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JohnnyQ1960's Profile

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Best Boston Burger

This topic is pretty much talked out, but I'll second Coda and also recommend the burger at Avila (order at the bar).

Is all the Pepsi Throwback gone?

Is the Pepsi throwback made with pure cane sugar? That is the taste differential in my book. I've been told that Coca Cola distributes product made with pure cane sugar around certain religious holidays. I found a stash in Carmel last summer at a drugstore and bought out the inventory. It was bottled in Mexico.

North End lunch spot?

If you can wait until a little later in the afternoon, check out Ida's on Hanover Street. They have limited hours (5-9PM) and limited days (maybe Thur-Sun). It is a real old school red sauce italian-american joint, the kind of food your auntie would make. I go there religiously before Bruins games. I concur with the 2 other recommendations (Dinos and Antico Forno). They are both unpretentious places that consistently deliver what you expect.

Bar Harbor, ME

Heading up to Bar Harbor for a few days. Any suggestions? Would like something in the spirit of Reds in Wicasset. Looking strictly for the NE seafood genre, so please don't recommend your favorite Thai or Italian!

Great Taste Bakery & Restaurant Chinatown

GG/Striper, Pleased to be an inspiration for 2 chowhounds whose opinions I respect. Chinatown to me is all about value which is why I love the Windsors, Pho Haus and Great Tastes of the world. Also love the little rat cakes they sell in the bakery.

Great Taste Bakery & Restaurant Chinatown

Went back again tonight to Great Taste. Some of the kitchen staff were dining on abalone and scallops over rice vermicelli with garlic and ginger on a large shell. A tremendous dish. Also had the minced beef with egg in the rice bowl and wonton soup. This is becoming a go-to place because you can order anything under sun and the value is fantastic. The staff is efficient and helpful, there is normally at least one large group having a great time (Germans tonight), plus there are the take-away sweets from the bakery.

Dairy Joy in Weston: Very Expensive, but ...

Visa would have descibed the evening as priceless. I'll put DJ on the to-do list, but bring my own water.

authentic non sushi Japanese restaurants

I think Beard Papa has closed shop at Quincy Market. There is a Japanese bakery in Brookline a few blocks past Simmons College.

Little Q Hotpot news

Could be either the edge of Chinatown or the Ladder District depending on where you measure Boston Common. Sounds convenient to me. Do they still sell the Little Q T-shirts?


They've done a very good job at a location that previously knew nothing but failure.

Great Taste Bakery & Restaurant Chinatown

Went to Great Taste on Beach Street this past week. I'm surprised that no one recommeneded the wonton soup. I haven't tased a better wonton soup in Boston. My wife had the chicken, salted fish, tofu and rice dish - solid Cantonese comfort food - which she enjoyed. This is a great little addition to Chinatown.

Figs [Review and Pictures]- Beacon Hill

Way to turn on the charm!

The Best Donuts in the Planet are in East Boston...

I'm getting an 80's flashback...Michael J. Fox as the coke-head Jamie Conway in Bright Lights Big City...Jamie trading his sunglasses for a loaf of fresh baked bread...watching the sun rise and deciding to start his life all over again... :-)

Just opened -Chelsea Market Basket

Hey how can yo beat those private label Fudge Grahams. They cost like a buck a package.

Dinner near Stuart Street Playhouse?

Avila specializes in Mediterranean-style food. The food is consistently good as is the service.

1 Charles Street South, Boston, MA 02116

Dim Sum in Boston

An endorsement from a Hong Kong person is about as good as it gets. My wife and I both enjoyed the dim sum at Victoria City Seafood, Sun Hung Kai Center in Wanchai. The way Hong Kong moves at the speed of sound, there are probably other great places for dim sum that have since stepped up.

The Best Donuts in the Planet are in East Boston...

Glad to help and hope you enjoy Red's. Hopefully she gets there early before they sell out. Full disclosure: I've never met a donut I didn't like, other than Dunkin. The other great thing about Monterey is the municipality has an amazing healthclub (including deep water lap pool) where you can pay $10 per diem and work off Red's donuts.

Bina Osteria: Second Visit, not so happy

For all it's worth, my wife has been a huge fan of the pastry. She would get take-away from the counter and raved about the quality. I think the last time she went was last week (for a pear tart). Not sure if this was before the pasty chef ran off with the executive chef. I haven't eaten there myself (Avila makes fantastic pasta across Boston Common) but am pulling for this place to succeed, although inattentive service is difficult to justify.

Lawton's Hot Dog Stand Sliding Away?

Further up north, Lena's in Salisbury grills a pretty good hotdog.

The Best Donuts in the Planet are in East Boston...

Although it's a pain to get over to Eastie, I'll check out Betty Anns. Also wanted to plug Donuts with a Difference in Medford, on the same block as Chili Garden. And if you are ever in Monterey, CA, check out Red's Donuts, which is right in the downtown area. It's similiar to DWD, a long counter with some stools, althougher the stools are tall rather than short!

HK style Claypot rice?

Maybe Pearl Villa on Tyler Street in Chinatown. They serve old style cantonese dishes and should have bo jai fan (is this the correct spelling?).

One Asian (any variety) restaurant next weekend

Just got back from Dok Bua Thai Restaurant on Harvard Avenue in Brookline. I had one of the daily specials - steamed cod over white rice seasoned with lime and chilis - which was outstanding but a little bit too spicy for my liking. In fact, my tongue was pretty scorched and I had to proceed with caution between bites. But the fish was very tasty, fresh and cooked perfectly. My wife had a glass noodle salad with shrimp, pork, peanuts, mint, lime and cilantro. Again, she very much enjoyed the meal, but she also found it too spicy. Not sure if other diners have had the same experience. We plan on going back, but might have the kitchen go a little bit lighter on the chilis.

S/S Crabs and Vinh Sun

Vihn Sun is a great place to buy a whole roasted pig. Got one a few years ago for Chinese New Year.

One Asian (any variety) restaurant next weekend

Had been going to Allston strictly for JJ Taipei but will definately check out Dok Bua Thai the next time. Thanks for the suggestion.

Chang An- Concord, MA

Bernards is a good call. I'm not a regular (now that Boston has a Barneys!) but never had a bad dining experience. Unfortunately Concord is ground zero for the meeting place.

Are There Any Brewpubs with Good Food?

If the venue doesn't have to be a brew pub, there is Coda on Columbus Avenue in the South End. They have a good beer selection and the food is outstanding for what is essentially a bar. They serve things like burgers, mac and cheese, calamari, brick chicken, wings, etc. but done exceptionally well. I don't know if you would call it a gastro pub, but pretty darn close.

Butcher Boy in North Andover

Yes, please change the heading to North Andover. The locals will be very sensitive to that slight. I like the Irish blood sausages (white and black) which aren't that easy to find in the area.

Dim Sum in Boston

As per a previous post, I'm a big fan of Windsor and have taken taken many friends and relatives, including overseas guests from Hong Kong and Taiwan. The response to-date has been 100% positive. Try the scallion pancake; roast pork buns; pork and egg congee; stuffed eggplant; seafood or beef noodles and shrimp dumplings. I've also been known to order the french toast. If you prefer another restaurant in Chinatown for dim sum, that's cool, but to say that Windsor 'sucks', you really have no credibility.

Breakfast spot near Copley Plaza

Second on Mike and Pattys in Bay Village. Cool people, plus they carry Vernas Donuts.

best lobster roll

This is old news, but Red died last year. Here is his obit. Seemed like a great guy. I hit Reds once a year on the way to the Maine Lobster Festival. The place backs up traffic something fierce, but they've earned that distinction.