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Let's Talk About Woburn

So I really enjoy Pho...Vietnamese in north Woburn...haven't been up that way in a while...hope it's still open.

Love Marco's...go there often to get pasta sauce to take home.

Love the Italian cookies and rolls at Romas Bakery.

Louie's Pizza is amazing.

Not fine dining, but a roast beef sandwich with bbq sauce at Bill and Bob's is so yummy.

Enjoy the Woburn County Club every now and then.

In love with the pilgrim sandwich at Callahan's Deli.

Anyone try the new Taipei Tokyo (spelling?) yet?

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  1. North Woburn:
    Pho #1 is still pretty good (ate there the other day); beef pho better than chicken pho.
    Lanna Thai: decent Westernized Thai in a cool diner setting.
    Churrascaria Rodeo: very fine rodizio-style churrasco, very friendly service.
    Sichuan Garden II: get the dinner menu for very authentic Sichuan cuisine. Fantastic place.

    Downtown:
    Tuda Na Brasa: excellent buffet-style churrasco, a bargain.

    Bad:
    China Pearl: no dim sum on weekdays, lousy American Chinese menu
    Ixtapa: maybe the worst Mexican meal in my memory.

    Would love more tips on worthy lunch spots!

    13 Replies
    1. re: MC Slim JB

      Have to agree with you on Ixtapa. The food was awful and the margaritas cost more than the entrees.

      Tre Monte is always a solid choice, though I describe the experience as "Fantastic food with diner-level service". Lots of "just a sec, hun, I'm swamped" from the servers.

      1. re: Frank Enbean

        Oh tha's a shame about Woburn Ixtapa! Haven't been yet, but I really enjoy the Ixtapa in Lexington - the chile verde is fantastic. Though I agree about the margaritas. Expensive and small.

        Sichuan Garden II - the mini juicy pork buns haunt my dreams.

        1. re: Eatin in Woostah

          Another spot to avoid in Woburn is Polcari's. So-so Southern Italian comfort food at best, and can be worse than that.

          1. re: bachslunch

            But you could do much worse than ordering a Regina's pizza to go. It's no Thatcher St. pie ... but it sure beats my local "House of..."

            1. re: merrvally

              The Regina's pizza is likely the best thing on Polcari's menu. I'm guessing we're in agreement if it's between a "Thacher Street pie" and "local 'House of...'"-- myself, I'd call that so-so.

          2. re: Eatin in Woostah

            Quick update - I had the misfortune of trying the Woburn Ixtapa last night. Horrible service and truly bad food. Our family eats at the Lexington Ixtapa regularly and we were all very disappointed with the Woburn shop. My husband's California Burrito (chile verde, rice and beans) which is consistently great in Lexington was mostly filled with rice and beans in Woburn, with only 5 chunks of pork to be found. My daughter gets chicken fingers, and even those were overcooked and dried out. I had two vegetarian enchiladas and a chile relleno, and they were very bland. What a shame.

        2. re: MC Slim JB

          I had lunch a few days ago at Pho #1 and, for a change of pace, had the spicy beef soup - Bun Bo Hue. Delicious!

          1. re: MC Slim JB

            You may want to double check on the China Pearl part. I have not been during the week, but I read that they now serve dimsum daily now that it has reopened under new mgmt... We went for the 1st time in about a year last sunday and found the dimsum to be quite decent and also ordered chow foon, pea tendrils and pan fried noodles from the kitchen which were quire good.

            1. re: hargau

              Good to know! My one visit to China Pearl Woburn was so bad as to be depressing. Brown glop, and a lot of it.

              1. re: MC Slim JB

                Your one visit during non-dimsum times or you have not been to the dimsum at all there? I have never been for non-dimsum.

                1. re: hargau

                  I agree the non dimsum is not worth going for. The dim sum, however, is quite good. I was there this past weekend and chatted briefly with the new owner. He plans to continue the fresh and abundant dim sum, and does plan to start weekday dim sum soon.

            2. Is the Woburn branch of Masa open yet?

              2 Replies
              1. re: galleygirl

                It wasn't as of a few days ago, but it looks like it's close.

                1. re: galleygirl

                  It's definitely still closed. OpenTable (which otherwise has never let me down) let me make an anniversary reservation there, but when we showed up, the place was still closed :-( But it turned out to be a great evening because we discovered Tryst in Arlington, which we both liked.

                2. I passed by Taipei Tokyo last night and it still is not open. There is also another Japanese restaurant opening further down Main St., which I think may be in Winchester. I think the name is Sakura but only caught it out of the corner of my eye.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: RichardA

                    Help! We are looking for a fine(r)-dining destination as close to Woburn as possible to take some older relatives who don't get out much. Unfortunately nothing more exotic than Italian. They've been to Tre Monte before, so I am looking for something else along those lines with polished service, or an historic inn if such a thing exists. Thanks!

                    1. re: galleycat

                      What about Burlington. Don't know how "older" is old, but took relatives to Cafe Escadrille. Wouldn't have been my first choice, but they liked their steaks. There is also Adama and Summer/Winter, both in Burlington.

                      1. re: galleycat

                        Go to L'Andana in Burlington on Rt 3A. It's a nice atmosphere and great food. They'll be impressed.

                        1. re: Frank Enbean

                          When I went to l'Andana, almost everyone was "older."

                        2. re: galleycat

                          If you are still looking, I would definitly go down the road a bit to Stoneham to Felicias of the North End. I didnt love Tre Monte at all, but do love Felicias as an occasion place. Its VERY old school italian, pictures of stars on the walls, very good waitstaff, excellent simple old school italian. i dont even think they add salt to the food. flavors are subtle but very good.Take them on a Sat night (need reservations). Two older guys from Italy with an accordian and tamborine singing old Italian and standards. They'll love it. Just went on Valentines day..very romantic, candlelight, roses for the ladies, the music etc.

                      2. Living in Woburn, it's hard for me to add to your list.

                        But, Bill & Bobs roast beef sandwich has shrunk in size. And it was grey and overdone the last time I got it. Too bad, it was always a great deal and a great sandwich.

                        Roma's Italian Bakery is a hidden gem, except during the Holiday season when the lines are out the door. Every dessert is great.

                        I went to Lana Thai recently and really didn't know what to get. I need to get some recommendations, other than always ordering Pad Thai....ugh!

                        I am glad that Callahan's Deli is still there, they were a ghost town when they first
                        openend. I was hoping it would catch on. Owners seem really nice.

                        Here is a list about not going good:
                        Ixtapa
                        Giovannis
                        Brothers Pizza (except the Cuban)
                        Cousins (breakfast)
                        The Restaurant (cafetaria style)
                        Thai place (downtown), blech
                        Bishops Seafood, awful
                        Fiorentino's, across from Roma's (never consistant), expensive.

                        5 Replies
                        1. re: mcel215

                          Cousins is always packed...so it's not good, or going downhill? I was never one to go there myself.

                          Bishops was fine under the old owners...not great, but fine. I haven't been since the new folks took over.

                          HATE Brothers Pizza

                          Giovannis - like the chicken kabob salad and that's about it.

                          Callahans is open and doing well. It was pretty packed the last time I went there. I had the meatball sub...it was good. They got new sub rolls which are awesome. I want to try the calzone next time I go...my husband said it's excellent. I was talking to the owner and he's doing dinners now Wed-Fri and it's BYOB. And I guess he's been getting a lot of catering business.

                          1. re: mcel215

                            Oh, as far as thai...my favorite dish is beef massaman curry (spelling?). It's in a peanuty sauce. I LOVE it....give it a try.

                            1. re: rizzo0904

                              Thanks Rizzo!

                              Also, I heard that there is a roast beef place up near Lana Thai on the left, in a little strip mall that is quite good too. I forget the name.

                              1. re: mcel215

                                Roast Beef Roundup - I also like Pete's on Winn Street.

                                1. re: phonelady

                                  Thanks,

                                  I always wondered about that place.

                          2. I recently tried La Stanza Diva in Woburn and loved it. Very eclectic, huge portions, but clearly homemade. Italian plus game (I didn't try the game). BYOB.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: nomadgirl

                              Unfortunately...La Stanza Diva is a shadow of it's predecessor Il Fiorentino's. Sorry, Chef Lynn.

                            2. There are a few other places which haven't gotten much mention.

                              Good Beef Grill in the center is a good alternative to Tudo na Brasa. I believe they have more selection and a lot of Brazilians prefer it for that, but to my limited experience Tudo is a bit better. Rodeo is on the second or third set of owners, it wasn't worth the drive under the previous ones. The brazilian store south of the center on 38 was doing some prepared foods (under previous and current owners), but not certain what they have now.

                              Bishops is Brazilian owned now, no longer greek. They actually do quite good Brazilian Pizza if its your things, plus have some unusual offerings in lanches. I posted some info on that a while back, but didn't get around to translating the menu. Brother's also offers a X-tudo and can do Brazilian pizzas, but for those Bishops is a bit better.

                              Hot Breads deserves a mention, although I have some mixed experiences. Also the Indian convenience store in the lot roughly above CVS has decent samosas, although a bit soggy from sitting in trays.

                              The Portuguese American club has roughly monthly dinners which are open to the public, plus you can get some snacks at their bar.

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: itaunas

                                "Good Beef Grill" should be "Gold Beef Grill" in case anyone tries to look for it. It is a few doors down from tudo na brasa, near the gol market, between tudo and the acougue or bishops.

                                1. re: itaunas

                                  I have to ask: Brazilian pizza - bananas and mayonnaise?

                                  1. re: almansa

                                    Hearts of palm. Its mostly a different animal than Italian Pizza which is my preference, but its more than the ketchup and mayo that most Brazilians use as condiments (yeech). In Brazil there are more artesian style pizzas, particularly wood fired pizzas (which has gotta be exciting to tend with 30 toppings on some pizzas), but here most shops copy the dough recipe from somewhere they worked at. There are plenty of other places where Brazilians work which do certain Brazilian toppings (for example somewhere like 2 paisans in Malden maybe), plus a couple of more in Somerville now. Pizza in Brazil tends to be a date night or after theater kind of thing, Brazilians have a hard time understanding how Americans like Pizza (especially ordering 10-15 different pies for a birthday party or office party, although they often do the same here in America).

                                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/546348

                                  2. Sorry about the super-belated response, but IMHO the Ambassador has one of the best Indian buffets in the area.

                                    -----
                                    Ambassador Indian Restaurant
                                    9 Cummings Park, Woburn, MA 01801

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: tunamelt

                                      tried Tokyo Tapei for late snacks and was very encouraged! Chinese has let us down a lot lately but this had promise, although we didnt sample a lot. Just crab rangoon, shrimp lomein (several large shrimp), california roll and scallion pancake. Everything was quite fresh and tasty, and the atmosphere is very nice. Reminds me of something from San Francisco chinatown, with asian woodwork even outside the front door, and nice art and pottery and lanterns etc. Very pleasant hostess, waitress a bit cranky that hostess encouraged us to come in close to closing time..Definitely will try it again. They raised the prices already from original menu in very short time! I think 5 bucks is high for veggie style maki/rolls but otherwise prices are pretty ok.

                                      1. re: tunamelt

                                        This Indian restaurant is over-priced and the food is not very good. I ate dinner twice and was unimpressed. I had dahi vada on both nights and it was reasonable but outrageously expensive at $8 for three vadas. This restaurant is owned by gujaratis and they offer south Indian dishes as well but do not know how to cook south Indian food. I had utappam [$10] the first night and masala dosa [$12] the next. They were supposed to give sambhar with both dishes but what they really gave was gujarati dal dressed up as sambhar [too sweet]. The coconut chutney was GREEN !!! And way too sweet, did not taste like coconut chutney at all and completely inedible. I went early at 5:15 pm both nights so there was only one other party the first night and no one else the next night. Owner is friendly enough but that does not make the food taste any better. If you go, order only gujarati food; hopefully that is better than their south Indian food. The lunch buffet may be a better value but I did not have lunch so cannot comment on that

                                        -----
                                        Ambassador Indian Restaurant
                                        9 Cummings Park, Woburn, MA 01801

                                        1. re: ANNONYMOUS1234567890

                                          My friends love theThe Rang Indian Restaurant in Stoneham Center, perhaps you would like it better. It's on my to try list. It's right on rte. 28 in Stoneham, close to the theatre.

                                          -----
                                          Rang Indian Restaurant
                                          5 Central Sq, Stoneham, MA 02180

                                        1. re: phonelady

                                          I know, feel bad. I wanted them to succeed. I guess it was a terrible time to open a deli.

                                        2. Masa on Cambridge Rd. in a strip mall is a nice addition. Yummy lunch with good service and a free birthday dessert based on conversation our server overheard us having. Nice margarita too.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: ShelT54

                                            Yes, and an excellent watermelon habanero margarita. Also a unique brunch with some insanely cheap specials.

                                          2. Went to lunch at Pho 1 yesterday, it was amazing.

                                            The place is small, but larger than it looks from the outside. And it was extremely clean for a small hole in the wall. The decor was pleasant, even kind of nice. My DC and I both got luncheon special, which are listed on Menu Lizard as Woburn combos. I got Drunken Noodle with beef and dc got Lomain Kra Pa with Pork. Mine was spicier, but his had excellent flavor from the ground pork I think.

                                            Lunch was served with a crispy spring roll and steamed dumpling, both excellent and would love the recipe for their dippings sauces. These came out first, on little tiny stoneware platters with two little holders for dipping sauces. Beautiful presentation.

                                            Then a refeshing cup of seaweed soup, which had fresh cilantro and tender chicken. Yum! Simply excellent.

                                            A glass of Jasmine Limeade would have been a nice compliment, will try next time.

                                            Price for each lunch was 8.95, and very well worth it. My DC and I are planning to go back in a few weeks. All in all, and excellent lunch and service was great.

                                            Menu Link:

                                            http://www.menulizard.com/restaurant/...

                                            1. Bahamas Grill is a couple doors down from Tudo Na Brasa on Main St and is arguably more delicious. The food is far less expensive and the dining area is polished and upscale-looking. It's your traditional Brazilian lunch fare with rice, beans, salads, and of course meats on spits. The fried bananas are quite good. I love it here for lunch!

                                              1 Reply