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Only a Boston-area hound would...

...have nearly debilitating back pain, but go out of his way to drive up bumpy Fawcett St. in the morning to get a ham & cheese croissant at Iggy's because he happened to be in the area dropping the dog off at the kennel, right before a big trip when there really wasn't time to spare.

Anyone?

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  1. ...not call back an otherwise perfectly ok first date, because she Ewww'd your som tam at Dok Bua. Don't mess with my phet ma, mama.

    1 Reply
    1. ...would get a nightcap of lobster mac-n-cheese at Amrhein's after an otherwise delicious dinner at O Ya.

      1. would search for a restaurant that serves the best made in-house baked beans.

        1. Jog a couple of miles to Newmarket Square, wolf down a Speed's dog with everything, waddle back to my office and consider this a healthy lunch. Happy Holidays Hounds.

          2 Replies
          1. re: gourmaniac

            That's a good one. I'll need to calculate the mileage from my office on Boylston St.; that might be doable!

            1. re: gourmaniac

              <clap clap clap> Extra points if you walked in with a smug grin and bbq sauce/chili on your shirt.

            2. ...head out of Winchester at 11:15 AM, pick up a friend in Cambridge at 11:30, drive 40 miles away to a place called Poopsie's for bar pizza and a beer, then turn around to head back to work in Winchester by 2:30 PM.

              1 Reply
              1. re: hiddenboston

                Poopsie's bar pies for the win!!!!!

                -----
                Poopsie's
                243 Church St Ste 1, Pembroke, MA 02359

              2. ... plan an entire lunch excursion just to take the water taxi from Downtown to Scup's in the Harbor.

                -----
                Scup's In the Harbor
                256 Marginal St, Boston, MA 02128

                3 Replies
                1. re: mikeinboston

                  I wish Chowhound had a "Like" button. :-)

                  1. re: hiddenboston

                    Me too! I "like" Prav's (first down.) And I "love" this thread!
                    ...justify buying an oil change deal that is 30 miles from home or work solely because it will give me an excuse to eat at one of the local ethnic eateries for lunch.

                  2. re: mikeinboston

                    Alas! Alack! Scups is CLOSED until APRIL 1!!!

                  3. . . . volunteer to drive a friend to the airport just for an excuse to stop at Santarpio's on the way home.

                    2 Replies
                      1. re: winedude

                        I need to put their # in my phone book. Last flight was so delayed that by the time we landed, got luggage, found car, and got over to Santarpio's they were no longer serving. Next time I'll call from the plane for a pie.

                      2. ...use her maternity leave as an excuse to visit almost every (good) bakery in the Boston area. Ahhh B&R Bread - we miss you still. Not that I did that, or anything...

                        (great topic!)

                        -----
                        B&R Bread
                        151 Cochituate Rd, Framingham, MA

                        1. ...hotly debate where the best fried clams are (or who has the best lobster roll) when most of the country would kill for any of our options.

                          1. Put up with a lousy website and moderaters and give, for free, fantastic content.

                            Also try to do grocery shopping at H-Mart, Watertown, Formaggio's and a Farmer's Market in one day.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: tatsu

                              Sounds like another great Saturday to me! I have a Boston shop-hopping map dedicated only to specialty grocers like those you've listed above.

                            2. ...stock up on croissants at Clear Flour before boarding a flight to Paris.

                              1. organize a day around New Deal, Russo's, Savenor's, Wine Cask, & Hi-Rise.
                                Formaggio's? If there is a more overpriced, pretentious place in the country, that'd have to be Eli's.
                                www.shrinkinthekitchen

                                6 Replies
                                1. re: scotty27

                                  Formaggio's isn't pretentious at all. Most of the staff these days are young and very helpful, no attitude what so ever. The prices are ok. Probably the most expensive thing is a whole leg of Jamon Iberico de Bellota for ~3 grand. Other things are uh, cheaper. But I go for provisions and some rare cheeses. The owner is a chevalier of cheese, it doesn't get better than that.

                                  1. re: tatsu

                                    Do you mean Zabar's in Manhattan? I give a lot of business to South End Formaggio, and I find my neighbors tougher to take there than the staff.

                                    http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                    1. re: MC Slim JB

                                      Eli's is owned by Eli Zabar and Zabar's is owned by his brothers. Last I heard Eli doesn't talk to the brothers. Eli's (and EAT) is super pretentious and not like Formaggio's at all. Found Formaggio's to be a great neighborhood market. Can't say the same for Eli's.

                                    2. re: tatsu

                                      I love South End Formaggio. And they are exquisitely patient, slicing an eighth of a pound of four different cured meats for my charcuterie-for-two dinner.

                                      -----
                                      South End Formaggio
                                      268 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                                    3. re: scotty27

                                      Be happy about a two hour commute to work because I can go to the farmers market at Copley Square twice a week.

                                      1. re: scotty27

                                        It's amusing that you recommend Hi-Rise, then turn around and slam Formaggio for being overpriced and pretentious.

                                        Do you have examples of items that are overpriced at Formaggio? I'm looking for concrete instances along the lines of "Gorgonzola Dolce sells for $x at these fine stores, but costs $1.5x
                                        at Formaggio." And do you have anecdotes of Formaggio pretentiousness?

                                      2. Chinatown at 2 in the morning!

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: baldbert

                                          Chinatown at 2 in the morning doesn't necessarily mean you're a chow hound. It does, however, indicate that you are a booze hound.

                                        2. Roast meat plate from Kantin at Super 88 and a bahn mi from Pho Viet for dessert (or equivalent in Chinatown).

                                          -----
                                          Pho Viet
                                          1095 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

                                          Kantin
                                          1095 Commonwealth Ave Ste 203, Boston, MA 02215

                                          1. .....get excited over seeing a total dump with bars over the windows (or no windows at all) that he had not known about, mainly because it could be a great place for steak tips or bar pizza.

                                            1. Fill a cooler full of ice, buy close to $100 worth of seafood at New Deal for Christmas Eve dinner on December 23 and drive 2.5 hrs to CT because your dad claims "you just can't get good seafood in CT"

                                              1. Oh my goodness it is hard to know where to begin...
                                                -Spend 1/2 of my paycheck for dinner at Craigie
                                                -Wander through Allston/Chinatown/Cambridge for 3 hours while starving, wanting to make sure I pick the absolute PERFECT meal
                                                -Have a slice of pizza from Armando's as an appetizer while driving to dinner
                                                -Pho at Pho Hoa as an app, followed by s/p fried pork chop with Eggplant Hotpot
                                                at Best Little Restaurant followed by Brown Butter, Brownie something or other ice cream at Toscaninis...yes I did eat ALL of these :)

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: jessabella617

                                                  Brown Sugar, Brown Butter, Brownie -- also known as B3 and delicious.

                                                  1. re: jessabella617

                                                    Armando's is also a good appetizer before getting BBQ on the sidewalk at Formaggio!

                                                  2. ...tolerate a city that is nearly devoid of a decent pizza place or deli despite its relative massive population.

                                                    51 Replies
                                                    1. re: cheesefries

                                                      I agree about the deli part, but pizza? Have you been to Picco, Regina's, Ernesto's, or Galleria Umberto?

                                                      1. re: hiddenboston

                                                        I still don't understand the obsession with Regina, I find it borderline gross

                                                        1. re: redips

                                                          And you've been to the one in the North End? As others have noted, that makes all the difference. That's the one with the magic oven.

                                                      2. re: cheesefries

                                                        couldn't agree more cheesefries. All of the pizza places you mention, hiddenboston, are not even close to adequate.

                                                        as for delis, Bob's in Medford is the closest thing to a decent deli. There are about five just like it in every town in the NY Metro area (southeast CT and NJ included).

                                                        1. re: ecwashere7

                                                          Regina's is not even close to adequate? Well, we agree to disagree!

                                                          1. re: hiddenboston

                                                            I've been looking forward to trying regina for a long time. Is there a specific location that is the real deal, as I've noticed there are a lot?

                                                            1. re: cheesefries

                                                              To many (myself included), the only one to go to is the original Regina's on Thatcher Street in the North End. The others are of varying quality--I'll go to the South Station one in a pinch, but the original is much better than all the others.

                                                              1. re: hiddenboston

                                                                The North end one is the original and most certainy the best. Plus very unique and cool waitresses

                                                                1. re: hiddenboston

                                                                  I agree with you - the original Regina's is much better. Same goes for Santarpios in East Boston. - you cannot replicate the neighborhood surroundings

                                                                  1. re: BD143

                                                                    The surroundings do affect how you taste food, but in this case it's more the interior. Specifically, the interior of the oven.

                                                          2. re: cheesefries

                                                            A couple of issues, cheesefries. One, I don't think Boston 'hounds tolerate these things: if there's any community that complains about the lack of quality in certain cuisines, it's this one.

                                                            Two, while I agree with you on the deli front, I disagree about the pizza. I rate Picco, Gran Gusto, and the original Regina's highly, among others. There aren't many foodstuffs around which people have more ultra-specific ideas about what constitutes quality, first and foremost transplants singing the praises of whatever they grew up on.

                                                            http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                            -----
                                                            Gran Gusto
                                                            90 Sherman St, Cambridge, MA 02140

                                                            1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                              I never mentioned where i am from, nor sung any praises. Maybe its because I am not from New York or Chicago but I totally disagree about pizza. Good is good. I can recognize quality in a greasy slice at Ray's as quickly as a cheesy deep dish; I just don't happen to see much quality in Boston outside of a very few locations.

                                                              1. re: cheesefries

                                                                In my experience, no town has great pizza everywhere: the mean is always mediocre (sorta by definition). Any pizza in the area you particularly like?

                                                                http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                  Sure... santarpio's is some of the best pizza I've had in my life. As long as we're talking ultra-specific preferences, their pie suits mine to a T, greasy as hell with a bit of a crunchy crust. I live in brighton, and my favorite in these parts is pino's in cleveland circle, though they're prone to inconsistency. That's about all I've got, but I'm gonna try some of places mentioned above.

                                                                  1. re: cheesefries

                                                                    Let me know if you get to try the new Fiorella's Express. I'm a fan of the pies at their Newton original -- good Italian-American food in general, too -- but haven't gotten to the new Brighton offshoot yet.

                                                                    Have you been to Stella's in Watertown? Little family owned place, a nice thin-crust pie, best eaten in rather than taken out or delivered.

                                                                    I remember Bluestone Bistro having good fancy-ish pies many years ago, but haven't been since it changed hands more than ten years ago.

                                                                    http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                    -----
                                                                    Bluestone Bistro
                                                                    1799 Commonwealth Ave, Brighton, MA 02135

                                                                    Fiorella's
                                                                    187 North St, Newtonville, MA 02460

                                                                    1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                      I got a Bluestone pizza for the first time since the changeover a few months ago. Definitely not the same crust. Just so-so. I'm not a thick-crust fan normally, but thought the old Bluestone's crust was some of the best around.

                                                                      We were all bummed and agreed we wouldn't bother again.

                                                                      1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                        Blusestone's pizza went plummeting downhill with the ownership change. Not nearly the pie it once was. Cheesefries, since you are in Brighton, try the Sicilian from Imperial on Washington ST. Their standard pie is nothing special, but their's is my favorite Sicilian slice in town (I love Umberto's - but Imperial is much better).

                                                                        1. re: kimfair1

                                                                          I'm surprised I don't know imperial, being a BC alum. I'll definitely check it out though, as I will Fiorella's as well.

                                                                          1. re: cheesefries

                                                                            Years ago—nearly 10—there was a place next door to Bluestone, Korean/Vietnamese/Japanese—I know, I know but the owner was absolutely adorable, and she made the best naeng myun and good chap chae too, at least as I recall them. Can't remember the name. Still there, by any chance?

                                                                            1. re: tatamagouche

                                                                              I think that's a Japanese place called Fuyami now, never been.

                                                                              http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                              1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                Ah, that helped me look it up. It was called Damoah. Bummer.

                                                                      2. re: cheesefries

                                                                        pizza, like hamburgers, is a much discussed and divisive topic for many B Chs. I lived in Italy as a teenager and ate alot of pizza; Regina's (ONLY the NoEnd location) tastes like italy to me. Gran Gusto's is authentic Roman pizza, though more spartan than regina's. We are also big fans of Stone Hearth Pizza in Belmont, always the sausage caremelized onion, and the pesto white bean, w/ added chevre, bacon, and tomato sauce,. with an extra well done whole wheat crust. Here are some relevant posts:

                                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/540924#

                                                                        "Stone Hearth Pizza in Belmont is my new favorite in the area thanks to opinionatedchef's posting of a couple of weeks back. When ordered extra-crispy it delivers a North End worthy pie with nice char, spring (blister), center chew and a perfectly balanced tomato sauce. I haven't been to their Needham location but would think it the same."

                                                                        Harp

                                                                        Stone Hearth Pizza
                                                                        By Harp00n on Aug 11, 2008 09:19PM

                                                                        -----
                                                                        Gran Gusto
                                                                        90 Sherman St, Cambridge, MA 02140

                                                                        Stone Hearth Pizza
                                                                        57 Leonard St, Belmont, MA 02478

                                                                2. re: cheesefries

                                                                  Most cities in the US do not have decent NY style deli.

                                                                  For Pizza you need to get out more.

                                                                  Stella's in Watertown.

                                                                  Sabatino's in Arlington.

                                                                  The original Regina.

                                                                  Gran Gusto in Cambridge.

                                                                  Galleria Umberto (but it is a very particular style and rather simple.)

                                                                  -----
                                                                  Gran Gusto
                                                                  90 Sherman St, Cambridge, MA 02140

                                                                  Sabatino's Restaurant
                                                                  735 Broadway, Malden, MA 02148

                                                                  1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                    I've heard that Brookline is full of good delis. Haven't made my way over there, but that's what I've heard.

                                                                    1. re: AndrewPF

                                                                      Not sure where you are getting your info. Brookline has a few places that sort of have some slight pretense of being delis. The food is generally mediocre, and they are not delis in any true sense of the name.

                                                                      1. re: AndrewPF

                                                                        Ah, if only! Traditional Jewish deli is a gigantic hole in the Greater Boston dining scene. I've talked to several folks who were considering opening deli-focused restaurants in Boston (e.g., it was an early concept considered for what is now The Gallows), but those plans all came to naught.

                                                                        The three Brookline places most often mentioned are Zaftig's (undeniably popular, but a debased, Disneyesque notion of deli, in my book), Michael's Deli (good corned beef, but not much else to recommend it -- order on rolls, their bread is awful), and Rubin's (a proper kosher deli, but a bit tired and certainly not remotely up to New York standards).

                                                                        I thought it was an awesomely perfect symbol of how crass and clueless Howie Carr is that he hyped Michael's (one of his sponsors) to Anthony Bourdain, a New Yorker.

                                                                        http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                        -----
                                                                        Michael's Deli
                                                                        256 Harvard St, Brookline, MA 02446

                                                                        1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                          The Stage (NY) had a branch in the theater district and Alan Dershowitz tried a deli, Maven's in Harvard SQ..maybe 10 ish years ago. Neither lasted.

                                                                          My 1st choice for pastrami in Boston is Sam Lagrassa's and Michael's for CB. Smoked fish is Barry's in Waban or some of the Russian places.

                                                                          -----
                                                                          Sam Lagrassa's
                                                                          44 Province St, Boston, MA 02108

                                                                          1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                            Rubin's is NOT a proper deli. Rubin's is a mediocre kosher joint that sells some deli-ish items. Honestly the place is just tired and the food is pretty gross.

                                                                            Noone who knows deli from a hole in the wall would call Rubin's a proper deli. And after all, what am I, chopped liver?

                                                                            1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                              I think we're in agreement on Rubin's quality: my comment "proper kosher deli" refers to the fact that it is indeed kosher, which many New England delis aren't.

                                                                              http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                              1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                Many, if not most good delis, are NOT in fact kosher.

                                                                                Ya can't serve a nice cheese blintz AND a pastrami sandwich if the place is kosher.

                                                                                In fact, not sure I can think of ANY really good deli that is in fact kosher (but I am sure someone will chime in an remind me of one)...

                                                                                1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                                  A bunch in NYC. Second Avenue Kosher Deli is the one I've been to most recently, pretty fine.

                                                                                  http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                    Forgot that 2nd ave deli was in fact kosher...

                                                                                    1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                                      I still can't believe Ratner's closed.

                                                                                      edit: hmm, this was supposed to be a direct reply to StriperGuy so no one would get confused and say "but Ratner's was in Manhattan!"

                                                                                      1. re: djd

                                                                                        It is... (see on the right where it says re: Striper Guy)

                                                                                        Took me a long time to figure that out. :)

                                                                                        1. re: tatamagouche

                                                                                          but the weird thing is I did hit the correct reply option--? Computers.

                                                                                          Edit: yeah. like that.

                                                                            2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                              The Boston deli void is huge and includes not just traditional Jewish delis but also the kind of ordinary street corner delis with which NY is overrun. There are many places in NY to get a standard yet competent roast beef sandwich. The bread may be a commercial roll and the meat Boar's Head, but the sandwich will be quite edible, and often enjoyable. It will also be made quickly. It's not easy finding places that do this in Boston. I travel frequently between Penn Station and South Station. At the New York end it's easy to get a decent sandwich to eat on the journey. In Boston it's essentially impossible. I once got a roast beef sandwich at Cardullo's. The bread was disgustingly soft, the roast beef entirely tasteless (you might think you were eating beef-textured rubber, except the texture was rubbery too), and there was so much mayonnaise that it ran down my arm at the first bite.

                                                                              1. re: FoodDabbler

                                                                                It sounds like you're saying that it's very convenient to get a lousy deli sandwich in NY..near Penn St. If you consider that a positive experience for you,. I won't argue.

                                                                                I'd far rather get a bahn mi near South Station in Boston or something better than decent at Al'snear SS or a lobster roll at Hook's for my Bos-NYC trip.

                                                                                1. re: 9lives

                                                                                  I said competent sandwich, you're reading lousy.

                                                                                  Apart from Al's the other options you mention are not hugely close to SS. That might, in fact, be a good response to the title of this thread "Only a Boston-area hound would consider something a car-ride away close." I've done banh mi, as well as lotus-leaf packets of sticky rice, coconut buns, etc., but it's a hike from SS. You need to have at least 45 minutes in order to guarantee that you'll be at your train or bus when they board. I don't tend to be able to arrange my life so as to routinely have large amounts of extra time on my hands.

                                                                                  Al's is convenient, but it suffers from yet another problem that's widespread in Boston: the deli-knows-better attitude. Many of the sandwich places in town, including ones I like to varying degrees (All-Star, Darwin's, Hi-Rise), mostly offer their own combo, package-deal sandwiches (roast beef with melted cheddar and a touch of horseradish, layered with asparagus on cornbread) and are not set up to easily handle simple personal requests. Ask for something like ham with a little mustard on French bread, and you either won't be able to get it or will have to negotiate your way to it.

                                                                                  1. re: FoodDabbler

                                                                                    Despite my lousy reading,..

                                                                                    it seem that you don't know the that that there is a second Al's on Essex St. I don't know if you're a golfer, but it's a short pitching wedge to South Station.

                                                                                    If I were taking a train fom SS to Penn, I could probably find 50 places to pick up something in Boston that are closer and better than Cardullo's.

                                                                                    Frankly, I could give a S++# where you eat before your train rides From SS to Penn. It's your meal, and you get to eat it.

                                                                                    You want to win an argument, you win. You want to eat better....

                                                                                    1. re: 9lives

                                                                                      If you read my post you'll see that I'm agreeing that Al's is close to SS. Not sure why you're working yourself up over this.

                                                                                      1. re: FoodDabbler

                                                                                        I'm not worked up over this. makes no difference to me.

                                                                                        I didn't much care for your comment re my reading skills but no biggie.

                                                                                        Eat well.

                                                                                        1. re: 9lives

                                                                                          My comment was on competent sandwiches vs. lousy sandwiches, not competent reading skills vs. lousy ones.

                                                                                          1. re: 9lives

                                                                                            Although, ironically, FoodDabbler is right: you had clearly completely misread his/her post when you wrote "it seem that you don't know the that that there is a second Al's on Essex St. I don't know if you're a golfer, but it's a short pitching wedge to South Station." FD had said that Al's was the only place on that list that was close to South Station.

                                                                                            1. re: Jenny Ondioline

                                                                                              Jenny, i don't know why you're sticking your nose in in this mini thread but,welcome. Perhaps you're a better golfer than me . but Als' on State is far further than a wedge shot.

                                                                                              FD claimed hat Al's is a short drive to SS. It isn't, if you consider the second locatiom, it is a short pitching wedge to the station.I'm still unclear if he knows of the second location...or cares. Really not my concern. I mentioned it once to try to help the poster

                                                                                              There's also a handful of delis in the Leather District that will make sandwiches with or w/out mustard that shouldd make FD happy...and better than the Penn St offerings he mentioned.

                                                                                              Eat well.

                                                                                              Out....

                                                                                              1. re: 9lives

                                                                                                One more time.

                                                                                                This is what FoodDabbler wrote, with capital letters for emphasis on the part that you seem to be having trouble understanding:

                                                                                                "APART FROM AL'S, the other options you mention are not hugely close to SS."

                                                                                                That sentence means that FoodDabbler knows that the Essex Street location of Al's is close to South Station. FoodDabbler is not talking about the State Street location of Al's. No one is talking about the State Street location. All of us are talking about the Essex Street location, and all of us agree that it's close to South Station. It's like a block and a half, tops!

                                                                                                I'm just confused why you continue to insist that FoodDabbler is talking about the State Street location, when it's obvious that FoodDabbler is talking about the Essex Street location.

                                                                                                -----
                                                                                                State Street Cafe
                                                                                                114 State St, Boston, MA 02109

                                                                                                1. re: Jenny Ondioline

                                                                                                  Apology for yesterday's posts to Jenny and Food Dabbler. I was neeedlessly nasty and out of line.

                                                                                                  Eat well!

                                                                                  2. re: FoodDabbler

                                                                                    I'd welcome some tips about where to get a worthwhile deli sandwich around Penn Station.

                                                                                    I did not even know that Cardullo's makes sandwiches. It's not my favorite gourmet grocer.

                                                                                    http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                    1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                      I want to make clear that I'm talking about *competent*, standard sandwiches, not extraordinary sensory experiences for your tongue (or "lousy" sandwiches on the other end of the scale). If you're in a real hurry there's the Don Pepi deli on the Amtrak level that's very fast, has several acceptable bread options, and makes sandwiches competently. The meat is Boar's Head, but is quite tasty. I'm guessing that there are options among standard BH offerings, and this deli makes good choices. Their roast beef, for instance, is often faintly garlicy.

                                                                                      If you have the time to wander up and down 9th, or are coming from one of these directions, there are first-rate options in places in Chelsea Market in the south to places in the low forties. There's a new portuguese-inspired sandwich place at the north end of this strip that's very good, but the name escapes me. And if you have a lot of time, then Sullivan Street Bakery off 10th and on 47th (or thereabouts) is extraordinary. Their sandwiches are very good, their flat breads superb (especially the mushroom and the potato), and you can get a bombolini for dessert, or osso di morte (the dry, bones-of-death cookies).

                                                                                      Nearer Penn, and away from sandwiches, there are good takeout options in Koreatown on 32nd. There's also a booth of the 'wichcraft empire off 32nd just before you hit Koreatown. The sandwiches are good, but often pre-made. Ask if they are fresh.

                                                                                      Back in Penn, if you stand with your back to the LIRR ticket windows, there's a branch of Island Dine in front of you. I've had decent oxtail curry, salt fish and okra, etc., in the past, but have not had their food in over two years. Facing the LIRR ticket windows you'll see a place called Tracks. It has slightly OK pub-type food, and if you walk past the long bar as you enter, way at the back there's improbably an oyster bar. The quality is uneven.

                                                                                2. re: AndrewPF

                                                                                  Brookline used to have good delis years ago. Many years ago. But much as I love Michael's corned beef, there hasn't been a single good full-line deli in town since the B&D closed back in 2005.

                                                                                    1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                                      Joe V's is leaving the South End, taking over the space that used to be B&D; it will be called Jimmy's. If he does the same concept, that food might make you long for B&D.

                                                                                      http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Joe V's
                                                                                      315 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                                                                            3. .....say "that chowda's wicked awesome"

                                                                              1. ... knows that the best Italian grub isn't in the North End.

                                                                                7 Replies
                                                                                1. re: ecwashere7

                                                                                  ...or that our reputation as a town loaded with great seafood restaurants is undeserved.

                                                                                  http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                    Island Creek and Neptune are changing my mind on that front. I still miss Great Bay.

                                                                                    1. re: ecwashere7

                                                                                      East Coast Grill is my fav.

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      East Coast Grill and Raw Bar
                                                                                      1271 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02139

                                                                                  2. re: ecwashere7

                                                                                    I know that. So where is the best Italian food?

                                                                                    1. re: MAhasbadfood

                                                                                      The North End has some worthy Italian restaurants; it just has low average quality, especially considering its fame/reputation. "Good Italian restaurants outside of the North End" is a pretty popular topic here; a little searching will yield many responses. A few that readily come to mind: Erbaluce, Vinny's at Night, Trattoria Toscana, Rino's Place, Carlo's Cucina Italiana, Coppa Enoteca, Grotto, Via Matta, Il Casale, Sportello.

                                                                                      http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Trattoria Toscana
                                                                                      130 Jersey St, Boston, MA 02215

                                                                                      Rino's Place
                                                                                      258 Saratoga Street, Boston, MA 02128

                                                                                      Via Matta
                                                                                      79 Park Plaza, Boston, MA 02116

                                                                                      Sportello
                                                                                      348 Congress Street, Boston, MA 02110

                                                                                      Erbaluce
                                                                                      69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

                                                                                      Coppa
                                                                                      253 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                                                                                      1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                        Second that on Carlo's, best value I've had in town.

                                                                                        1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                          In full agreement with MC Slim, I love Via Matta and Erbaluce for their take on Northern Italian. I love Coppa for its creativity and Carlo's is great for Italian American that is simple yet tasty.

                                                                                          I go into the North End for Neptune Oyster and Salumeria. Occasionally I'll eat at Taranta and Prezza (I think you get more for your money at Erbaluce, Via and Coppa).

                                                                                          -----
                                                                                          Neptune Oyster
                                                                                          63 Salem St Ste 1, Boston, MA 02113

                                                                                          Prezza
                                                                                          24 Fleet St., Boston, MA 02113

                                                                                          Via Matta
                                                                                          79 Park Plaza, Boston, MA 02116

                                                                                          Erbaluce
                                                                                          69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

                                                                                          Coppa
                                                                                          253 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                                                                                    2. Long lunch of excelllent Peruvian food at Rincon Limeno in E Boston; followed by a Meridian Special from Italian grocer Meridian

                                                                                      http://www.flickr.com/photos/61246842...

                                                                                      followed by home made Pisco Sours..

                                                                                      http://www.flickr.com/photos/61246842...

                                                                                      8 or 9 course tasting lunch at #9, with a cocktail and or wine pairing..that lasted until dinner, so we had a small diiner at our same table..noon to 9-10PM

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Rincon Limeno
                                                                                      409 Chelsea St, Boston, MA 02128

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. * Have a valid 2-sided debate whether the lobster roll is better at a high-end restaurant in the North End or at a shack out near the Airport on the way to Wintrop

                                                                                        * Know that the Arlington Greek festival is the best because the lamb is nicely cooked on a spit..

                                                                                        * Pine for a higher level of ramen, soup dumplings, and yakitori, whilst also wishing our weather allowed places with big open decks to sit outside and drink margaritas in April or food trucks to show up in random places serving delicious treats year round.

                                                                                        * Wonder if a talented young chef with a vision could ever salvage Anthony's Pier 4

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Anthony's Pier 4 Restaurant
                                                                                        140 Northern Ave, Boston, MA 02210

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: grant.cook

                                                                                          Great list! I wonder if it's better to hope for a new ownership / new concept reboot of the Pier 4 location; they're back in tax trouble again there, another half-million-dollar "accounting oversight".

                                                                                          http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                        2. ...have fond memories of the (intoxicating scents emitted from the) secret donut place by Davis Square!

                                                                                          1. ...have a bowl of carbonara (bacon and eggs, right?) for breakfast while husband munches on tenderloin and eggs at 9:30 a.m. at Caffe Nuovo in the North End, and then head over to Maria's for cannoli for dessert. Hey, it's five o'clock somewhere.

                                                                                            -----
                                                                                            Caffe Nuovo
                                                                                            76 Salem St, Boston, MA 02113

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: bear

                                                                                              bear, THANK you for that. i love to laugh.

                                                                                              i think you would appreciate the NewYorker cartoon showing a man in front of an ice cream cart, saying
                                                                                              " i'll have the double fudge cranberry pecan AND the coconut banana caramel. We pass this way but once."

                                                                                            2. still have a knish from Buzzy's in their freezer

                                                                                              7 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                I may still have a Buzzy's knish in my lower intestine as they were undigestible. I fondly recall their french fries!

                                                                                                1. re: gourmaniac

                                                                                                  Jesus, their french fries were a whole potato, cut in 4 chunks and then poorly fried...I hated those things.....why did I order them every weekend??!!!?

                                                                                                  Me and a freind at Buzzy's for the umpteenth time ordering knishes, giant fat man at counter chuckles and says, "man, you guys really like those knishes", my friend looks him dead in the eye and says "no".

                                                                                                  And yet, there we were the next week, racing down Storrow from Allston in the dead of night to order more.....go figure!

                                                                                                  1. re: devilham

                                                                                                    This may be the funniest post of 2011 so far. :-D

                                                                                                    1. re: devilham

                                                                                                      The Buzzy's experience, oft thought, but never so well expressed.

                                                                                                      1. re: nsenada

                                                                                                        Sure, the knishes were $2 scud missiles that could satiate any drunken hunger, but remember the beautiful aroma that wafted from the foil pack as you unwrapped the roast beef sandwich, lathered with that wonderful sauce...

                                                                                                      2. re: devilham

                                                                                                        Or its corollary, sometime in 1985 or thereabouts. Scene: 3 or 4 AM, at Buzzy's, in the proper state of mind for Buzzy's, with college roommate. My roommate just loved the Buzzy's BBQ sandwich. Goes up to the counter to giant fat man at counter, says to him, "I really love your BBQ sandwich." Guy says, "you like this shit?"

                                                                                                        1. re: Uncle Yabai

                                                                                                          Awesome, that guy was a trip! Not freindly at all, but a trip.

                                                                                                    1. ...wear a Red Sox ballcap to afternoon tea at the Athenaeum.

                                                                                                       
                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: erikschwarz

                                                                                                        I haven't seen that one yet but I did have a meal at L'Espalier tainted by an older woman in a team shirt with some player's name on the back and a snack at the bar at L'Voile interruruped by a "Mrs Kraft' Look alike who was trying get them to put the football game on their computer screen in back of the bar- even though she was not sitting in the area.

                                                                                                        My husband explained to her that we were there because they DID NOT have football on and she told us we were not "Real Bostonians" before she toddered away.

                                                                                                        Penny
                                                                                                        http://www.bostonzest.com/

                                                                                                        -----
                                                                                                        L'Espalier
                                                                                                        774 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02199

                                                                                                        1. re: BostonZest

                                                                                                          Agreed... i had an anniversary diner at the Capital Grille in which my direct view (from a table I had selected ahead of time) was a dude in a Varitek t-shirt. Did not make the dinner feel special.

                                                                                                          1. re: astrid

                                                                                                            A Dress Code?? haven't heard that term in a while.

                                                                                                      2. ...be excited to travel to Boston for a week in January because its Maine Shrimp season (hope saying that doesn't jink the fishing weather though)!

                                                                                                        1. Insist on stopping at the Baltic Deli for an eclair, with stomach dangerously distended by a Speed Dog and Speed Pastrami, whilst bemoaning the decision not to stop at Liquor World.

                                                                                                          -----
                                                                                                          Baltic Deli & Cafe
                                                                                                          632 Dorchester Ave, Boston, MA 02127

                                                                                                          9 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: nsenada

                                                                                                            Did you have the speed dog with the pastrami? Husband and I shared one of those this week.

                                                                                                            Penny
                                                                                                            http://www.bostonzest.com/

                                                                                                            1. re: BostonZest

                                                                                                              You have to have a serious appetite to polish off either one; both is frightening to me. Baltic is awesome, and Liquor Land is surprisingly good.

                                                                                                              http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                              1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                I had a Speed dog awhile back, then finished things off (almost literally) with an empanada and fries from the Oasis food truck next door.
                                                                                                                My doctor won't let me do that again.

                                                                                                                1. re: hiddenboston

                                                                                                                  Oasis is one of those Neglected Places Next to a Good Place (e.g., El Chalan next to Rincon Limeno, Buteco next to Brown Sugar, Thaitation next to Trattoria Toscana, Taco Loco near Vinny's at Night, etc.) that I've long eyeballed but can never pass up Speed's to try. Worthwhile?

                                                                                                                  http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                  -----
                                                                                                                  Trattoria Toscana
                                                                                                                  130 Jersey St, Boston, MA 02215

                                                                                                                  Rincon Limeno
                                                                                                                  409 Chelsea St, Boston, MA 02128

                                                                                                                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                    It was pretty good. The empanada was dry, but the beef was seasoned well as I recall. The fries were nothing to write home about. Nice people there....

                                                                                                                2. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                                                  Demolished one Dog, and half a pastrami.

                                                                                                              2. re: nsenada

                                                                                                                Darn, they have eclairs at that deli? When I was there they only had jelly donuts (which were good), or am I completely confusing this with another place nearby?

                                                                                                                1. re: Ralphie_in_Boston

                                                                                                                  I first got into the eclairs when they ran out of the donuts. They are pretty huge, and awesome. I'm not sure if they make them there, but I prefer them to the donut.

                                                                                                              3. Be thrilled to be driven squished in the back seat for 35 minutes to a wonderful feast of Cambodian food in Lowell!

                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                1. ...be envious of the food blogger who wrote "my mother gave me some duck fat for my birthday."

                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                  1. re: threedogs

                                                                                                                    i understand completely, but just fyi, not v expensive at savenors.

                                                                                                                  2. move to Denver, but come back as often as possible, for instance on the most recent visit (last week) to eat over 70 dishes in the course of 6 days?

                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: tatamagouche

                                                                                                                      Ahhhh, now I know who tatamagouche is.... :-)

                                                                                                                    2. ... ask for a "cannolo", thinking I was being suave, using the singular when I wanted only one (and this at a well-known place with an Italian name) though I don't speak a word of Italian (well OK, one word). My request was met with a confused silence, so I quickly added, "one cannoli, please." "Ahhh, chocolate or regular?"

                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                      1. re: Brock Lee Robb

                                                                                                                        I've always wondered if that was the correct singular term, but never had a practical use to find out, as I've NEVER bought only one! :)

                                                                                                                      2. I once thought about this when I stopped for a slice at Newbury Pizza on my way to pick up Taiwanese food from Wisteria House. Back when both those places existed in the Back Bay...(not that bostone pizza isn't good!)

                                                                                                                        -----
                                                                                                                        Wisteria House
                                                                                                                        569 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02141

                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                        1. re: tamerlanenj

                                                                                                                          Wisteria House not only no longer exists in the Back Bay, it no longer exists. Both the satellites are closed now.

                                                                                                                          -----
                                                                                                                          Wisteria House
                                                                                                                          569 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02141

                                                                                                                        2. See a "snow day" as an opportunity to walk to a local tavern for a long lazy lunch, or start wondering the minute the snow emergency is declared if it's going to be possible to get food from the Paddock.

                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: yumyum

                                                                                                                            That's exactly what I did last week, and it wasn't even snowing! :-b

                                                                                                                            1. re: yumyum

                                                                                                                              Given that my Maine shrimp now seem like a remote possibility how is the charcoal situation? (maybe some supermarket will have them on sale this weekend to move out shrimp fished before the storm, but head-on with roe seems unlikely until late next week). I am sure the stores are stripped bare of water, milk, candles, but if I can get a flight in late today I feel like a good old snow emergency "BBQ" (New England BBQ aka grilling).

                                                                                                                              1. re: itaunas

                                                                                                                                Brookline Ice and Coal always has charcoal and woodchunks, year round.

                                                                                                                                1. re: itaunas

                                                                                                                                  Seabra in Somerville had lots of bags of Royal Oak for $6.99 yesterday.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: itaunas

                                                                                                                                    Restaurant depot always seems to have the large royal oak bags, though I'm getting annoyed with the fact that the charcoal seems to consist of one giant, unbroken sequoia stump these days.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: nsenada

                                                                                                                                      you can also buy it at brookline ice and coal near brookline village(or have it delivered).
                                                                                                                                      lots of smoking woods, charcoals, etc.

                                                                                                                                2. be watching the weather, and hoping that Thmor Da..X Floating Rock will be open and accessible in Revere tomorrow for an early lunch...major craving.:)

                                                                                                                                  -----
                                                                                                                                  Floating Rock
                                                                                                                                  485 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA

                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                  1. ...know that cheddar rhymes with feta.

                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: BobB

                                                                                                                                      Someday, Chowhound's gonna get a Like button.

                                                                                                                                    2. Avoid the line at Mike's Pastry and treat yourself to a nice Mocha at Cafe Vittoria... then take your car and hike your butt 45 minutes up north to Rockport and get Fried Clams at The Lobster Pool while downing your own 6 pack of Non-Sam Adams beet

                                                                                                                                      -----
                                                                                                                                      Lobster Pool
                                                                                                                                      329 Granite St, Rockport, MA 01966

                                                                                                                                      Mike's Pastry
                                                                                                                                      300 Hanover St, Boston, MA

                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                      1. re: nephyrwynn

                                                                                                                                        Speaking of fried clams ........... I drive 130+ miles to the Hingham Lobster Pound (from Merrimack, NH) 'cause the clams don't taste as good up here as they do down there. I do stop along the way back at Fratelli's for eclairs. I also drive to the Coolidge Corner Theater at least once a month 'cause they have the best popcorn .......... I mean, 'cause it's a great place to see a film. ; )
                                                                                                                                        My hubby & I will also fly once a season to Jaffrey, NH to Kimballs for a "$115 lobster roll" (well, it's actually 2 lobster rolls, rings, lemonade, which is about $40 .......... & $75 for the hour of plane time!).

                                                                                                                                      2. At the risk of taking a beating on this one -

                                                                                                                                        ...consider a gristly, oversized sausage with a sweet (grape jelly?) sauce the best hot dog on the planet.

                                                                                                                                        9 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: LStaff

                                                                                                                                          I know that Grote & Weigel dog has serious snap, but gristle? I go light on that relish, as I too find it a bit sweet.

                                                                                                                                          http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                                                                                                                                          1. re: LStaff

                                                                                                                                            Gristly? I don't personally see that at all, but it's certainly a dog with some body to it.

                                                                                                                                            I've had the dog without the relish, but it just seems unbalanced without it.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: LStaff

                                                                                                                                              ...and be right.

                                                                                                                                              I'd no less enjoy a Speed Dog if I saw an anchor tattoo hidden on the inside of the tubesteak. I have heard the sweetness complaint from others, I definitely enjoy it though.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: nsenada

                                                                                                                                                oh, is that what that was a reference to? Grape jelly on a speed dog? LOL,

                                                                                                                                                I am generally not a fan of sweet-on-savory (I don't care for chutney, for instance) but the relish on the Speed's dog for some reason just works for me.

                                                                                                                                                How does one puree gristle anyway?

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Ralphie_in_Boston

                                                                                                                                                  It's sweet, but it's not grape jelly, lol. I remember Speed himself telling us that it was his *secret* sauce, and wouldn't let us in on the secret. I was with someone (who introduced me to Speed) then who knew him way, way back, when he was on Blue Hill Ave., I think it was - before the infamous Boston bussing & riot days.

                                                                                                                                                  I love Speed - anyone hear how he is (and where)? I picture him retired in Florida til he's over a hundred.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: threedogs

                                                                                                                                                    I ran into Speed last year at Newmarket Sq. Guess he was checking up on his fans! I wrote about it and posted a photo of him that I took that day. He looked great! Gave me a big smile and was enjoying being the center of attention.

                                                                                                                                                    Chef Greg is always able to tell me how Speed is doing when I ask.

                                                                                                                                                    Penny
                                                                                                                                                    http://www.bostonzest.com/

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: BostonZest

                                                                                                                                                      Awesome! Can you give a link to the photo & write-up? I looked on your blog - which is really great, btw - but couldn't find it. Of course I ended up just reading your articles, which got me too hungry, of course...

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Delhiwala

                                                                                                                                                          Thanks for the link! Fantastic seeing Speed after all these years. Now I'm dying to try the pastrami, too.

                                                                                                                                            2. ...refuse to eat anything called "chowda" or "lobstah" with the exception of Lobsta Land in Gloucester. After a 30 year ban it turns out it's a locals place with pretty good food.

                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: thanksgang

                                                                                                                                                What 30 year ban? Is the restaurant that old?

                                                                                                                                                1. re: PinchOfSalt

                                                                                                                                                  I meant I drove by it for 30 years before stopping in. Glad I did

                                                                                                                                              2. Visit and eat at Viva Mi Arepa, Pizzeria/Taqueria Romano, and Taqueria El Amigo all in one day,
                                                                                                                                                in an attempt to learn more about Venezuelan comfort food and to continue to locate the best tacos in Boston(fyi, definitely not at the aformentioned TR and TEA.)

                                                                                                                                                -----
                                                                                                                                                Taqueria El Amigo
                                                                                                                                                196 Willow St, Waltham, MA 02453

                                                                                                                                                Viva Mi Arepa
                                                                                                                                                5197 Washington St, West Roxbury, MA 02132

                                                                                                                                                1. ENDLESSLY debate the merits of the canonical NE roast beef sandwich, complete with a full download about the proper roll, discussion of the appropriate sauces, and meat temp.

                                                                                                                                                  Hey, I fully understand. I have friends who have moved away who will never get over missing our particular roast beef sander.

                                                                                                                                                  At least we have one sandwich (besides the lobster roll) that lives up to culinary greatness and hyperbole like the Italian beef or the Hot Brown.

                                                                                                                                                  (Edit to add: which reminds me, the new issue of Saveur is dedicated to sandwiches and is well worth picking up.)