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Any Cranston Recs?

dagwood Nov 7, 2007 05:22 AM

I have a couple of fave's in Cranston, but it's a big city & I'm wondering if there are any I don't know about.....We're going out to dinner next week with friends and would love something new for all 4 of us. Does anyone have anything they really really love in Cranston? (And yes, it has to be in Cranston) Thanks!

  1. a
    Alica Nov 19, 2007 05:57 PM

    We went to Effendi's a few weeks ago, I am usually a fan but it was pretty bad. I had an eggplant parm that was fried beyond recognition. Cafe Itri was always good!!! Went to Galaxy today for lunch, I think the food is okay, had nime chow, never for dinner though. Twin Oaks has been around forever, probably still good, great drinks, the only reason we do not go there that often is because we are vegetarians. Is the Sunflower Grill still open? That used to be good and I believe BYOB.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Alica
      ImprovGal Nov 24, 2007 03:52 PM

      Do you mean Sunflower Cafe on Mayfield? I used to really like that restaurant, but unfortunately it did close a while ago. I drove by there last week, though, and noticed that there was signage for a new restaurant now although it didn't look open yet.

      One of my faves in Cranston is Campanella's on Oaklawn Ave. (RI directions -- where Oaklawn Pharmacy used to be) I love the calzones and always ask for a side of their yummy sauce for dipping. I've also had good pasta there. Prices are very reasonable.

      1. re: ImprovGal
        Alica Nov 24, 2007 06:07 PM

        Yes, I went there a long time ago, I figured it might be closed by now. I am anxious to find out what the new restaurant will be!

    2. r
      Rhody Dave Nov 19, 2007 04:22 PM

      I have a few favorites that I travel to from South County (overnight trip for a RI'er)

      Thai Orchid on Park Ave is a tiny, tiny, tiny place - it's really small, like 4 tables - that makes some of the best Thai in New England.

      Big Cheese on Reservoir - get anything with their sausage! The salad dressing is great too.

      HONs on Reservoir - House Of Noodles is the name of this Vietnamese place with really really good pho. Hell, I like just about everything there.

      1. t
        Trnrbrnr Nov 7, 2007 05:36 PM

        La Moia on Pocasset Avenue- love it!

        7 Replies
        1. re: Trnrbrnr
          Bluebird Nov 8, 2007 06:59 AM

          Didn't La Moia have a fire and close? Have they reopened? I really enjoyed La Moia and would certainly go back.

          1. re: Bluebird
            Frobisher Nov 8, 2007 09:34 AM

            They did have a fire, if they have reopened that would be wonderful. However, aren't/weren't they in Providence.

            1. re: Frobisher
              Bluebird Nov 8, 2007 12:31 PM

              I also think La Moia was in Providence and not Cranston. I did some Google searching and can't find any mention of them reopening.

            2. re: Bluebird
              Trnrbrnr Nov 8, 2007 05:01 PM

              You're right! Bummer!


              ..and it is in Providence

              1. re: Trnrbrnr
                dagwood Nov 9, 2007 07:10 AM

                Thanks for all the great recommendations! Efendi's, along w/ Spain & L'attitude, are my local favorites. Every time I go to Efendi's I wonder why I don't go more often. I've been eying Cafe Luna, so now I'm eager to try it out for lunch. And I cannot wait to try Bilkins! It's one of those places I keep forgetting about....now moved to the top of my list, thanks!

                1. re: dagwood
                  eenie1 Nov 9, 2007 11:41 AM

                  Definitely try Cafe Luna for dinner. I've never had a bad meal there!

                  1. re: dagwood
                    winochick Nov 10, 2007 06:23 PM

                    Spain is one of my favs too. My friend is addicted to a place that opened in the new plaza across from Garden City. She says they have awesome Thai and that they are owned by the same co as PF Chengs. Might be worth a look. Cafe Itri is a great choice. So is Cafe Luna. Last 2 times we ate at Efendi, it was very blahhh. Average service, average food. Disappointing b/c I've had some great meals there. Not recently though.

            3. c
              cajuntoast Nov 7, 2007 02:46 PM

              I always have a good time at Twin Oaks.

              Also, my coworkers rave about a Thai place in Edgewood, but I've never been there and don't know the name (I can ask). Maybe someone else has?

              2 Replies
              1. re: cajuntoast
                jgl Nov 7, 2007 04:02 PM

                I'm not sure if it's what your coworkers are raving about, as I wouldn't say it's in Edgewood, but Thai Orchid on Park Ave. near Rolfe Square is really good. I've never had anything bad there, though I must admit I haven't explored their entire menu--I can't stop myself from rotating through my favorites. The Thai noodle soup is excellent, wish I had some now. The 2002 ProJo review, for what it's worth, can be seen here:


                I think, but I'm not 100% sure, that the menu linked to at the review is out of date--my recollection is that they expanded it a bit a couple of years back. Just a tiny little place, three or four tables, but very good.

                Thai Orchid
                800 Park Ave, Cranston, RI 02910

                1. re: jgl
                  passing thru Dec 10, 2007 04:29 AM

                  i ate here on saturday afternoon, it was quite good. had a really tasty noodle dish and a great fried tofu appetizer. nice family run place, i'd sure go back.

                  there's other good stuff right in that neighborhood as well. i got pita bread + lamejun at the near eastern market nearby (sonia's?), some candy flavorings at the little cake/candy supply on park and all sorts of stuff at the really nice chinese/filipino market also on park. the latter was really pretty impressive, they have a whole range of asian groceries and produce--it's better than the asian market that i went to previously on broad st in providence.

              2. s
                Sean Nov 7, 2007 11:43 AM

                Cafe Itri is highly recommended: http://www.caffeitri.com/

                1. t
                  thinks too much Nov 7, 2007 10:16 AM

                  I know that it's dorky, but I'm a fan of Galaxy, the pan-asian place. The service may be spotty, but the manager is very nice, it's cheap, and the nim-chow sauce is addictive. I take an extra pint home every time I eat there.

                  1. j
                    JaneRI Nov 7, 2007 05:42 AM

                    I haven't been in about 2 yrs now (not sure why really) but I really liked Efendi's near Garden city. Nice atmosphere, never a wait, interesting food, cordial service, good prices.

                    Not a "night out" place but Bilkens has REALLY tasty food.

                    I've only ever had lunch, but Cafe Luna in Garden City nevers disappoints. It's counter service during the day but table service for dinner.

                    How about Cafe Ittri? It's on my "to try" list but I haven't yet made it.

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: JaneRI
                      Moonpie1 Nov 7, 2007 09:26 AM

                      A disclaimer---the Cafe Luna folks are longtime friends of our family---but that's where I'd go in Cranston, every time. Great, unassuming food, all the time. Friendly, neighborhoody admosphere, even in the middle of Garden City.

                      1. re: Moonpie1
                        JaneRI Nov 7, 2007 11:10 AM

                        Tell them thanks for me that their outdoor furniture stays outside all year. Just last week we had a warm day and I met my friend and her little girl for lunch. What a treat, at this time of year.

                        I wanted one last night to sit outside at the bar at Al Forno, but they had packed it in around Labor Day - it was warm enough for all of October! What a disappointment.

                      2. re: JaneRI
                        pork_chop Nov 8, 2007 01:34 PM

                        Bilkens does have really tasty food! I went there last Saturday evening for dinner. Started with a special app. of a stuffed artichoke- stuffed with sausage, panko bread crumbs, garlic and herbs.(awesome!) For dinner I had another special- seared scallops with citrus cream that surrounded a bed of wild rice with walnuts, golden raisins, and cranberries, with sauteed baby spinach on top. My companion had the pub filet (also a special) with a horseradish sauce and a side of butternut squash and apples. Everything was absolutely delcious and well prepared. The owner, who was also our waiter, was very attentive- even remembering what we had to drink from the last time we had dinner there several weeks ago. Highly recommended.

                        1. re: pork_chop
                          JaneRI Nov 8, 2007 01:43 PM

                          Yes, the owner is VERY attentive. Sounds like he really kicks it up a notch for dinner. Lunch is more "plain" but the things I've had were exceptional - meatloaf & cheese sandwich, grilled - oh my.

                        2. re: JaneRI
                          dagwood Dec 9, 2007 05:26 PM

                          Thanks for the rec for Bilkens! We went a few weeks back and it was just outstanding. Unfortunately they're closed for dinner until Spring, but the owner (who was so attentive) said they do lunch and brunch throughout the year. We're definitely heading back to try it. Also, next summer we'll be back for dinner...they have a patio w/ outdoor seating and a chimenea. Very nice!

                          1. re: dagwood
                            JaneRI Dec 10, 2007 07:21 AM

                            I had breakfast there for the first time this wkend - that was also excellent.

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