boston: food

things are winding down here, i back in the office after an eye-opening food tour with experts, aka asians who live for fine nourishment.  Actually i didn’t join them for last night festivities, but generally our day involved late noon gatherings + walk + bakery + cafe + girls watching + superb dinning + passing out at nice ice cream shop.  So, in case you find yourself in boston, these are the places i recommend:

Yankee Lobster Fish Market, highly highly recommended.
Rod Dee Thai,
Pho 2000 in Dorchester, super cute waitress who kept calling me cưng (translation: pamper, cherish, dear, …)
Christina’s Ice Cream (and next to it is Christina’s Indian Spices shop)
Diesel Cafe, aka dyke cafe shop. there’s a darn starbuck opening right opposite of it, boo.

so, if you read reviews of these places, it seems people who have problems are those expecting shiny service! we vietnamese have this way of saying: the shinier the restaurant, the worse the food.  I am there to eat and enjoy the high quality food, not the damn shiny tables + shiny services!   Let’s take Yankee Lobster Fish Market for example: BEST lobster, YUMMMM.  and for $20! did i mention fresh?? can’t believe i have lived in Boston for so long without knowledge of this little hole in the wall.  it really is just that: you fight your way in to a counter, order what you need, might require a bit of push and shove 🙂 (think fish “market”).  then look for a spot to sit if there’s any, else you might just have to stand in the parking lot 😀 (i heard they have seats outside during summer, but i’d avoid high-capacity hours).  The food comes out in paper box and plate, then you roll up your sleeves and yumm…. 2 hours later, truly a satisfying experience. we ran out of stomach room to try steam clam, next time…

Pho 2000 is for baked fish and 7 course beef.  It’s not that superb if you compare to west coast standard but still very good.  And that waitress alone is worth the trip ;-).  She even remembered me from 2 months ago. I mean how often you have a group of asian dykes rolling in to town? everything comes with rice paper + vegetable + dipping sauce, so lots of hands involved.  if fork and knife is your style, you’ll be very lost here. Also, their english might be limited if you want to carry on a conversation or ask for something different or for an opinion, so don’t forget to take me along.

As far as Christina’s ice cream is concerned, these friends drove hours from Manhattan here to just savor the flavors (they had multiple cups PLUS pints togo).  If you get 1 pint to go (for $4.80!!!), 2-flavors is allowed.  Mine was Gina’s Mocha Explosion and Red Bean.  Can’t wait to get to bottom of that “jar” to taste the red bean.  It’s owned by an Indian family, and their way is the less sugar way.  Everything contains actual taste of whichever flavor they put in, just enough to savor, nothing overboard.  I always have problem here in the US where people don’t understand the concept of subtlety.  So, am told to come back for their Ginger-flavored ice cream (to die for according to 1 of friends who lamented about the lack of good ice cream or good cafe shops in Manhattan.)  One should also try their Kulfi-flavored, burnt-sugar, and oh, i don’t know, all 40 flavors… there’s also jalapeño-something sorbet which resulted in another pint togo…  Anyhow, they’re now probably on their way back to new york in a car i’m sure filled with ice cream and sweets and …

and I got an open invitation to visit Manhattan, and we all now have insiders for MET opera tickets (discount, they know which friends should be called for what kind of discount tix).  a trip to new york is soon coming :-).

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About thả diều
writing-challenged opera-addict

9 Responses to boston: food

  1. jcmwee says:

    What is it about Asians and food? Many of my Asian friends sound like YOUR Asian friends!!! LOL!!!! Self included, except I’m not so obssesssive about it. Having just moved house i’ve been eating frozen meals for a few days now….

    You know, I actually think the Asian obssession with good food kind of meant that we never had the great intellectual/philosophical developments like Europe did – our forebears were just thinking how to catch/grow the best ingredients and how to best cook it. My best memories of my mum was when we’d watch wildlife documentaries, and when some endangered animal came on screen and the commentary was on how rare it was, mum’s automatic conclusion was that that animal must have been tasty…. LOL!!!

    But one day Dr T, I will visit those places you mention in Boston. YUM!

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    • thả diều says:

      ahhh, jcmwee, vhat do you mean by “we never had the great intellectual/philosophical developments like Europe did” ??? 🙂 . frankly, my body can not handle any cuisine that is butter-based, cheese-based, meat-based, and oil-based… however philosophical/intellectual they claim to be. Though to be fair, i never study food and can be heavily biased when it comes to debating vietnamese cuisine vs others :-). But i do think we have one of the _most_ (non)balanced diet filled with herbs and vegetables that is downright attractive for all asians 😀 (and others who live with little meat and loads of clear soup, hihi) .

      happy to hear your asian friends are similar to mine ;-). actually i’m also not that crazy about food, following more the line “i eat to live” rather than “i live to eat”, but do enjoy greatly when led the right way by “experts”. And oh, experts (myself included) in dipping sauce would like to advertise lime+salt+blackpepper (Muối Tiêu Chanh) in place of butter for lobster (who on earth came up with butter to destroy the taste of the lobster in the first place?? yikes!!!) ok, i done being defensive 😀

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      • jcmwee says:

        Hi Dr T, sorry it’s taken me some while to get back to you. After moving house I had to travel for a wedding, then my Christmas/New Year/summer/Chinese-Lunar New Year holidays got in the way. I’m slowly working through a 2 month’s of worth oif posts on yours and eye’s blog! Glad I found my way back to this one.

        What I mean by “we never had the great intellectual/philosophical developments like Europe did” (this is an entirely unscientific, subjective supposition of mine. Please feel free to disagree vehemently with me):

        Since South East Asians living in the tropics don’t live through debilitating northern hemisphere winters (like the one Europe is currently suffering through), and the tropical environment generally speaking provides plenty of sustenance year round (barring warfare and natural disasters of course), SE Asians weren’t cooped up indoors through long, cold winters thinking up huge complex theories of how/why the universe operates under a Christian deity.

        Given usually sufficient sustenance, SE Asians only had to sow, harvest or hunt/gather year round, and didn’t really have the inclination to think up huge complex theories of how/why the universe works. And with pantheistic/animistic beliefs, there was no need to reason cause and effect as you would with a Christian deity who blesses/curses those who obey/disobey – there were just cheeky, playful spirits who were mostly reasonably harmless.

        Leaving SE Asians to obsess about food, which is really quite life-affirming (imho).

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      • jcmwee says:

        ps luckily for me, I have all the necessary enzymes that my lactose/alcohol intolerant compatriots are missing to throughly enjoy butter, cheese, meats as well as fish sauce and green mangoes (not in that combination!) so on weekdays I eat to live, but on weekends I tend to live to eat. 🙂

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  2. Eyesometric says:

    Interesting stuff, Dr T, but one complaint ….. no pix of super-cute waitress! 😉

    Like

    • thả diều says:

      ahhh, Eyes, it’s the vietnamese way, we’re very timid around each other, conversation at close yet arm-length-away distance, some endearing references.. but pix.. that’s for the 6th encounter… 😉

      Like

  3. idlehouse says:

    didn’t I drag you into Christina before dinner back in July ?

    Like

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