Restaurants & Bars

Boston Area Deli

A sharp contrast: Victors deli and Yerardi's

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A sharp contrast: Victors deli and Yerardi's

Gourmaniac | Apr 26, 2004 09:58 AM

I had two Italian meals on Saturday that is as sharp a contrast in a day's eating as I have ever had. Based on many board recommendations, I finally tried the chicken parm sub at Victors (Broadway in Ball Square, Somerville). This was a chowhound's delight. I saw Victor himself throw the breaded cutlets into the fryer. Minutes later, I had these crisp gems with the meat inside meltingly soft and luscious. The sauce, provolone and hot peppers and pickles (my request) complemented this terrific sandwich served in a fresh Quinzano roll. The large ($7.00) was enough for my lunch and a snack for my wife and myself later. For dinner, said wife and I went to Yerardi's on Watertown Street in Newton. Yerardi's has been there for many years and seemed like a nice neighborhood place in a good Italian neighborhood. Di Pasquales Sausage, Vecchia Roma and Antoines pastry are all located nearby so we assumed they knew what they were doing here. Our first clue to the contrary was the strong bleach smell going upstairs to the dining room. The staff is very friendly and it does have a nice neighborhood feel to it. We ordered the Eggplant Angelina (fried and served with mozzarella in a mushroom marsala sauce over linguine). The sauce was deadly,a cloyingly sweet sauce with an underlying bitterness from not cooking off the alcohol. The linguine was limp and tasted reheated. My wife ordered a veal, shrimp and chicken dish with the same criminally negligent sauce. The bill was $37 for two entrees, one glass of wine and tip. We left half of our plates unsampled and returned to the car to eat the aforementioned chicken parm leftovers to redeem the evening. I wish I could be kinder to Yerardi's in that the people were nice, but you have to wonder how such places stay in business.

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