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Restaurants & Bars 7

Merengue, The Palm, Tom's Tavern

Joanie | Feb 7, 200803:53 AM

We made our excursion to Blue Hill Ave. last nite for Merengue and had a good filling meal. The place is huge and very pleasant. Our waitress kept calling us honey which was both amusing and slightly annoying the way she said it at the end of every comment. We split the fried cassava appetizer ($3.95) which came out looking like 6 mozzarella sticks. Nicely fried with mashed stuff inside and a great garlicky sauce served with it. I'd read that seafood was the way to go so we split a calamari in garlic sauce (on her rec as opposed to another sauce or grilled cal. dish) and fried plantains stuffed w/ shrimp. One side of rice and beans (served as rice AND beans, not together) and one side of sweet plantains. The shrimp dish was interesting, about 8-10 fried plantain cups w/ shrimp, peppers and a tomatoey sauce. Not a ton of calamari but a good amount in a very garlicky sauce. Sides were decent. I had a large passion fruit juice and he had a glass of wine that came filled to the brim in a small glass. With tax it was about $43. People next to us had fried chicken and a grilled chicken dish and those looked good. Lots of pics of baseball players on the wall, and I guess the Baltimore Orioles make it a regular stop when they're in town. There's a bar called the Breezeway across the street that I'm curious about.

Played hooky on Tues. and wasn't sure whether to go to West Rox for the Himalayan buffet or get a burger at the Palm that Pegmeister talked about. Figured I'd go for the latter and check Filene's Basement for sales at the same time. No luck with sales but enjoyed sitting at the bar at the Palm. VERY quiet, 2 others (who appeared to be regulars) at the bar and I think just one table in the dining room. The bartender was excellent as was the burger. Which actually took a while to get out, plus he came back saying provolone was no longer an option for cheese, but once it finally arrived, it was very good. Almost too big to get your mouth around but not a meatball like O'Sullivans (they wrapped up the other half for me). Very juicy, very steak flavored, decent poppy seed roll, tons of good fries, missing a pickle tho. At $11.50, somewhat of a bargain (and why I can't believe a plain hamburger costs $12 at the Alchemist). The bartender, the woman who's a regular and I discussed the depressing Superbowl. They serve lunch til 3 on weekdays so I'd definitely recommend checking it out (and weekdays is the only time you can get a burger).

Old poster Harpoon had recommended Tom's Tavern in Wrentham next time I did outlet shopping, so after 5 hrs of semi successful shopping, I was definitely ready to eat. Kind of disappointed in the experience tho. I like a divey place as much as the next person, but Tom's seemed kind of like a zoo, the first room was just a mess of a layout. Every time the front door opened, you froze plus they kept getting food out the back door by the end of the bar where I was sitting, so that didn't help. I ordered a clam roll but the fried clams that had been so heartily endorsed were overcooked. The hot dog bun was grilled but with no butter, and slightly overgrilled. She forgot my cole slaw, but once that came, it was actually decent and obviously homemade. Fries were average, $10.99. It's a huge menu and maybe I just caught a batch at the wrong time, or should have just gone w/ a burger.

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