We hosted our son's graduation with a dinner at Green Street Grill (Green Street in Northhampton)and a luncheon after graduation at Holy Smokes (Rte 10 in Hatfield). These were two fantastic meals gleaned from the pages of the New England Board.
Green Street Grill had wonderful combinations of their own garden herbs with absolutely fresh ingredients. The potato leek soup with lovage and chive blossoms was delicious and complex in flavor. The crab cakes were superb and the freah Hadley-grown asparagus was sweet and tasted of spring. A surprising highlight was the rhubarb baby cake, freshly baked and as light as air. The still warm cake was complemented by an scoop of orange vanilla bean ice cream. Portions were perfect (not enormous amounts of mediocre food) and the flavors distinct and clean. Price was about $40 per person before tip which I thought was excellent value for the quality.
We were also very happy at Holy Smokes for a chow down BBQ that is about the best that i've had in New England. My wife and I have checked this place out a couple of times (all in the name of research,of course) before deciding to try this instead of the typical tea sandwich crap to celebrate this joyous day. What a great decision. There were 13 of us arriving at noon and the service and attention to our special day was great. There was a special of scallops with truffle oil that some in our group quite enjoyed (I didn't try them). It was a nice alternative for the less carnivorous but we were here for MEAT. Most of us had pork ribs or the house special beef short ribs. Both were luscious with a fine smoke ring bespeaking of hours in the smoke house. The beef ribs were particulary good and richly carmelized. The chipotle sauce is terrific, the sweet sauce, a little nondescript. Sides were good, mac and cheese, beans and slaw were the favorites but the grilled zucchini could have used more time on the grill. The cost was about $20 per person with huge portions. It wasn't crowded as we managed to beat the after church crowd to this former Lutheran Church converted to a shrine in praise of grilled meat. If all churches served such BBQ, the pews would be full every sunday. We had hymns of praise in our hearts and a fine smokey smell on our fingers on the drive home.