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lergnom's Profile

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Overcharging at Whole Foods

WF has admitted to systemic overcharging for prepared foods, following an investigation in NY. Every single one of 80 packages at different stores was over-priced. The chain blamed employees but it was at every location in NYC, which makes that claim hard to believe. The amounts were sometimes small, sometimes large. So be very careful shopping there.

about 7 hours ago
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Cold Press - Coolidge Corner

I overheard they may be reconsidering staying kosher.

about 21 hours ago
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Boston Public Market is here

Coconut was very good.

about 23 hours ago
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Cold Press - Coolidge Corner

They have actual cheese and are Kosher dairy. They have some vegan choices.

about 23 hours ago
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Cold Press - Coolidge Corner

They are kosher certified. They showed the certificate to me. It's on the wall.

I assume they are as strict as Rami's, which became glatt kosher when his kosher customers preferred that.

Cold Press - Coolidge Corner

I think the trend is not about kosher, which is more old Brooklyn, but about young people with more money, places that cater to them, and the more lively vibe.

Burrata - locally?

Yes. From Mozzarella House in Peabody.

Aug 29, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Cold Press - Coolidge Corner

Sitting in Cold Press having eaten a very tasty vegan blt (with a lot of avocado). I've also had the caprese, which was excellent. And I'm drinking a very good cold press coffee. All vegetarian (so they can serve cheese and be kosher), high quality, not cheap but lots of flavor. It's the space next to Rami's and it's their venture. (Rami's has meat, no dairy.) Cold pressed juices, smoothies, prepared or make your own salads, hip decor. Definitely new Brookline. (Another juice place is coming to Washington Square.) I'd list this as a solid part of the sandwich revival and also as what I think of as the Brooklynizing of Brookline.

September 2015 Openings and Closings

On Comm Ave in Allston at Babcock, where Quan's Kitchen was for years, per the Brookline Tab, a hand-pulled noodle place called Live Noodle should open in a few weeks. Story says the owner, Sam Ho, was a partner in MDM Noodles, saw its success, sold his share and said, "This is the way I want to go". Story implies he "found noodle experts from China". I hope so.

And in Brookline Village on Cyprus, the space which was Olecito will be Pineapple Thai Cuisine. Takeout only. Also in a few weeks.

September 2015 Openings and Closings

It's been open. The space is very nicely done with an artsy vibe.

Aug 27, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

One-day foodie road trip from Boston

A favorite in Providence is Red Fez. It's tiny and funky with pretty good food and terrific cocktails. If it's a lovely day, I like to go to Venda Ravioli (Costantino's) and eat outside on the little plaza for lunch.

Aug 26, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area
1

One-day foodie road trip from Boston

I eat fairly often at When Pigs Fly. It can be very good. They certainly care about their food (though I sometimes want to bring a cushion to make those chairs less uncomfortable). Last time, I over-ordered as usual and made a meal of the Belgian fries with the excellent 3 sauces and then took an entire pizza home. I also have trouble avoiding the pretzel, though it is over-priced ($2 more than in the store next door).

Aug 26, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

One-day foodie road trip from Boston

Scratch is excellent. Get there earlier for more selection. But Portland has other very good bakeries, including Standard, which has been mentioned more than once and which is in the walking part of, well, sort of the eastern side of the old port.

Aug 26, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

One-day foodie road trip from Boston

Third Portland. The food there is often fantastic. One of my favorite restaurants is Five Fifty-Five (though it's probably only open for dinner and weekend brunch). There are just so many places with interesting food and walking around is a pleasure. Have to mention: they have a Cabot's store with a big assortment of free samples - which makes it my favorite store on earth because I can scarf cheese - and ridiculously cheap prices for the better Cabot cheeses. The food in Portland is good enough we've considered moving there ... but the slacker/dude vibe is a little thick and the weather is bleep for way too much of the year. I almost forgot the Holy Donut. Can't forget the Holy Donut. Add to the list: Standard Baking Company.

And if you want lobster roll, etc., there's Kennebunkport's Clam Shack and Alisson's Restaurant (that's a last name, thus the spelling). The former is classic roadside on the little road in and the latter feels like your basic blah restaurant but has startling good & big lobster rolls.

Aug 25, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Boston Public Market is here

When I parked in the garage a lot, I'd buy a slice at Haymarket Pizza. Note: avoid the garage on Friday or indeed any late afternoon because it has one exit lane and the traffic out can wind around to the 3rd parking level and beyond that. It should be easy in and out if you get out before 3PM or earlier. Poorly designed entrance that requires every user to go out single file.

As for Saus, I'd never get the poutine to go. It is really a "Belgian street food" place with sandwiches added. Stuff like sausage with curry ketchup. If you're eating it in the car when it's fresh, then go for it. And they have Belgian beer, so the ideal is something fried and beer and talk for a bit and move on.

Aug 24, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area
1

Tell me about Haymarket please

One trick for Haymarket is weather related: many vendors get pallets of produce on Thursday afternoon so the stuff sits overnight on the street wrapped in plastic. This leads to a few points:

1. If it's hot out, be more careful. Stuff may have aged a lot overnight.
2. You can ask. Vendors get deliveries during the day. They may lie but my experience is they'll say what's fresher.
3. If it's really cold out, think about what is damaged by being frozen and be extra careful because freeze damage doesn't necessarily show on the outside. Eggplant may look nice but it's ruined when frozen.

Aug 23, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

Cafe Fixe is still excellent, a sort of oasis compared to the Starbucks across Beacon (in Washington Sq, if anyone cares). 4A makes excellent coffee.

I'm going to try The MiddleGray, a physical manifestation of the arts MiddleGray Magazine. Because they have arepas and I'm ever hopeful! It's in the former crappy pizza place/variety of sandwich shops little building opposite the post office in the Village.

Aug 17, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

Too bad. They are a nice couple.

Aug 14, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

And the area around Kurkman's is neither fish nor fowl. Part of it was "The Point", which was short for Whiskey Point, a poor area as one can guess. And part is of course Pill Hill, which is the opposite of the Point. They're sort of in between and are more NoBro.

Aug 14, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

South Brookline is the suburbs. North Brookline is the city. Or SoBro and NoBro. There's not much in SoBro, partly because there isn't much retail space at all; it's houses. Just Putterham Circle. Brookline touches Newton at Hammond Street, where the big shopping center is, and that has some restaurants too, but it isn't "Brookline" as meant.

Aug 14, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

There are many others, from MJ Ready for home-made basic Thai (in the Arcade) to CC Clubhouse (which, though not a favorite, is good at what it does). The Village has funky, bitsy places like Koo Koo Cafe as well as Clover, Matt Murphy's, etc. I'm looking forward to La Voile coming to Washington Square where it will join Ribelle and Fairsted as better dining experiences in that block.

Aug 13, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

There isn't.

Aug 13, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Ode to Brookline

Don't fall prey to the aggressive defensiveness of so much of the posting on this board.

Why is Boston food so bland?

Why such blunt defensiveness in at least 50% of the posts? If the Boston food scene were that great, there would be no need to be so defensive about it. The scene is improving. It's improved in the last 2 years and I think that is picking up speed, but the defensive reactions are, to me, absurd. This is the same kind of reaction I've complained about in other posts: a decidedly unfriendly, negative tone that treats other people as idiots.

Why is Boston food so bland?

I know this is going against the trend of the thread here but I think many restaurants in this area do tend to be bland: under-seasoned generally, under-salted often and generally preferring not to risk offending. (Example: I've noted in another thread that Otto's pizza needs better seasoning, that it has interesting ingredients but often manages to be relatively tasteless.) I don't think this is a Brookline thing. I live in Brookline but mostly eat in other places. (Example: restaurants in Providence and Portland serve food with more seasoning.) I expect Boston will change though the odds it reaches the level of, say, Toronto are slim: there people can argue about which of x kind is best, not which one is good. Example: after years where we could recite the list of good bread bakeries on a few fingers, we're finally at the point where we can (almost) expect decent bread and more places serve sandwiches where bread is a genuine ingredient. (Example: Tatte.) It was only a few years ago the choice of bread was soft-crusted rye from a supermarket bag or a bulkie roll, which is pretty much like saying bread is just the stuff we put stuff on.

That said, yeah Yelp is more about what's popular and what's popular is pretty much by definition middle of the road. You have to seek out places with flavor. This is why, for example, I return to places like Stellina in Watertown Square: they know how to season food.

Aug 11, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area
1

Boston Public Market is here

FYI, Gilt City is running a coupon special for Nella Pasta at the Market. $25 for a $40 credit's worth of pasta.

Aug 10, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Boston Public Market is here

While I don't eat Perdue chicken, they have been moving to eliminate antibiotics. They have lines that are "no antibiotics ever", which includes antibiotics not used in humans (that some companies apparently consider not the same issue), and their recent statement about the matter says:

"The percentage of flocks that received a human antibiotic for compassionate disease treatment dropped from five percent of our total to four percent. Those targeted treatments were typically for three days or less. In those rare instances, our veterinarians prescribe the antibiotic that has the least importance in human health, yet is effective in treating the flock.
In the past year, the percentage of our chicken flocks receiving animal-only antibiotics dropped from 60% to 42%. That means 52% of our chickens are now raised with no antibiotics of any kind.
All of the pork we sell is raised with no antibiotics ever, and our beef is sourced from animals that were never treated with antibiotics.
We continue to increase the percentage of no-antibiotics-ever turkey flocks, and to reduce antibiotic use in all of our turkey flocks. We are not as far along in the evolution of our turkey program, but continue to make progress."

They said that if animals/birds are treated, they aren't sold as "no antibiotics".

Aug 09, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Morano Gelato Chestnut Hill, the realness

Neat thing is when we went on Wednesday, I asked and they make all of the day's gelato that day in the store. I had gianduia and coconut together. Tried the orange and it was great.

Aug 07, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

Food to go -- as in to the airport

3 or 4 Suggestions to consider:

1. If you take something - shuttle, anything - to downtown, you can take the Blue Line from State St or Aquarium to Airport. Just leave an extra 20 minutes for the poorly run shuttle to the terminal. Or you could take the water taxi from behind the Boston Harbor Hotel.

2. If you do this, possibilities grow. A couple of thoughts for portable food, meaning sandwiches, are Bricco Bakery - down an alley on Hanover - where they have excellent sandwiches on very good bread. Or a simple favorite, which is the British chain Pret a Manger, which has a couple of locations downtown (including one next to State St. station). I love their egg salad, which is on basic good bread, etc., but the real point is they come packaged for travel.

Jul 30, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area

September 2015 Openings and Closings

Seems so. I thought the "other one" was open but I checked the website and, guess what, I wasted a post!

Jul 25, 2015
lergnom in Greater Boston Area