Good, inexpensive food in JP/Roxbury/Roslindale?
My husband and I just moved to the Forrest Hills area of JP (from Cambridge where there were tons of great cheap eats). Does anyone have places they like for a casual dinner or takeout in the Roslindale, West Roxbury, Dorchester area? We love cheap but authentic (nothing fancy) Mexican, ALL Asian (I'm craving Vietnamese, thai), Indian, almost any ethnic food. Or are we relegated to delivery?? Help!
You've got to do some research on this board: there are tons of good recs for all those neighborhooods, especially JP. A few that come quickly to mind:
Dorchester: King Do Baguette, Tavolo, Ashmont Grill, Poppa B's, Blarney Stone, Pha Le Bakery, Pho So #1, Restaurant Laura, Donovan’s, Merengue, Mrs. Jones, Singh’s Roti, Ali's Roti, Shanti, Caeseria.
Roxbury: Pepper Pot, El Mondonguito, Haley House, Packy Connor's, M+M Ribs.
In JP I can't think of any decent Vietnamese, Thai, Mexican or Chinese. As for Indian, there's the new(ish) place, Ghazal on Centre St in JP, which I haven't been to but have heard is decent. The other place, whose name escapes me, I quite detest.
There is a Mexican place up by Jackson Square, on the north side of the street, that is ok. I like Food Wall in Hyde Square for Americanized Chinese take out--but don't expect it to be like Qingdao, Zoes, Wangs or Mulan, b/c it's not in that genre at all.
Pupusa Guanaca, also up by Hyde Square, is good Salvadoran food, and has a nice feel to it.
Some people like El Oriental de Cuba a lot, but I find it pretty middle-of-the-road, though they do nice shakes and strong espressos for $1.
Closer to Forest Hills itself, I like Dogwood Cafe for their pizza. Some people like to get the pizza "well done," but I strongly prefer it the regular way.
The nearest respectable Chinese I can think of is Sichuan Gourmet (Garden?) in Brookline Village, from which I have occasionally had pretty good meals and occasionally pretty bad meals.
For Thai, I'd just head up to Allston to S&I or Dok Bua. There is Wonder Spice in JP center for Americanized Thai; I am partial to their crispy ginger fish, but that's about it. Tons of Vietnamese in Dorchester, but others can fill you in on that.
Not really dinner, but if you don't already know about it, Canto 6 is a fantastic bakery: their pastries and tarts and whatnot are reliably great; and if you're missing Hi-Rise breads, they sell those at Ula Cafe, so you don't have to cross the river to get them. (Both Canto 6 and Ula do sandwiches as well, so I suppose kind of takeout.)
There's a pizzeria in Roslindale that's also part taqueria. It's decent, though not something to go far out of your way for.
Lots and lots of good options in Roslindale & West Roxbury. Here are my favorites:
Romano's Pizza in Roslindale Village is the one that serves Mexican food - and I actually think the tacos are among the best (and probably most "authentic" - whatever that means) in the area. If you're into the straight-up meat-on-tortilla taco experience, potentially even a destination. I can't vouch for anything else they serve on the Mexican menu- in fact, I consider the mediocrity of the burritos a sign of seriousness. Sicilian pizza also good.
Himalayan Bistro in West Roxbury is excellent for Indian & Nepali - eat in or takeout. They deliver.
The King in West Roxbury for top-notch Lebanese.
Tons more too...