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Where to eat in Burlington area?

Staying at the Summerfield Suites in Burlington for 5 days in June. Will have a car and will visit Boston and other Massachusetts and Rhode Island locations, but wondering if there are any rec's for the Burlington area?

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  1. I used to work in Burlington and loved the Lemon Tree on Middlesex St. - excellent thai and sushi. http://www.lemontreecafe.net/

    I always enjoyed Dandelion Greens on Mall Rd., nice salad bar and good all around menu, from an awesome burger to steak tips, or just a nice pasta dish.

    You'll pay a bit but can't go wrong at Legal Seafoods in the Mall - some think it's gone downhill but I still love Legal's. This location is a bit noisy because of the mall but at least you don't have to run to Boston when ya want great oysters. :-


    And Capital Grill just opened in Burlington (I'm dieing to get there) - it's pricey but heard it's great. http://www.thecapitalgrille.com/menu/...

    1. There have been several posts about restaurants in Burlington so doing a search will give you lots of options. You are in short driving distance to Arlington, Lexington, Woburn, and Stoneham so do a search for these towns as well.

      Korean: Down 3A (aka Cambridge St), towards Billerica and on your right is a Korean restaurant that gets some good reviews on this Board.

      Vietnamese: Take 128N to Rt 38, go left away from the movie theaters and follow the road to Pho #1, which will be on your left after awhile. Wonderful food and a friendly atmosphere.

      Thai: Across the street from Pho #1 is Lana Thai, housed in an old diner, that has had some positive mentions here.

      Indian: Keep going down 3A towards Billerica. Not long after the Billerica line, on your right, is Maasala. Many people on this board like it for South Indian food.

      Szechaun: Past Maasala for 10 minutes or so, also on the right, is a Szechuan restaurant in a strip mall. If you pass KMarts, you just missed it. Many great reviews on this place but do a search because some dishes are better than others.

      In your immediate area of Burlington, there are lots of mediocre and chain restaurants. I still recoil when thinking of meals I've had a tLemon Tree and am not a fan of Dandelion Green or Legal's. . However, at the corner of Rt 62 and Sun Microsystems Drive (or whatever they call that road) is Flatbreads, a decent and different type of pizza place, and Bamboo Gardens for decent Chinese.

      2 Replies
      1. re: three of us

        Note that searches are pretty much useless now since you can't sort by date or see the number of responses. To stay on topic, I find Burlington itself bleak for non-chains, but Legal Seafood in the mall is always adequate or better. Joe's at the not so distant Woburn Mall is also pretty consistent and OK.

        I do think it's very much worth the 5-mile drive down Middlesex Turnpike into Arlington for Scutra, Blue Ribbon, Something Savory, Lakota bakery, and Toraya sushi -- all of which don't even require getting as far ar Arlington Center.

        Also, add driving into Winchester for Catch for terrific upscale seafood.

        1. re: three of us

          The Korean restaurant is called New Jang Su BBQ and should be one of your first stops.

          260 Cambridge St
          Burlington, MA 01803
          (781) 272-3787

        2. Dandelion Green is old as the hills and very stale. Capital Grille will easily outshine anything available in Burlington. The Cafe Escadrille will be a close second. Don't waste your time anywhere else unless you want ethnic food. Overall the dining options in the Burlington area are horrible.

          4 Replies
          1. re: BostonBarGuy

            Disagree with you on Cafe Escadrille, unless you happen to be 80 and have blue hair. As for Capital Grille, it may be good, but you can find upscale overpriced steak places just about anywhere. I agree that the Burlington options are best avoided, and that the OP should check out the options in adjacent towns (with Arlington probably offering the best bets). Burlington also is close enough to Waltham (5 miles south on I-95) that the OP might want to check out the many good options there; Compania certainly would be worth the drive.

            1. re: Blumie

              The original poster asked specifically about some options in Burlington. If they are traveling alone and want bar dining options w/full bar and possibly watch a game and interact with others, I still maintain that the Escadrille is a decent, local, Burlington option. Yes the patrons in the dining room can look like they've been bussed in from a retirement home but if you want to stay IN Burlington, I believe it is one of the adequate options. The rest of Burlington has a scattering of Chillis, Outback Steak House...etc. In my opinion, to steer the poster to Pho#1(Woburn) and the Fish House in Burlington(Formica land) would be a mistake unless they are looking for take-out.

              SASSYMI2: I'd love to help you, and I'm sure others here are willing also. What are you looking for? Will you be dining alone at the bar? Do you drink alcohol?Alchohol or just beer wine license preferred? TV @ bar for sports preferred? Any budget restrictions? It's impossible to give you great recommendations without specifics. Maybe you don't drink, don't like the bar and just want to read a novel and enjoy a specific type of food and some peace and quiet and don't care what the place looks and feels like??? If you'll give us some detail, you'll get better results. Thank you.

              1. re: BostonBarGuy

                Why do you think going to Pho #1 is a mistake unless one is getting take-out? Granted, it's not posh but it is certainly fine for a sit-down meal and the food is great Haven't been to the Fish House but I'd make the same comment. Many don't care if a place is "formica land" if the food is good.

                1. re: three of us

                  I love thai and vietmamese and was anxious to try a new place and was disappointed with Pho#1 but to be honest I mostly ordered thai and was looking forward to the vietnamese (not sure what happened when I ordered) so to be fair - I will try it again for the vietnamese. But I'm not in a hurry when we have fabulous ones in Lowell.

          2. Burlington is home to lots of mediocre chains. I like Servizio for sandwiches. That's about it.

            1. I live in Billerica and Sichuan Gourmet, on 3A near K-Mart, is fantastic. Some dishses are hit-or-miss. Old Chicken is not so great at all, Sechuan Kung Pao chicken is fantastic, love their wonton soups. Watch out for hot - they mean it! A kinda of homey place in a strip mall - nothing fancy, but the food is generally outstanding.

              Nearby the Naked Fish on Middlesex Turnpike (about 2 miles from the Summerfield) is good but not nearly as good as it used to be. Closer to you, the Lemon Tree, also on Middlesex, is far far below what it once was. I used to live fort he Lemon Tree, but I just won't go there again. Bamboo, right around the corner, is over-rated IMHO, same as their Westford location. It's good, but not great. Why go there when Sichuan Gourmet is 10 minutes away? Pathetic cocktails, too.

              In nearby Bedford, perhaps 15 minutes from the hotel, is Dalya's. I went in on a whim, and was pleasantly amazed. Outstanding food - but be aware that I was there once, and wasn't expecting anything close to what I actually got, so it went way above my expectations. Still, it was so good that on a bad day they'd still be easily recommended for the area. They're right next door to some of the best ice cream in the area, too.

              I have never for the life of me understood why people, other than tourists, would go to Legal Seafood. It's always good, but generally seems so wrong and overly fancy. I just don't get it.

              Dandelion Green - Stale is a good term. Capitol Grille - haven't been yet, but it's absolutely on my list. I expect it to be fantastic. Cafe Escadrille - I've heard that it's gone downhill, but havn't been there in years.

              7 Replies
              1. re: Scottes

                When fresh oysters call out to you (because you crave them) and you don't want to drive into boston, Legal Seafoods is the reason I go (and fresh seafood). Just in case you need someone to answer your question scottes.

                1. re: lexpatti

                  One of Burlington's highlights is Lester's Roadside Bar BBQ

                  376A Cambridge Street

                  They really smoke their meat.

                  1. re: Joshua B

                    I agree. I know some hounds don't care for it, but we have found it to be really smoky, tender and moist. The pulled pork was great, and the ribs were awesome. We love Blue Ribbon, but have found their ribs a bit tough when we've had them. Our order of preference: Lester's, Blue Ribbon, Firefly, and then Tennessee's.

                    1. re: bear

                      I'm one of those that ran in to try Lester's after many CH raved and was totally disappointed - tooo salty, tooo mushy, tooo overcooked, it was too ready too quick to be good. If you are traveling north thru Manchester and have time, try a little southern soul place - Premier Palete on Elm St. - homemade, lots of lovin, ribs, brisket, chicken to die for, fried okra sometimes, fish on fridays, awesome sides.

                      1. re: lexpatti

                        I'm one of those who raved, but subsequent visits disappointed- dry and not at all smoky. I don't know what the quality control issues are but there obviously are some.

                2. re: Scottes

                  Assuming the OP likes Sichuan food, I must cast my vote for my favorite: Sichuan Gourmet. (And I note the query was for the Burlington area, so this qualifies, IMO.)

                  1. re: Scottes

                    I'd second/third/whatever Sichuan Gourmet.. My Chinese boss at my last job absolutely loved it -- very authentic. Yes, there are some dishes to avoid like the old chicken, and err.. I cannot recall - but one of their duck dishes (waay to salty). I absolutely love their Peking Pork - delicious! Great combination of sweet and savoury (just a touch of sweetness). Yum!

                    I'm looking to go out someplace tonight near Burlington, and don't need anything super-fancy, but something nice to sit down to. Dalya's is intriguing me (especially with the prospect of Bedford Farms Ice Cream next door after dinner), but may go with Border Cafe -- yes, they're a small chain, but they've been pretty good for Cajun + mexican - and their prices are good (you can get a good mexican entree for under $7 -- other dishes are $12ish I think -- this was at lunch, but I don't think the prices change at dinner).

                    Blue Ribbon would be good too though :)
                    Decent beer is a must, unless there are margaritas :) anyway - by the time you guys post suggestions, I'll have already had my dinner, I'm just thinking for the next time, or maybe giving some direction :)

                  2. Follow 3A north to the center of Burlington and you'll find The Burlington Fish House, which is a pretty decent, no frills seafood joint, just behind Shaws supermarket and Dunks.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Kiyah

                      In Bedford center, not far from Dalya's is Ginger, a very good Japanese place. There's a parking lot around the back.

                      In the same development as the new Capital Grill, at the end away from the road, there's a Not Your Average Joe's, a better-than-most chain.

                      I'll second Naked Fish and Bamboo.

                    2. Second the reccomendations of Dalyas and Ginger in Bedford, about a 10 minute drive.
                      Also Flatbread Pizza just down the road from you.
                      Legal Seafood in the mall is ok.
                      On Route 3 just south of 128 is Paparazzi, quite good northern Italian.
                      On Route 3A heading north into Billerica is The Emerald Rose which is split in two. One half an Irish Pub, the other half an Irish restaurant with tasty home-style food.

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: cap

                        If you are in Burlington you should definitely take a short drive to Winchester and try Catch on Church St. In my opinion Catch is the best restaurant north of Boston and one of the best in the entire Boston area. It is small,(38 seats) but offers an excellent selection of well prepared seafood along with a couple of non-seafood entrees. The food is creative and the quality and freshness cannot be beat. They also have suberb wine list with a wide variety of price points. Winchester is about a 15 minute drive down Rte 3A from Busrlington. From your hotel it shouldn't take you more 20 to 25 minutes depneding on the time of day. Be sure to call for a reservation if you are going on a Wed, Thurs, or Fri night. They also have a web site.

                        1. re: RoyRon

                          Thanks to all for all your rec's. Keep them coming if possible. Catch sounds like it's worth the short drive.

                          1. re: SASSYMI2

                            Definitely get to Catch if at all possible -- not cheap, but so good! Mapquest will get you there nicely and parking is a breeze in downtown Winchester. It's in a different league from the other recommendations here.

                            1. re: rlh

                              Could not agree more! Catch is wonderful! I have eaten there twice and have been very happy.
                              Woburn center has a few good restaurants as well Tre Monte for Italian and I think a decent thai? place.
                              Woburn is the next town over from burlington, maybe a 15 minute drive

                              1. re: Diski

                                flatbread company for sure.. It's about a mile past the Burlington Mall, but if you call information make sure you say Bedford because it is just over the Burlington line. Best pizza around! and fun atmosphere, friendly staff and music on some nites. Lesters isnt bad. I dont eat meat but liked the salmon cuz its smoked and you cant find smoked alternatives to meat anywhere else! The sides were fine too.. Its very casual and chainlike.

                                1. re: chompie


                                  Just a note to all the fans of Catch in Winchester. Chris Parsons, the owner/chef of Catch, has just openned a second restaurant on Martha's Vineyard. It is in Edgartown in one of the high-end hotels. I think he is naming the place Catch On The Deck. They openned this past weekend.

                                  1. re: RoyRon


                                    1. re: SASSYMI2

                                      No one mentions the Cheesecake Factory here, either out of fear of getting put down, or a genuine dislike, but mostly, I think, because it is a chain, and everyone knows about chains so why even mention them. But it's true that some chains are regional, or just skip over certain cities or states.

                                      I have a friend who's a foodie, but not a food snob, who is genuinely reviled by the Cheesecake Factory. We don't even utter it's name.... But I like 2 things there: the nachos, with a nice mix of four cheeses; and the Linda's Fudge Cake. (I'm a health nut.) I know of 2 people who don't like crappy food who love their cobb salad. The menu is extensive, so there might just be a thing or two on it that even most chowhounds would like.

                                      Back to the cake. They have 3 chocolate cakes there. Two, in the words of Blumie, are BLECH, but I don't know a chocolate freak who doesn't really like their fudge cake. It's dark, dense, moist, flavorful, with tons of fudge frosting.

                                      So, yes, there is Cheesecake Factory in the Burlington Mall. Eat up!