Aromatherapy has been mentioning this place for a while and I finally had the chance to stop by. What a *truly* hidden gem. The tiny store-front has a few tables inside and an extensive menu of Portuguese favorites. I asked the friendly guy what the best thing on the menu is and he demured. "The chicken (BBQ chicken with garlic sauce) is our most popular, but everything is good." Of course.
Not in the mood for chicken, I thought about the seafood stew, either with or without rice and there was lots of Bacalhau (cod) dishes to choose from but being the pork loving girl I am I had to try the pork, clams and potatoes. For $10 I had enough food for two and if the quality of all their cooking is that good, I'm in serious trouble. Really, it's a great value -- I think if you ordered two of their dishes you could surely feed 4-5 people for $20.
The gravy was delicious (I'm going out on a limb here to say I liked it better than the same dish at O'Fado) and the potatoes were fried up just right. What I didn't really get was they seemed to dump a handful of pickled veggies (cauliflower, carrots, etc) on top of the whole thing. They were a crunchy counterpoint to the melting pork cubes and the awesome small portuguese rolls (4) that came with my order, but they seemed afterthought-ish. Maybe they are traditional? Who knows? Only a handful of clams but the pork and gravy was the star.
Anyway, the guy couldn't be nicer, the deal couldn't be much better and I'm so glad I finally followed Aroma's houndly instincts over there. Do yourself a favor and check it out.
J&J Restaurant and Takeout
157 Washington Street
Open till 9, seven days a week