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Specialty grocery stores in Medford/Somerville?

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kirbybirdie Oct 26, 2010 07:18 PM

I know of Pemberton Farms, the Japanese supermarket in Medford Square, and Dave's Fresh Pasta near Davis. Are there any other notable grocery stops in the area?

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Dave's Fresh Pasta
81 Holland St, Somerville, MA 02144

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    redelephant RE: kirbybirdie Oct 26, 2010 07:29 PM

    Capone's on Mass Ave. has some items that could save one a trip to the North End, including various cured meats, pastas, carnaroli rice for risotto, and high quality farro that is a bit cheaper than I've seen at Whole Foods and Dave's ($8 for 1000g vs $8 for 500g).

    2 Replies
    1. re: redelephant
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      somervilleoldtimer RE: redelephant Oct 26, 2010 07:45 PM

      And try the original Capone's, on Bow Street in Union Square, Somerville. And while you're in Union Square, try the Indian Market, the Reliable asian market, and the Brazilian market.

      1. re: redelephant
        Bob Dobalina RE: redelephant Oct 27, 2010 06:16 AM

        For warmer days, they also have iced coffee with coffee ice cubes, which seem like a really good idea to prevent dilution.

      2. itaunas RE: kirbybirdie Oct 27, 2010 04:30 AM

        Seabra Market a Portuguese Supermarket on Somerville ave has a nice selection of Portuguese and Brazilian items, including a few Portuguese items which are harder to get elsewhere. A nice selection of Portuguese linguicia's and chouricos, some first press olive oils, things like artisan piri piri sauce. They also have decent Portuguese cheeses, although they are all pre-wrapped (and I prefer Fernandes Market in Cambridge). Winter Hill Bakery in Somerville is the best overall Portuguese bakery and I have had too many bad experiences with Italo's (raw burnt flour on Portuguese rolls, overbrowning on Italian breads) although I want to like them. Other hounds have done better and they supply some rolls to Bob's for sandwiches (where I have seen the same browning issue) so your experience might be better.

        Roberto's Produce market on Mystic in Medford is an old-school produce grocer supplying a lot of Italian families and take pride in their displays, selecting their produce. You have to ask them to get herbs from the walk-in and they have a few things like hand-made vinegar peppers, in addition to canned goods and bakery goods. Their focus isn't organic, local produce, but are an excellent ethnic grocer. Farmer's Bounty in Davis Square was related and I believe still. They have less produce, but a freezer full of Irish sausage, bacon and meats, fresh and frozen Indian breads, imported British candies.

        The original Capone's is the best for cured meats, specialty items like 00 flour and imported mozzarella de bufala. Sessa's in Davis doesn't come as close and has turnover issues, but has some nice cheeses and I like their sausages when fresh. La Bella Ravioli on Main Street is worth a trip for their pastas and a lot of people like their sauces. Capone's, Bob's, and Medford Deli in West Medford all make fresh pasta too. Bob's on Main in Medford is a good one-stop Italian grocer as well as a sub shop, but tends to be a bit more expensive. I like Patsy's in East Somerville for Italian breads (limited selection) and sweets, but there is the Modern Pastry in Medford Sq and La Cascia's on Main Street too. La Ronga is also very convenient if shopping at Market Basket or Union Square. Il Sogno and Nappi Meats are a bit less complete, I like shopping at the latter and if you want veal cutlets and other traditional Italian butcher things they are pretty good for that. McKinnon's in Davis is good for selection, including a decent variety of Italian goods, and meat prices, but is not a specialty butcher. They were planning to reopen after a move, but keep an eye out for Maria's cold cuts which offered several types of Imported and domestic proscuitto, has some nice cheeses, and makes excellent sandwiches -- a step up from a Boar's head style deli.

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        Winter Hill Bakery
        318 Broadway, Somerville, MA

        Bella Ravioli
        369 Main St, Medford, MA 02155

        Modern Pastry
        20 Salem St, Medford, MA

        Sessa's
        414 Highland Ave, Somerville, MA 02144

        La Cascia's
        418 Main St, Medford, MA 02155

        La Ronga
        599 Somerville Ave, Somerville, MA

        1 Reply
        1. re: itaunas
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          mizzduke RE: itaunas Oct 27, 2010 06:00 AM

          Maria's Cold Cuts is now open in Teele Square on Broadway (just around the corner from Rudy's). Their Italian grinder is delicious!

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          Teele Square Cafe
          Somerville, MA, Somerville, MA

        2. itaunas RE: kirbybirdie Oct 27, 2010 04:55 AM

          The Guatemalan grocer La Internacional and Salvadoran Tony's Foodland in Somerville are both good general Central American markets, carrying slightly different selections. Tony's also has a Brazilian butcher and a good selection of Brazilian goods. For specifically Salvadoran goods I prefer Amigo's Market (which was or is related to Tony's) and for a slightly better selection of South American (Columbian/Peruvian) La Sultana on Broadway which also has a Brazilian butcher and some nice produce items, as well as Columbian fresh cheeses and chorizos from NY. Panaderia Vicentinos in East Somerville has a fairly limited selection, but if you are shopping at Tony's or Amigo's its worth a visit.

          I am not a fan of Pao de Acucar in Union Square, their prices are higher than other Brazilian markets and I have always found items which are past the validity date. Casa de Carnes Solucao on Bow is much better (a butcher with canned and dried goods, frozen fruit pulps) but can be pricey, Acougue Brasil on Middlesex in Medford is a slightly better butcher (and usually prices) but a bit less turnover on some items. BTW Brazilian butchers carry slab bacon (sometimes Leidy's whch isn't bad) which can be useful and both pork and beef ribs are available flanken style.

          Panificadora Modelo on Medford St is probably the best Brazilian bakery option and Petisco's across the street is more of snack shop (pastries, juices, soups), but is a good source for bite-sized Brazilian salgadinhos for parties (100 for roughly $40-45) and sometimes has house-made sweets like green papaya. They might also be able to sell the soups frozen in portion sizes, but not certain.

          In addition to Dave's you might try Sherman Market in Union. Jerry's in Union and Ball Square are liquor stores where you can find different wines (Portuguese and Green respectively) and Ball Square has expanded into tastings.

          In addition to Reliable and Ebisuya for Korean and Japanese shopping, I have always gotten really nice fish from Captain Boston a Korean Fishmonger right near La Bella Ravioli. The catch is the retail experience isn't that great: communication can be tough, selection is sometimes limited, and you have to play 20 questions about what they have in the walk-in freezer (a much larger selection than displayed). That said, now that I am out of the area one of the highlights of a recent visit was a great piece of salmon sashimi that they provided.

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          Panificadora Modelo
          508 Medford St, Somerville, MA

          7 Replies
          1. re: itaunas
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            Madrid RE: itaunas Oct 27, 2010 07:51 AM

            Definitely Sherman Market, Union Square Somerville. Only New England food products, including dairy, cheese, meats, snacks, breads, produce. They have items such as leaf lard and will order for you. Sell herbs by weight so you get only what you need.

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            Sherman Market
            22 Union Square, Somerville, MA 02143

            1. re: Madrid
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              somervilleoldtimer RE: Madrid Oct 30, 2010 02:51 PM

              And while you're at Sherman's, duck around the corner and get a scone and coffee in their cafe. Or a delicious sandwich.

              and let's not forget about the Halal market a short block from Market Basket.

              1. re: Madrid
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                hckybg RE: Madrid Nov 21, 2010 08:59 AM

                Sherman Market is great. Don't forget about Savenor's, very nearby (though technically Cambridge) and Wine and Cheese Cask, also very nearby (and technically Somerville). You can buy very nice, though expensive Intelligentsia coffee at Bloc 11.

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                Bloc 11 Cafe
                11 Bow St, Somerville, MA 02143

                Wine and Cheese Cask
                407 Washington St, Somerville, MA

                Sherman Market
                22 Union Square, Somerville, MA 02143

                1. re: hckybg
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                  emannths RE: hckybg Nov 22, 2010 05:39 AM

                  Expensive, but not overpriced. The in-store prices are about the same (per lb) as Intelligentsia's online store. Similar quality coffee from local roasters is about the same price, I think (e.g., George Howell, Barismo). Bloc 11 usually has pretty fresh beans too--the roast date is on the barcode sticker on the bottom of the bag.

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                  Bloc 11 Cafe
                  11 Bow St, Somerville, MA 02143

                  Barismo
                  169 Massachusetts Ave, Arlington, MA 02474

                  1. re: emannths
                    h
                    hckybg RE: emannths Nov 22, 2010 07:17 PM

                    Good point--it is worth adding that if the OP is willing to drive to mid-Cambridge, Formaggio has a treasure trove of specialty goods (including cheese, meat, sweets, wine, produce, bread, and lots of coffee choices--George Howell, Barismo, Stumptown, etc., etc.).

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                    Barismo
                    169 Massachusetts Ave, Arlington, MA 02474

                    1. re: hckybg
                      jgg13 RE: hckybg Nov 22, 2010 07:43 PM

                      Just to be pedantic, Formaggio is (relatively speaking) nowhere near mid-cambridge. It's on the west side of neighborhood 10, on huron ave

                      1. re: jgg13
                        h
                        hckybg RE: jgg13 Nov 22, 2010 08:11 PM

                        Not pedantic at all, just a correction. And you are right! It's West Cambridge, I misspoke.

            2. s
              somervilleoldtimer RE: kirbybirdie Nov 20, 2010 06:34 PM

              The Little India grocery store that used to be on Bow street has gone into the big warehouse-y space right next to Market Basket, that was the Somerville Boxing Club and before that a paper warehouse. There's lots of stuff in there. I bought some sweets and some snacks. There's lots of real food there too.

              2 Replies
              1. re: somervilleoldtimer
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                Madrid RE: somervilleoldtimer Nov 21, 2010 06:40 AM

                thanks, didn't know that. do they have produce?

                1. re: Madrid
                  s
                  somervilleoldtimer RE: Madrid Nov 21, 2010 06:32 PM

                  i think so. They have a lot of stuff, and a big frozen section. I was distracted by the sweets, and was about to go into Market Basket for my produce anyway, so I wasn't really looking here. It's worth taking a prowl around, anyway. Nice owner, too.

              2. CapeCodGuy RE: kirbybirdie Nov 23, 2010 05:20 AM

                Don't forget Bella Ravioli in Medford. Best homade pasta in the state if you ask me. Bob's Italian Foods in Medford is an excellent Italian specialty shop with terrific sandwiches as well. And lastly, Modern Pastry in Medford Square will save a trip for canollis in the North End.

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                Bella Ravioli
                369 Main St, Medford, MA 02155

                Modern Pastry
                20 Salem St, Medford, MA

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