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Bob's Italian Food

Seeing as how I've lived here more than ten years and only brought home prepped pasta from Bob's Italian Food in Medford tonight, I suppose it's time to give them their own thread. I've read some comments in random threads here and there - curious about those large meatballs I read about.

They have:
-BBQ packs where you can get ready-to-grill meat - some marinated - for 15 which sounds like a nice idea.
-full Turkey holiday dinners
-antipasti, cold cut, cheese, crudite, wing, cannoli and Italian cookie trays.
-salad and fruit bowls
-couple, family, or party-size take-home dinners (lasagna, stuffed shells)
-a wide of sandwiches of the Boston standard varieties you expect; think "the full range" rather than a selection.
-a variety of soft, rather tasteless Italian-style breads (think scali)
-a slightly larger-than-average variety of imported Italian groceries (a second brand of Nutella, some imported bitter soda, etc.)
-a butcher shop
-a deli case with olives, stuffed peppers, stuffed mushrooms, a lot of stuffed things I don't recognize and MONSTROUS, softball-sized meatballs.

in a storefront that's approximately 500 sq. ft. (ok, kidding on that one).

What's good? What's not-so-much?


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  1. BTW, I bought home two couple-sized prepared pastas: one chicken pesto and one orecchiete with sausage bits, green bits, and an eensy bit of red pepper flakes.

    Both were seasoned effectively, by which I mean they accounted for the fact that these were held and refrigerated, which takes some experience. I consider re-seasoning of take-home entrees pretty standard, so I don't ding 'em for it. The pasta had some bite to it.

    It did taste kind of... corporate. The pesto chicken, in particular, was dry, thinly sliced (I imagine to save on chicken), and re-moistened with oil. I think the oil was olive oil, but not very tasty.

    Nonetheless, it was good enough to buy again if I don't feel like cooking and it's on my way home. And I'm sure I can find better with your help?

    1 Reply
    1. re: enhF94

      Bob's is definitely one of the best Italian style groceries/delis in the area.

      My recommendation is to simply enjoy the gem that you live so close by to...

    2. Decent pizza chiena for Easter. Quite like their sandwiches, a really good lamb tips one, for instance. Great for groceries and deli, if not quite Salumeria Italiana.


      1. This may be weird but they make delicious chicken cutlet subs. They take some pounded flat meat that has a light coating, fry it and put it on a sub roll. I eat it without the sauce. A number of their subs are good.

        As to the rest, it's more about the stuff they make than the groceries. Watch. You see people buying large numbers of the things from the cases. Because it's good.

        1. The imported Italian is fantastic...they slice the meat to order.

          4 Replies
          1. re: rknrll

            Second the imported Italian. Nice meat, beautiful rolls. I haven't had one in a very long time, maybe tomorrow? Subs in general are very good.

            They also put together nice trays of things like lasagna, sausage and peppers, etc. for funeral buffets, christenings, parties, etc. Reasonably priced, too.

            1. re: pemma

              Third that sandwich. One of those once a quarter is perfect.

              1. re: smtucker

                Fourth. I think it is called the "Deluxe Italian"

            2. re: rknrll

              I'm looking forward to this Italian sub; as a Boston transplant growing up with Oscar Mayer, serious cold cuts were a whole new thing for me. I just had one at La Cascia's and loved it, so it'll be fun to compare.

              Is sliced-to-order is a thing? Or just a nice touch because, I'm guessing, the meat doesn't dry out?

            3. They actually make one of my favorite steak and cheese subs in the Boston area. Pretty awesome.

              1. our office gets 2 of their six-foot subs every year for the office xmas party ... yummy, enough to feed 20 easily.

                1. We stop in the shop every time we're even near the area. The subs are excellent and a great value. We pay twice the price for half the quantity and quality here on the Cape. A medium chix parm feeds two. I prefer the veal parm though. They'll sell you the prepped breaded veal or chicken if you ask. I freeze it and then it's easy to pan fry whenever we want it. The sausages are quite good. I happen to really like the scali rolls. The imported cold cuts sliced to order are worth getting. The marinated meats and chicken wings are pretty good too. For pasta, I go to the fresh pasta shop across the street and down the road a few blocks. The name escapes me now but the ravioli and other pastas are top notch.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: CapeCodGuy

                    That's Bella Ravioli...very sweet people in there too.

                  2. I get a large prosciutto and mozzarella sandwich there a couple time a summer - a rare treat. and I would say its my go to place (I live in Arlington) for Parma Ham and salumi..

                    1. Thanks, y'all, this is fantastic and also puts my doubts into context. (Such as seeing breaded chicken strips in the freezer, portioned but unwrapped: it sounds like turnover is high enough that these aren't sitting for days, but hours.)

                      Can't wait to combine the pizza chiena (which I know as ripiena) with Pescatore's pastiera next easter. I haven't had it since school and even then, only the once.

                      Fortunately I have a long list of subs and such to try between now and then!

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: enhF94

                        The subs at Bob's are great. The meatball sub (pictured here) is on a soft roll, with provolone and their very good sauce. Bob's sauce is some of my favorite around (second only to Vinny's in my book) as it's pure simplicity of fresh tomatoes and not sweet at all.

                        You'll notice that these meatballs are a little more dense than at Nappi's in Medford but with very good flavor and heft. The sub here is a small and it's more than enough for me.

                        The steak and cheese and steak tips are good too. You'll enjoy Bob's!

                        1. re: yumyum

                          Oh, and I found this picture of the soprasata sub, hold the lettuce, add hots. This one is VERY good. Maybe I need to go to Bob's today!

                          1. re: yumyum

                            I second the meatballs! I buy their bulk package from the case to make quick spagetti and meatballs at home. Love the sauce it comes in.

                            1. re: Grammaton

                              If, by luck of username, you are a Gramma, and want to endear yourself to anyone under 20 forever, may I encourage you to refer to yourself as "Grammatron?" That's how I misread your username and frankly I'm snowed already.

                        2. jeez where ya been? long time fan tip- try the chicken/ eggplant parm combo sub- perfect balance of texture, moistness.
                          call order in during lunch rush or wait with the crowd...

                          1. Love Bob's. The take-home lasagna portions are massive (enough for 2 easily) and very good. The meatballs I've found are too salty for me. Their Italian subs are OK -- depends on who makes it -- I much prefer their steak and cheese subs. Fantastic. Also, good Italian wedding soup in the cold case by the front.

                            Their raw meat case is very small, but I highly recommend their Italian-marinated steak tips. Also, their price on rib eyes can be $12.99 per lb., which is very reasonable.

                            1. there is a current groupon for bob's. thought you might want to know.

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: opinionatedchef

                                Thanks. I'm not a groupon-er, but someone here will be.

                                1. re: enhF94

                                  It's $15 off $50, (grocery only if I read it correctly) not the usual Groupon savings % , but it's something.

                                  1. re: CapeCodGuy

                                    i've deleted it but what i believe i saw -included prepared foods.

                                    1. re: opinionatedchef

                                      I think that's correct, but I read it as not including subs and the like. Not 100% sure.

                                      1. re: CapeCodGuy

                                        No, it's "$35 for $50 Worth of Deli and Prepared Foods, Meats, and Groceries", so that includes anything on the to go menu, like a jumbo eggplant parm sub!

                                        1. re: gltsoi

                                          I'd call first before I made that assumption. I read "prepared foods" to be pre-portioned lasagna, containers of sauce, and the like. Not subs, wraps, sandwiches, fries and other things made to order. I could be wrong.

                              2. There was a groupon Dec 9 - 35 bucks for 50 bucks in food use by end of Jan 13