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Gloucester + 30 min drive.....recommendations

housesitting for a week, looking for pho, breakfast, food trucks, gourmet fastfood, pizza, roast beef, one high class night, chinese, italian, out of the ordinary

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  1. Breakfast is easiest - Sugar Magnolias in Gloucester, also Lees which is more greasy spoon but everything is served with fat sausages. Jims on RR ave has good enough bagels and coffee. Food trucks? Don't think so. Pizza.....pretty tough but try Sebastian's on Washington St, Gloucester. Sandwiches: Virgilios. High class night: Franklin / Gloucester. I love the burgers and other pedestrian fare at Alchemy but it can be inconsistent. Ain't no pho but for a place on Rt 1 S - think its called Pho 888 and its pretty darned good the it will take more than 30 mins to get there. New place called Whats Cookin' on Washington St has potential to be good....had a good write up on the now owners in the Gloucester Times a few days ago. Supreme Roast Beef in Gloucester is also worth a stop. No real good Chinese up this way but some do like Midori, also on Washington St. You would think there'd be good Italian around but there just isn't. You may want to check out Rockport Lobster Co in Gloucester, get a few big culls cheap and steam them up....always a good treat. Have fun!

    1 Reply
    1. re: ipsofatso

      Duckworth on E. Main is also nice for an upscale dinner. .

    2. Most of Rockport, Bearskin Neck, and Gloucester shuts down for the winter, so if you're looking for dinner along the North Shore area, be sure to call first. Last time I was up there during the colder months I was greeted by rows of boarded-up restaurants and shops.

      10 Replies
      1. re: Boston_Otter

        All the places I listed are open year round.

        1. re: ipsofatso

          IPSO, in your original post, what was the place you listed that you said has huge portions? Also, you mentioned Cape Ann, and isn 't there a Taco truck by the grocery store? Can you repost (or if it was someone else, please repost).
          I like the Depot Diner in Beverly too.

          1. re: MacshashRIP

            http://thehappytaco.com might be the truck you seek..being a frequent visitor to the W coast, I pretty much don't eat the local 'Mexican' food because its pretty awful for the most part although there are a few decent enough placed popping up close to Boston lately...reports from the local chat boards on Cape Ann are so-so for the taco truck - expensive and small portions.... The Causeway Restaurant is the deep-fried place with huge portions; not my speed but indeed a local favorite. If you are venturing the the Depot Diner, I think that is in Peabody if I am not mistaken, not a quick trip from Gloucester.

        2. re: Boston_Otter

          "Most of Rockport, Bearskin Neck, and Gloucester shuts down for the winter" Really? Define most. In reality 90%+ stay open....

          1. re: mmerriman

            "Define most?" Seriously?

            Every single restaurant on Bearskin Neck. Roy Moore's. Captain Carlo's in Gloucester. All closed and/or boarded up for the winter.

            Others keep limited hours during the winter months.

          2. re: Boston_Otter

            That's utterly NOT true for most Gloucester restos.

            Personal favs include Lobstaland and The Franklin.

            1. re: StriperGuy

              me too - however Lobsta land IS one of the FEW that close for the winter. Reopening in April. Its actually great to eat there the day they close since they pretty much clean out the kitchen and pour big drinks

              1. re: mmerriman

                They used to stay open all winter, but now that you mention it, I think they started closing.

              2. re: StriperGuy

                Gee, okay. I guess when I was there they were practicing for a hurricane all winter long. My bad.

                1. re: StriperGuy

                  Agree, the closed resto's on Bearskin Neck would not be pleasant in the winter. Most places in Gloucesta, like The Franklin, are open year round.

              3. I think Salem is just in your +30 min request, Salem's Scratch kitchen has great sandwiches and rings.

                245 Derby St, Salem, MA 01970

                scratch kitchen
                245 Derby St, Salem, MA 01970

                2 Replies
                1. re: lc02139

                  salem also has in a pigs' eye which does a good homey brunch and decent tex-mex kinda food.

                  1. re: lc02139

                    Scratch Kitchen is the most awful establishment to ever open in Salem! That is why they are always empty except in October when everywhere else is packed. Virgillio's on Main Street for lunch and dinner at Jalapeno's also on Main street, no need to leave Gloucester for great food.

                  2. rip, the No.Shore, like many Boston suburbs, is really the hinterlands imo.Pho, gmt fast food, food trucks, out of the ordinary? Good luck. We travel up there often but the No Shore is a tough call. We found The Franklin mediocre on our 2 tries. Much better is 62 on Wharf in Salem, a No. Italian artisinal bistro run by a young talented chef and wife; our fav place up there. For a casual Mexican spot that can be very good if you order right , try Howlin Wolf in salem; open lunch and dinn. Do a Ch search for recent threads. And plse let us know what places you liked. It will help us advise others like you.

                    1. I would also recommend Lat43 in Gloucester. Nice menu..good service..and I love the food.
                      Also, Minglewood Tavern is located in Lat43 and is a more casual place ..good for lunch. They also have great entertainment in the tavern at night. Check out their website for the schedule and the menu for both.

                      Also..it would be helpful to know when you are coming. True many places close down for the winter, but a mild spring could have places opening up at least on weekends in March or April.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: BlueMagic

                        I am here now...thanks for all the suggestions. The brunch at Passports was recommended to me and said to have great cbhash. I went by at 9am on Sat and it was closed, so I went to Sugar Mags next door. Very good breakfast. Had the Charleston breakfast - Eggs, Ham, Pineapple Fritters. Beverly is about as far south as I want to go. I hit the Depot Diner which is good too but too crowded. Looking now for a fried fish joint..I prefer shrimp and don't like whole belly clams. Probably will check out Causeway. Anything good in Rockport?
                        The happy taco truck is away for the week, but did notice Tacos Lupito - might give it a shot. Someone needs to open pho up here!!

                        1. re: MacshashRIP

                          if you're willing to go to beverly, it's silly not to go 5 more min to salem. just sayin'.signin off now. hope it works out for you up there.

                          1. re: MacshashRIP

                            If the Gloucester Tacos Lupita is anything like the old one in Somerville, run, inhale a torta al pastor and thank me later. RE upscale hotdogs, Rockport has Top Dog (check if open) and Fred's along the lake in Wakefield on weekends (a little beyond your radius but not far).

                        2. Try Georges for breakfast on the corner of Washington St. and Centennial Ave--great food and hearty portions. Jalapenos has good Mexican food downtown. +1 for Latitude 43, and great sushi at Midori, so I've heard. Cape Ann Brewery is pretty decent.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: morningwood farms

                            re: Cape Ann
                            been there many times - hoping the greenhorn DIPA is on tap this time!
                            re: Salem
                            OK, gonna do a Salem day this week, starting at Beer Works and ending up at an above suggestion. Thanks!

                            1. re: MacshashRIP

                              Try Charlie's on Bass Ave for fried seafood and Maria's on Pearl St for great pizza.

                              1. re: greenstate

                                I am gonna try Charlie's, based soley on the fact that every time I have driven by there going to Stop and Shop, it has been packed with elderly folks.....always a good sign!

                              2. re: MacshashRIP

                                food at beer works very meh. lots of sysco products.

                                1. re: MacshashRIP

                                  My favorite spot in Salem is Cafe Polonia for Polish & Eastern European food. Love their kielbasa, pierogies, bigos, and goulash.