Thursday, March 6, 2014

Boston Bites – Part I

No one does dining like Boston

The thing I miss most about Boston and the surrounding New England area is the food. Since I’ve been back in Los Angeles, I find myself craving food items I can only get in Boston. The seafood, the pasta, the beer, oh my!

If you read My 5 Favorite Things About Boston (and 5 Least Favorite) then you’ll know I was not a fan of the sushi there. However, I would trade my beloved Sugarfish for some truffle pasta from Vinoteca di Monica’s any day.

Since I can’t feed my stomach with Boston delights, I will create a feast for the eyes instead and discuss some of my favorite Boston eateries.

Lobster Roll at Fenway Park!

Lobster Pot Pie on the left and fried clams on the right from The Causeway

I’m going to start off big, the famous truffle pasta from Vinoteca di Monica that I have mentioned on several occasions. No doubt, this was a serious treat.  This pasta dish is so extreme that they don’t even list the price on the menu because it’s based on the current market value of truffles. You can order just black truffle or a combination of black AND white truffles, for an extra charge of course. I have never enjoyed both types of truffles, too rich for my blood, but just the plain, old black truffle is enough to send your mouth into tasty ecstasy. The pasta is homemade and melts in your mouth. The dish only features a few ingredients but as you can imagine, each taste, each bite, is simply blissful.


Truffle pasta AND lobster galore in Boston!


Truffle pasta from Vinoteca di Monica (This photo is courtesy of my wonderful cousin, Ilene - I never took a photo myself because I wait an extra second before digging in!


While we are talking about Italian food in the North End, let’s stop by my other favorite restaurant that serves up yet another  pasta dish that I find myself craving. The Pappardelle e Melanzane, eggplant pasta, from La Summa. Pappardelle noodles are large, broad, and flat, somewhere between a fettuccine noodle and a lasagna noodle. And it’s homemade, of course. It’s hard to explain the eggplant portion of the dish. It’s not like an eggplant parmigiana that we’re use to seeing, it’s more like a chunky eggplant sauce. This dish is so tasty, I literally wipe the bowl clean.

Pappardelle e Melanzane, eggplant pasta, from La Summa

The North End in the Boston cooks up Italian food just as good as the Italians!


Last, but not least: Dessert. A visit to the North End is not complete without a stop at Mike’s or Modern’s. I always get a traditional cannoli, a lobster tail, and some almond cookies. Try as I might, I always end up eating at least some of the treats on the train back to Waltham. Boy, I could really go for a lobster right about now….I'm sure many of your are confused. Let me explain. A lobster tail, aka La Sfogliatella, is a crusty, layered shell that resembles a lobster tail, stuffed with custard.  I could easily make a meal out of a lobster tail and a lobster tail. HA! I crack myself up.

Lobster tail, cannoli, and almond paste cookies from Mikes Pastry
But seriously, that’s a nice transition to the other food item I miss oh so much: Lobsters. When I was living in Boston I ate lobster several times a month, and even more than that during the summer months.  Am I rich? Do I have an uncle in the lobster business? No and no.  Lobsters are so abundant in New England that they are not only easily accessible and tasty, but they are affordable too. 
Lobster Roll from The Atlantic Fish Company
Lobster Roll from The Top of the Hub

Forget the Boston Red Sox, it's all about Boston lobsters!

I remember the days I use to get to Ralph’s in Los Angeles early before the sale on frozen lobster tails started and wait in line to purchase the maximum number of tails allowed and ration then throughout the year. Now that I know what it’s like to live with lobster in my life, I never want to go back to that. But sadly, here on the West Coast, good lobsters are expensive and bad lobsters are expensive. In Boston, I use to get a pound and half lobster from Hannaford’s (the Pavillions of the East) for twelve bucks and they’d steam it for me while I did my shopping. I would then put on my lobster hat, and go work. I became I an expert lobster de-sheller. It's like watching a red tornado of hands and shell pieces. 
Lobster from Coop De Ville on Martha's Vineyard
 
Lobster on Martha's Vineyard  from The Wharf Pub Restaurant
If you don’t believe my love of lobster, here are a few visual aids you might enjoy.







To be continued......check out Boston Bites Part II!

 Want to learn even more about Boston? Check out St. Patrick’s Day the Boston Way!

Like lobster and pasta and cannolis? Let me hear it!



4 comments:

  1. Those lobster rolls look amazing! Reminds me of a few great ones I've had....and now have a craving for! :D

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  2. Hi Michael! Nice to hear from you!! I really need to plan a trip to the East Coast so I can get my hands on one, or two, or three =) Have you have any good ones around LA?

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  3. yum!!
    I will note these places down for the next time I'll be visiting Boston :D

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Serena! You definitely should! Nothing beats a Maine lobster that didn't have to be flown in from anywhere =)

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