litchick's Profile

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Big Platter 'o LOX? -- quantity as well as quality

Hey trufflehound -- I actually would, but we have a new baby in the house and I can barely feed myself let alone make a slab of lox. However! I'm banking this recipe for the future -- thank you!

Jun 10, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Big Platter 'o LOX? -- quantity as well as quality

Hi hounds,

I'm looking for a big platter of lox for a party this coming Sunday, and I'm hoping for good bang for the buck. Quantity as well as quality. Obviously something like The Butcherie will have nice quality lox, but it also seems on the higher end budget-wise. Anyone have good rec's?

Jun 08, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

favorite salmon dishes?

Looking for your favorite salmon dishes in Boston metro area -- any cuisine. Bonus points for good value, but I'm interested in both ends of the cost spectrum.

Mar 11, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Orange wines, Boston area?

The wine list at Study (and so, I presume, also Ames Street Deli) has a section of Orange Wines. Not sure if they're Georgian or not.

Mar 03, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

ISO: Gourmet Oreo-style Sandwich Cookies in Back Bay, South End, or Downtown Xing?

Madrid: yeah, those are good. So are Lakota. Sadly, I'm on a tight schedule and need to pick these up for an event, and I'm only going to be in those three random neighborhoods over the next 24 hours!

Feb 26, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

ISO: Gourmet Oreo-style Sandwich Cookies in Back Bay, South End, or Downtown Xing?

Looking for a place to buy much-better-than-Oreo sandwich cookies (any flavors) someplace in Back Bay, South End, or Downtown Crossing. Any favorites or leads?

Feb 26, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Best Egg and Cheese Breakfast Sandwich around

It is no way gourmet, but the egg and cheese on croissant at Verna's Donuts (Mass Ave, North Cambridge) is just plain delicious. It's super basic, but it's one of my favorites. $3.50.

Hi-Rise's egg sandwich on potato roll is on the gourmet end (price-wise as well as ingredients), but it's very tasty.

Honorable mention: In the mornings, Ames Street Deli (Kendall) does a made-to-order donut with a sous-vide-style soft egg inside which is completely to die for. No cheese in it, so it doesn't quite fit your parameters, but golly it's good.

Feb 25, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Good Experience at Bread & Co, Everett

Stumbled into Brazilian bakery/sandwich/breakfast joint Bread & Co (Everett) for the first time today. Looking back on old chow posts, I see that it was mentioned quite a bit around 2006, but I didn't see any recent discussion, so I thought I'd post about our experience.

I'm a fan of Brazilian fare when I encounter it, but am also a total amateur. I don't know the proper names of things, so forgive some of the generalities of this description.

The counter service at this family owned joint was wonderful. The bakery items have no labels, but the two young women patiently explained what each of the sweet and savory items were in the cases, and made recommendations about what their favorite items were, and which were the freshest.

Savories: We were huge fans of the small (egg-sized) chicken croquettes -- so flavorful, great texture for the filling, and a crust that was well-fried with a satisfying thickness. We also had a mini baked roll with the same chicken filling, and a mini baked roll with a hearts of palm filling. Both were good, and the hearts of palm filling was delicious.

Sweets: I enjoyed the basic sweet bread I ordered -- a rectangular split roll with sweetened flake coconut on top, and I believe maybe also some sweetened condensed milk? We also a got a big puffy corn-based bread, which we took home with us and haven't had a chance to try yet.

We ordered full breakfasts -- basic diner fare, but extremely well made. The breakfast potatoes were quartered boiled small potatoes, well seasoned, crisped up on the outside, and not at all greasy. The pork sausage links were exactly the kind I love: snappy casing, tender inside, highly seasoned, and really juicy. Good wheat toast w/salty butter, nicely scrambled eggs. Nothing special or out of the ordinary in terms of choices, just really solid. The brewed Brazilian coffee was strong and dark, exactly what I was hoping for.

The joint is cute, has wifi and a fireplace. I'm glad we blindly ran into it on our way to the UPS store next door. We don't live super close, but we'll definitely be back.

...
Edited to add: tried the corn based bread this morning at home and it was awesome. About the size of a grapefruit, it had a cornmeal dusted crust on the outside, and was puffy and tender on the inside. Only very slightly sweet, with a nice egg/vanilla flavor augmented by caraway seeds. Halved and toasted with butter, it was a perfect snowpocalypse breakfast bread. Wish I'd bought like 6 of them.

Kudos to COMMON GROUND in Arlington!

Really enjoyed my burger and tots last night. Very friendly service overall, and we liked the design. The rest of the menu looked good, and we'll definitely be back. [Two downsides, however: freeeeeeezing bathroom and no baby changing table, which was weird.]

Feb 01, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Gaslight560 - anyone been here? Review/comments?

Agree with MC Slim JB. It's solid, and the free parking is like gold. The escargot are very tasty. I'd probably go more often, but I find the Thurs-Sat crowds sort of unbearable -- and I haven't found the service to be good enough to make up for that. How many people are you hosting for dinner? If it's not a huge crowd, I'd recommend Metropolis. Just a few blocks away, great food, same resto group, and loads better atmosphere.

http://www.metropolisboston.com/

Jan 28, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Drinking establishment to GSD!

Big fan of bars w/good GSD vibes. I work at Eastern Standard frequently, up in the front area there's even an outlet by the lamps. The Hawthorne opens at 5p, and actually has outlets installed along the bar so you can hang out and work. Backbar has wifi and hosts "genius hour" from 4-6p for folks who want to hang out and work. Ames Street Deli is spacious enough to hang, though the chairs aren't as comfy as I would like. I also like Parrish Cafe on Mass Ave. Sunset Cantina has terrible food, but a good beer list, and because it's on BU campus they couldn't care less if you hang out with your computer forever. (And if you know someone with a BU id, the BU pub has a great beer list and is perfect for GSD.)

Jan 28, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area
1

Looking for Excellent Restaurant- or Store-Prepared Pot Roast

Hi Hounds,

I haven't eaten beef in years, but I'm pregnant, and I am deeply craving pot roast. I don't think I've eaten pot roast in over 25 years, but there you are. For a wide variety of reasons, I'm not going to make it at home, so I'm looking for somewhere in Boston/Camber-Ville/etc that offers it on the menu, or has a good version as a prepared foods option at a store.

Any sightings?

Jan 24, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

January 2015 Openings and Closings

It is GIGANTIC. Pretty well laid out, easy to navigate, very beautifully designed, and lots of prepared food choices. Even on crazy opening day yesterday, I found it easy to get in and out. And yes, it has a spa.

Jan 10, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Shabu & Mein

Made it over to Shabu & Mein the other night for a late-ish meal (9p or thereabouts), and enjoyed the ramen and the design of the space.

It's huge inside, with a bar/dining area in the back that is all glass and looks out over a nice courtyard. MrLit and I both had the traditional ramen ($13-14), and found it overall very satisfying. I got kimchi to go with mine, and though decent, it wasn't terrific, and at $3 for a small amount, it was definitely overpriced. The thin noodles were toothsome and flavorful, and I liked the earthiness of the broth. It wasn't the most nuanced ramen broth I've had in the area, but it had a rich flavor.The charsiu pork slices were hefty, and the soft cooked egg was nicely done. It's a little insane to me that they charge $1 for chili sauce to spike the soup, so that's a negative. But the bowl is huuuge, and the leftovers held very well until the next day.

My biggest complaint is that the music is godawful -- Kenny G does soft rock classics. I mean, just the worst. And they had the music playing AS WELL AS the sound from the giant TVs over the bar, which had Thursday night sitcoms on. I mean... whut. The host was super charming and friendly, but our server was a bit brusque.

Overall, I'd totally hit this place up again for ramen. (For shabu, I'm lucky enough to live near Little Q, so my heart belongs to them.)

Jan 10, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

The new Rosebud, Davis Square

Stopped in for some small bites after a movie last weekend. It was a bit on the later side -- maybe 9:30p? -- and it wasn't overcrowded. The tables were all full, but we were sat immediately in the front diner-y section. Kudos to their designer, the space is really nice. Soothing with lots of points of interest and moody lighting that isn't too dark. The servers were exceptionally friendly.

I'll say that I was a little put off by the randomness of the menu. It seemed like someone said, "Hey, what's every single hipster food trend, and how can we do them all at once?" Now, as someone who likes both bbq and Korean food, there were a lot of things that looked intriguing, but (and this is just me) I would prefer a little more focus.

Of the stuff we tried, the biggest food note I have is this: those "dry fried" green beans are a valiant effort, but lordy, they are nowhere near as good as you'll find at any of the area's Sichuan-tilted Chinese restos, and about 1000% more oily. "Dry fried" -- hardly. The flavor is good up front, but oil-slicked as they are, they get wear out their welcome pretty quickly, and the lone chunks of dry-ish pork that are interspersed don't help matters.

This is the kind of place where if someone in our party wanted to go there, I totally wouldn't object, but I don't think I'll end up back there of my own volition. The price point is juuust high enough that I can think of a bunch of other options that are tastier and more of a destination for me.

As for the Redbones comparison, I'd rather patronize Rob any day of the week than the Alpine Group who run Posto/Burro/Rosebud. Rob and the Redbones crew are huge community supporters and civic leaders, and from what I understand the Alpine folks are... not.

Jan 10, 2015
litchick in Greater Boston Area

December 2014 Openings and Closings

Wondering if anyone has heard a realistic opening date for Barcelona in the South End?

Nov 21, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

November 2014 Openings and Closings

I think Ames St Deli is gonna be so so great. Pastries/coffee/sandwiches during the daytime; craft cocktail bar at night. We went to friends and family night. The sandwiches and pastries look good, and I hear tell of a breakfast egg-in-a-donut concoction that will likely make me brave diverting my commute through Kendall at some point.

I like the space a lot, and for anyone who is a backbar regular, you will spot the highly friendly and competent vibe immediately. I am sure there will be kinks to work out in their first week or so, but the menu looks solid, and I'm such a fan of Sam (part owner) and Joe (who will be running the joint).

When you go, get the Carrot Culture mocktail. It doesn't look like the ingredients should go together AT ALL (carrot juice, decaf coffee, maple syrup, sherry vinegar), and yet some sort of magic alchemy happens and the whole thing is an effing delight.

The restaurant part (called Study) won't open until mid/late December probably. They also have a loft space for private events, which similarly is not open yet.

Nov 21, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Best Fishmonger/ Fish Share in Medford/Arlington/Somerville?

+1 for Cape Ann Fresh Catch. Wonderful product, great people, well-priced.

Nov 15, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Now that Hamersley's is gone, where is Boston's best chicken dish?

OH MAN. I love the chicken at Metropolis. However, I'm a salt hound, and folks who aren't may not find it as swoony.

But seriously, Metropolis chicken. Dang.

Szechuan's Dumpling Is Amazing, Lucky Arlington

We frequently did take-out before the ownership changed, and always had great soup dumplings -- even after the 10 min of travel back to the house. Sad to say that our take-out order the other night was just terrible. The dumplings were doughy, lacking any soup at all, and the pork mixture was strangely sweet. The scallion pancake -- previously always reasonably tasty --- was overdone, hard, and lacking scallions. I wish these guys well, but I'm not sure we'll be giving it another go now that Dumpling House is open in Central Sq.

Oct 05, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Dumpling House (Central Square)-- details & Chinese name?

Finally made it here two nights ago, and am so happy to have this in the area. It was packed to the rafters, but we were seated quickly, and service was friendly.

We had:
- A13: spicy salt & pepper tofu
- A30: mini soup dumplings with pork
- H6: spicy fried lamb in wok
- E19: braised eggplant with spicy fish sauce

The tofu was just about perfect. Inch-square pieces of firm tofu in a crisp light dry fried shell, done in the classic salt & pepper style. Lots of good sliced spicy peppers and over the top. I could eat this all day.

The dumplings were good. While the wrapper was a little thicker than I prefer, the pork inside was generously flavored with ginger, which I like, and the soup itself was tasty and unguent.

The eggplant had a lovely flavor, though it was a bit sweet for my personal taste, and was a bit oilier than I prefer. Still good though.

The lamb was unlike any dish I'd had before. The meat was nicely wok fried and caramelized, and it was accompanied by thin planks of carrot, big chunks of spicy green peppers, and large thin wheels of lotus root. The lotus added a great textural and flavor balance to the lamb. Will definitely order again.

Great joint, can't wait to make my way through more of the menu.

Aug 30, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Cans of Moxie in Camberville Area?

Looking for canned Moxie -- I never seem to find it at Shaws, Star, Target grocery, etc. Anyone spotted it in the area lately?

Aug 30, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

BoMag cheap-eats feature

This truly is a great article, thanks for posting! It reminds of the equally excellent issue from last year where they highlighted a ton of great Asian dining in the metro region.

http://www.bostonmagazine.com/2013/01...

Jan 30, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

January 2014 Openings and Closings

Looks like Delux in the South End is no more. The sign on the door is a big drawing of a tombstone with "2014: RIP DELUX" on it.

As an artist who works in this neighborhood, it's a particularly sad loss. Now there's nowhere near the BCA that's truly affordable for drinks and food.

Jan 25, 2014
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Zoe's Chinese Possibly Closed "For Several Months"

The facade of the building where Zoe's is, as well as Mixtura, collapsed today. The report in the Globe indicates that both restaurants will remain closed for some time:

"If the building is allowed to stay put, Kelleher said, it could be several months before the two small restaurants, which together employ about 15 people, will open their doors again."

Really sad. I hope they survive this.

http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2013/...

Sep 09, 2013
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Yume Wo Katare, new hours?

This is right. I drove by there today and their window is painted with the new hours: 5-11p.

Sep 05, 2013
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Paprika Cream/Paste

The last time I bought this (a year ago?) was Dave's Fresh Pasta in Davis. However, I've looked for it there for months now and they never have it. (I haven't gotten around to asking if they can order it.)

Funny, I bought it for the exact same recipe, and made it with the paprika creme and lamb. It was delicious. If you do find it someplace local, please post back with the info!

Aug 23, 2013
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Dinner for 150pp that celebrates a sense of place?

Thanks to everyone for responses thus far -- it's a good jumping off point, and you bring up ideas we haven't yet explored.

Aug 18, 2013
litchick in Greater Boston Area

Dinner for 150pp that celebrates a sense of place?

I'm trying to pull together a list of options for a banquet location that could do about 150 people on a Saturday night.

The catches are as follows:
- ideally it should be accessible by public transportation
- could be Boston or Cambridge
- is not a hotel banquet hall
- can accomodate a little speechifying (so it can't be too noisy)
- has chow-worthy food

This is for a gathering of performing arts professionals and will cap a 3 day conference in Boston. Traditionally, this event is designed to celebrate locale, history, quirkiness, and identity of place. One example of a previous event was a banquet in a reclaimed factory/distillery for a city that was rooted historically in that industry. We'd like to use this as an opportunity to showcase some aspect of Boston's identity or history.

I think ideally the organizers would love to work with a location that's a restaurant, or has its own kitchen facilities, rather than renting a large hall and also organizing caterers, but all suggestions are welcome.

My personal goal is to help make this an event that is in an interesting space AND has good food. Boston's a great food & drink city, I'd hate for my colleagues to come here and have rubbery banquet chicken.

Any brilliant ideas?

Aug 17, 2013
litchick in Greater Boston Area

I find Zoe's is very underrated here

Love Zoes. I prefer their ma po to almost anyone else's. The green beans, the tea smoked duck, smoked tofu & celery, chicken with strange flavor, duck mala style... so good.

Aug 17, 2013
litchick in Greater Boston Area