Yummy papusas at El Buen Gusto in East Boston
Just came back from a field trip with my daughter's preschool to Buen Gusto Restaurante in East Boston (295 Bennington, right in Day Square). The mother of the owners is the chef, and she demonstrated how she makes papusas from scratch, then we ate them. We had some that were beans and cheese, some that were zucchini and cheese, and some that were the "typical" Salvadoran pork. The latter ones were absolutely fantastic. The usual sides of Salvadoran cole slaw and salsa were not too spicy (don't know if they toned it down for the niños) but very tasty. I love the texture and mild acidity the slaw adds to the papusas.
We also sampled some fried yucca with chicharrones. I never really like chicharrones much, but they were fine. The yucca was wonderful. This platter is served with fresh lime slices, tomato and radish garnish. Yum. We also had lots of horchata to wash it all down, mild and sweet.
The restaurant itself is lovely. They have some beautiful photos on the wall from El Salvador.
Can't comment on how service would be for a more typical dining excursion, but they were certainly very welcoming to our group of preschoolers. They are open at 10am every day......didn't notice the closing time. They do have a couple of breakfast items on the menu, one of which sounded like a breakfast burrito, the other was scrambled eggs with Salvadoran sides: avocado, fried plantains, beans, etc.
I'll be going back with the spouse for a lunch or evening run sometime.
Would love to add my 2 cents here. Tried it for take out last weekend after driving by the place for over a year.
While trying to decide on what to order, Francisco, the owner left his dinner with his family to make sure everything was ok. We discussed my likes and my wife's. When I had ordered he came back to check on me again, and suggested that for take out the Salvadoran ribs (don't recall the actual menu name) were delicious but would be better eaten here.
I switched the order to shrimp which my wife said were fantastic (I'm allergic) and the orginal strip steak i ordered he spiced up for me.
He was gracious. The food was fantastic. Even the fries were great. Salad was fresh with lots of chopped cillantro.
The restaurant was reviewed by the Globe on 2/14. He told me that has helped business along with finally securing a beer/wine license.
I can't wait to go back and eat in with my wife.
The place was immaculate. Staff helpful and friendly and of course, Francisco obviously took pride in his establishment and rightly so.
BTW, dinner for 2 and a beer while I was waiting came to about $22.