somehow even though winnie’s been out of boston for the past four years i still haven’t managed to catch up to all of her eating escapades while she was here. her article for the tech of favorites provides a handy checklist: you too can take advantage of her extensive legwork and skip the bad stuff. her list led me directly to wangs fast food in somerville (went a few weeks ago. will post pics soon.) and:

punjabi dhaba (hampshire street, inman square): more out of the way than the hundreds of other indian places in cambridge, but well worth it. homey fare but some of the most savory indian food i’ve had in boston. i had the “vegetable special” which included biryani and a curry, and andy had the aloo gobhi. both were just about the perfect level of spiciness, and the chutney was nice and chunky and flavorful. definitely has jumped near the top of my list of indian eateries.

in other food news: hit via matta (back bay) for the third time. andy scored with his “Poached Shrimp with white beans, arugula, and bottarga” and rabbit tortelli. i had the roasted cauliflower which was one of the best things i’ve had this year: breaded and cheesed to perfection. my buffalo mozzarella with grilled peppers was forgettable. i was hoping the crispy eggplant would be as perfect as when i first had it, but it was disappointing for the 2nd time; this time around it was overdone. service was decidedly subpar, with the waiter neglecting to even bother lighting the candle on the table.

border cafe (harvard sq): i’d been before, but somehow i’d gotten it stuck in my mind that this place was about on par with a friday’s or the cactus club on boylston (maybe b/c it’s always so crowded), but when andy and i dropped in for a laid-back meal this past monday afternoon we were both pleasantly surprised. hot chips, fresh veggies, and a nicely done black bean and corn empanada with a sauce that, while not particularly deep, didn’t at all wear out its welcome. not to mention attentive service. one of the few times a place was distinctly better than i remembered. will def. put it back on my list of restaurants worth going to.

also, the wrap was apparently bought out by a company called boloco. the menu is pretty much the same, but when bess and i hit the one on mass ave by berklee this past weekend it was tangibly improved. fresher, less greasy ingredients meant a fresher wrap that didn’t leave you with the sickly/gross feeling that the old place often did.

and worth mentioning (or if i’ve mentioned it before, worth mentioning again) is shalimar food and spaces (central sq), not to be confused with the restaurant which is only a few stores away on the other side of the street. what’s notable about this store is the lunch counter they have in the back. for something like $7.50 you can get a veg. special which includes rice, two vegetable dishes (e.g. curry, saag, mutter paneer, eggplant), a samosa, and a mango lassi. they also have meat specials for you carnivores. not the most memorable indian food in boston, but when you’re jonesin’ for some indian and you don’t want to wait to stuff your face, this is perfect. they also have a whole case of sweets: several kinds of gulab jamun and a host of pink, white, yellow, diamond-shaped, and similarly unidentifiable confections. every once in a while andy and i get a random selection of these, and although a lot are sickeningly sweet, some are worth getting again.


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