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Harmony Market in Acton and El Huipil in Maynard

  • Kat Sep 21, 2010 05:16 AM

Harmony Market looks about to open in Acton on the corner of Rt 27 and Massachusetts Ave. The signs says "Bakery, Cafe, Tea and Chinese Market". I am really looking forward to checking it out and I hope that it will bring some good Chinese food to this area. Also, a new Mexican place opened in downtown Maynard called El Huipil which has brought positive word of mouth so far; hoping to try it this week.

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  1. I've been watching the progress on Harmony with great interest. From what I understand, it is the same people who own the small market on Rte. 27 heading toward Maynard. I think the sign also says deli and catering. Sounds promising, and right on my way home from work!

    1 Reply
    1. re: bear

      Yes it is. The small market over by the kungfu place. Would be great to have some chinese food in the area. About time someone did something with that building. the sign also says "chinese kitchen"... Hope it opens soon

    2. I saw an ad in a local paper for El Huipil and decided to check it out for lunch today. It's located in that space off the parking lot next to the back entrance to the hardware store in downtown Maynard. 51R Main (behind Halfway Cafe, where 51 Main used to be.) The last incarnation was a hot dog place.

      So I am way far from a Mexican food expert, but it seemed pretty authentic. I had veggie enchiladas with the red sauce (green sauce also an option.) Came on a platter with rice, refried beans, and a bit of greens. (Nice fresh greens not iceberg, with ripe chopped tomato, small thing but appreciated.) $5.95 and all very tasty. I will definitely go back.

      Since they don't seem to have a website, here's a quick outline of offerings from the takeout menu I grabbed - Tacos, Tacos El Pastor (Mexican grilled pork), Flautas, Tamales, Chimichanga, Mexican Plates (your choice of topping on rice and beans), Carne Asada plate, Pollo En Mole, Burritos, Quesadillas, Enchiladas. Depending on item toppings/fillings included Chicken, Beef, Carnitas, Carnitas Chile Verde, Pastor, Chorizo, Shredded beef, Bean & Cheese, Veggies, Steak.

      Same style as the last 4 tenants (is this place a revolving door or what?) Order at the counter for takeout or take it to a table. I was there about 1:30 and they seemed to be doing a modest but steady stream of business for that time of day. I think this place has a better chance of sticking than the last few. Hopefully they'll advertise enough and get enough word of mouth.

      1 Reply
      1. re: snippet

        I checked it out the other day as well and I agree with you, it was a good experience. The food seemed home cooked, like what you would eat at someone's house. We had the carnitas plate and chorizo tacos. Chorizo tacos were really good; spicy ground sausage, yum. Had a side order of guac, which was very fresh. Hoping to have more chorizo tacos this weekend at Maynard Fest downtown.

      2. Update on this. I stopped in today and spoke with them for quite a while. Grand opening is scheduled for tomorrow. They have a website here http://www.harmonysfood.com/
        They will have takeout and delivery and on the weekends they will have a special northern style chinese brunch. They also have boars head sandwiches, bubble tea, and a small grocery section in the back that will feature many fresh vegetables as well as basic chinese staples.

        4 Replies
        1. re: hargau

          Thanks for the heads-up. I'll have to check it out. I'm hoping for a decent grocery selection, especially fresh rice noodles.

          According to a friend, they are going to keep the small market up the street as well.

          1. re: bear

            Yes the small market up the street is staying and is actually much larger than the grocery section at Harmony i think. Harmony has basicly 2 aisles with groceries on both sides so 4 walls of shelves about 20ft each

            1. re: hargau

              I've never made it to the other market because it doesn't open until 3, and I'm usually heading out of town before that. It would be worth hanging around a few minutes to check it out.

              1. re: bear

                Yes, the other market a bit further south on 27 is well worth checking out. Don't miss the downstairs!!

        2. We got take out from Harmony's this evening-- stir fried Chinese greens, scallion pancake and "Moshu" pork. The greens consisted of baby bok choy, mixed together with other baby bok choy. It wasn't half bad but at nine dollars we expected a bit more. The moo shiu was also decent, but totally unremarkable. The scallion pancake was oil laden and soggy. All in all, we felt that the meal was not worth our 25 dollars. Buffet lunch at Bamboo would have been cheaper and much better.

          2 Replies
          1. re: rubysdad

            They actually have 3 types of scallion pancake. We got a taiwanese style that was huge! LIke 1" thick and very cake/dough like. interesting. Not greasy at all

            1. re: hargau

              I stopped there just after they'd opened and got some spicy tofu and veggie dish. Not the best version of this I've had, but pretty good. Also some egg rolls, which were more like giant spring rolls (not egg roll wrappers) and I wasn't keen on. Haven't gotten around to going back but I'll have to check it out again soon.

          2. Some have said that the food at El Huipil seems home cooked, and this is true, but it falls short of the mark. Might be better to say that it's like eating at your best friends house, and for years he's been telling you about his grandmother who lives in Mexico City, and how she loves to cook and will spend all day doing so. When she comes to visit and you finally get there for her meal, you can taste the love in every bite. El Huipil is like this. Yes, the decor may not be conducive to romance but just shut your eyes and enjoy the food...

            -----
            El Huipil
            51 Main St, Maynard, MA 01754

            1 Reply
            1. re: rubysdad

              Maybe verify your order though. I stopped there again a couple days ago, just got a bean burrito for takeout. When I got home I discovered it was chicken. I could understand mishearing bean/beef, but bean/chicken?

            2. Well 1 week ago when i drove by Harmony Market there was a sign that said "closed for remodeling"... Tonight when i drove by it is basically empty and has FOR LEASE signs in all the windows. Sad, it didnt even last a year.

              5 Replies
              1. re: hargau

                That's too bad.

                1. re: Kat

                  They never really seemed to find a focus. Were they a deli, takeout place, or a market? Too bad.

                  I do wish they would open their other little market before 3 p.m.

                  1. re: bear

                    Well and they did none of them well. I dont think many used the market. They made a big deal about their bubble tea yet from day one never once had proper tapioca to put in the bubble tea. First they tried selling it with none, then they tried using some bright colored bottled tapioca strips instead, claiming it was "the same thing".. The takeout everyone was excited for but the 1st 1-2 months they were open the place was so crowded, chaotic and crazy that many never went back. It could easily take 1hr from walking in to walking out with a bag of food. Too bad.. Great idea, poor execution.

                    1. re: hargau

                      I thought their pork dumplings were very good but the main dishes I tried were mediocre. I wanted them to succeed since I live in Acton. The sit down dining area was rather stark.

                      1. re: frond

                        when they 1st started they had 1 cook who specifically only did homemade dumplings, scallion pancakes, buns, etc.. Not sure if that continued or not..