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Mar 31, 2008 06:05 AM

New England Soup Factory

My friend was looking for a good soup place. I've heard good things about New England Soup Factory, but don't really know anything about it. Is it all carry out or is there a place to sit down and eat? And, are the soups as good as has been reported? Also, any other suggestions for good soup would be appreciated.

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  1. Hi!
    I've only been to the one in Newton and had a good (delicious) experience :-) That location had several tables for sit-down. The NESF website has their daily soups listed - I've had the Triple Strength Chicken Vegetable which was very tasty (on the sweeter side), and the Potato soup (with a little kick of horseradish - also very delicious).

    You get a handful of rolls with every quart/container - whole wheat or french roll. Overall I liked it and would go back again. Sometimes (especially when we're sick!) we just don't have the energy to make our own chicken soup!

    1 Reply
    1. re: run26.2

      Yes there soups are real good, I live up in NH, travel past there Newton store most weeks, and buy a couple of Quarts to go, I will also say that the containers that they supply are really good, they freeze well, we save ours to do just that.

      Great service, we like the Lima bean and Barley, Double Onion and sherry, as said here check there web site for daily specials, its usually up by 8 or so in the morning

    2. Both the Brookline and Newton locations have a few tables, but most of the business is takeout. If I remember correctly, in Newton most or all of the indoor tables are for two people, and can't be moved easily for larger parties. There are a couple of outdoor tables (with views of a parking lot) that seat 4. In Brookline, the tables can be pushed together. Newton has free parking. Brookline has validated parking in the lot/structure on Pearl St., near the restaurant - I think it's free for the first 15 minutes. Otherwise, there is metered street parking.

      The soups are generally good, but over-salted. I always find myself getting very thirsty after eating there. They have several standard soups available every day, in addition to several specials. Of the standard soups, the chicken vegetable is good with their (non-traditional) matzo ball - huge and looser than a traditional matzo. Their corn and clam chowder is also pretty good, but I prefer straight clam chowder. The specials are often better bets than the standards. They will let you taste before ordering, so you can decide for yourself.

      2 Replies
      1. re: overproofed

        Thanks so much overproofed and run26.2 for your quick and detailed replies. It sounds like it's worth a try.

        1. re: Merryworld

          I have found all of their soups to be delicious. Yesterday I had Pea with Spinach which was a special and their Chicken Pot Pie Soup is outstanding. They also have good sandwiches, salads, and cookies and brownies. The Meyer Lemon cookies are especially good.

      2. They have a tuna salad niscoise with their lemon vinaigrette and a beet and goat cheese salad with pomegranate dressing that is very good. The Greek orzo soup with lemon and chicken is one of my favorite soups they make. I just got the new england soup factory cookbook as a gift and I can't wait to try making the recipes myself. I wish their cookie recipes were included too.

        1. I've tried 3 or 4 different NESF soups...passable, but not anything to rave about. A good cook can do far better at home. It makes sense - with their volume and variety, they couldn't possibly produce enough well-made stock from scratch to be comparable to homemade. Worthwhile stock is time-consuming, laborious, and worth the effort!

          4 Replies
          1. re: greygarious

            my mother buys their homemade stock all the time. They sell it in quarts and the owner is helpful when my mom needs more than a gallon of chicken stock. The owner is the chef and I doubt that she would not make her own chicken stock. she even helped my mother through a recipe when she had questions from the cookbook.

            1. re: macadamianut

              There is also an phone number you can call where there'a an automated message with the soups offered that day. It's updated daily. I have it programmed in my phone and call it on my way home from work when I'm in a soup mood. Brookline's number is 617-739-1899. Newton has a different number.

            2. re: greygarious

              There is some truth to this. However, there are a number of things I can likely make better at home but did not always have the time, inclination, or desire for leftovers so I went to NESF. Or I went because it was lunch time. Or I went because I didn't want to spend $25+ on ingredients to make something at home when I didn't want more than a $6 bowl. It fits its niche. I know I used to eat there about once every month or more during the cold months for years and years.

              However, they are not shy about the butter/dairy use so it's not anywhere near healthy eating.

              1. re: Dax

                they'll tell you whether a soup has cream/butter etc. Frankly, I'm a great cook but their soup is a wonderful substitute on a cold night in particular (my husband says he'll eat their gazpacho anytime on a warm night too!) and you can always get a good vegetarian choice or one without cream. My family rates their chicken soup second only to their memories of my mothers! Some soups will be saltier than I like, but they all are definitely made from scratch.