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Lunch places in Waltham

Looking for some good ideas for weekday lunch in Waltham, Moody St area preferred. Thanks!

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  1. Taqueria Mexico, on Charles Street (just off Moody, opposite the common) is excellent.

    1. On or near Moody, Mi Tierra (Salvadoran / Guatemalan), Sadie's Saloon (American fare, great steak tips), Kebab and Tandoor (Hyderabadi and other regional Indian), Erawan of Siam (decent, Westernized Thai). A bit further off the track: Domenic's Italian Bakery (excellent subs), Taqueria El Amigo (awesome Mexican), Carl's (greasy steak bombs), and Josephs Two (old-school American and diner food).

      I used to recommend Sushi Yasu for its Korean food (not the Japanese side of the menu), have not been to its successor Sushi Box.


      4 Replies
      1. re: MC Slim JB

        Have you been to Erawan of Siam since the ownership change? I rarely see anyone in there for lunch lately.

        1. re: LStaff

          I have not, and was not aware of the change. Back when I routinely had lunch in Waltham, I found three places, Tree Top, Erawan, and Baan Thai, to be roughly equivalent, i.e., decent if rather Americanized. (With a wider net, you could throw Green Papaya on Winter Street into that bucket.) I suggested Erawan as the only one on Moody; it was also the nicest-looking one, tons of lovely carved wood.


          1. re: LStaff

            The new chef owner is from the well regarded Thai Moon in Arlington.

          2. re: MC Slim JB

            We went to Sushi Box over the summer and stuck with the Korean menu. Really meh food.

          3. Places I frequent on Moody St. are Little India for the buffet, Kebab and Tandoor (although less lately as the buffet seems to be sliding - would like to check out some items at the Food Bazaar though), and I have been going to Pho and Spice a lot lately - a little pricey for pho, but good. Off Moody st., I like Mulan, Taqueria mexico, Taqueria El Amigo, and Tree Top Thai.

            2 Replies
            1. re: LStaff

              The Food Bazaar looks kind of un-promising, but Jenny Ondioline & I had an unexpectedly good lunch there a while ago (basement of Waltham India Market, along with Kebab & Tandoor.) We don't get out that way very often, and tend to visit Taqueria Mexico when we do, but I'd be happy to explore the Food Bazaar further.

              1. re: Allstonian

                I'm curious about the falafal as its the only place in town that I know of that makes it.

            2. I second Domenic's on Main for the best sandwiches just about anywhere. Take out only, though (maybe a few seats to snarf it down). Mu Lan on Main has gotten some good press, but I haven't been yet, personally.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Science Chick

                Second Mulan, Taqueria Mexico, Tacqueria El Amigo, and we like Solea for the occasional more up-scale lunch. Domenic's has great sandwiches but is a bit off the "moody street" track.

                1. re: Science Chick

                  Third on Domenic's. It may have lost a bit of its charm in recent years with rational organization of the lines, but they still bake their own bread and have fabulous parmesan (chicken or eggplant) sandwiches.

                2. Some great places mentioned...but here are a few more:

                  -Antojitos Cafe on Moody St for their $1 tacos & more. For $1, the tacos are amazing. The tacos at El Amigo are much better, but they cost more than $1.

                  -Fried Chicken downstairs in the Waltham India Market. Cheap & really good. Great crispiness, juicy, and a slight spice. The guy selling the fried chicken also makes amazing chaat.

                  -La Chapincita on Moody St in Waltham. This is a market, but they sometimes have some food. When you walk in, look in the warmer on the left and look on the left side of the counter to see if any prepared food is for sale.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: eatanddestroy

                    eatanddestroy, i just saw this thread and am responding to you, so don't know if you'll see this. You might want to add your fried chicken rec to that recent fried chicken thread. i bet it would be appreciated! when you mentioned 'a little bit of spice' it got me to put it on my 'to try' list, so thx!

                  2. taqueria el amigo
                    kebab and tandoor
                    taqueria mexico
                    little india
                    bombay mahal

                    1. Nothing gourmet, but you can't go wrong with Watch City Brewery, Habaneros, Bison BBQ, all on Moody St.

                      12 Replies
                        1. re: carneyvore

                          I am going to have to disagree on Watch City and Bison, have had lunch at both of them recently and have no plans to return to either of them. Service at Watch City was atrocious and the food was greasy and boring. Bison was not particularly good food, heavy, gloopy, flavorless chile rellenos and standard beans/rice.

                          I'll echo others and say my favorites for quick and easy are Taqueria el Amigo and Carl's. If you want to sit down, Pho and Spice is good but the ambiance leaves much to be desired. Tree Top is greasy Thai, but I like it that way. I work in Waltham, and pickings are pretty slim, I'd try more but the traffic getting to Moody is miserable.

                          1. re: ColoradoXJ13

                            Chile rellenos at Bison? I didn't even notice them on the menu since I haven't looked at the food menu in years - I just order a burger and/or the spicy carolina wings - imo, that's what they do best. Love the baked beans and mashed potatoes there too. Not all things are great there - not a fan of the bbq, so I stick to the things I know are good.

                            Personally i find it funny that you give thumbs down to WC (deserved imo) and Bison, but recommend Carl's. TEHO I guess...

                            1. re: ColoradoXJ13

                              pickings pretty slim in waltham?!? good lord man, where do you live??

                              while i can understand your reticence to attack moody on your lunch hour, the fact remains that in in a one mile square area, bordered by the pretty fair pizza at francas, to the sandwiches at dominic's, over to el Amigo and russo's (which is about a mile and a half from Doms),
                              there are tens of places to eat

                              multiple decent indian food options (including indian supermarkets and a food court), mexican food, thai, pizza, breakfast joints( in a pickle, josephs), all the major fast food joints, ice cream (lizzies), sandwiches, steak tips (sadies), beer brewery, and asian.

                              i will give you that there is no great fried chicken and the barbeque is always disappointing but i think "pickings are slim" seriously undersells this area for food.

                              1. re: hyde

                                Have you tried the desi fried chicken at the Indian Food Bazaar? I've been curious about it since they opened, but fried chicken hasn't been on my diet.

                                Also for bbq, blue ribbon (although consensus here is that it has fallen off I'm not in total agreement with it) is a quick drive down high and cherry streets.

                                1. re: LStaff

                                  forgot about the desi, you are correct, sir!
                                  blue ribbon, though close is not waltham as the OP specified. i was mostly channelling the sadness i used to feel when i ate at jake and earls dixie roadhouse, (now closed, thank god) and was always horrified how it had fallen from the original in inman. i once mentioned this place to jake jacobs, and he nearly threw me out of his place.

                                  i live 500 meters from blue ribbon, and while ok, do not think it as good as it used to be. i have given my heart to blackstrap in winthrop and BT's smokehouse when i am traveling out that way. looking forward to Red Eyed Pig in west rox, but cannot eat BBQ as much as i would like.

                                2. re: hyde

                                  Franca's has been empty for a few years, alas

                                  1. re: L2k

                                    crap. this has happened to me before.

                                    i KNOW in my heart that FRANCA'S has been closed. (thought the pizza there was some of the best in the area. the guy who ran the joint was a hoot, but often the wife and i were the onlypeople in the place.)

                                    FRANCO'S on the newton end of moody (714 moody) is the place i was thinking of, old school joint, pizza is pretty good (make sure its well done)

                                    1. re: hyde

                                      Agreed on the guy who ran it. He went to high school with a close friend of mine, so any time we went there we had to talk and talk and talk!

                                      1. re: L2k

                                        hope your close friend enjoyed his(her) time at brookline high. my daughter ended up in a 45 minute "did you know...?" conversation with him about BHS. oh well, comped tiramisu!

                                        1. re: hyde

                                          That's the link between Franca's and Village Smokehouse: The proprieters went to BHS (as did I)

                                          1. re: L2k

                                            that same daughter delivered the graduation speech in '06. my younger went to newton north, the horror!

                            2. I wasn't aware of the change of ownership of Erawan of Siam until I ran into this thread! I visited for lunch today and they have a very extensive lunch menu and also a lunch combo menu that includes a springroll (not sure what the filling was) and two little fried dumplings (excellent). I had the green curry with pork and it was good and also lived up to its two peppers for heat.


                              1. Habanero's is a new place on Moody and I started a thread about it. Jim Fahey, 30 years+ cooking both authentic and creative Mex food, is the new Exec Chef there. From my experience and others on that thread, experiences are inconsistent( as one might expect when a new chef comes aboard and everything changes for quite awhile til they settle) so I'm not saying it's tremendous, but you may want to check it out. When Jim is on his game, he can be a very talented chef.And the menu is def NOT your typical Mex menu (at least for now, 5/2012.)