Has anyone been to Red Pepper in Framingham?
I think the resstaurant is Red Pepper. Haven't been yet, but here's an early interesting thread.
This one's very long (sometime entertaining) but there's a more recent mention of Red Pepper from around Jan 4th.
let us know if you go. My fave is still the Sichuan Gourmet in Billerica (granted it's also closer to me, but if it's a reference, I prefer it to Chilli Garden in Medford and Sichuan Garden in Woburn)
TC and I went again last night, and had a very good meal. It's a little tough exploring a whole Sichuan menu with him, becasue he's such a wuss...I kept casting longing looks at the table of 4 next to us, who's every dish was swimming in chili oil...Sigh...
As a disclaimer, we went early, @6:30, so service was no problem. We had their amazing seaweed salad, which isn't the Japanese extruded kind found at every sushi restaurant. They combine wakame, I think, with cellophane noodles, and bean sprouts, in a sesame-slanted dressing.
I also gave in to TC's begging and got scallion pancakes, which seemed to be made in-house. Much thinner than the norm, they almost looked like a few layers of thin crepe put together, with lots of bright green scallions inside. High points.
I got the Tender fish fillets in Spicy sauce, which was tons of tilapia, napa, and fettucini-width cellophane noodles in ma la sauce. Plenty hot, but low on tingle factor.. TC got Ants on a Log, which they made spicy (I was worried when I saw slivers of dried chilis in it). I asked the owner if this was traditional, since it had no peppers next to it on the menu, and I had always thought of it as a mild dish. He said no, and a new dish was brought out several minutes later, which TC enjoyed.
They're adding more items to the menu, and the lunch specials look like great deals. They're served 11:30-4, including Saturdays!
So, some people have mentioned that the food is much more "rustic" or "homestyle" at RP as compared to SG. However, the prices are basically the same (or slightly more expensive at RP?)
Would you say it's worth forgoing the nice presentation and comparatively superior service at SG to eat at RP?
I actually found more choices I personally like at RP, notably lots of cold dishes, in chili oil, that I remember from the VERY old days at Sichuan Garden in Brookline, before they cut them from the menu. Things like scungili in chili vinaigrette, and bamboo shoots, in same.
Price examples, Dongpo Pork, 11.95
South Mountain Chicken, 12.95
Whole fish with sichuan bean chili sacue, 17.95 (most expensive I noted)
They're also doing whole steamed fiish.
Their website, which I found with some difficulty, is www.redpepperroute9.com
Is it not up to date, however. In fact, the takeout menu we picked up on the way out seemed more up to date, than the table menus.
When the service is present (which it has been both times I've been there), it is very good. Frequent refills of water, dishes brought out at appropriate times, charming waitstaff. I have been on a Sunday night, and early on a Saturday night. I personally like it better than SG, when comparing my particular bellwether dish, the poached fish in ma la sauce.
I have no problems with their presentation. It's a fairly upscale looking place, They had white tableclothes; sheesh....I think you should go; THE FOOD TASTED GOOD!
Sorry, I meant Red Pepper! :)
I decided to go there last night for some take out. I ordered C05. Shredded Pork in YuXiang Sauce $8.95 with plain white rice. I usually order this at Sichuan Gourmet, but lately it's been lacking in flavor and figured I would start with this at Red Pepper.
I loved it. I thought it was really good, had more flavor than the one served at SG, a little thicker sauce too. It was spicy, but not too spicy with some sweetness to balance it. I don't have much experience with authentic asian food, so I can't say if it's authentic or not, but that one particular dish I liked more at RP than at SG. They also have hot pot there too that I am looking forward to try.