KO Pies

Finally made it to KO Pies in Eastie this weekend — the outdoor dance was a couple blocks away! Had a classic beef and a jerk chicken (special), both tasty. Fries are the dreaded wedge, but fried to a golden fucking delight, so WINNING. Lots of beers, a few Aussie desserts, and picnic tables in the shipyard parking lot. My kinda joint. Want to try the beef stew flavor next time.



Went out to Drink a few days ago to bid goodbye to a new friend leaving town, and as could be expected at Drink, had smashingly perfect cocktails and very tasty food. However: one cocktail stood out from the rest, being outside my well-trodden realm of whisky + aromatic liquors, but gorgeously bright, richly flavorful, and entertainingly retro.

Enter Martinez: Old Tom gin, sweet vermouth, maraschino, bitters.

Wouldn’t have thought I’d like anything with maraschino, but apparently I do when it’s in balance with other ingredients. There’s a great deal of discussion in recipes about proportion and ingredients, and sadly I was one too many drinks in to retain what they used at Drink, but I believe the stage is set for some entertaining experimentation at home of an evening.


Five Guys burger and fries

Had my first Five Guys burger for lunch today.  Meh.

It was ok, I guess.  Got a cheeseburger with everything and a regular fries, for a straight middle of the road experience.   Not bad, but not especially good either.

Soggy bun even eating it immediately on receipt.  Sauteed mushrooms are nice but unnecessary and probably the cause of the bun sog.  Didn’t expect double burgers, which balanced out all the rest of the mess on there but were really more than I want in terms of meat on my burger.  Not an especially tasty burger, and I think it would suffer if some of the extraneous toppings disappeared.

Fries are soggy.  A few crispy ones in there, but greasy as hell and frankly too thick cut and not cooked correctly to have the right crunch.  And a regular order of fries was too much for me and the tallasiandude, which is saying something.  They do seem to err on the side of “more is better” which isn’t really how I roll, especially when it comes to burgers and fries.


AND they source their ingredients industrially, which isn’t a deal-breaker but does put the final nail in the coffin.

Tasty Burger for me when I’m home, and In-n-Out when I’m in CA.  No contest.   Mmmmm, Tasty Burger….

little green lasagne

I had a really tasty little morsel at Rendezvous in Cambridge last night. They call it a “little lasagne” and it’s a freeform stacking of pasta sheets, ricotta, comte and swiss chard, with a pungent, salty, dark green salsa verde and chopped almonds alongside.

Absolutely delicious late-summer vegetable treat, savory, filling and not too heavy.

The rest of the menu was pretty good too. Duh. Try the Summer Breeze if you like whiskey drinks or bitters. And the summer chowder is dreamy.

aw, HELL YEAH – Vietnamese in Waltham FTW

Remember that Vietnamese place down the street from my house? It is awesome, and I am very happy.

Pho tai gan - noodle soup w/ rare steak & tendon on Twitpic

The pho is really good. Delicious broth, supersoft tendon, tender steak, fresh toppings. Even comes with the wee little Viet chilies, which is awesome even though I never put them in my pho.

Com chien - vietnamese fried rice on Twitpic

The Vietnamese style fried rice is also excellent, with tender shrimp bits and lots of wok hay. They have some homemade chili oil and some chili garlic sauce that are very good on it. Ask for the condiment tray if they don’t bring it automatically.

Bun tom thit - vermicelli w/ grilled shrimp & pork on TwitpicMi hoanh thanh - vietnamese wonton noodle soup w/ chicken broth on Twitpic

The banh mi is good too, though the bread is a bit bland and dry — easily remedied with a drizzle of the green chili vinegar from the condiment tray. Our friends got a bowl of bun and a wonton noodle soup, both excellent.

And they deliver within a 5 mile radius. I can now have someone bring me pho ga on a cold winter night when I am sick. THAT, my friends, is quality of life.

Viet restaurant on Moody St in Waltham! Pho tai gan & com... on Twitpic

Pho & Spice
457 Moody St
Waltham, MA
(781) 788-8899
I will not link to their actual website at phoandspice.com because it plays music. SINFUL. But I will make a special exception in their case and continue to patronize them anyway, because did I mention? Pho within walking distance. Noms.

UPDATE: The Bun Bo Hue is really good too. 🙂

mostly retarded but I still kind of want to go

This place in NYC is a fairly ridiculous faux-Japanese/anime theme restaurant serving Asiany burgers and appetizers, with the usual Manhattan excesses and menu for skinny girls, with perhaps a minor whiff of David Chang about it for good measure.

It’s completely idiotic. But still I kind of want to go there anyway.

eating in montreal

We were in Montreal for a dance weekend, and between the sleep deprivation and the language barrier, we were not going too far afield. Happily the dance venue was smack in the middle of what appeared to be Little Saigon, so we ate pho and banh mi the whole time. The banh mi were particularly good, on skinny crunchy baguettes with a schmear of pate and mayo on each, plus the grilled pork or cold cuts and daikon, carrots and wee hot peppers.

Then finally last night we had a bit of time so I asked one of the Montreal dancers where the really good poutine was to be had. He sent us to La Banquise, and he was not wrong. Yum.

Poutine from la banquise, montreal

Really delicious, crisp fries as a base, with good gravy and squeaky cheese curds on top, and then you can go nuts with variations. T got his with hamburger meat and sauteed onion, which was the best. It’s basically a burger and fries all smushed up together on the plate — can’t go wrong. I had smoked meat which was not as good as you’d hope, and tallasiandude got merguez sausage but what came wasn’t nothing but a hot dog as far as I could tell. So I guess stick with simple toppings and stay away from cured meats. Anyway, absolutely the best possible meal with a beer after two solid days of dancing. Open 24 hrs, too, doing a brisk business in cheesy gravy fries. Hell to the yes.

Penny Cluse Cafe, Burlington VT: Best Sammich Evar

Or pretty darn close anyway. Ham Randy: thick cut smoked ham, cheddar cheese, fresh red tomato, lightly spicy jalapeno mayo, on grilled sourdough. DAYUM. Available at Penny Cluse Cafe in Burlington VT, where we are visiting pals.

Comes with delicious bread and butter pickle slices and some cilantro-cabbage slaw. We also got a side of excellent mac-and-cheese, and a broccoli-cheese-cherry pepper relish grilled sandwich, and a side of bucket-o-spuds (homefries with cheese, pico de gallo and sour cream). All excellent, but eclipsed by the glory of the Ham Randy.