Monday, August 20, 2012

NIght out in the castle

Last night, I went to Smith & Wollensky (the castle in Back Bay) for dinner with my boyfriend. We ordered from the restaurant week menu. I had the salad to start, grilled salmon with pesto and the chocolate cake. My boyfriend ordered the salad, filet mignon and coconut cake. For a side we ordered hashbrown potatoes (it was a large potato pancake) from the regular menu. Smith & Wollenskys serves break away bread in a small dish; the presentation was great but it tasted okay. The salad was okay but a little heavy on the balsamic dressing. I have become a salmon connoisseur since I eat it out quite often and was not blown away by this salmon preparation. The pesto was not a great addition, the flavor seemed a bit off. The side dish was good but be aware it is quite salty and greasy. My boyfriend was extremely pleased by his main dish. The dessert was delicious. The wait staff was okay. They certainly did not rush us which was great. The decor of this restaurant and event the outside is phenomenal! This is an extremely well known steak house for obvious reasons but im not so sure about seafood.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


This morning I made a berry cobbler for a fourth of July BBQ. It was very easy and quick to make.

ingredients for the fruit base:
1 pint of blueberries
1/2 pint of blackberries
1/2 pint of raspberries
2 pounds of strawberries
1 peach - peeled
1/3 cup sugar
2 Tbsp flour

* wash fruit and pat dry. Cut the strawberries and peach. Place in a large baking pan, then add the sugar and flour, mix.

3/4 cup flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup oatmeal
1/2 stick cold butter cubed
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of cinnamon
1/2 tsp of vanilla

* mix all of the dry ingredients together. Then add the butter, you can use a food processor or combine with your hands. Then add the vanilla. Sprinkle on top of the cobbler.

place in the oven for 30-35 minutes at 375 degrees. Let cool and enjoy - add vanilla ice cream if you wish.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Apple pie, the finale to my day

Sunday night I went to finale on Columbus Avenue in Boston for dessert. This was only my second time eating at finale and I love it because the chefs have mirrors so you can watch as they construct the desserts and the food is great. When I arrived, the restaurant was empty but the hostess sat us away from the mirrors and right next to the bathrooms. We asked to move towards the center near the mirrors; she moved our seats but she was not happy about it. I'm not sure why she was bothered considering the restaurant was empty - I'm sure she wouldn't want to sit next to the bathroom when she goes out to eat.

Anyways, now on to the food- I ordered the apple a la mode. It was delicious! They use Macintosh apples so it was sweet (but not too sweet, just right) and the apples were very soft. They also added cranberries to the filling. The crust had a good texture and taste. There is a lavender soaked hazelnut financier on the side - I have never had anything like that before, it was interesting and a little too sweet. I dont think it added to the dish. There was also a large sugar type brittle (without nuts), it was too large and disproportionate in size. I think for a garnish a caramel sauce and fresh thinly sliced apples would suffice. The star of the dish was certainly the apple and cranberry tart.

I highly recommend this place for a dessert. The prices are reasonable for the quality of dessert they serve.

The apple pie is hiding behind the sugar piece. The apple tart was fairly large in size.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Take a trip to mexico without leaving the city

I caught up with two of my girl friends in NYC and we went to café frida, a Mexican restaurant on the upper west side. The atmosphere and décor is fantastic. We sat upstairs and they had an indoor authentic-looking fake roof. It's a very young, fun scene. We had chips and guacamole to start – excellent, you can never go wrong with chips and guac. I had a mojito to begin the night, it's a drink for special occasions, since I usually drink white wine or vodka soda. They add tons of mint leaves, it was a great drink choice! Since I am kosher, I eat vegetarian when I go out. I ordered the chile relleno – roasted poblano pepper stuffed with sweet potato, wild mushrooms, toasted pumpkin seeds, ricotta, fresco and cotija cheese. It sounded delicious but lets just say I was very surprised when they brought my dish out. It was one green pepper stuffed with what looked like pink mush. Much to my dismay, they pureed all of the vegetables. I would have loved for the vegetables to have been chunky and it seemed from the description they would cube the vegetables and cook it together. I would go back to the restaurant but I can guarantee you I will not order that dish again.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Screwdrivers and mimosas

I have been to Isabella's on the upper west side in NYC twice for brunch - once on a Saturday and the other on a Sunday. The only difference is drinks are included on Sunday beginning at noon. Isabella's is in a great location- they have outdoor seating and the decor is rustic. The portions are a good size, the price is right and the food is great. You can't make reservations for brunch but I have not waited more than 15-20 minutes and it is so worth the wait. There is a food market on the next street you can walk around to kill some time. The wait staff is great, they can alter things on the menu an  they certainly do not rush you to finish eating. The first time there, I ordered the French toast stuffed with caramelized bananas; it was fantastic! I can picture it now, two pieces of what seemed like cinnamon raisin bread cooked well done with caramelized bananas in between. It comes with grand mariner strawberries (I asked for fresh) and warm syrup. It was delicious and filling. This past weekend I went back for Brunch and ordered the farmers egg white omelet. I got it without turkey bacon and salsa. It was delicious - the vegetables were cooked perfectly and had a very light and tasty seasoning. It wasn't an omlete per se because the veggies were not cooked in the omelet, it was more like the eggs were a tent over the vegetables. It was a very large portion. I also got well done potatoes - it had a rosemary seasoning - mmhm yum. My only complaint was that the egg were not hot. I also would suggest they try cooking the vegetables in the egg. The way it is now you have I fish under the egg to eat the veggies. Overall though the taste was certainly there and the food was fantastic. Everything looked great as well. I would say 4.25 stars - I highly recommend this restaurant!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Banana Egg Rolls... yumm

Last week I went to PF Changs near chinatown, Boston with a large group of friends. We started the night off at the bar with drinks and lettuce wraps (chicken and vegetarian). The bartenders were great - a white sangria was not on the drink menu but they made it for me anyways and it was delicious! My other friend ordered one too. After we finished our first round of drinks we moved over to a table. I ordered the buddhas feast for dinner - its vegetarian. It was really bland, the vegetables and tofu were steamed with no sauce and the tofu was extremely thin. I don't like a lot of sauce in dishes, a little goes a long way. For dessert, I split an order of the banana egg roll. Its amazing - it comes with coconut ice cream and caramel sauce. Its a must have! Now, if you don't like bananas this will convert you into a banana lover for certain!!

Q Restaurant

Two weekends ago about 5 of my friends and I went to dinner at Q restaurant near chinatown, Boston. The restaurant is known for hot pots - you cook your own meats and vegetables in a boiling broth - meat takes about 30 seconds and vegetables about 2-3 minutes. I got the vegetarian broth and a variety of vegetables (tofu, broccoli and corn). Everything was very fresh but quite bland. They do provide some dipping "sauces" but some were spicy and another was just simply minced garlic. 

Overall, it was a fun experience. The wait staff was great - very attentive and friendly. I would probably not order a hot pot again but I wold certainly return because the atmosphere was great for a group.

Friday, May 27, 2011


I was watching "The Best Thing I Ever Ate..." on the Food Network and Max Brenner's chocolate pizza was mentioned. Since I saw that episode over 6 months ago I have been dying to eat at Max Brenner. Lucky for me, a couple of months ago, one opened in Boston on Boylston Street. I finally got to indulge at Max Brenner in Boston 3 weeks ago. They have a very extensive menu - if you are indecisive I recommend looking at the menu online prior to going. I went around 10 or 11pm on a Saturday. It was busy, the bar was packed but the service was fabulous and very quick! I ordered the banana tempura fondue it was amazing!! If you are a banana lover, which of course I am, I highly suggest ordering it. Everyone was extremely happy with their dish as well. I cannot wait to go back and try the chocolate pizza. I highly recommend going to Max Brenner.

My rating is 4 1/2 stars out of 5 stars.

Smoothie time

Yesterday, I took the blender out and decided to make a healthful filling smoothie and that I did. This recipe is for banana lovers.

1 large banana 
3/4 cup crushed ice
1 cup almond breeze milk (i use original, 40 calories/ cup)
1 tablespoon of peanut butter (optional)

Blend and in no time you have a delicious and very healthful smoothie!

Al Dente

Al Dente is a very small, rustic italian restaurant in the North End. I went for lunch on a Friday with 8 other people. I ordered the grilled fig salad to start. I thought the figs would be hot and cut up but instead it was cold, which was fine, but I would have preferred if the figs were cut more than just in half. I ordered the gnochhi for my entree; it was one of the best I have ever had - no complaints. One person in my party ordered veal parm and another chicken parm and the server mixed up the dishes but by the time they noticed they werent going to swap and neither wanted to return the dish. Another member order penne al vodka but the pepper seasoning was too overpowering. Another, ordered pesto with pasta but it was very oily- it was more like pasta with oil and a little pesto mixed in which was quite disappointing. Although, I had a fantastic pasta dish the rest of my guests were not thrilled which is disappointing since the North End usually never fails.