Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Grotto- Boston, MA

Fontina Cheese Fondue
Beef tenderloin, Aged balsamic, Truffle oil, Portobello mushrooms

Pan Roasted Buffalo Mozzarella 
Baby spinach, Black olives, Small tomatoes, Capers

Potato gnocchi, Short ribs, Mushrooms, Gorgonzola

Melting chocolate cake with Vanilla ice cream

Lemon Panna Cotta
Raspberry sauce, crispy pizzelle cookie

Location: 37 Bowdoin St. Boston | MA 02114

Hidden in the cute streets of Beacon Hill, Grotto is one of the few restaurants on Bowdoin. If not illuminated by a few Christmas lights on the restaurant sign, Grotto would probably be passed unnoticed, blending into the similar brown stone houses on the street. A few tiny steps takes you to a door, which most likely has people inside, waiting to be seated. 

The place has a rustic yet romantic kind of feel due to its dimmed ambience and little candles on the table. It's perfect for a date with someone you already know :) ..One word of advice though: Make reservations.

What I liked most about this place is its fixed menu price. For some reason they kept the same prices from Restaurant Week, but you are more than welcome to order A la Carte. 

As an appetizer I ordered the Fontina Cheese Fondue. It was GREAT. The cheese was not too strong and seasoned perfectly. I was craving some more tender tenderloin bites after they were all gone...but the portion was JUST the right amount for an appetizer. I had some cheese left after my beef and mushrooms were gone, so I dipped my bread in it :D

My entree was the Gnocchi dish. The first reaction is: OMG. Not for the Gnocchi..but for the short ribs. SOOO tender and soft. They almost melt in your mouth. It sure was somewhat fatty, but woa..worth it. Gotta say though, maybe there were too many Gnocchi bits..they are WAYY too filling.

As you can see, I was in a red meat craving that night. Nothing better than a glass of red wine :) It fuses with both the cheese fondue and the gnocchi dish. Perfect! I just can never finish an entire glass haha.

My dessert was the Panna Cotta. It was good at the first few bites. Its really smooth and creamy, but after a while the taste is overwhelming and I could not take it anymore. Perhaps a LITTLE too much cream in could also be a little less sweet. So far the best Panna Cotta I've had was at Pigalle. Unforgettable! 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Stephanie's - Boston, MA

Jumbo Sea Scallops: marinated with fresh oregano and pan seared served with spinach, roasted garlic risotto, and kalamata olive puttanesca.

Asian Yellow Fin Tuna Salad: pan seared tuna served with fresh field greens, wok charred peppers, shredded cucumber and pickled onions tossed in lemon vinaigrette, with wasabi aioli, sweet soy and crispy wontons.

This was the pretty disappointing meal I mentioned on my last post. It was sunny but the wind was still pretty chilly Saturday lunch time. Since the line to sit indoors at Stephanie's was a 40 mins wait, we asked to sit outside and were sat immediately.

I don't know if it was because we were cold, but this time Stephanie's totally disappointed me. People always told me that place was overrated, and I always thought so too, but at least I enjoyed the food there..until this past Saturday.

The scallops..were completely overcooked. Sure, they were crispy on the outside...but the inside was not soft and juicy like scallops should be. It was dry and too chewy. The risotto didn't taste much like anything, nor did the spinach.

For the salad, the leaves did not seem fresh at all. It just didn't give me the YUMMM feeling I always get. To disappoint me further, the wasabi sauce was a tad bit too strong. Maybe it's because I don't like wasabi but I know when the flavour balance is just not right.

Maybe I'm being a little harsh on Stephanie's was probably just a bad day. It was TOO busy and perhaps the Kitchen just didn't have the time to put extra care and love into the food they were making.

Chop Salad - Sonsie, Boston MA

Dish: Chop mixed lettuce, egg, crouton, grilled bacon, tomato, Old Chatham camembert 13
Restaurant: Sonsie
Location: 327 Newbury St. Boston | MA

I didn't mean to go to Sonsie so often but I had this terrible meal at Stephanie's on Newbury ( I will post it next) this past weekend and ran to Sonsie in hope of something. Unfortunately I was already half full so all my friend and I ordered was a Salad and a dessert ( coming up later too). 

I ordered the salad after seeing another table ordering it. And yummmmm! It was awesome! The crispyness of the bacon plus the camembert cheese fuses REALLY well with the salad leaves! It was the perfect balance in flavor and texture. 

Unfortunately I am not a big fan of raw tomato so I didn't touch them. There were little pieces of tomatoes in the salad, however, and those blended in pretty well too cause the tomato taste was not overwhelming. 

It's certainly a perfect choice for a very light meal or appetizer :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Risotto - Sonsie, Boston MA

Risotto - spinach, carnaroli rice, roasted portabella mushrooms, truffle ricotta.

Restaurant: Sonsie
Location: 327 Newbury St., Boston MA 02115

Well, not a out-of-the-typical place to go, but just thought I'd post this up since I got my detachable flash working well last night when we went to Sonsie. 

I was actually in between a Lobster salad and this. I asked the waitress what she suggested "Definitely the Risotto!"....lame choice. 

I really like spinach..and really like mushrooms..but the risotto was just disappointing. It lacked salt and I thought it could be more creamy. The taste of spinach and mushroom was not strong enough. I had to ask for some Parmesan cheese for more flavor..and even splash some salt. But then again, probably my salty brazilian palette interfered there. 

I kind of regretted not getting the Lobster salad instead..but oh well. Next Time!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

KingFish Hall @ Quincy Market, Boston, MA

A restaurant that completely threw me off guard. We weren't craving anything specific that day..all we knew was that we didn't want the food inside Quincy Market. Somewhere where we could sit and eat comfortably while staying away form the cold wind outside. Basically we walked in with no expectations whatsoever. 

We ordered a bowl of their Clam Chowder with these AMAZING Oyster Crackers and shared a Lobster Meat on Pumpernickel Bread with Fontina Cheese. It comes with a Tomato Soup and Baby Greens with Mango Salsa on the side. AMAZING~ The soup gives an extra flavor to the bite of soft bread, cheese and lobster!

The second dish was the Thai Bouillabaisse. I know, not the place to order a Thai dish..but I wanted to see how a non-Asian place would handle a flavor of Thai in a western dish. It turned out pretty good. It was a taste of seafood with a twist of Thai red curry.

I was too full to order their dessert. :(