- Guilty Glutton Jun 17, 2008 09:15 AM
I wanted to try Poppa B's fried chicken after reading MC Slim JB's review in Boston Magazine. How is the neighborhood? (1100 Blue Hill Avenue in Dorchester). Would you feel safe walking around alone at night?
The Silver Line bus stops close to Poppa B's going both ways. I wouldn't want to walk around alone LATE at night, but I imagine early evening Is Okay.
I wouldn't hesitate to visit; Blue Hill Ave is a main drag and very well lit. If it makes you feel any safer, there is a large Boston Police station at 1165 Blue Hill Ave. That part of Dorchester is under explored on Chowhound, likley on Yelp as well.
The area around Poppa B's doesn't feel too great to be honest, but if you have to have your Soul Food then it could be worth the risk. I personally wasn't enamored by Poppa B's but the Yelp reviews of nearby Flames and Ali's Roti are very tempting.
To be honest I felt a little anxious when I visited, but that fried chicken is goood. They also serve it for breakfast if you prefer a morning visit. There is street parking right out front.
I took a bus from Forest Hills and walked a block or so mid-afternoon - absolutely no problem. Walking, I passed an interesting Haitian place, and taking a bus up Blue Hill Ave towards Ruggles, saw lots of Jamaican, West Indian, etc hole in the walls. If anyone wants to call a travelling chowdown, I'll join up!
I don't think it's much different from any other not-upscale, largely residential neighborhood at night. You need to keep your wits about you; solo females are more at risk than males. I don't think safety is an issue at all in the daytime. Street parking is easy to find nearby.
Incidentally, the Silver Line ends at Dudley Square, nowhere near Poppa B's. The #28 bus from Dudley, which goes all the way down Blue Hill Ave to Mattapan Station, is the best MBTA route there. Get off at the Havelock Street stop and walk about a block and half north, back up Blue Hill Ave. Poppa B's is on the inbound side of the street.
Ate at Poppa B's Friday night. Firstly, the neighborhood was a bustle of activity and I felt completely safe, but I was not alone and I'm often in that neighborhood anyway, so maybe I'm not the best person to ask. Secondly, Ali's Roti is really great - I love the oxtail stew especially.
Now, the food:
Split an order of sweet potato fries - well-fried, but in desperate need of a post-fry salt. Split two dinners between us: 1/4 fried chicken (dark meat) - perfectly fried, crispy, delicious. Sides of mashed potatoes and gravy (yum) and butter corn (excellent). The beef ribs were chewy and covered in a delicious bbq sauce. Candied yams on the side were wonderful, but the black eyed peas and rice was really dry. Only down part of the night.
Edited to add, the moist, crumbly, slightly sweet corn bread was also lovely. They have an assortment of cakes & pies as well, but they said the red velvet cake wasn't ready to slice when I got there.
Absolutely prefer it to Mrs. Jones and can't wait to go back!