New (last 3 yrs) noteworthy places?
Moved back to the Boston area after 3.5 yr absence, any must-visit places that have opened since then? Have been to O-Ya, Sorrelina, Jo Jo Taipei, but not much else new. New cocktail places also welcome. TIA!
As an "other side of the river" kind of guy, some Cambridge notables:
Craigie on Main, Salts, Gran Gusto, Hungry Mother, Rendezvous, Garden at the Cellar, the recently revamped Green Street.
The first three on the list all make it onto my ultra-super-duper-awesome list right now, as does Green Street for cocktails.
If cocktails are your thing, definitely check out Eastern Standard in Kenmore. The food there is consistently outstanding as well.
Lots of great suggestions, and I think you'll really like Craigie on Main. We loved it on our most recent visit. Excellent cocktails too with Tom, formerly of ES, in charge of the bar. I had a Hoskins, and a Camino (Rittenhouse rye, bitters, mirto, and housemade vermouth). You might be interested in one of their cocktail classes too. From their latest newsletter:
Stirred not Shaken: How James Bond Got it Wrong! -$40 per person
The lore of 007 has led to the misconception that all cocktails, properly made, should be shaken. Through a series of side-by-sides we will learn the basics of when to stir and when to shake. Drinks we will explore (and taste) include the Vesper, the Last Word, the Florentine Flip and the Italian Greyhound.
When Bar Meets Kitchen: Making Your Own Vermouth-$40 per person
Vermouth has been made since 1786. You will learn to make your own vermouth which you can use to spice up classic cocktails, as well as new libations. Enjoy tasting your new creations.
(Both classes taught by expert bartender, Tom Schlesinger-Guidelli)
Yes, Craigie is definitely a must-visit. We loved everything about the place - the comfortable warm atmosphere, the fantastic food, great service, and excellent cocktails.
Don't worry, you can still get your Hoskins fix at ES - I had one on our last visit where Hugh and Kit took good care of us at the bar. Be sure to try the Heather in Queue (gin, vermouth, fernet branca, flamed with lemon peel), and my new favorite app there - the mimolette croquettes.
BTW, another spot that opened this year which I really like is the Marliave, I love Angela's cafe in E. Boston for Mexican (Pueblan), and make sure you check out John Gertsen's new place Drink - try the Obituary with gin and absinthe.
I had signed up for the newsletter by email. The latest one had a lot of information, including NYE info (5-course dinner for $110, later seatings 7-course and champagne toast for $150. 3-Course menu for $75 available at the bar). They will be open NY Day in the evening, Christmas Eve, and the bar will be open Xmas Night (12/25).
They also have a couple of special events coming up:
6-Course Truffle Dinner and Wine Pairing - $250 pp.
High On the Hog Dinner and Pairing - rusticity meets refinement in this dinner of all things pork - $200
(At both dinners, you’ll be perched at our Kitchen-Side Chef’s Tasting Tables as you are guided through each course by Chef Tony Maws and Wine Manager Kai Gagnon - maximum 14 guests.)
If you want, you can email me (in my bio) and I'll forward it to you.
Craigie on Main
853 Main Street, Cambridge, MA 02139
Just off the top of my head, eats: Angela's Cafe (Eastie Mexican, very authentica Poblana cooking), Hungry Mother (French/Appalachian), Saray (Turkish), Grain and Salt (Pakistani / Punjabi), about a dozen shabu joints (Kaze probably still my fave), Mrs. Jones (soul food), Orinoco (Venezuelan), Yoma (Burmese), Scampo (new Lydia Shire Italian), 51 Lincoln (chef-owned New American in Newton), Vlora (Albanian/Greek), La Voile (rustic Southern French), Benatti (fine Emilia-Romagnan), Grezzo (raw food), Mike & Patty's (Bay Village breakfast/lunch), Ecco (Eastie eclectic bistro), Marliave (modest bistro food in the downstairs cafe), Oran Cafe (very modest Morrocan place in Eastie, terrific food), Estragon (South End Spanish), Pops (South End upscale comfort food), Coda (above-average bar food in old Tim's Tavern space), Craigie on Main (same chef/concept, bigger/nicer space where La Groceria used to be), El Paisa (Eastie Colombian), Gran Gusto (great Neapolitan pizza in North Cambridge),
Drinks: bar at Green Street, Drink (new Fort Point home of John Gertsen and co.), Scampo, The Independent (newly revitalized from a cocktail point of view), Toro (ditto, as they hired Courtney, ex-No. 9 Park as bar manager), Deep Ellum (also an excellent beer bar), Craigie on Main (ex-ESK barman managing), Marliave (both upstairs and downstairs bars).
I'm sure I'm overlooking some worthwhile places.
A few of my favorites that have opened over the past 3 or 4 years include Gran Gusto in Cambridge, Angela's Cafe in East Boston, Geoffrey's in Roslindale, Orinoco in the South End and Brookline, and Mrs. Jones in the Lower Mills section of Dorchester.
Here's a list of notable places that I can think of (a few duplicates in here from previous postings):
Craigie on Main, Cambridge
Franklin Cafe, South Boston
Erbaluce, Bay Village
High Street Grill, North Andover
Oran Cafe, East Boston
Max & Dylan's, Boston
Jo Jo TaiPei, Allston
G Bar and Kitchen, Swampscott
Townsend's, Hyde Park
Hungry Mother, Cambridge
Winsor Dim Sum Cafe, Chinatown
Fat Cat, Quincy
Gitlo's Dim Sum Bakery, Allston
Da Vinci Restaurant, Boston
Myers and Chang, South End
Savant Project, Brigham Circle
Gaslight, South End
Mooo, Beacon Hill
Scarlet Oak Tavern, Hingham
Suvarnabhumi Kiri, Allston
T.W. Food, Huron Village
Con Sol, Cambridge
O Ya, Leather District
51 Lincoln, Newton Highlands
Shoot, who will give me the insider tips next time I'm out there (which should have been for that Pats game but Europe came first)? I don't think anyone's mentioned Vee Vee in JP in the old Cha Fahn (sp) space. I still haven't gone but it seems to get good marks.
And Townsend's in Hyde Park, yes Hyde Park. Going again on Tues. for their $15 deal before 7PM.
And Masona in West Roxbury (who have a $12 deal!).
Geoffrey's which was in the south end and back bay is now in Roslindale. There's a new place called Blowfish on Washington St. but not sure what that's all about.
There's a new pie place in Newton Center, both sweet and savory.
There's a newish latino place on Brighton Ave. by the Jackson Mann school, can never remember their name. And Privus next to the Kells for sushi and Asian in a loungey atmosphere.
A Z Square opened just outside Kenmore Sq. Was U Burger here before?
Someone must have mentioned the Beehive in the south end for jazz and hanging out, maybe not so much for the food.
Hopefully I didn't repeat.
Joanie, since you were last out there, a couple places have opened which might interest you for next time, Spur (cocktails and bites) in Belltown area and Spinasse (rustic Italian) in Capitol Hill area...and if you didn't get to Crush last time, put it at the top of your list for next time (sit at the bar, order a hot toddy w/ honey foam, fennel or fresh spruce martini and enjoy the ringside seats on all the kitchen action)
These are pretty comprehensive lists, but I can add one more: Shiki in Coolidge Corner, for Japanese that goes well beyond the typical sushi menu. It's in the downstairs space where Firenze used to be.