I'm From Lynn, What Can I Say?
The above titled song was written by Lynn's own Don White. Don is a well known comedian & singer-songwriter with several CD's, a DVD and a beautifully written autobiography to his credit. He has the audience, literally, rolling in the aisle with a couple of screamingly funny, often self-deprecating, ditties at one turn. Only to rip your heart out with a song of incredible poignancy in another. Yes, he's that good. But I digress. One of Lynn's claims to fame, according to Don, is more sub shops & Houses of Pizza than pretty much anywhere else on the planet.
I'm also from Lynn, what can I say? But I've lived in the Metro-West for many years.
When visiting the near & dear, who still live there, it would be nice to have some kind of
Hound Handbook. After searching Chowhound recently for a comprehensive overview of the Lynn dining scene I quickly reached the conclusion that it doesn't exist.Stop laughing, you!
I know Lynn still has the great Capitol diner, Monte's, The Porthole Pub, Blue Moon and doesn't have the late, lamented Oxford St.Grille. But what else is Chow worthy, albeit; restaurants, pubs, butchers, fishmongers, markets and yes, pizzerias & sub shops. At it's zenith of 100,000 people, Lynn was an incredibly diverse ethnic stew of Irish, Italian, French, Greek, Polish, Jewish & Afro-Americans. Today, add Cambodians, Dominicans, Thais, etc.to that original gumbo. There's got to be some incredible hidden jewels and some great locals that have been around so long they're taken for granted. C'mon Hounds write 'em down, so to speak, for ALL of us. TIA.
Top restaurants in Lynn (plus one in Swampscott) with the factors of quality & character...
Tacos Lupita -- Monroe Street: the best Mexican/Salvadorean place around. Cheery atmosphere; top notch owners.
Gulu-gulu Cafe -- Central Square: possibly the coolest and most diverse place to hang, ever. Where else can you listen to live music, drink coffee, beer or wine, alongside of senior citizens, diverse ethic groups, a group of 13 year olds having hot cocoa and a bunch of college kids celebrating a birthday. Food is pretty good; prices are reasonable. A real destination.
Monte's -- an institution that still is thriving. No credit cards accepted -- just order the antipasto, pizza and fries for great comfort food.
Pho Lynn -- great Pho, great price.
Golden Lake (Bennett Street) -- between Full Moon and Bayon, management has made their way around landing back at the site of the old Lynn Diner. The quality is back to top notch; wait staff is great too.
Mildred's (Lewis Street) -- a bit expensive for breakfast but definitely great menu choices, interesting omelettes and fun ambiance (old movie memorabilia); great new locals place.
Brother's (Market Street) -- a great Lynn institution, even if a local chain; the quality and speed of service will never slow down a bit; expansive menu choices; great local color.
Capitol Diner -- true blue local institution, political and all. Food is great for typical stuff and more.
Caffe Paolina (over the line into Swampscott, Humphrey Street) -- a destination. Paolina makes you feel like you're in her kitchen in Calabria. Prices reasonable; authentic southern Italian food. Don't be in a rush or you'll spoil it!
Read my earlier thread on Monte's. I absolutely love the place. Don't be fooled by the scary-looking exterior; it's a friendly little spot with salt-of-the-earth types, great pizza, and very good steak tips.
Much of my family is from Lynn and the surrounding area, too, so I have a soft spot for the place. I miss that chicken place by the rotary near where Routes 129, 1, and 128 meet, though!
I am very anxious to see all of the responses to this. I am from Salem and I, too, have always wondered about the 'hidden gems' in Lynn.
The only contribution I can make is MILDRED'S on Lewis in Lynn. (you can search it here - i posted a detailed review a few weeks back.) Their breakfast is absolutely phenomenal - better than any of the dozen or so places in Salem.