Friday, November 27, 2015

Taipei Gourmet Lexington

I was going to go to Masa in Woburn on this Black Friday and check out the place after they morphed into a Taqueria and Tequila bar, but they were serving brunch today, from their old menu, and I haven't had much luck there getting either a properly poached egg or "creamy" scrambled eggs so I went to Taipei Gourmet in Lexington instead.

Lunch special Flounder Fish with Szechuan Sauce ($7.99) ordered extra spicy. I haven't been here for a while, but it seems that bringing out the food on a serving dish with rice on the side have gone the way of the dodo. This, of course, means that the serving in now smaller. On the plus side was that the dish was pleasantly spicy and the fish was, as usual, perfectly cooked. The included spring roll was light and fresh.

I now ask them to hold my order for five minutes so that I have time to enjoy their excellent Hot & Sour soup. Look at that color! It tastes as good as it looks and you can even find slivers of shitake mushrooms in the soup.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Lavender Sudbury

I had some hankering for Classic American so I headed out to Lavender in Sudbury on this beautiful day. I wasn's sure about the traffic since this was the day before Thanksgiving but going there it wasn't a problem but going home I had to get off Rte 128 and take Rte 2 and then the backroads to get home.

They are located in a plaza just off Rte 20 with plenty of parking and they even have outdoor seating. Of course, the view is of the parking lot.

Very sleek and modern dining room with plenty of light and a really cool mural of the Great Wall of china.

There is also a sports bar separated from the dining room. There is another bar in the dining room area.

I never really got this. OK, it's crunchy and sickly sweet but why? You get linen tablecloth but paper napkins and of course, knife and fork.

Their lunch offering is a really good deal, not only do you get the aforementioned snack, you also have a choice of soups, differents apps and a salad. The Hot & Sour Soup seemed a bit bland to start with but then the heat kicked in! It turned out to be OK. The salad was mostly lettuce with some shards of cabbage and carrot added, but it had a dressing so at least it was a proper salad.

Here is what they call general Tso Chicken ($9.25) ordered extra spicy that the waitress confirmed when she delivering the dish and it was also marked as +spicy twice on the receipt. Of course it wasn't spicy, this is Sudbury. The chicken was made with the proper dark meat without too much batter, but some of them had been in the fryer a bit too long and was quite hard. I could have done with a tad more sauce. It was a VERY generous portion without any trace of the despicable broccoli. My appetizer of a chicken wing was a proper wing, nicely cooked, crisp on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside. Overall a very pleasant drive here and a nice lunch in a very cool place. Service was very good with a properly attired staff.

Lavender Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Redbones Somerville

Redbones Barbeque is located in Davis Square in Somerville and I have been going here since they opened in 1987. Back then this was THE place for BBQ mainly because there wasn't anyone else who did real BBQ, e.g. low and slow. They are still in business and that should tell you something about the quality of their food. Of course, they also have a good beer selection and are open and serve food really late.

There is on-street parking and also a community lot behind them.

The sign at the door is really cool and they still do valet bike parking, after all, this is Somerville.

The Lunch Special ($10.99). "1/4 st louis rack & 2 sides". For my sides, I picked Collared Greens and Baked Beans, you have to go with the classics, right? The ribs had a nice bark and smoke ring and was really tender and had a nice flavor. The collared Greens was well cooked and had a bit of tang to them. The beans were strange, very sweet but with a nice kick to them so I went ick! this is too sweet but wait it tastes really good. In the end, I finished off all the beans.

Nothing fancy about the interior. I, of course, took the wrong door and ended up in the bar but remembered my way around.

The place to be is up at the counter so that you can look into the kitchen and see all the dishes being prepped.

Yes, cooking with real wood fire, this was mostly used for reheating since all the BBQ is pre-cooked. I saw them cook burgers on the grill and they actually seasoned the burgers. What a concept!

This is the way to the Underbones.

I don't remember the Underbones looking like this way back then, but I don't think I was ever down here sober.

Redbones Barbecue Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Monday, November 23, 2015

Diva Indian Bistro Somerville

Diva Indian Bistro in Somerville has been here for quite some time now and I have always enjoyed their lunch buffet and paid them a visit today on a sunny but cold Monday.

They are located just around the corner from Redbones.

Not an extremely large buffet but the price is right at $9.95.

I have fond memories of their goat curry, but it wasn't present today.

Condiment section with Papads and dessert. How come that if I take two pictures, they are both in focus but if I only take one, it's out of focus?

It was such a cold day that I had to start with the Mulligatawny Soup and it was very good as was the papad. Of course, I adore papads.

I think you also have a choice of garlic naan, but I wasn't offered a choice, but the naan was one of the best I have had in a long time, thin and flaky and super light.

The Tandoori Chicken was in the same class as the naan, tender and tasty with a really nice smoky flavor from the tandoori. This is one of the better renderings of this classic that I have had in a long time. I'm never sure if the onions that the chicken rest on is for decoration or not but the onions looked seasoned and ready to eat so I did. Very tasty. The Aloo Gobi (Potatoes and Cauliflower) sans the cauliflower was also good. How do they cook the potatoes perfectly every time? The Saag Paneer was a bit bland, but the Chana Masala was very tasty with tender chickpeas.

Interior is nice with both booths and tables, This is how they started, then they expanded next door but that didn't work out since Amsterdam Falafel Shop is now located in that space.

Diva Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Deluxe Depot Diner Framingham

I saw Deluxe Depot Diner in Framingham on Chronicle and it looked so cool that I had to pay them a visit today.

They are located in a real train station in downtown Framingham.

It's a diner so I had to order the Hash and Eggs ($10.95). "Our famous homemade corned beef hash, two eggs any style, toast and home fries or mixed green salad". As you can see, the green salad didn't make it. The toast was very lightly toasted, but it had real butter on it so that was good. The eggs were cooked perfectly over easy and the hash was excellent and very tasty. I'll forgive them for the carrots that they sneaked in. The home fries were fluffy with a lightly crisped outside. Overall a very nice lunch in a really cool place.

You can see traces of the old station everywhere.

Nice dining room and they were busy today with people waiting, but there were open seats in the bar so I got seated quickly. A gentleman at the bar had a waffle with whipped cream and blueberries with an order of hash on the side for lunch.

Deluxe Depot Diner Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Sichuan Gourmet Framingham

I usually go to the restaurant in Billerica but then I found out that the New specials were different at Sichuan Gourmet in Framingham and since that couldn't go unexplored, I headed there for lunch on this sunny Saturday.

They are located in a small plaza just off Rte 9, don't blink, you will miss them.

Interior is both bright and spacious, unlike the Billerica location. The lunch menu was slightly different and the also serve lunch Mon-Fri, compared to Billerica that is doing so well that they don't serve from the lunch menu on Fridays.

Appetizer from the specials menu, "Smoking five flavored BBQ Spare Rib" ($7.95). I assume they meant smoked because they were and they also was excellent, tender and tasty but still with some bite left.

Next from the specials menu was the Garlic Flavored Pork Chops with Dry Chili ($13.95). The picture doesn't really show the size of the plate, it was about twice the size it looks here. Oh, was this a good dish! Tons of tender and flavorful pork with a hint of sweetness and a nice amount of heat and a nice burst of flavor when you bite into the Sichuan Peppercorns. I have to get back and try more stuff from the specials menu, this was outstandingly good. They got really busy as well and it not really surprising considering the quality and size of the food. They also have a number of dishes with frog legs (weekend only) that looked interesting but frog legs usually taste like chicken when I have had them in the past.

Sichuan Gourmet Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Friday, November 20, 2015

R.F. O'Sullivan & Son Somerville

I was recommended R.F. O'Sullivan & Son in Somerville a long time ago by a waitress when talking about burgers, but I never went until today at lunch time.

It's Somerville so your parking options are on the street, but it's free parking.

They are seriously known for their burgers. A Phantom Gourmet snippet is playing on their website and it can be a bit annoying. Anyway, this is the HOUSE BURGER ($10.25). "A Combo of ham, bacon, lettuce, tomato & of course, cheese". Choice of Sully's Fries or Onion Rings and I went with the fries. The fries were good, but more like steak fries. The burger was ordered medium rare and it come out more on the rare side which is fine by me, better than the other way around. As you can see it had a thick slice of ham with perfectly cooked crispy bacon on top and nicely melted cheese. The burger was beefy and juicy but lacked seasoning but had a nice char on the outside. Not a bad meal especially for the price. The burgers start out at $9.75 and tops out at $10.75 and you have almost thirty different burgers to select from.

It was smaller than expected on the inside and it wasn't this empty for long, the place filled up quickly with a hungry lunch crowd.

Where is the kitchen? It's literally at the end of the bar and it can't be more open than this.

R.F. O'Sullivan & Son Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato