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I adore whole belly fried clams. Surprisingly, after more than 20 years living in the Boston area, I still had never been to the Clam Box in Ipswich. I just could never muster the strength to deal with long lines. But when my sister (also a clam freak) came for a weekday visit, she declared it criminal that I hadn't been...and so off we went. They were fresh, tender, nicely coated and the fry job was top notch. However, they had an off-putting aftertaste. I am a fish-eating vegetarian and haven't eaten meat for over 10 years...the flavor to me was reminiscent of beef....sort of brisket-y. Onion rings had a similar flavor. Do they use lard? Anyway, I won't return. There are plenty of other places to get excellent clams that use vegetable oil. I know I'm breaking with a traditional CH darling of the boards....but they just weren't my cup of tea.
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