Trattoria Il Panino, North End
A satisfying scallops limoncello, with a hefty caramelized crust on the surface of the scallops and a deep sear in between. A touch more deeply cooked than some of my favourites, but the tightly packed strands of scallop were still moist and sweet. The limoncello is more apparent in the light salad dressing, a good kick to crisp, sharp and gently bitter mixed greens. Appropriate to their claim to Almafi cuisine, a nice nod to Sorrento. The subsequent gnocchi was hearty, competent. Dark wooden interiors, intimate, casual and relaxing, more outstanding than the food in some regards. Complimentary limoncello for dessert. A fine place, but not significantly better than other places in the North End.
China Gourmet, Chinatown
From the list of Foochow dishes, a small to medium sized rice plate of drunken spare ribs came out impeccably. Battered and deep fried meat on bone, juicy, with a complex sweet and tangy sauce laced with rice. Also, many chunks of fried taro.
Ho Yuen Ting, Chinatown
A crisp Teochew stir-fry (in Chinese on the back of the menu), a nice melange of white chives, garlic chives, onions, pork, shiitake all nicely cut into bite sized strips, punctuateed by sweet, salty crunches from pickles. Best part: a hidden nest of thin fried taro strips under the stir fry, brittle and crunchy, a great textural variation to the softer stir fried items.
Taqueria Boca Grande, Kendall Square
Slightly over dry and fiberous carinitas were wholely redeemed by the plentiful lard spooned in with it, a slow richness that soaked into the rice. Another incarnation of pork and beans, with a decent salsa to cut into all that oil. Good for the relatively low price.
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