The Usual Suspects [Greater Boston, MA]

(Denise) #41

I feel the same about Park. And though I never managed to write it up, this summer we met friends at The Hourly Oyster House (another Grafton Group restaurant nearby) that hits that same dependable spot for me. Sometimes you just want a straightforward meal out with friends or family, yes?




It’s really nice to sit in the room with the comfy chairs and sip wine on a cold night. The patty melt is very good, and at $12 with those fries, it’s a good value.


So good to know! I love a patty melt.


Lovely dinner at Gran Gusto in Cambridge tonight. We started with a refreshing salad of greens, artichokes, pecorino and pears. My husband had the cod special, with cherry tomatoes, capers. olives and broccoli. He said the fish was perfectly cooked and pristinely fresh and he sopped up the extra sauce with their excellent bread. I had short rib paccheri, which was rich and hearty and full of flavor. I think next time I’ll have to get the chitarra again. It’s fun to watch the fresh pasta being tossed in the well in the huge wheel of parmesan. And, ahem, please excuse the excessive amount of cheese on the pacherri. I have a cheese problem.

(Denise) #46

Aha, the chitarra is the pasta dish that Gran Gusto tosses in the hollowed out wheel of Parmesan! I have seen people order it and I never knew which menu item that was. Thank you, @bear.

There can never be too much Parmesan cheese in my life.


those pictures!


After reading a Globe article that the original owner of City Slicker in Somerville had repurchased the place, we got pizza from there the other night. My son had gotten pizza from there with the interim owners, and felt that the sauce had a strong winey taste and the crust wasn’t quite as crunchy as before. The pizza we got this time was that same old City Slicker goodness. We got a sausage and banana pepper, a mushroom and onion, and a tree hugger, (which I didn’t get to try). It was flavorful and had a satisfying crunch even after the 20+ min. ride home.

This is not a thin-crust Neapolitan or even old-school Italian-American pizza, but more reminiscent of a Southeastern Mass. bar pie. It’s really more of its own thing, with a rich, crunchy crust, a simple sauce and tangy cheese. We were a little disappointed that they don’t have linguica anymore, though.


Just had a somewhat decadent lunch at Branchline: polenta topped with lamb sausage patty, charred onions and fried eggs with green harissa. Very tasty.


Tonight we returned to the Druid in Inman Square for the first time in a while. Long story, but I wanted/needed a burger and wanted someone else to do the cooking. Maybe it was just tonight, but I swear they have upped the game! The burger was pleasantly charred at exactly as ordered [medium rare.] The onion was truly grilled. The bun is no longer a brioche-light, but something firmer that could withstand being a burger bun. The fries were well cooked with some little crunchy bits that I love. We requested none of their rosemary seasoning, and they didn’t!

At $12.00, this isn’t cheap or anything, but it was exactly what I wanted from a burger. I have gotten so used to disappointment.

What's For Dinner #27 - 11/2017 - the Giving Thanks Edition

I love the Druid. Great food. Great atmosphere. My kids love going for the Irish sessions on Saturday afternoon.


I took an out of town friend to Moulton’s in Medford when she said she wanted seafood. We were both very pleased. Started with salads that were nice and fresh, decent dressing. She had grilled filet of sole and I had fried filet of sole. Both were perfectly cooked, the fish pristinely fresh. Excellent low-key dinner, as always at Moulton’s.


The seafood stew at the Druid is one of my favorite things to eat in Greater Boston. Thanks for reminder to get back there.


After voting in the Waltham Municipal elections, we continued our post-voting ritual of heading out for pizza after hitting the polls. This year we ended up at Charcoal Guidos for their excellent Neapolitan pies. An eggplant and smoked mozzarella pie for me, a Bolognese for my husband, and a burrata for my son. We really enjoyed each of them. The crust was quite crisp immediately after the pizzas arrived, and it did soften as it sat. The dough was pretty flavorful. The pizzas themselves were simple and beautifully prepared.

Last year, we had pizza at Brelundi after voting. We’ve decided that we need to have the Brelundi pizza again soon to compare while Charcoal Guido’s is still fresh in our mind. I remember thinking that I liked the crust better at Brelundi and the toppings better at Guido’s, and need to see if that’s still true.

And, as we were leaving Guido’s tonight, we passed by The Back Room at Moody’s on the way to the car and remembered their delicious wood-fired pies. We really do have a wealth of riches on Moody, and things seem to be getting even better with the addition of Moody’s Oyster Bar and Deli/Taqueria. Cool.


I will have to give charcoal guidos another try (only been once or twice). I do like brelundi - though my favorite is still Max and Leo’ s - though not in waltham. But since we are talking waltham and pizza … I’m a little embarrassed to admit … but … the chateau has $7 cheese pizzas on wednesdays (large pie not a personal pizza) and I have to say it was better than some of the “pizza joints” around town (not charcoal guidos) and a really solid deal.


hmmmm, I’m trying to decide where to go Friday on my pass through Waltham and those photos sure do make a strong case for pizza! (I like the look of that almost burnt crust).

I do wonder if the Tacqueria El Amigo folks wonder what happened to me, though.


Met a friend for dinner last night at Kirkland Tap and Trotter (first time there for both of us). I had not been able to picture where it was but it is next door to Dali, across the street from the Kebab Factory. Our experience overall was meh. Our waiter was comically bad, we assumed maybe undertrained, but thinking back everyone else we interacted with was terrific so maybe he just doesn’t like his job. We started by sharing the lacinto kale, apple, walnut and Fourme D’Ambert cheese salad. This was by far the best of the food we had, apples julienned, kale cut in ribbons, nice vinaigrette, everything in balance. I had the grilled lamb blade chops special – silly me, I know that blade chops are far better braised than grilled – the advertised lamb-fat roasted potatoes were actually a potato, not roasted long enough, and a turnip and a radish. If everything had been braised together it would have been much tastier – provided of course that the vast quantities of fat had been trimmed off the chop. And believe me, I love fat. My friend had the sirloin skewer with mashed turnip and salsa verde – except there wasn’t any salsa verde as I think about it. The beef was tasty, better than my lamb. We shared the grilled rapini with buttermilk remoulade. The rapini itself was very nicely grilled but the dressing was too wimpy – rapini needs something with punch and acidity – a harissa vinaigrette would have made that rapini sing. So yes, it was one of those meals I thought I could mostly have made better myself – hate that. Have others been? Was it just an off night? It was also very cold in the dining room, not least due to a lot of coming and going of folks picking up their grilled chickens to go.


No, I bet they don’t.

They have have moved on to wondering if you are wondering whether they are wondering.

Gives you something new on a meta-meta-level to wonder about, no?


I’m going to have to think about this over some lengua tacos.


No, no. You must eat sesos tacos while you think, ojos tacos while you look, and then, and only then, lengua while you speak/post, being very careful not to eat your own tongue.

(A decade ago I ate tongue, eye, lip, cheek, etc., tacos, but I cannot find my account of it or my pix at short notice. Have I mentioned I’m intellectually vegetarian?)