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Lunch Help for Lynn or Swampscott?

I'm meeting some relatives in Lynn near the Swampscott line next week for lunch and could use some ideas of what might be available. Something casual would be great. Thanks.

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  1. ooh, lynn is so unattractive , couldn't you make it beverly or salem or marblehead instead?much better choice of restnts.

    2 Replies
    1. re: opinionatedchef

      I like unattractive. Just think of all of the formerly unattractive parts of Boston which are now teaming with great places to eat.

      1. re: opinionatedchef

        Hey, my family is from Lynn!
        It's really not such a bad place (some parts are better than others, of course). There are some good restaurant choices there if you like casual and cheap, including Monte's (great pizza) and Tacos Lupita (excellent Salvadoran cuisine).

      2. How about Gulu-Gulu Cafe. Has anyone been?

        1. red rock? or if you go early for breakfast, Mildred's on Broad steet, lynn is cute. Oxford Grille in lynn in good but not sure if they are open for lunch.

          1. There is that great sandwich shop on the lynn/swampscott line --right across the street from Red Rock. I think it's NY Deli or something to that affect? Really good sandwiches, but not really anywhere to sit. If it's nice enough I guess you could sit on the seawall.
            There's also Popo's, the hot dog spot, just a few doors up from this deli. I know they are open for lunch and I'm pretty sure you can sit there. BUT. You'd all have to be in the mood for dogs, I'm not sure how much variety they've got. Dogs are supposed to be great there.
            Both spots obviously very casual :)

            1 Reply
            1. re: twentyoystahs

              I've had the dogs at Popo's. They're excellent, and you can get about any topping you'd ever want and a bunch you wouldn't have considered, including some pretty elaborate combinations. They offer other sandwiches also, but the dog's the thing to get there.

            2. LAST CHANCE to help me find a place for lunch on Thursday. Oxford Grille is not open for lunch. Sandwich shops are not appropriate for this lunch. Casual is fine but a place to sit and schmooze is a must. Has anyone been to the Gulu-gulu Cafe?

              1. Go five minutes more to Marblehead and have lunch at the Barnacle. Typical fried seafood, good mussels, prime location on the water. Won't be the best meal of your life but lunch options around here are sorely limited.

                Red Rock is on my boycott list. Food isn't good enough to justify the management's arrogance.

                1. Hi Chuck,

                  Not sure if I can help much....

                  When I lived in Lynn (on the Swampscott Line)many moons ago, I used to love the Paradise Cafe in railroad square, Swampscott. Great neighborhood pub with excellent steak tips and burgers. I believe it has been reborn as the Cafe Paradiso, a red sauce Italian place. I have no idea whether the previous owners are still involved or if it's any good now, but it might be worth a look.

                  Another possible choice is the Golden Lake Diner on Bennett St. in Lynn. It's an asian retaurant that serves several different cuisines (thai, cambodian, vietnamese etc). I stopped in for a snack while getting new tires on my truck and enjoyed the spicy wings with peanut sauce. The patrons were mostly asian, which can't be a bad thing!

                  There is also Thai Thani, almost across the street from Red Rock that gets pretty good reviews, though I've never been there and I'm not sure if they're open for lunch.

                  Marblehead definitely offers more choices as well.... perhaps Hurricane's or Flynnie's on the Avenue.

                  Good Luck!


                  1. Haven't been in that area in ages. Just wondering what is in the place where the Tides used to be on the causeway in Nahant? Anything good?

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: AnneM

                      The Tides rolls on. Was there for lunch a couple of weekends ago, and drove by sightseeing this weekend. Both times, colorful kites were flying on the beach. I had a quesadilla, which I enjoyed; it may have been smallish, but was ample for me. My friend and I shared a gooey and delicious dessert. Service was friendly and thoughtful, but the ambience was bare bones.

                    2. Cafe Paolina on Humphrey St - in a small strip mall heading toward Marblehead.
                      Homemade, delicious, Italian food.

                      1. Hi, I have a feeling it is too late and you're already on your way, but just in case:
                        Cafe Paolina is an excellent suggestion, but I am not sure they are open for lunch.
                        Flynnie's in M'head would be perfect, if you don't mind going just a bit further. Open for lunch for sure.
                        The Golden Lake Diner is an asian spot that has had a number of different names/owners over the years but is good asian food. Definitely open for lunch.
                        Another great idea that i totally spaced on, may be the best so far is the Capitol Diner. Located in Lynn --ask anyone they'll know where it is. They serve great breakfasts and lunches are good too. Classic diner with excellent comfort food.

                        All of these spots will offer you a chance to have a conversation while enjoying a nice lunch. Good luck. Enjoy!

                        1. hey,

                          only read your request much later than you needed it but next time try both Gulu-Gulu and Mildred's Cafe. Gulu has an urban feel, straight downtown Lynn. They have wine and beer and the staff is friendly, which usually includes the owners. The same holds true for Mildred's. They do a fancy breakfast, Pumpkin Pancakes, Wild Mushroom Omelet, Huevo Rancheros are among my favorites and the place and people in their are entertaining. No wine or beer, simple but good lunch of wraps and sandwiches and they have an old movie theme with 3-tv's playing classic films, apparently Mildred Pierce is their namesake. Both places are great, check hours though, I think Gulu has short hours on weekends, and Mildred's is closed at the beginning of the week.

                          1. No one mentioned Le Petit Cafe right off Market Street - tiny but wonderful food.
                            Also, I recommended the National Historic Capitol Diner. Been there for years and has great food. Incidentally, Oxford Street closed.
                            Also, try Popo's for great bratwurst and hotdogs. Also, Anthony's right on the water on Lynn/Swampscott line. Very nicely decorated.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: taxi

                              We like the Green Tea in Lynn. They have a lot of lobster choices, although I dont eat lobster, my dad in law loves it. I love their Lake Tung Ting shrimp which is different than the usual, probably made with coconut cream. Really fresh good flavors there. I have been wanting to try Paolinas. Swampscott is a tough area for food. The Porthole is standard for oldschool northshore food. Good for relatives. Dad in law just got a menu at his house for a new place on Humphrey street that had a great sounding menu, including gourmet italian and pizza as well as Meditteranean like baba ganoush and falafel which is impossible to find on North Shore! i have my fingers crossed! I dont know if its mostly take out or eat it. Does anyone know what i am talking about. It could be near the White Hen, judging by the address..I cant think of the name!

                              1. re: taxi

                                Anthony's Hawthorne by the Sea does have some nice views, but like all their restaurants, the food's bad and the service can be snarly. I can't recommend it.

                              2. We just had lunch at Monte's--second time there in the last couple of weeks. The bar pizza there continues to impress me greatly.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: hiddenboston

                                  Hiddenboston, you go to all my favorite places ! I am just going to have to yell out 'hey hiddenboston' next time i go out to eat and see if you answer:)
                                  I love the shrimp and broccoli alfredo there. i am addicted to it. Its not anything gourmet, i think the sauce is actually Stouffers, but its really a nice mild not rich cream sauce and i love that they deep fry the shrimp. theres just something yummy about deep fried shrimp in a cream sauce with penne and broccoli that is very comforting

                                  1. re: chompie

                                    Everyone try Monte Cristo on Central Ave in Lynn. A broke friend turned me on to it, and I was pleasantly surprised. Beats Tacos Lupita hands down in value, taste, atmosphere, authenticity. The restaurant is clean and roomy, service is good and friendly, even with my mangled broken Spanish. Tacos Lupita can be kind of a horror show at lunch...Monte Cristo is refreshing. When I went last week I spent $8.00 on the fried chicken and I couldn't finish half my plate(and I can eat). Salad, beans, rice, fries and the chicken was crispy and juicy.