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Nov 20, 2013 11:01 AM

Some Ting Nice, is it?

Anyone tried this place yet? The yelp reviews are glowing, but who knows.

For those who don't know, it is a new "Caribbean restaurant" in Somerville. They have doubles and macaroni pie, suggesting it's a Trinidadian place.

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  1. Go early--they're just getting sorted out and had run out of a lot of things by the time we got there at 7pm on a Friday. It was super friendly, really nice vibe, but am going to decline to comment on the food until I go another time, as the owner was just making whatever he could for us from what he had left in the kitchen, mostly wasn't on the menu. I think we did end up with doubles? Seemed a little bland until owner brought out the vinegary tamarind sauce and then, yum. I would put that on anything. Saw a couple friends there from the Caribbean and they were happy.

      1. re: StriperGuy

        We recently returned from a trip to the Caribbean, and the room was stocked daily with 2 bottles of Ting in addition to Coke and Diet Coke. We had bought a bottle of light rum and one of dark in duty free, so we drank Cuba Libres and what we called Rumtings, light rum and Ting, all week. Man, I love Ting! Has anyone tried their beef patties or jerk chicken (or do they even have them?).

        1. re: kimfair1

          i posted about this a few yrs ago--patties. Even though you will be told that their patties are 'made there', 99.9% of the time, the patties that you find in the NE US- come frozen from a factory in NY/NJ, and they are baked off by the restnt where you buy them. It is the oddest thing. I did a patty crawl incl Roxbury et al (somewhere in the CH archives) and this was proven by that crawl. The give away is the mustard color of the pastry (annatto gives it that color) and the tough cardboard texture of that pastry. Man would i love to try some home made patties.

          1. re: opinionatedchef

            Lenny's the only full service Jamaican bakery in the area, Lorenz Island Kuisine and P&R all make their patties in house.

            1. re: Matt H

              hmmmm, i'm just so sceptical about this. they'll say they make them in house but they really just bake them off in house. if you ever have photos of samples, plse post them.
              btw, i did read your 2011 thread.
              do Lenny's or Lorenz Island's patties look like this? rectangular shape,thick yellow crust?:

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                I grew up eating those at pizza places in NYC.

                1. re: opinionatedchef

                  Lorenz patties, which I find plausibly home-made, pictured below:

                  1. re: Nab

                    Yah those are NOT the prefab ones I am familiar with.

                    1. re: Nab

                      Yeah, the Tower Isles ones are eye-numbingly yellow and the tops fall off like IROC Camaros.

                        1. re: Nab

                          Lorenz's patties taste and look similar to Michidean's in Toronto. So either they are shipping them in from TO daily or they are home made as they say.

                          1. re: Nab

                            Well, i wish i could say differently, but these look like Tower Hill to me. So shoot me.

                            anyway,it'd be different if i didn't respect you guys , so i'm just
                            going to have to do a revisit. meanwhile, i sure wish i had been in jamaica with kimfair.

                            1. re: opinionatedchef

                              Tower hills are machine-crimped around the edge.

                          2. re: opinionatedchef

                            I definitely am familiar with the Tower Isle brand and none of the mentioned above are similar in any way. All three are made in house.

                            If there's one thing I know its the difference between a frozen manufactured patty and a home baked one ; )

                            1. re: Matt H

                              Ahemmm, o.k. matt, it's done. i can cross it off my bucket list now. here's what i found out. Lorenz Island Kuisine buys their patties from a factory in FLA. "If you needed a few dozen for a party, we would make them ourselves but we sell too many all day to make those. we are hoping to start supplying our own in Jan." So i skipped going there.

                              at Lenny's I did indeed find a truly HOUSE made patty with a thick and tender crust and a large amount of beef filling ($1.75@/such a deal!) Man, those suckers are HEAvy! The only thing is, the beef filling just tasted like beef and black pepper.
                              Are the good ones in Jamaica like that, Kimfair? or do they have herbs and spices?

                              1. re: opinionatedchef

                                Thanks for doing the leg work. That is disappointing to hear about Lorenz since they told me in person they make their patties in house. With that said, they are very good and whichever supplier in FL they use is legit. I personally like Lorenz patties better than Lenny's so I would not be so quick to write them off because obviously they found an excellent supplier.

                                Frozen patties from a good source hold up very well. Whenever I go home (JA) I bring back dozens from Juici and Tastee that taste better warmed up than any home made patty made anywhere in the country.

                                1. re: Matt H

                                  have you seen Confidence? Next time you fly back into Boston, I think I'll take on Andy Garcia's role, but this time I won't be looking for any drugs, i'll be lookin' for your patties!!
                                  and somehow, i don't think they're going to make it back to the evidence room :-}

                        2. re: opinionatedchef

                          Tower Isles is the name of the company that makes the 99%.

                          1. re: opinionatedchef

                            Au Beurre Chaud, Le Foyer - it tastes like most of Mattapan & Hyde Park's Haitian and African bakeries are making their patties in-house. theyre more croissant-like, like at a vietnamese bakery (whose are usually stuffed w/ shrimp). then there's the Irish meat-pies of Adams Village (green hills and some other places whose names elude) Aussie-meat-pies of Eastie/Southie (K.O) - both cases you'll need to bring your Matouks but the actual pies + filling are a cut above

                        3. re: StriperGuy

                          No Ting, but maybe if everybody asks, they will get it!

                          1. re: dulce de leche

                            If not, just go to the stop n shop around the corner and pick up some on your way there!

                        4. I went once recently to pick up an order I'd placed. It was around 7 and they were already closed. I ordered a bus up shut and a doubles - they were out of a lot of stuff in terms of fillings & sides, to the extent that they called me back that my third choice wasn't available.

                          Got home and the doubles wasn't in there. The bus up shut was good but I preferred Singhs. Also I specified the hot sauce and they rang it up as the mild sauce.

                          I'd go back but i'm not in a rush.

                          1. I've been meaning to post about this place. I have 3 visits under my belt and its a mixed bag:


                            - Soups are very good. Chicken soup is very nice and traditional and the Fish Tea is as good as you could find anywhere.

                            - Excellent Rice n Peas. Huge amounts of coconut flavor which I love.


                            - Oxtail is solid. Very tasty with a good sized portion. Good quality oxtail as well, not all bone.

                            - Escovitch fish is fried perfectly. The toppings are great as well. Only issue is that there is not enough of it. Next time I will mention it to the owners (Very nice people) and then this dish will be great.

                            - Jerk Chicken. Okay, like most Jerk chicken in the area. I'm not a huge fan of ordering out Jerk because I have perfected my own but I do like trying it out at least once.


                            - Curry Chicken is flavorless, really tasted more like stew chicken but without the flavor. Not sure what was going on that day in the kitchen but I hope it was an aberration.

                            Owners are from St. Lucia and I believe the head chef is from Jamaica. The menu is impressive but they really need to get up to speed. I have hope because the Soups are excellent, but they have some work to do.

                            1. I'm here as we speak. Fish tea was amazing. Waiting on macaroni pie and bus up shut with pumpkin. Will post back!

                              Follow-up: Food came promptly. I like their bus-up-shut better than Ali's. The "shut" comes separately in a dish, and the shrimp curry and veggies (I ordered pumpkin) don't saturate the roti before you can get to it. The shrimp curry was excellent - very balanced flavors, and the shrimp weren't tough or overcooked.

                              Macaroni pie was fine, just a big ol' square of thick M&C. Good stuff.

                              The black cake really shines here. Very rummy, it was in cupcake form, and they packed it with a little sauce-cup full of rum sauce and a maraschino.

                              I'm so happy this place exists. The food was a delight, service very friendly, and inexpensive (Everything together was $21). It's like the opposite of Ali's and Flames put together.

                              2 Replies
                                1. re: StriperGuy

                                  Gotta admit, that does sound appealing. Plant based tea is excruciatingly boring.