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Apr 29, 2009 07:43 PM

Lunch fare in Medford, Somerville

I've started a new job recently in Wellington Circle. Where's the great food in this area? I am open to any type of food. Ambience is overrated, so just the best food that you've ever eaten that's in a 10 minute or so drive. For a frame of reference, here's what I can see is in a few mile radius: Meadow Glen Mall, Gateway Center, Tufts, Davis Sq, Assembly Sq Mall. Thanks.

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  1. Very authentic sichuan cooking is available in Medford at Chili Garden. Colleen's diner and ice cream shop also in Medford is a great place and fun. One last of course has to be Modern Pastry shop in Medford, which has classic italian desserts. Enjoy!

    3 Replies
    1. re: InNOutBurger

      if you go to medford square you should also check out chung ki wa (korean) located just a few doors down from chili garden

      1. re: InNOutBurger

        Thanks to all for the Chili Garden recommendation and thanks for the specific menu suggestions. The beef noodle soup, such an unassuming name, was fantastic. The pork fried rice was very mundane and a lost opportunity in comparison to the soup. Seems like it's worth sticking to the Sichuan part of the menu.

        1. re: headbroad

          Yes, definitely stick to the Sichuan part of the menu. This is where they excel. I think they do the Americanized Chinese because they feel they have to and while I do enjoy Americanized Chinese sometimes, too, I would not get it there.

      2. Head to Union Square, Somerville. We have great Thai, Indian, Mexican, Portuguese, Peruvian and Brazilian, all at least good and sometimes better. And even reasonable Chinese, unfortunately with the ambiance of a gas-station bathroom.

        1. fuloon on main street in malden center is not too far from wellington circle and has wonderful regional chinese food. in the same area is habesha (ethiopian), pho 99 (vietnamese), saigon noodle (vietnamese), all seasons table (pan-asian and sushi), and exchange street bistro

          1. For more than reasonable Chinese, head north to Malden to Fuloon. I would guess this is about a 6-minute drive. Parking is fairly easy.

            Read itaunus' posts about East Somerville. There are several good taco spots on East Broadway. Also is Vinny's Superette [Vinny's at Night] where I believe you can get some good home-style italian food. On Broadway headed towards Winter Hill is Maria's Cold Cuts. They make a great Italian sandwich. A tad farther is the new Brazilian bakery/sandwich shop.

            Going East on Rt 16 there is the famous Coscto hot dog. $1.50 for a dog with a soda, free refill. Head the other way, and you can get to Bob's of Medford which has great Italian sub sandwiches. This might be getting a little to far for a quick lunch however.

            Union Square as mentioned has some very good food. I would recommend either of the Korean restaurants, the roasted chicken at Machu Picchu Charcoal Chicken & Grill is wonderful and travels well. Sherman Cafe serves some refined, but expensive sandwiches. I don't think there is any decent Chinese, but the new Thai restaurant has had some nice reviews.

            In Davis Square, try the Namaskar buffet or the Tibetan restaurant. There are tons of Davis Square posts, so I won't try a comprehensive list.

            And finally, Ball Square [which is getting farther away] you have Soundbites, Ball Square Cafe and Pescatore.

            If you tried each of these spots, you have a month of lunches right there. Enjoy exploring!

            3 Replies
            1. re: smtucker

              While in Ball Square I would definitely recommend Victor's for great homemade food, soups and calzones.

              They also have what I have found to be the best chicken parm sub in the Boston area.

              1. re: TomH

                Totally ditto this. Victor's is a gem. Also good sandwiches and funky people at True Grounds in Ball square.

                I live in the general area and hit up lunch at Dave's Fresh Pasta in Davis, Sessa's for an awesome Italian or eggplant parm, or Namaskar's buffet.

                I also enjoy the clams, roast beef and fish sandwich at Kelly's right in the Wellington circle.

                As others have said, the drive to Fuloon from Wellington Circle is about 10 mins and well worth the drive. Be sure to try the Bang bang chicken!

                1. re: yumyum

                  Thanks. I hope to try Fuloon tomorrow, or Guru depending on where my lunch companion wants to go. Kelly's was a useful recommendation. It has good clam chowder, the milky kind which I like. And a drive through.

            2. More: Oasis on Main St. just north of Harvard for Brazilian (be prepared to pack leftovers). They have rotating specials (moquequa on Friday). The one meal I had at Raso's Grille on 38 was pretty good. I like the calzones at Il Sogno on Spring St., the arancini not so much since the warming oven was added. Thai at Tom Yum Koong (Medford Sq., Forest St.) can be good but if you want spicy you have to convince them. Strong second for Chilli Garden and Fuloon but I think the lunch specials are more interesting at the former. At Fuloon I'd order from the menu and pack leftovers. Bob's is quite reachable but very busy, worth calling first (if's takeout only). Good quality American-Chinese lunch specials at East Asia, Powderhouse Sq. in Somerville. Getting a little far, takeout at Guru the Caterer up Broadway on your way to 16 (Punjabi). (I may be underestimating weekday traffic here.)

              4 Replies
              1. re: Aromatherapy

                I just finished yesterday's leftover Porchetta panini from Il Sogno. I think it was better today. It was nice to see it in your list, because that's exactly the kind of place I'm looking for -- given, it does have some ambience in Meford/Italian/slice-of-life-way. Thanks for the ideas. I searched Yelp last night and Guru came up as #1 within 2 miles, so that's a must do.

                  1. re: yumyum

                    Is it only takeout, or can you sit down?

                    1. re: headbroad

                      I usually take out but he's recently expanded and now you can sit.