Posts Tagged ‘MA’

Victoria’s Diner, Boston, MA

4 August 2016

Victoria's Diner Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

This was the best meal I have had in the Boston area, ever.

We started out with some excellent iced tea. Great stuff. I had a bowl of beef stew that I would have been happy to get anywhere. Big chunks of braised beef, veg, and wonderful broth, all tender and highly flavorable. YUM!

Raegan had baked haddock, and ate all of it, reporting it excellent. Erin had a bowl of mac and cheese, it was great, as I had about 10 bites of it. She liked it too. I had steak tips with mashed potatoes, gravy, and baked beans. All excellent! The steak tips were tender and had great beef flavor. I loved the mashers and gravy. The beans were good also. I could finish the tips, but between the stew, Erin’s mac and cheese, and the tips, I left a small pile of taters and 80% of the beans.

We finished the meal off with a huge piece of very good chocolate cake.

Service was very friendly and fast. The food was excellent. The iced tea was welcome. Our check was $80.14. Recommended, I would go back any time.

Blue Hills Grill, Canton, MA

4 August 2016

Blue Hills Grille Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

After we walked up Blue Hill, we hit the Grill for late lunch.

First of all, the iced tea is very good. Really nice after the slightly sweaty walk. Raegan got a turkey wrap, really good turkey in that. Erin got fish and chips, it was two HUGE pieces of fish, and one of those was her limit. Finally, I got shepherd’s pie, and it was perfect, one of the best I’ve had, and done in the traditional style.

Service was very friendly, the food was great. Our check was $55.57, a bit expensive (perhaps we are noting this is a trend for New England). Again, the iced tea was great. Very nice place, would be happy to eat here again.

Olivio’s Pizza, Norwood, MA

3 August 2016

Olivio's Grill and Pizzeria Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

We had been thinking about pizza for a couple days, and decided that tonight was the night. I found Olivio’s from Google and we headed that way.

Just so you know, go to the counter and order, then go sit down, and they will bring your food to you.

We started off with some decent buffalo wings, and Raegan had a Greek salad. They didn’t have iced tea (too bad), so I had DP, not bad.

Our dinner was a large (14″) pizza that Reagan and I shared. Her half was ham and mushrooms, mine was a Meat Lover’s, minus the salami. Erin had a small chicken parm. Both of these are hand tossed, thin crust pizzas, and both were better than average. The crust was crispy but not tough, and the toppings were very good. Kind of unusual, the sausage was largish slices cut from the sausage log-style.

Service was very friendly. The place was not crowded. Our check was $55.89. We ended up bringing about 2/3rd of Erins pizza, and about 1/3 of our pizza, back to the room with us for a snack, or breakfast :). Not bad at all, I would be happy to go back.

Blue Ribbon BBQ, Newton, MA

20 February 2014

Blue Ribbon BBQ on Urbanspoon

OK, so I get behind a bit. This post is the last of a group of restaurants that I was in while on three weeks of travel.

I was driving to Boston Logan getting ready to head back home early, on 04 Feb, and it was dinnerish. My flight didn’t leave until 1945. I had just visited an Eastern Mountain Sports, and did a Google search for restaurants, and this place was right up the road, and on the Mass Turnpike (which goes right to the airport), so it worked.

I got a two-meat, with pulled pork and sliced brisket. Both were very good, smoked and tender. The BBQ sauce was thin and didn’t really have much flavor. The amount of food was pretty large. My sides were green beans (very good) and baked beans (OK). The meat was surprisingly good, better than I expected.

The iced tea was kind of odd but not bad. I tried the lemonade but didn’t like it; it had a sharp taste that was unpleasant. Service was a little slow; it seemed like the first time to built my meal failed, and it got tossed. But the Q was pretty good. My check was $20.84.

Kennedy’s Public House, Norwood, MA (Hampton Inn)

18 February 2014

Kennedy's Public House on Urbanspoon

This restaurant is in the Hampton Inn at Norwood. A week ago Monday, my co-worker Dave and I had dinner here.

I got a porterhouse, which was the special of the day. It came with a baked potato and a salad. The potato and salad were great. The steak was not the best I have had, but it was pretty darn good, cooked just like I asked (medium), and nice and juicy.

The iced tea was pretty good, and kept refilled. Service was pretty much right on the money. My check was $37.18. Pretty good.

Conrad’s Restaurant, Norwood, MA

6 August 2013

Conrad's Restaurant on Urbanspoon

I’m about to publish a string of restaurant reviews from our trip to the northeastern part of the country. This one was great!

We picked Conrad’s based on reviews. The reviews were understated.

We started off with clam chowder. That was the best clam choweder I have ever had. Hands down.

Raegan got seafood tuscany and found it excellent, but a huge amount of food. Erin got shrimp scampi and loved it. Ian and I got steak tips, a signature dish for Conrad’s. These were perfect. Largish chunks of beef, perfectly cooked, tender and flavorful. I particularly liked the rice pilaf mine came with.

The iced tea was pretty good. Service was perfect, and very friendly. Our check was $90.37. About $7 of that was the first martini for Raegan.

We would gladly go back.

Northeastern Family Trip, 24 July – 02 August 2013

5 August 2013

We took a 10-day vacation trip that combined a bit of work for me with a lot of travel for all of us, a loop that started and ended at New York LaGuardia airport, and looped from New Jersey back to Connecticut.

Photos from the trip on on my Google site here.

Trip summary: Just under 1400 miles, and seven states: New Jersey, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.

We started out by flying from OKC to LGA on 24 July. I bought my ticket through my work travel site (saving over $100 by flying to a NYC airport instead of Boston, where I would be working), and got the family tickets by cashing in some American AAdvantage miles. We had good flights in, arriving at LGA around 2130. Here is where it got fun. The signage out of LGA is for crap. We had no less than three oops moments trying to get from there to our hotel in New Jersey, every one of them within five miles of the airport. It wasn’t any better on the way back in (see that later). We broke a couple laws regarding turn lanes and such, but eventually got moving, and crossed the RFK bridge to get our first sight of Manhattan!

As we approached the Washington Bridge, it turns out that the RFK-westbound bridge ramp was… closed! No signs telling us that. We did watch as a couple enterprising New Yorkers drove around the barrels and cones and a curb to get on the bridge anyway. We drove down the Hudson for a couple miles, broke another couple laws turning around, and got up on the bridge that way. We then continued the drive to Parsippany, NJ, our base camp for several nights. The only remaining adventure was being passed by at least 15 motorcycles, weaving in and out of traffic. We were doing 80, they had to be going 120; those guys were moving.

The next morning, Thursday, we got up and had breakfast. Our plan for the day was to take the Staten Island Ferry to New York. That plan survived until we passed a National Park Service sign that pointed to the Thomas Edison Factory National Historic Park in West Orange, NJ. It was a GREAT detour! I was utterly fascinated by the place. Edisons work was so wide ranging as to be incomprehensible. The mostly self-guided tour led through the main building where stuff was machined. After lunch, we headed north to the town of Paterson, NJ, and the Great Falls there. We next just drove out into the countryside to look at the pretty hills and trees. We ended up back in the hotel around 2100.

Friday we made good on the Thursday plan. We drove through the Newark area and made our way to Staten Island. Since we were inbound to NYC, it was a $13 bridge toll. We mad a heck of a time trying to park at the Ferry lot, but ended up using on-street parking a couple blocks away. We missed a ferry by one minute, and so had a half hour wait. The half hour ride across the Hudson was amazing! Tours out to Liberty Island were booked up through September, but the ferry ride past Liberty Island was awe-inspiring. I always enjoy ships and ports, and that was a huge bonus on the ferry crossing.

We got to NYC with the expected crush of people; it was amazing! We had lunch at a streetside shop, and headed for the Subway. We had a little glitch here. Each ride is $2.50. I went to a subway pass station, and bought two $15 passes. The third one, it complained about my credit card. We used Raegans card (same company and account, different number), but same result. WTH? We used Ians card to get the last two, no sweat. We figured that USAA was being prudent since us using the card out of state was tripping a flag. We called, and that was NOT the case. USAA showed the two passes being bought, but no declines on the other attempts. And the card worked two minutes later at a restaurant. My theory is that the subway machine/network was unhappy about buy three cards of the same denomination in a row. Regardless, we had our passes.

We headed uptown to the area south of Central Park. We walked the famous 42nd Street, Times Square, the Rockerfeller Center area, visited the flagship American Girl store there, and just generally drank in the sights, the people, the smells, the food carts. It was ALIVE there. Eventually we were quite walked out, and so we headed for the nearest subway stop, which happened to be Grand Central Terminal. That was one amazing building! The architecture was stunning. Although the high ceiling was intended to collect and vent steam and smoke, now it is just gorgeous and HUGE.

We rode the subway back to the ferry port, had a short wait for the next one, and then an amazing ride back to Staten Island with the lit up NYC skyline and the Statue of Liberty lit as well. After some car stuff on Staten Island, we found a restaurant, and got back to the hotel around 2300.

Saturday we visited the Intrepid Air and Space Museum. This is the WWII/Korean War carrier USS Intrepid along with a lot of other exhibits. We headed out from the hotel and drove to NYC via the Lincoln Tunnel (another $13 toll), then parked on a former dock ($35). We spent basically the entire day at the Intrepid; there is a LOT to see. A number of the decks are open. I wish the engine spaces were open, I think that would be fascinating! We were able to attend a lecture by four senior NASA folks on the future of manned spaceflight (and both Raegan and I got to ask questions, very cool). The Intrepid has the shuttle Enterprise on her after deck, which was a nice treat. Again, I wish the shuttle was actually open; I don’t see why it wouldn’t be able to be. It would be the coolest thing to walk the middeck and into the payload bay. The only thing we didn’t get to do was walk through the submarine Growler; they close it early for some reason.

At the New Jersey Meadowlands, there was an interesting structure that reminded me of enclosed ski areas I’ve seen pictures of in Asia. A little research here showed that’s exactly what it was, as part of a large entertainment and amusement park development for the Meadowlands. Not open, unfortunately. Maybe this fall according to Wikipedia.

We headed back to NJ through the tunnel again (no toll since we were outbound), had dinner, and got back to the hotel around 2100.

A note on meals here. We ate in a number of diners. I’ve seen NJ referred to as the diner capital of the world. The meals we ate in diners were at worst pretty good; none were bad. They were by and large, huge amounts of food. The menus were varied. It’s hard to get fried chicken in the OKC area, but I think every diner we ate at had fried chicken, and it was good stuff. The only downer, we had one place with decent iced tea during the trip; it was at a diner. I actually looked in a WalMart for a jug of Red Diamond; they had some other brand, but it was lemoned, so I passed.

On Sunday we got up and packed, and headed north. Our objective was Burlington, VT. We got a late start. We drove through Parsippany and one other small town. We then stopped for a full gas tank, and found that NJ requires gas stations to be full service. You can’t do anything in the process except hand your credit card to the attendant. We continued north through stunning rolling, tree-covered hills, eventually getting off the interstate to find Kaaterskill Falls in the Catskills.

This was a great little hike, about 1.3 miles roundtrip and 600 ft of elevation gain.

The only problem is that the parking area is a bit away from the trailhead, and you have to walk along the road with only about two feet of space. It’s dangerous. I would be very surprised if people have not been hit and injured or killed along this.

The Catskills were beautiful. There are lots of trails in the area that I would like to go back and walk. Evetually we got into Albany, accompanied by heavy rain with a couple vivid bolts of lightning. We got dinner at a very good family style place, and continued north. Darkness was falling as we got to Lake George, and eventually we crossed a very pretty bridge over the southern end of Lake Champlain. We got into Burlington around 2200. I would far rather make that drive in daylight next time.

On Monday morning, we were in the Hilton right on the waterfront in Burlington. We toured the ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center (ECHO is Ecology, Culture, History and Opportunities). This is a bit of a natural history center, partly an aquarium, partly a childrens museum, and partly a research center). It’s pretty cool. We also walked along waterfront for Lake Champlain. From Burlington, we headed out through the Green Mountains of Vermont through Montpelier. We drove on into New Hampshire and towards the White Mountains. There were a bunch of very slow drivers along this route, like 20 miles an hour under the speed limit. It is, however, a beautiful drive.

One word about wildlife. From the moment we left Burlington, we saw sign after sign after sign warning us about moose crossing, moose activity, moose this, moose that. We saw exactly zero moose. I think that the VT and NH tourism departments need to get on the ball and get those moose out for us tourists to gawk at.

We drove up Mount Washington in NH. The views were magnificent. We saw a stunning, bright full-arc rainbow on the way up. It was cold (50F) and pretty windy up there higher than 6,000 ft. I enjoyed looking at the views, and the exhibits of the “worst weather in the world”. Afterward, we headed south into the Boston area, getting in around 2245.

On Tuesday, I went to work for the day. Raegan and the kids went to Concord and explored the area.

Wednesday, I worked again. Afterward, we went back to Concord, visiting the Minuteman National Historic Park where the American Revolution started. We also went to the Concord Museum, which was a very neat facility. Afterward, we drove down the battlefield trail to Lexington. The day ended with us tooling around outer Boston for a while, then driving downtown to look at Old North Church (which is wedged very tightly between many newer buildings), the Boston Commons, Beacon Hill, and the State Capitol.

Thursday, we took it easy heading back towards New York. We had lunch in Rhode Island, visited Misquamicut Beach, stopped in Mystic, CT to visit the Seaport and have tea, then drove through New London, into NY and our last hotel for the trip.

We got up Friday morning for our last day, had a leisurely breakfast, and headed out the 24 mile trip three hours before departure time. It took and hour and a half to get there!

Random Notes

We had a Hyundai Tuscon rental car. It was a good size for the four of us. We traveled with three biggish rolling suitcases, and one checkable rolling suitcase. Those and our four backpacks were our entire gear set. We did pretty well, I think. We bought some stuff on the road (including some shirts on sale for Ian), and managed to get it all back with no problem.

This was a connected trip. We didn’t use a single paper map (although we had one for Vermont). We relied on Google Maps for navigation. There were a couple places we didn’t have connectivity; mainly along the eastern shore of Lake George, NY. The car had dual 12VDC plugs and one 5VDC USB up front. I bought a 200W inverter/power supply at Target that took a 12VDC input and put out 120VAC, 5VDC USB, and another 12VDC (it was only $25, a good deal). We ran that inverter into the back seat for the kids, and Raegan and I shared the USB up front. It worked out pretty good.

Some of the roads we traveled on were terrible. We were constantly driving on a minefield, it felt like. NYC roads were especially bad, to include the expressways, the arteries, and the side roads. Signage was lacking in many instances. We totally missed (for example) the turnoff for the RFK bridge. Once we figured that out, we hit the toll booth for the bridge, and were looking for I-278S; we only saw a sign for I-278 and followed it… north. The turn the other way had no sign for I-278 at all; it should have had one for I-278S.

If you are reading this and you are in charge of road signage around LGA, you should be fired. Every other airport I have been to has large signs on approach for rental car returns. The only ones around LGA are ON THE GROUNDS. And since the rental car returns are on the far west side, they should have signs before that exit to get people there who are coming to LGA eastbound. After getting turned around, I saw a sign (it was probably only 8×14″) for Avis as I came west. Dumb.

Summary

We left a LOT undone up there. Raegan and I were constantly amazed at how green and beautiful it was. I’m already thinking that the next time, we will spend less time in NJ/NY and more time in upstate NY, maybe Canada, and drive over into Maine.

This 10-day trip cost us about $3,000, which isn’t too bad, I think. We saved a huge amount of money by staying 20 miles out of NYC. Of course, that is partially offset by the tolls, but the hotel costs in NYC were $250+ per night; our Embassy Suites was $120, and the HGI we stayed in the last night was only $105.

There is a lot of cool stuff that we didn’t realize was doable, for example, visiting the Coast Guard Academy in New London, and the USS Nautilus museum in Groton. We saw the Edison exhibits via a National Park Service (NPS) sign on the Interstate; we otherwise would have had no clue that it was there. And it was very cool. We also passed on many shorter stops that could have added up to hours of extra time; an example is the overlook of the Hudson from the parkway we drove down from our last night hotel on the way to the airport. More research next time.

Food… we ate very well on this trip, all local. Diners have huge amounts of food. I think the prices are 20% higher than prices back home.

We need to get moving more quickly in the morning… OK, the heck with it, we haven’t learned how to do that in 10+ years, so never mind.

Navigation in the NYC area is tough! It’s best to have a navigator that is able to look ahead a turn or so so help the driver out.

I wish the NYC area would accept credit cards.

I would like to walk around more of NYC, including every borough, the islands, and the like.

And there is a heck of a lot of hiking in the northeast…

J & M Diner, Frameington, MA

1 August 2013

J & M Diner on Urbanspoon

We had just completed another leg of the Visit Every American Girl Doll Store On Planet Earth tour, and needed lunch. A quick Google Maps search for “diner” pointed us at J&M, one town over in Frameingham. We got there about 1300 and left about 45 min later.

First of all, be warned: cash only. If you are like we are, and carry little cash, that might be an issue.

This was a nice little place. Ian and I got cheeseburgers, mine had bacon. His was a double, a full pound of beef (which he basically inhaled). These were very good burgers, with great beef flavor, and cooked just right, with that nice crust that should be on every burger (no mush!). They came with white American cheese; mine had enough mayo to cause a dietician to despair. Erin got a serious grilled cheese, and liked it. Raegan got an egg salad sandwich, which had so much egg salad on it that the bread gave up quickly. I had quite a lot of it, it was excellent egg salad, without the crap a lot of places use as filler. My only suggestion would be to add a bit of chopped sweet pickle to the mix. Raegan had baked beans as a side, they were very good. Ian got potato salad as a side, also very good.

A pleasant surprise: they had very good iced tea. We’ve been out for 8 days now, and I’m really missing my iced tea, so that was very nice. Service was fast and very friendly. Our check was $49, which isn’t a bad value at all for the food, and the quality. I would go back anytime.

Uno Chicago Grill, Dedham, MA

7 February 2013

UNO Chicago Grill on Urbanspoon

We ate at a Uno in the Chicago area several years ago, and really liked it. I had dinner here with my friends Clark and Ron Monday evening.

I got an individual deep dish pizza, with pepperoni, hamburger, and sausage. It was very good. I think it needed a bit more pizza sauce. But the crust was perfect.

The iced tea was very good, service was very good as well. My check was $15.60.

Westbury Farms, Norwood, MA

7 February 2013

Westbury Farms on Urbanspoon

Since it was snowing last night, didn’t want to drive too far, and this place was about a mile from my hotel. Got there at 1940 (they close at 2000).

I got a 3×3, which is three eggs, three bacons, three sausage links, and three pancakes. Maybe it should be a 4×3. I asked for the sausage to be replaced by bacon, so I really got a (2×3)+6. Regardless, it was very good. The eggs were perfectly over easy, the bacon was just the right amount of crispy, and the pancakes were very yummy.

The iced tea was good, service was outstanding. My check was $14.69. Good stuff.

Mick Morgans Irish Pub and Restaurant, Newton Highlands, MA

7 February 2013

Mick Morgans, Irish Pub and Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Ron and I had finished our meetings and were headed to our hotel at the airport, and looking for lunch. We drove by Mick Morgans, and decided it was the place. Good choice!

I got the shepherds pie. Simply outstanding. It was on the small size, but it was lunch, so that was OK. It came with two very good pieces of garlic bread. Nothing of this was left. I decided to finish off with some dessert; I got an apple crisp, which was baked apple shavings with a cinammon cracker crust, topped with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream, good stuff.

Service was perfect, friendly, and Irish accented. My check was $22.10. I would gladly go back.

Papas Roast Beef and Pizza, Boston, MA

7 February 2013

Papa's Roast Beef and Pizza on Urbanspoon

My buddy Ron and I were taking a stroll through breezy and cold Boston, and needed dinner. We had walked by Papas earlier, and needed dinner, so we decided to give it a try.

We both got a Super Beef and a drink. The beef was thinly-sliced and coarsely chopped medium-rare roast beef. The beef had a bbq-like sauce and mayo on it (fry sauce!), on a bun that I think was an egg bun with toasted onions on it. It was pretty good, albeit quite messy. Ron went after his with a fork, and I tried to treat it like a sandwich, although there was a lot of rebuildiing going on.

They advertised fresh brewed tea, but there wasn’t any while were there (about 1745). Service was fast. My check was $9.90. Good stuff.

Jake n Joe’s Sports Grill, Norwood, MA

21 March 2012

Jake n Joes on Urbanspoon

We got into the Boston area late last night, and Clark and I were hungry. We stopped at Jake n Joes since it was across the street from the hotel we were staying at. We got there about 2150; the grill was closing at 2200, so we ordered quickly.

I got a BBQ burger, which is a half pound of beef that has pretty darn good flavor. It has some BBQ sauce on it, some sauteed onions (that are fairly thick, and needed to be cooked longer), and bacon. I added onion rings. The burger was pretty darn good; very messy. The rings were OK at best. The iced tea was OK, it tasted like a concentrate. Service was OK. My check was $16 and some change. It was OK. I might even go back one day.

Pacini’s Italian Eatery, Needham, MA

21 March 2012

Pacini's Italian Eatery on Urbanspoon

A couple work friends and I chose this place pretty much at random after a Google Maps search, after our meeting today was done. We got there about 1815, and left around 1940. The restaurant was not crowded.

As is my custom with a new italian restaurant, I chose one of my standard test meals. In this case, it was 1.5 standard test meals, as I selected chicken parmesan. Instead of the ziti and marinara side, I asked for fettuccine alfredo as my side. The brought me two huge chicken breasts of parmesan, and a similarly sized bowl of fettuccine alfredo – essentially two meals! Too much even for me.

I was not impressed by the chicken parmesan. The meat was tough, the breading was also, and the breading was constantly flaking off. The chicken didn’t have much flavor. The marinara was a chunky style, with big tomato chunks (I prefer smoother). The marinara also had a distinct flavor of bell peppers. I didn’t eat even half of this chicken.

The fettuccine alfredo had a fairly light alfredo. The noodles were pretty overcooked and mushy. This part of the meal was far better than the chicken.

The iced tea was strong and tasty. Service was very good. My meal was $15.41. Not bad for essentially two meals! I would try the marsala next time.

The Colonial House Restaurant, Norwood, MA

19 March 2011

Colonial House Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Four of us went needed dinner Wednesday evening, and I picked this place from Google Maps. It is located in what is pretty much a residential area of Norwood.

We got there around 1730, and were immediately seated. When I asked our server if separate checks were a problem, she said “Yes”. Hmmm…

I ordered iced tea; it was not the best, I think it was a concentrate but wasn’t too bad. I got some onion rings for the table; they were excellent! I asked for some ranch dressing, and it made them even better.

I ordered a 14oz sirloin. The steak was a perfect medium, and had decent flavor, and no charring. I don’t remember what it came with. The meal overall was pretty darn good.

Our checks did come separate, so that was good. Mine was $28.58. Service was a touch on the randomly slow, but not excessively so. It was quite brusque, though.

I wouldn’t mind trying Colonial House again.

Legal C Bar, Dedham, MA (AKA Legal Sea Foods)

18 December 2010

Legal C Bar - Legacy Place on Urbanspoon

On Wednesday, a couple co-workers wanted to get some seafood while we were in the Boston area, and the desk clerk at the hotel pointed us to Legal C Bar, which is apparently a subsidiary of Legal Sea Foods. It was a mile or so from the hotel, so we headed over.

We got there around 1800, and were seated immediately. There are a mix of tables – traditional booths and tables. We were seated at a high table with bar-height seating. The place was very crowded, about 80% full, and was completely full when we left.

OK – if you are not terribly interested in seafood, this really isn’t your place. There were only two non seafood items – a beef tips (I saw one on a nearby table, and it looked like it was more brown gravy with small chunks of presumably beef over a lot of rice), and a chicken dish.

I went with the flow and got fish and chips. I started out with clam chowder. It was really good, but a bit expensive at $6.50. The fish and chips – I was really disappointed. I’ve had fish and chips in England, right off the street, and found it really, really good. This was OK at best. The fish I expected was a fillet of cod, and what I got was chunks of what I suspect was not cod. The fish was, well, fishy, and left a not-too-pleasant aftertaste in my mouth. The cole slaw and fries and onion straws were OK. But the chunks of fish were just not impressive.

The tea was good, but it ran out often, so that was kind of a drag. My check ended up being $27.72, which just does not seem like good value for the money. Yes, I *know* that LSF is famous, and so is more expensive, but the seafood was simply not outstanding. We talked about this on the drive back to the hotel, and we speculated that we saw a less desirable species of fish due to overfishing.

My friend Clark got hot tea. This came with the single coolest teabag I’ve seen – a long pyramid. I thought about taking it back home to show Raegan.

That cup, BTW was $3.50. When I think about an entire box of Trader Joe’s Irish Breakfast Tea, which is $3 for 80 bags, that works out to about $0.04 per bag. That leads to believe that the hot water at LCB is extremely expensive, or the markup at LCB is just hideous. Somehow, I think the markup is the problem.

They did have very cool bathrooms. The “sinks” were glass panels tilted forward at you at a 45deg angle, the water splashes off the panels and runs down and back toward a tradition basin.

We left about 1930. I don’t think I will ever go back.

The Barking Crab, Boston, MA

7 March 2010

Barking Crab on Urbanspoon

OK, so I am not a seafood fan, but friends of mine are. So after visiting the New England Aquarium, the Barking Crab was on the way back to where we had parked the car, so we decided to eat here for lunch.

We got there around 1300, and the place was pretty much full. It looks like a dump, BTW.

Ron got crab cakes and pronounced them excellent. His came with some onion rings that were excellent; they had to been made fresh. I liked them.

I got shrimp scampi, but with sauteed chicken since I’m not a huge fan of shrimp. The chicken was OK, it was in a couple biggish slices, and it was in a bowl of thinnish noodles and a very thin broth. It was not terribly tasty. I ate all of it, but it just wasn’t impressive.

We got iced tea. The sever said they brewed it there, but it had a significant coffee aftertaste to it. I tried to mask it with sugar, but it wasn’t enough. I switched to Coke instead.

We left around 1450, and the place was still packed. My check was $21.13.

If I went there again, I’d try a cheeseburger. One a couple tables away looked pretty good.

Michael Shay’s Rib and Seafood, Provincetown, MA

4 March 2010

Michael Shay's Rib & Seafood on Urbanspoon

A work friend and I decided to visit Cape Cod during our trip to the Boston area. It’s a LONG drive out from Boston. We went all the way to the farthest point, which is Provincetown. As we headed out of the very sleepy place, we passed Michael Shay’s and decided to try it. We ended up lucking into a nearly perfect meal.

The “Ribs” part of the title is for baby back ribs. We didn’t try them.

We started out with salads. The salad bar is surprisingly large. I got ranch dressing, and while a bit thick it was wonderful. I put it on a mixed salad of iceberg and Caesar greens.

I also got a bowl of New England Clam Chowder. It was excellent, fairly thick, with decent sized chunks of potatoes and a lot of clam. Really good.

Since Ron wanted seafood, but decided to get his tomorrow, we both got a special of a large Ribeye. It came with sauteed onions and mushrooms. His was medium rare, mine was medium.

Both steaks were cooked perfectly! Both were well marbled, and mine was very tender; a couple of places it was fork-tender all the way through. Mine was very, very tasty. I think this was the best steak I’ve had in a while, just fantastic flavor. The sauteed onions and mushrooms were perfect. Ron got a twice-baked potato with his, I got rice pilaf with mine. There was not a scrap of food left.

The service was excellent.

A very pleasant surprise: the iced tea was PERFECT! They brew it there. It was a perfect blend of strength and taste.

We got there around 1800 and two tables were occupied. One other table was occupied when we left at 2008. My check was $34.96, and I think it was excellent value.

This is the go-to place for Provincetown for me.

09 March:

I almost forgot. The cell service at the restaurant was very spotty. I noticed after a while a sign on the special of the day board: they had wifi. I scanned, then connected with my Blackberry, and had a solid data and VoIP connection for the rest of the meal. Cool!

Chateau Restaurant, Norwood, MA

4 March 2010

Chateau Restaurant on Urbanspoon

This restaurant is immediately north of the hotel I was staying in on a business trip. The front desk recommended it, so I headed over there for lunch with a work friend. There are a number of locations around Boston.

We got there around 1405, the place was virtually empty.

Ron got a salad and “wedding soup”, and pronounced them good.

I got a chicken marsala. It was good but unique. The marsala had little marsala flavor, and was very sweet. It imparted a good flavor to the chicken. The meal came with mostacelli and marinara. If I got this again, I would ask for fettucine as a substitute.

The tea was OK, but it had a slight coffee taste that was not pleasant.

We left at 1453, and the place was virtually empty. My check was about $14.00. I think it was good overall.