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Moved from North End to North Andover....Need help please.

We just moved from the North End to North Andover and desperately need help finding anything/everything chow worthy within a 20 minute or so drive.

What I've found so far...

North Andover

Burtons..mediocre food a bit overpriced.
Smolaks..great cider donuts,produce, and other baked goods
Butcher Boy..great meats and prepared foods
Tripoli..ok bakery with decent bakery pizza
Harrisons..serviceable North Shore roast beef

Andover

Brasserie 28....nice wine bar, haven't tried any food yet.
Andolinis....solid Italian
Yella...intersesting menu, some items executed better than others, nice dining room
Andover Liquors..best beer section in the area
Grassfields...chain quality
The little seafood market..good quality fresh fish

Haverhill

Keons...great pork chop in a bar like setting
Haverhill brewing..good beer, decent pub grub

Any other help will be greatly appreciated.

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  1. Burtons is a bit over priced..I agree. It is the type of place you go to more for atmosphere than for the food. It is on my list of places to meet friends/coworkers after work for a drink and appetizer..that is about it.

    Instead of Smolaks..try Ingaldsby Farm in Boxford. In my opinion it is superior to Smolak in every way. It is right off of Route 133 in Boxford. On the way back, stop in at Nason's Stonehouse Farm for fantastic homemade baked beans as well as other homemade goodies including jams, pies, and the best blueberry muffins in the areas.
    Butcher boy is great if a bit overpriced. Also try Thwaites Market in Methuen, Ma. Smaller, friendlier and to me better quality of what they do sell ( butcher boy has more variety).
    For Roast Beef sandwiches..skip Harrisons and try Phil's Roast Beef in Andover. You won't be sorry. They have the best RB sandwiches in the area..and we grew up going to Harrisons.

    Andover Liquors is the best in the area. The staff is knowledgeable and helpful. They do have an amazing beer selection. They are the only place around that sells a particular belgium beer favored by my nephew. I am not much of a drinker..but they have helped me select the right bottle of wine many times.

    Hometown Seafoods in Andover has the best fresh fish in the area...second to that is Whole Foods..also in Andover. ( also, their lobster dip is loaded..and I mean loaded with lobster meat.)

    Try the following:
    Teresa's in Middleton ( on Route 114..maybe 15 minutes from North Andover)
    Rocks Tavern in Middleton ( also on Route 114)
    Salvatore's Restaurant in South Lawrence along the Merrimack River
    The Loft - North Andover..nice atmosphere...decent food..exceptional clam chowder and lobster roll.
    Keon's Grille at the Black Swan Country Club in Georgetown ( located on Route 133). Great food, atmosphere and service.

    For Breakfast ..no question..Shawsheen Luncheonette in Andover, Country Kitchen in Methuen, Al's Diner in Methuen, and a little further ..but very well worth the nice scenic drive is Village Pancake in Rowley Ma.
    The Tap in Haverhill is good as is Krueger Flatbread, also in Haverhill.

    Also Tripoli is good. Their pizza is best if you get it with a slice of provolone on the top...since th sauce tends to be on the sweet side. I like tripoli's a lot but the better bakery is Piro's in Methuen on rte 113. If you go there..down the road is Borrelli's Italian Deli ..I think you might find that interesting.

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    Phil's Roast Beef
    38 Andover St, Andover, MA 01810

    Hometown Seafoods
    28 Chestnut St, Andover, MA 01810

    Krueger Flatbreads
    142 Essex St, Haverhill, MA 01832

    2 Replies
    1. re: BlueMagic

      Thwaites is the venerable Chowish market of the area.

      http://www.thwaitesmarket.com/

      1. re: BlueMagic

        Ingaldbys was great, we grabbed a lot of apples and veggies.The cider donuts and muffins are better at Smolaks Imo.

      2. In Lawrence, there's a nice place for breakfast called Three Dogs on rte 28, also Cafe Azteca for Mexican, in Salem NH Ralphies is old school Italian, in Bradford Joseph's for a bit more upscale Italian with a good bakery and Keon;s either in Georgetown of Haverhill is very good. Most of the places you have in Andover I'd skip. Agree, Burton's is over rated and priced like a high priced 99. Lastly, in N. Andover Shadi's for Middle Eastern is very good.

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        Cafe Azteca
        180 Common St, Lawrence, MA 01840

        8 Replies
        1. re: treb

          Have you tried 3 dogs..? Is it really good? I can't remember the name of the place that was there before but I didn't care for it. I have heard mixed reviews about 3 dog from coworkers...

          1. re: BlueMagic

            The place before Three Dogs Diner was Sam's Steak Out and I didn't care for it either.
            Three Dogs on the other hand isn't that bad. When I stop for lunch their I usually get the brisket sandwich, if not the turkey. Both smoked on site.
            I haven't been for breakfast or dinner there since this past winter.
            Service can be slow when they are busy, but its good home cooked quality food.

            1. re: BlueMagic

              I've been for breakfast several times, solid american comfort fare although you can get an omeltte with some of their house smoked meats if you wish, the place is fresh and clean, good wait staff and it's very reasonable. They recenty had a groupon deal.

              1. re: treb

                We just went to Three Dogz for lunch, and were impressed. Run by a hard-working couple, who smoke meats twice a week, The breakfast menu looks impressive, and I plan to try that soon.

                1. re: cocoabrioche

                  I had the brisket and eggs..what a deal! A huge mound of brisket with 2 eggs and homefires for around $8..Very nice people working there as well. Will be back soon.

                2. re: treb

                  I finally got around to trying 3 Dogs Diner today. The food was great indeed. My boss and I both had the same thing..chicken salad melt with provolone cheese. Was perfectly done. We also had a cup of the soup..today was Turkey Noodle. Definitely homemade and very tasty. We will be back again for sure.

                  1. re: treb

                    Hi Treb.,..wanted to let you know that I finally made it to 3Dogz Diner for breakfast this morning. We ordered lunch there a couple of times from work over the past few weeks and all enjoyed it. Yesterday..we ordered breakfast at work and it was really good. One of the girls ordered a slice of chocolate cheesecake for the afternoon snack. We all had a bit and it was..in a word..amazing.
                    Anyhow..I usually go out for breakfast on Saturday mornings and this morning my SO and I decided to give the diner a try. We were impressed in every single way. The breakfast was delicious ( couldn't finish it) and the service was very friendly. Delicious coffee too ( always a plus).
                    On the way out..I got a couple of slices of the chocolate cheesecake for dessert tonight. FYI...all their food, including baked goods are homemade.

                    1. re: BlueMagic

                      Glad you enjoyed it, the couple running it are very hard working folks and do make everything from scratch. Been going there, frequently, since it opened. Also, it's a great deal that's affordable.

              2. I sound like a broken record but Joseph's in Haverhill/Bradford is good. Their creamy polenta is to die for, lol! :)

                1 Reply
                1. re: mcel215

                  I agree that Joseph's is good. For some reason they don't come right to mind. The last time I was there I had a really good spinach ravioli.

                  1. I sympathize. The hinterlands are tough. You might try doing a CH search under Lawrence. i remember some active threads for ethnic places up there. have also heard good things from a friend about Blue Fin on 114 in middleton for sushi (same owners as now-closed Blue Fin in porter exchange.) For really superb Boston level dining, drive 45 min. to Black Trumpet in Portsmouth NH (really lovely town and a number of good restnts.) And The Clam Box in Ipswich is 30 min from you. Lowell , 20 min from you,has some good asian and indian spots.

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                    Blue Fin
                    1815 Massachusetts Ave # 1, Cambridge, MA

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: opinionatedchef

                      Another good place for phatchris is PJ's Pizzeria in Methuen, they make an excellent Italian meat pie. Also, in Methuen, Piro's bakery.

                      pjspizzaplace.com