In the early years of Chowhound, people could not say enough good things about East Coast Grill; it clearly was a board favorite. More recently, it seems to have fallen out of favor. It still has its fans (myself among them), but those who don't like the place have become more vocal.
I don't eat at ECG as often as I once did, but I still need to go in regularly for a fix. I did that last night and was very pleased that I did. I was not adventurous with my ordering, sticking with some old standbys, but was rewarded with a delicious meal.
I started with the hell sausage. (That's not what they call it, but it's the insanely spicy sausage from ECG's "hell" repertoir that's currently on the appetizer menu.) It was as delicious (and spicy) as ever, and now is served with a slaw of cabbage, avocado, mango and onion, which is both delicious and helps one cope with the heat of the sausage. A side of inner beauty also is included for dipping (which I happily did).
I then ordered the burnt ends sandwich and an order of their damn good fries (or whatever they call them!). My recollection is that when ECG first opened 25 years ago, the focus was on the BBQ, and one of the reasons the place was such a hit is that such good BBQ was relatively new to Boston. (The HooDoo is the only other place that I can recall where we could get decent BBQ in Boston.) We now have other options, like the wonderful Blue Ribbon, but I think ECQ still does mighty fine BBQ. I used the leftover inner beauty from my sausage on the sandwich, and it was awesome.
So perhaps not the most innovative meal, but I still love the place and still think that one could do far worse in the Boston area than a meal at ECG.
East Coast Grill and Raw Bar
1271 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02139