brunch. It's a wonderful little spot!

Dinner suggestions for $100-$120pp?

Thanks everyone for your suggestions! Now, hubby has a decision to make.......

Dinner suggestions for $100-$120pp?

We probably won't be indulging in too much alcohol. Only a glass or two for hubby. =0)

Dinner suggestions for $100-$120pp?

My husband won an award at work which includes $250 for dinner. He has been trying to find a 'suitable' place for dinner, but he wants 'something special'. I would have gone for Uni, except I am pregnant and not allowed raw fish (or alcohol, for that matter). We were thinking along the lines of Salts or Pigalle, though we would try anything. Any suggestions? TIA!