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Framingham/Natick restaurant recs??

BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 04:14 AM

I am moving to Framingham this week (less than 2 miles from the Natick Mall) but I'm really not familiar with the area other than Rt. 9. I prefer non-chain restaurants and of all types (great takeout, ethnic, high-end, diners, etc).
Thanks, Chows!

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  1. nsenada RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 05:11 AM

    Right off the bat, I could eat at Sichaun Gourmet every day for the rest of my life and not get bored. They are right on Route 9 just past Sturgis Road. Casey's Diner in Natick has great, simple dogs and burgers. Haven't been in a while, but I love Corrado's subs in Natick (and they've been consistently great for years, so I'd find it hard to believe they've fallen off in quality). There's a Five Guys about to open on Route 9 by Building 19. There are tons of Brazilian places I have yet to explore that look really good. Gourmet Decisions (In Natick, I think?) has a great breakfast.

    2 Replies
    1. re: nsenada
      galleygirl RE: nsenada Mar 14, 2010 12:48 PM

      Shout out for Gourmet Decisions; they serve dinner on the weekends, and we tried them last night, with a $25 coupon from restaurants.com that I got for $2...Yikes, I'm embarrassed that we spent so little for such a nice meal.

      The dinner entrees were in the high teens to mid to upper 20's, but they seemed to be full plates, with veggies and sides...We were all set, then they recited the day's specials, which were actually cheaper; hasn't anyone told them they're supposed to gouge for specials? (g)..

      Anyway, the boneless shortribs in a red wine glaze called out to TC, and came with mashed potatoes (mmmm.) and roasted asparagus and carrots (lovely job on them, BTW)...My thick fillet of salmon was crusted with lovely potato slices, and resting on a bed of squash gnocci in a maple butter...KInd of an unusual combination, but it worked. The same asparagus and carrots, and they both came with very large, fresh, and wonderfully varied greens in their very lightly dressed house salads...Quite impressive.

      In fact, lightly dressed would describe all the food here, and in a good way. I didin't feel the way I often do, with reataurant food, that they were upping the taste and luxury quotient by adding more fat...It was just flavorful, seasonal ingredients that the chef knew enough to let do the job on their own..

      The room was cozy, slightly Italian looking, and has a fireplace, perfect on this cold and rainy night. White tableclothes make it more elegant than the Galleys are used to, but made TC happy. Fine par-baked bread (I wouldn't have guessed it I hadn't asked), and decently priced wine and beer...Late dinners may find their 9:00 closing a drawback.

      Waitstaff were friendly, helpful, and didn't skip a beat when we presented our coupon...We'll return.

      1. re: nsenada
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        susanpmccoy RE: nsenada Apr 17, 2010 04:21 PM

        Ran into 5 Guys for lunch today. Definitely a burger joint. Got a bacon cheeseburger with fries. Fries were ok, burger was ok, however, whatever they are using for cheese ruined the whole thing. I was under the impression it was suppose to be cheddar, but it was more like American (which I hate in anything but grilled cheese with tomato soup:-)
        Under 10.00 but I won't be going back. Guess I'm too old to enjoy noisy joints without beer and awesome burgers

      2. BostonZest RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 05:22 AM

        I don't get out that way often and can't help with restaurants, but you will have access to great bread from B & R.

        http://brartisanbread.com/default.aspx

        We walk from Back Bay to the North End to buy it. Here's a piece with a bit more background and links to other info.
        http://www.bostonzest.com/2008/06/b-r...

        You'll have a great farmers market opening June 10th.

        http://www.framinghamfarmersmarket.com/

        And, when I was shopping with my Mother-in-law out in that area, I was impressed with Roche Brothers supermarkets.

        Penny
        http://www.bostonzest.com/

        2 Replies
        1. re: BostonZest
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          Tatania RE: BostonZest Jul 5, 2010 11:46 AM

          And B&R is at the Natick Farmers Market, Saturdays 9-1. Also Chestnut Farms meat, a terrific fishmonger, Natick Community Organic Farm, Tangerini Farm, several other very nice produce spots, etc.

          1. re: Tatania
            BellatrixStar RE: Tatania Aug 30, 2010 01:20 PM

            I've been frequenting the Farmers Market all summer! Definitely a treat! Especially since it's right down the street from me.

        2. BellatrixStar RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 05:30 AM

          Excellent! I really appreciate all of those and I'm really excited for the Farmers Market! I totally forgot about Five Guys opening up, I had heard that! Tried the one in Foxboro...really great.

          1. galangatron RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 06:09 AM

            sichuan gourmet (sichuan)
            uncle cheung's (shanghainese)
            red pepper (sichuan)

            2 Replies
            1. re: galangatron
              galleygirl RE: galangatron Mar 9, 2010 07:02 AM

              Add to those Chinese favorites Eo Noodles, just a 1/2 mile or so past Trolley Sq. on Rt.9. A chowish kind of place, in a strip-mall,BYO, some taiwanese food, some Mongolian, and a few menu items from Cheng-Du, where the owner is from. Not strong on fish items, but there are enough for me, and the ChengDu style noodles and Yu Shiang items make up for it..
              Great cold dishes, even tho they are very few. We LOVE the cold tofu skin strips, and seaweed salad, different than any version I've ever had. more like sweet pickled veggies...

              1. re: galleygirl
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                veryveryrosalind RE: galleygirl Mar 22, 2011 06:48 PM

                Wanted to say I ADORE EO Noodles, which we first tried thanks to a Galleygirl rec. The Chinese standards are great (loved the Yu Hsiang pork), as are the noodles. If they would hire someone to do delivery, I would be a very happy camper.

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                EO Noodle
                1245 Worcester Rd, Framingham, MA

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              emilief RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 08:20 AM

              Oga on Route 9 in Natick for excelent Japanese. Sel de la terre in the Natick "Collection."

              3 Replies
              1. re: emilief
                nsenada RE: emilief Mar 8, 2010 09:31 AM

                Oh yes - strongly second both, and well as B and R.

                1. re: emilief
                  ineemeeny RE: emilief Mar 8, 2010 02:57 PM

                  Another enthusiastic vote for Oga's. Looks completely unimpressive from the outside, but it's a beautiful sushi restaurant, that I think is one of the best in the area.

                  1. re: emilief
                    BellatrixStar RE: emilief Apr 7, 2010 08:46 PM

                    After being here almost a month, I FINALLY made it to Oga. I cannot thank you guys enough! The most fabulous sushi I've had since living in So. Cali. Thank you, thank you!!!

                  2. ecwashere7 RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 09:53 AM

                    I used to live in Natick and still miss a few places:

                    1. Dah Mee (Natick) - Korean/Asian food. It isn't fancy, but has delicious stuff. Its right in Natick Center.

                    2. Tennessee's BBQ (Framingham). Its a chain now, but still worth it for good BBQ.

                    3. Sel De La Terre (Natick Mall) - It wasn't there when I lived there, but it's fantastic.

                    4. Alta Strada (Wellesley) - Its very easy to get to Wellesley from Natick, and Alta Strada is awesome. Its not of the same level as other Schlow restaurants, but good nonetheless.

                    5. Riley's Roast Beef - great hole-in-the-wall roast beef place. It's popular amongst the classic car/hot rod community.

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: ecwashere7
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                      Gordough RE: ecwashere7 Mar 8, 2010 10:14 AM

                      where is Riley's? Lived in the area for a few years and I have never even heard of it.

                      1. re: Gordough
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                        hargau RE: Gordough Mar 8, 2010 10:19 AM

                        It's no longer... But there is a kellys in jordans

                        1. re: Gordough
                          trufflehound RE: Gordough Mar 8, 2010 03:38 PM

                          Riley's in Nobscot is now the Redline Diner. If you are in the area, Gianni's Pizza is the best in the area.

                        2. re: ecwashere7
                          BellatrixStar RE: ecwashere7 Mar 8, 2010 04:52 PM

                          WOW all great, thanks so much :-) I'm definitely looking forward to trying Oga and Dah Mee. I forgot about Sel De La Terre and the Collection has The Met Bar too which I haven't tried yet.
                          I'll definitely look into Alta Strada too.

                          Has anyone tried the diner that's owned by a Brazillian husband and wife?? The name escapes me but they were featured on Fox25 one morning a few weeks ago.

                          1. re: BellatrixStar
                            trufflehound RE: BellatrixStar Mar 9, 2010 01:32 AM

                            If it's the old Lloyds, Tropical Cafe I stopped there late Saturday night hoping for breakfast. They serve a dinner menu and I left satisfied with a chicken heart sandwich with fried egg. It was almost midnight and they could have used a broom throughout the place. thanks for the reminder. I was meaning to post.

                            1. re: trufflehound
                              BellatrixStar RE: trufflehound Mar 14, 2010 09:13 AM

                              YES the old Lloyds! Thank you for that!

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                          lulatula RE: BellatrixStar Mar 8, 2010 03:38 PM

                          J & M Diner on 126 is a great breakfast and lunch spot. I also love sitting at the bar at Imperial China for the chicken noodle soup, and one of Tina's special Mai Tai's. The sushi is also very good. And besides the bread at B & R they have great chocolate cherry , and molasses cookies. There is a new mexican place opening up on Rte 30 right by the post office also that I am looking forward to eating at.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: lulatula
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                            Tatania RE: lulatula Mar 9, 2010 03:35 AM

                            Where is Imperial China?

                            1. re: Tatania
                              MABMAQ RE: Tatania Mar 9, 2010 04:20 AM

                              on rte 9 westbound before rte 30 joins in - right after my fave Sichuan Gourmet on the right side.

                              1. re: MABMAQ
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                                Tatania RE: MABMAQ Mar 9, 2010 07:31 AM

                                Thanks. Somehow I've missed it. Must be due to the happy Sichuan Gourmet/Uncle Chueng's haze I'm usually in as I pass...

                          2. t
                            Tatania RE: BellatrixStar Mar 9, 2010 03:34 AM

                            Also the Aztec in Framingham for hole-in-the-wall Mexican. Also the new Winter Market in Johnson School in Natick - vendor favs from the Natick Farmer's Market, fish, meat, and even some produce.

                            Gourmet Decisions is in Natick. It's tucked away -- entrance is from the parking lot of the (mediocre) Dolphin Restaurant.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Tatania
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                              AnnieP RE: Tatania Mar 9, 2010 05:36 AM

                              Gourmet Decisions is also a good lunch place- soups, salads, sandwiches, etc. Note that they're closed on Monday. They also serve dinner several nights a week, but I haven't tried it. If you head out a little farther on Rt. 9 to Westborough and Southborough, there is some good Italian: Arturo's in W, and Trattoria Tomasso in S. Ziti's is good for casual Italian- one is at the golf course on Speen St. in Natick, and the other is in a strip mall on Rt. 9 E in Westborough. Some of my other favorites that have been mentioned already are Sel de la Terre and Rasoi. We have generally had good experiences at Skipjack's- it's pretty reliable for fish. We ate at Legal in Framingham last weekend for the first time in ages, as we had a gift card. We had an Open Table reservation, and took first available, which had us seated at a tall booth in the bar area in 5 minutes. Food was quite good, but it was incredibly noisy, and I just found it really annoying that people were standing so close to our booth, near the bar. Servers had to clear a path coming from the kitchen, and some woman's purse was nearly hanging over my water glass.

                              1. re: Tatania
                                nsenada RE: Tatania Mar 9, 2010 05:57 AM

                                Thanks for the tip on the winter market - will have to check it out (though the regular one is about to start up). Will also have to try Aztec.

                                I've had some pretty good food at the Chicken Bone - their buffalo chicken calzone was one of the better ones I've had, and the atmosphere is "interesting" (a kind of scary redneck bar feel).

                              2. b
                                bear RE: BellatrixStar Mar 9, 2010 04:48 AM

                                There is a new store in Trolley Square Plaza that I keep meaning to check out. It looks promising. They advertise their selection of caviars and fresh breads as well as a focus on local produce. You could hit up Rasoi for decent Indian or Red Pepper for good Sichuan after shopping, since they are right there.

                                http://www.freshchoicemarket.com/inde...

                                Also, in the old Bickford's on Rte. 30, La Carreta is supposed to open soon. They are a small chain of NH-based Mexican restaurants that seem to be well-regarded online.

                                You are also just a short ride on the Mass. Pike to Waltham and the Moody St. Indian and Mexican shops and all the restaurants.

                                Have fun!

                                12 Replies
                                1. re: bear
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                                  Gordough RE: bear Mar 9, 2010 07:57 AM

                                  Where do folks suggest getting good sandwiches in this area? I am familiar with Waverly Market but am looking for some additional options. The second post mentions Corrado's subs in Natick by they appear to be closed on the weekends and at 7:00pm during the week which is when I am most likely to be in the area.

                                  1. re: Gordough
                                    nsenada RE: Gordough Mar 9, 2010 08:14 AM

                                    Not sure in Framingham or Natick, but Wellesley has Tutto Italiano

                                    1. re: nsenada
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                                      emilief RE: nsenada Mar 9, 2010 08:52 AM

                                      Wellesley also has The Linden Store - great subs, always crowded, efficient service, but only open until 3 p.m. I believe.

                                      1. re: emilief
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                                        Gordough RE: emilief Mar 9, 2010 09:17 AM

                                        I live down the road from the Linden Store so I am very familiar with (and fond of) it. I am, however, looking for a place where I can get a decent sandwich when I get home from work at 6:30-7:00.

                                        1. re: Gordough
                                          MABMAQ RE: Gordough Mar 9, 2010 11:03 AM

                                          how about Panera Bread on rte 9/27 in the stop and shop plaza ?

                                          1. re: Gordough
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                                            emilief RE: Gordough Mar 9, 2010 11:58 AM

                                            I don;t know if you can get them in the evening, but Alta Strada has delicious sandwiches - pannini- that they make in the "Market " downstairs. Have had them at lunch and know that the market is open for pick up take out food for dinner. Bobby's American Grill in Wellelsy Lower Falls area has sandwiches on their dinner menu and would think that you can get them to go. As you say, it seems that the choices are limited .

                                            1. re: emilief
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                                              Gordough RE: emilief Mar 9, 2010 01:21 PM

                                              Thanks for the suggestions guys. I am actually going to Bobby's for dinner tonight so I will see what the deal is with sandwiches to go. Also, while not the kind of sandwich I had in mind, I am very much looking forward to the opening of Five Guys burgers in the same plaza as the Panera.

                                              1. re: emilief
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                                                susanpmccoy RE: emilief Mar 23, 2011 08:23 AM

                                                Bobby's in Newton Lower Falls is closed.

                                                1. re: susanpmccoy
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                                                  Gordough RE: susanpmccoy Mar 23, 2011 10:11 AM

                                                  Bobby's was in Wellesley not Newton and yes I know it closed. My post is more than a year old.

                                        2. re: Gordough
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                                          Tatania RE: Gordough Jul 5, 2010 11:54 AM

                                          Props to Lola's (Natick Center) in this category. A few very nice sandwiches on focaccia, Italian subs, red-sauce standards.

                                        3. re: bear
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                                          random amblings RE: bear Apr 18, 2010 09:00 PM

                                          North End Treats across from the Red Roof Inn on Cochituate Road, near the Mass Pike entrance is quite good. THey feature paninis and wraps, as well as pizza, and salad. Limited seating. Open til 9 weekdays, 10 weekends, closed Monday. Good stop to pick up something on the way home.

                                          -----
                                          North End Treats
                                          Natick, MA, Natick, MA

                                          1. re: random amblings
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                                            BJK RE: random amblings Apr 19, 2010 06:08 AM

                                            Agreed. I have discovered, though, that their pizzas are much, much better when they are as hot as possible. I have about a 15 minute ride home from there, and I'm much better off arriving at the store before the pizza is ready and hitting the road the moment it comes out of the oven than I am having it waiting at the store for me when I arrive. Really big difference.

                                        4. Ally Cat RE: BellatrixStar Mar 13, 2010 07:03 AM

                                          I don't think anyone has mentioned Stone's inn in Ashland which is a great pub with character.

                                          1. BellatrixStar RE: BellatrixStar Mar 14, 2010 09:19 AM

                                            We moved into the new place on Friday and our first meal ended up being at Ken's Steak House. I had the baked stuffed sole and it was absolutely amazing and was drenched in a lobster cream sauce. My boyfriend really enjoyed his steak too.

                                            Possibly Oga for sushi tonight.

                                            10 Replies
                                            1. re: BellatrixStar
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                                              lulatula RE: BellatrixStar Mar 14, 2010 06:18 PM

                                              When I responded earlier I forgot to mention a place I get takeout from at least 4 times a month, it is called subs n more on Concord Street right across from the mill building in Saxonville. They have great gyro sandwiches and the best chicken kabob lunch with a salad, hummus and safron rice for 7 bucks. And I saw a reply about the new fresh choice market. I have been in and the produce was not the freshest I have seen. They had cheap selection of by the pound candy , nuts and various crackers that were well worth the visit but as far as anything looking fresh I did not see it. And I also think Skipjacks is a very reliable place for great seafood. The skipjacks swordfish is my favorite swordfish anywhere. Also you can't beat Legal's six for $6 at the bar. (oysters) You have to ask for it though.

                                              1. re: lulatula
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                                                bear RE: lulatula Mar 15, 2010 03:45 AM

                                                Thanks for the review of Fresh Choice. I was thinking of checking it out this week when I'm in the area, but sounds like I shouldn't bother, since I'm not a candy person.

                                                1. re: lulatula
                                                  galleygirl RE: lulatula Mar 15, 2010 06:09 AM

                                                  I think Subs and More has changed its name and sign, yet again, to something like "Healthful Mediterranean Cuisine", or something similar. They are actually Turkish, and TC and I keep saying that if they'd just concentrate on that, and stop trying to be everything to everyone, they might have an easier time, because those people are trying hard!

                                                  1. re: galleygirl
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                                                    lulatula RE: galleygirl Mar 26, 2010 10:23 AM

                                                    (subs n more) I agree that they are trying very hard there and that is why I love to support them. They have their entire family in there on the weekends eating brunch, which btw looks great. Maybe he has to do the diverse menu because people are not buying enough of the Mediterranean foods and speaking of that the chicken fingers are really good there also! They actually taste like fresh tenderloins, which I don't usually eat but theirs are so good that I can't pass them up when my kids get them.

                                                    1. re: lulatula
                                                      galleygirl RE: lulatula Mar 26, 2010 10:39 AM

                                                      I think if they just concentrated on the TURKISH food, and publicized it, they could carve a niche for themselves...Most of the time, the Turkish options are unavailable!

                                                2. re: BellatrixStar
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                                                  hargau RE: BellatrixStar Mar 15, 2010 07:07 AM

                                                  Interesting. I always thought you had to have blue hair to enjoy Kens. Guess i was wrong.

                                                  1. re: hargau
                                                    BellatrixStar RE: hargau Mar 15, 2010 02:13 PM

                                                    haha we were definitely the minority in there and dare I say that we were still in our sweats from moving *gasp*. Delicious stuffed mushrooms and the entrees were fabulous. The veggie sides and the salad could of used some help though (lettuce, 3 onion slices and one tomato slice).

                                                    1. re: BellatrixStar
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                                                      BJK RE: BellatrixStar Mar 26, 2010 12:56 PM

                                                      My one experience at Ken's was a holiday party that managed to fall short of my incredibly low expectations. Horrifyingly bad.

                                                      1. re: BellatrixStar
                                                        nsenada RE: BellatrixStar Mar 26, 2010 01:43 PM

                                                        Did there actually seem to be much of a dress code? I have always wanted to go for ironic anthropological purposes, and my wife always says "we can't go in there in jeans."

                                                        1. re: nsenada
                                                          BellatrixStar RE: nsenada Apr 7, 2010 08:44 PM

                                                          We were so underdressed and it was awkward but the staff didn't make us feel that way, a few of the other patrons gave us the once over though. Business casual type dress would make you "fit in".

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                                                    winedude RE: BellatrixStar Apr 8, 2010 07:03 AM

                                                    Has anyone tried the new Ziti's at the Natick Golf Center on Speen St.? I'm looking for a good red sauce place, with a decent atmosphere, but the pictures on the website make it look very casual, and not a nice enough place for my Mom.

                                                    Thoughts?

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: winedude
                                                      ChinaCat RE: winedude Apr 13, 2010 01:38 PM

                                                      I have not, but are they affiliated with the Ziti's in Westboro at the Speedway plaza? Because the food at the one in Westboro is terrific, but the atmosphere is seriously casual. Definitely not a place I would take my Mom, but a perfect place to get a pizza or a plate of pasta after a movie.

                                                      1. re: ChinaCat
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                                                        winedude RE: ChinaCat Apr 13, 2010 07:44 PM

                                                        OK, I took one for the team tonight. I really wanted to like this place, but the food wasn't very good. The restaurant was mostly empty tonight, maybe 8 tables full. It was very casual, and not as clean-smelling as I would have liked. The red sauce was good, the pasta standard box variety (but cooked al dente), but the chicken parm was a big, clearly pre-frozen, deep-fried mess. I would never order it again. My DC's chicken marsala was better, but I think just mediocre. The caprese salad was iceberg lettuce, one slice of red pepper, one slice of tomato, and a sliced ball of mozzarella, with creamy Italian dressing all over it. Hmmm.

                                                        There's a lovely deck out back. On a warm night, I might try it for a pizza, but I'm not rushing.

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                                                      PatrickZ RE: BellatrixStar Oct 4, 2010 09:41 AM

                                                      just got a job in Natick - looking for any updated recommendations!!

                                                      i've been lunching at Lola's, Georges and Corrado's.... Caseys is next!

                                                      anything else?

                                                      -----
                                                      Corrado's
                                                      7 Middlesex Ave, Natick, MA 01760

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                                                        latte42 RE: BellatrixStar Nov 27, 2010 12:48 PM

                                                        Asia Bistro on route 135 (framingham). -- We love this restaurant. Their dishes taste much the same as our favorites in Chinatown AND they have a good sushi chef. It's family owned, and they did a nice job remodeling the interior. Great choices for vegetarians too. Very reasonable too.
                                                        Rasoi (Indian) behind trolley square in framingham -- they offer a wonderful dinner for 2 (meat or vegetarian) that includes soup, appetizer, naan and poori breads, choice of 2 entrees (we love the lamb saag and chicken tikka masala), raita, dessert and tea. Last time we went it was under $40 and we brought home enough for lunch the next day. Also family owned; they remember their customers..
                                                        The Villa in Natick on Rt 30 is one of those homey and generous family restaurants. They feature Italian, but offer a variety of choices, from pizza to steak. Nothing gourmet, but excellent comfort food. If you like eggplant parm, it's pretty good.

                                                        -----
                                                        Rasoi Restaurant
                                                        855 Worcester Rd Ste 24, Framingham, MA 01701

                                                        Asia Bistro
                                                        195 W Central St, Natick, MA 01760

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                                                          SamCarterX RE: BellatrixStar Feb 17, 2011 04:45 AM

                                                          I live in Sudbury, literally right next to the Framingham border (I grew up in Framingham, and moved in middle school.

                                                          For Mexican, there's Acapulcos Mexican Restaurant. I'm used to the one in Sudbury on Boston Post Road (aka Route 20) but there's also a location in Framingham on Rt.9. Good food, cozy restaurant, big portions (so bring someone to share or a large appetite). It (at least the Sudbury location) can get very busy especially on weekends, as its popular with the younger crowd and families. They serve free fresh and hot tortilla/nacho chips and salsa (like bread rolls at other joints) and my mom is fond of their really spicy salsa (which you have to ask for). Me, I can't do too spicy.

                                                          Vinny T's of Boston was my family's go-to place for Italian, but their Natick location (next to the Chuck E. Cheese I have fond memories of childhood birthday parties from) is closed now........oh well.

                                                          Bertucci's is good for pizza and Italian, but it is a chain. California Pizza Kitchen (Natick Mall but has moved to a different area of the mall) is also a franchise but makes good pizza and Italian, and recent memory recalls great (and large- worthy of being your whole lunch) salads.

                                                          Can't vouch for Chinese food as we are Chinese ourselves and therefore eat our Chinese food at home-- or in Boston (Chinatown) on weekends. However Sichuan Gourmet is very good

                                                          Panera Bread (also a chain) good for lunch- sandwiches and soups- and makes amazing bagels. There's a location on Rt.9 in the Target plaza (across from Natick Mall) and another in the Building 19 plaza.

                                                          I would suggest checking out the new restaurants in the Natick "Collection" (aka Mall)- in the upscale area. I've heard some of them are pretty good.

                                                          Minado is a Japanese sushi buffet on Rt.9- the Sherwood Plaza shopping area (Christmas Tree Shops). All you can eat, and pretty good.

                                                          I've been out of the country for a while, so my memory's a little rusty. I'll post if I remember any more.

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                                                          Sichuan Gourmet
                                                          502 Boston Rd, Billerica, MA 01821

                                                          Minado Restaurant
                                                          1282 Worcester St, Natick, MA 01760

                                                          Bertuccis Restaurant
                                                          6 Plaza Way, Plymouth, MA 02360

                                                          Pizza Kitchen
                                                          76 Revere Beach Blvd, Revere, MA 02151

                                                          7 Replies
                                                          1. re: SamCarterX
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                                                            Isolda RE: SamCarterX Feb 17, 2011 05:58 AM

                                                            Minado has gone way downhill. We used to eat there when it first opened, but the last few occasions (and yes, they really will be our last) were just awful. Seafood that tasted like it had been bathed in chlorine, salads that all had the same dressing, tepid tea, etc. Good variety, but not worth $29 pp.

                                                            -----
                                                            Minado Restaurant
                                                            1282 Worcester St, Natick, MA 01760

                                                            1. re: Isolda
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                                                              Bighead RE: Isolda Feb 23, 2011 07:45 AM

                                                              some good rec's above. only ones I'd add would be Pepperoncini's in Framingham, good pizza and steak tips, friendly bar (fills with college kids after 10pm though) and for take out The Grillin Greek in Natick Center. Foti and his mom whip up some great greek treats. pizza is average but the gyro and lamb stew are unreal!

                                                              -----
                                                              Pepperoncini's
                                                              486 Concord St, Framingham, MA 01702

                                                              1. re: Bighead
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                                                                AnnieP RE: Bighead Feb 23, 2011 02:08 PM

                                                                We recently tried Chinese Mirch, and liked it very much. My husband and I were the only non-Asian people (aside from our server)- usually a positive sign. The place was hopping on a Saturday night, but we were able to make a reservation by phone- not on Open Table. I could truly become addicted to the gobi appetizer if I ate there more often. We each had a soup, shared an app, shared a prawn dish and a noodle dish, and shared a dessert, with a little left to bring home, and didn't find it that expensive. I can see how it could add up.

                                                            2. re: SamCarterX
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                                                              veryveryrosalind RE: SamCarterX Mar 22, 2011 06:45 PM

                                                              We ate at the Met Bar in the Natick Collection on Saturday night. It was awful. At 6pm there was an hour wait, and it was full of families with little kids--not a terrible thing, but it was LOUD. By 8:15 it was a third empty (clearly families are the main clientele despite the "sophisticated" decor and the extensive cocktail list). We had a Caesar salad which was gross and overdressed with a gloppy, yellowish, mayonnaisey dressing, unbearably sharp-tasting with too much garlic. It's supposed to be a steakhouse so we each had steak a NY sirloin and a tenderloin; both of them were underseasoned and the meat itself tasted like nothing. The "country-style potatoes" that come with the steaks were dry and weird, and the mashed potatoes I got as an additional side were also bland. And our waiter seemed exhausted and distracted despite the relatively early hour. Generally I would give Sel de la Terre in the Natick Collection a B to a B+, but the Met Bar was a D for sure.

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                                                              Sel de la Terre
                                                              1245 Worcester Street, Natick, MA 01760

                                                              1. re: veryveryrosalind
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                                                                Duster17 RE: veryveryrosalind Mar 23, 2011 06:06 AM

                                                                The one in Chestnut Hill is no better. Had to go with friends on a Saturday night but will not return. I was offended by the mediocrity of the food at it's price point. One person in our group ordered a Miller High Life and was teased by the server for ordering it. He actually said that the beer had been sitting around for a year because no one orders it. I think he did think better of it and later returned and said something lame like "I drink Miller all the time". Lame.

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                                                                  Gordough RE: Duster17 Mar 23, 2011 07:18 AM

                                                                  I avoid all the Met related establishments at all costs. They can't even do a good burger at their "Burger Bar" The sad part is, in each of their locations, there are many other better options so it's not like people go there because there is nothing else around.

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                                                                    Isolda RE: Gordough Mar 23, 2011 12:17 PM

                                                                    Their vegetarian burgers are excellent, made with actual beans and veggies, not pressed TVP. However, this is not what you go to a so-called steakhouse for.

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                                                              thebumbles RE: BellatrixStar Mar 24, 2011 07:57 AM

                                                              Try the new Zaftigs in Sherwood Plaza on Rte. 9 across from the mall. Delicious and open all day for breakfast or lunch. They have a full bar too.

                                                              The Chicken Bone, which another poster mentioned, is also very good - always a good spot for live music to go with your wings/burgers/ribs. They do take-out too. Near the Natick/Framingham line.

                                                              For finer dining, go to Maxwells 148 on Rte. 135 near the Natick/Wellesley line. Really good asian fusian dining.

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                                                              Chicken Bone
                                                              1260 Boylston St Ste 3, Boston, MA 02215

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                                                                terrycatch RE: BellatrixStar Apr 19, 2011 01:55 PM

                                                                Here is a subset question on this umbrella theme: Are there any good/decent/not awful pub/bar-food type places in the Natick or Framingham area, preferably on the east side of the latter? Such as places along the Route Nine strip? Just looking for some new ideas for a hang-out, bite & beer type place that is reasonably comfortable.

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                                                                1. re: terrycatch
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                                                                  hargau RE: terrycatch Apr 19, 2011 02:28 PM

                                                                  Have you tried Owen Olearys? I have not been in years but i recall it having good pub food.. Fish & Chips, etc... technically its southboro though, right on rt9..

                                                                  1. re: terrycatch
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                                                                    thebumbles RE: terrycatch Apr 19, 2011 02:46 PM

                                                                    The Chicken Bone (Rte. 135 near Natick/Framingham line) and British Beer Co. (on Rte. 9 across from the Shopper's World) are 2 favorites for pub grub and hanging out over beers with friends.

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                                                                    British Beer Co
                                                                    120 Worcester Rd, Framingham, MA 01702

                                                                    1. re: thebumbles
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                                                                      hargau RE: thebumbles Apr 19, 2011 02:55 PM

                                                                      And John Harvards too.

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                                                                        nsenada RE: thebumbles Apr 19, 2011 06:42 PM

                                                                        Yeah, those two aren't bad.

                                                                      2. re: terrycatch
                                                                        MABMAQ RE: terrycatch Apr 21, 2011 07:34 AM

                                                                        well,right off rte 9 onto rte 127 north there's JJ Mckays in Natick (small strip mall at Rte 30), its a local hangout with decent food. also I have heard good things about Angry Hams Garage in Framingham (right off rte 9 at rte 126)

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                                                                          thebumbles RE: MABMAQ Apr 21, 2011 07:56 AM

                                                                          Funny you should mention Angry Ham's Garage - I stopped by this morning specifically to suggest it. I haven't been there myself yet but it has been highly recommended. My husband is going there tonight with some friends to check it out.

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                                                                            carneyvore RE: thebumbles Apr 21, 2011 10:49 AM

                                                                            I was there for dinner. Steak tips were fine, as was the martini, but not so special that it's worth a trip off the beaten path. Wasn't all that busy on a weeknight either.

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