New Shangha- first time here
Tried a variety of dumplings (crystal, shrimp with chives, spinach and pork, corn) - favorite was the shrimp with chives and the corn
Ordered off the dim sum menu (the carts were very empty when I went...) Shrimp dumpling in Soup (average but I was very "dumpling'd out" when these arrived, so hard to be objective), Stuffed Black Mushrooms (excellent), Lotus Leap Wrap Sweet Rice (less salty than most I have tried), Fried Sesame Shrimp Roll (hot from the fryer, ties with the Egg custard for best dish), Cripsy Fried Octopus Balls (very juicy, bigger than the ones you usually get, however at $6.25 for three, thought it was a little pricey) and Mini Egg Custard (agree with Limster, the best I've had in memory). Overall: Best dim I have had in awhile in Chinatown. Service was a little poor though - the cart ladies didn't know what they were carting around, spent most of the time talking to the waiter and ordering off the dim sum menu. Dim sum here is fresher, less oily than the typical places in Chinatown.
New Taste of Asia - first time here - Stir Fried Beef with Cumin (good/not that familiar with this dish, or having cumin in Chinese cooking), Stir Fried Squid with Triple Delight (had this in Taiwan a couple of times, pretty authentic), Shredded Pork with Dried Bean Curd and Celery (flavor was a little off for me, but I'm more used to Southern cooking and the waiter told me this was a Northern dish), Twice Cooked Pork (better at Taiwan Cafe). If this was closer to where I lived, I would probably go more often but I wouldn't drive to Brookline just to eat there.
Grotto: Garlic and Parmesan Soup (excellent), Oyster (decent), Crab Ravioli(fresh crab, even bit into a bunch of shells), Ricotto cavatelle (homemade ground sausage was esp. tasty), Grilled proscuitto wrapped beef tenderloin (excellent), Semolina crusted trout (average). I really liked this place. Very cute vibe/atmostphere. Excellent food for the price. Definitely a bang for the buck. Service is still a little spotty and slobby but adds to the charm. Too bad it is in such an odd location, otherwise, I would be there all the time.
Olives: Oysters w/ Chefs Adornment (this was actually gross. There was six and I could only eat 2. I'm an oyster lover too. The oysters were not fresh and the sauce on it was disgusting, the worst part was they would not take it away - I guess they thought I was still "working on it"), Foie Gras (very average), Duck L'orange (average), Duet of Bershire Pork (tasted like it was over brined way too salty). Really a very average place. Wish I didn't waste the calories.
Anna's Taqueria - first time here - ordered carnitas and chicken burrito. Pretty decent for only $3.85!. More like a Californian (San Francisco) style burrito than Tex Mex (I'm pretty spoiled though, just came back from a weekend in Houston where every meal I alternated between Fajitas, ribs, enchiladas) Anyone else have rec's on other items?
Dok Bua: I have to say, this place is really good. But I have had digestion issues 2 out of the last 3 times. 1st time I had food poisoning and was throwing up all night + next day and the people I went with also had stomach aches, 2nd time I was fine (I only ordered lunch special) and 3rd time SO and I also ended up with stomach aches. Am I just having bad luck?
Oiishi: Went on Sunday. Do NOT park across the street (behind the bank). There are signs in Oiishi - but I think people park there to get their take out as well. After our meal, when we went out, we saw 2 cars being towed. I like this place but maybe only in the summer time. Waiting in the winter - makes it almost not worth it (but it was also Sunday night and thought the fish wasn't up to its usual standard)
BTW drove paste CK Shanghai (Wellesley): looks like it is about to open any day - zagats/magazine acoolades were on windows, some of the newspaper was being taken down.
Alrighty - now that the long weekend is officially over I'm going to be living off yogurt and fruit (still angry that I didn't have chance to go to Reef Cafe cuz I was too stuffed! Also there is a Mexican place in Newton village, can't remember the name, we saw a sign and drove around in a circle trying to find the restaurant - anyone know the name, location and if it is any good?)