It was date night for my almost 10 year old son and me. I wanted to stay close to home and not have Asian or Italian. A neighbor suggested the Emerald Rose on the Billerica/Burlington line.
We placed our orders fairly quickly and were talking when my dear boy lifted up his breadplate (don't ask me why) and asked, "Mom, is this supposed to be here?" "This" was a huge glob of mashed potatoes stuck to the plate and accompanying schmutz on the table cloth. I called the waitress over and rather than moving us to another table (the place was barely a third full) she replaced the table cloth. We held our drinks and tableware while she removed the dirty cloth and put a clean one in its place. My son thought this was neat. I, less so.
Our food arrived very quickly. My son had ordered the baby back ribs. The meat was very, very tender. The Guinness bbq sauce was generously applied, if too sweet for my taste. The fries were crisp and hot. Cole slaw was just okay. I had ordered the steak tips and if you ascribe to the "chew your food 100 times before swallowing" rule for good digestion, then this is the dish for you. I liked the marinade they used on the meat but I couldn't do more than suck the flavor out as the meat was unchewable. Thinking I had just hit a bad piece, I tried another -- and I chewed and chewed and finally just discreetly removed it. The waitress came to ask how things were and I told her the steak tips were full of gristle and I couldn't chew them. She offered to bring something else and I ordered the babyback ribs. While I waited for them, I tried the raisin bread. It was okay, if a bit dried out around the edges.
My ribs arrived and they were as described above. Very tender but no smoke at all if that's a must for you.
My son had behaved very well so I said we could split a dessert. He chose the chocolate lava cake (what else?) and it was tasty.
Our bill came to $47 and change.
Overall, an okay experience but nothing to run back to.
I looked into the bar on our way out and it was hopping. Maybe this is a good place to stop in for a drink (without child, of course).
My son's review:
I think the service was great. The ribs had little bone chips in them but the rootbeer was delicious! The buttered bread was good. The cake was mouth-watering. Overall, I would give it a 6 out of 10.