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a few of my favorite holes in the wall


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Restaurants & Bars 4

a few of my favorite holes in the wall

Justin Kerber | May 9, 2000 12:49 PM

Here's a message I've been meaning to share with the Hub Chowhound community for a while now -- not a question, just a bunch of good answers.

My favorite Indian food: Little India, Moody Street, Waltham. This place is a treasure. Go especially for the Saag Paneer (spinach w/ homemade cheese), and there's a chickpea and tomato dish I really enjoy also.
runners-up: India House, Harvard Ave., Brookline (Coolidge Corner) (run by my once-upon-a-time landlord's kids); Bombay Bistro, Beacon Street, Brookline (also Coolidge Corner)

Favorite Greek: Niko's, Harvard Ave., Brookline. I mentioned this in reply to somebody else's question. Family restaurant was once magnficent, but they ruined their ambience when they opened their new place cafeteria style. And the food's just not the same anymore.

Favorite Chinese: I'm still mourning the loss of Ho Yuen Ting in Chinatown, but Chau Chau's is OK and Shanghai is OK.

Favorite Japanese: Fugakyu, on Beacon St. Not cheap, but sushi is not where you want to compromise. The ambience is very interesting. Actually, we usually get takeout to keep costs low.

Favorite Pizza: Bluestone Bistro, Com. Ave. and Chiswick Street (aka Bluestone Square). Wonderful gourmet 'za with incredible crust and interesting toppings.

for ordinary 'za: Pino's Pizza, on Cleveland Circle. Generous portions, nice crust, good toppings. Runner-up: Imperial Pizza, Washington St., Brighton Center. Better cheese pizza than Pino's, but the toppings aren't as good.

Favorite falafel and middle eastern: Rami's, on Harvard St. (Glatt Kosher) They make felafel with a real imported Israeli falafel machine, and I enjoy the sound of Hebrew conversation swirling in the air around me as much as the wonderful smell. Be sure to say "Ma Nishma" to Rami (the big guy w/ Kippah). Man, I miss Cafe Aviv, but that's water under the bridge.
Runner-up: Schwarma King, Beacon St. Also wonderful falafel - a little to much of one spice for me, but if you got turned out by the falafel in Lebanon as opposed to Israel, you'll probably like this more. They also have several varieties of shwarma, as opposed to just one, and a lot more intriguing desserts than Rami's. I also like the raisin juice.

Mexican: Anna's Taqueria, Beacon St. and Harvard St. Wonderful, enormous softshell burritos. Go for the tamarind soda, too.

for sit-down Mexican, Sol Azteca on Beacon St. at Park Drive is amazing. It's one of the only Mexican restaurants I know that doesn't shamelessly cheat and serve up tex-mex food, and it isn't annoyingly decorated like a carnival fun house, either. Go for the mole poblano - I've hardly ever encountered this dish outside of Mexico. Warning: I hear the Newton restaurant by the same name is not as good, but I've never been to it.

Fajitas and Ritas on Route 9 at Harvard St. merits a mention also.

Barbecue: I like Village Smokehouse (do any of you sense a Brookline prejudice? It's just b/c I've lived in Brighton and Brookline for the past 6 years); get the beef ribs, the brisket, or the chicken. or, hell, get the baby back ribs if you want -- I don't eat swine or shellfish any more. I hear it's not the best in the city though -- Blue Ribbon in Newton is supposed to be awesome, and Jake 'n Earl's somewhere is supposed to be incredible. I hear good things about Redbones in Somerville, but I understand they do "dry" BBQ, as opposed to the Smokehouse's "wet" approach, which is what I do when I do my own BBQ.

You already know my stands on Brazilian (Cafe Brazil, Cambridge St., Brighton) and Vietnamese (Sai Gon, Cambridge St., Brighton) from my earlier post.

New England seafood: My wife's family swears by the Barnacle in Marblehead, and Bob's Clam Hut in (I think) Kittery, Maine. Like I said, I quit eating shellfish a few years back, but I find both of these places have wonderful fish and chips.

I'm probably foregetting quite a few gems, but that's enough for now. B'tay Avon (Hebrew for "Bon Apetit")


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