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Let’s Talk Diets and WeightWatchers Balsamic Chicken

Posted by on Nov 15, 2015 in Blog, In The Kitchen, Recipes | 0 comments

Too much indulgence over the last few weeks, months… okay years have crept up on me in a negative way.  I am getting older and it’s getting harder to keep the weight down.   I have ignored my scales and neglected exercise…  and now, well now, my jeans are tight and I have a muffin top, and I feel I really can’t ignore it any more.  Or I could ignore it and just buy new clothes??  While I have been a little better lately at going to the gym but not as consistently as I should, I need to get a lot better and structured with my eating habits and not eat...

Seasons 52, Chestnut Hill

Posted by on Nov 14, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 2 comments

I recently received an invite from Seasons 52 to try out their new menu.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t make the date, however, if I am going to be truly honest with you my brain did rebel a little against going to a chain restaurant, which I am aware is totally stuck up and silly.  I recently tried Bonefish in Waltham, which I thought was great, so I am not sure where this anti-chain restaurant brain comes from.  Perhaps I really am a stuck up snob  That all said, I found myself over in Chestnut Hill last week with my friend, Kathleen so we decided to give it a try.  Seasons...

The Presence

Posted by on Oct 30, 2015 in Blog, Story Time | 0 comments

Tonight is my first night covering the reception desk at this lovely but worn looking little historic hotel. This is my second job, which I took on a few months ago to save for a down payment on a condo. It was simply supposed to be for a bartender position. That job quickly turned into waiter, room delivery person, and now front desk reception, handling all needy guests’ requests and complaints. It’s a quiet and boring night, with only a few guests checked in. It’s been storming all day, so the old electric lights continue to flicker and dim. The lobby is darker than usual because of the storm,...

Italian Turkey Bean Soup

Posted by on Oct 21, 2015 in In The Kitchen, Recipes | 0 comments

There are not many reasons I cherish the advent of cold weather, especially after our historical Boston weather last winter and for some reason I am always far busier in the winter with work.  However, there is one thing I do love and cherish and that is soup, especially when it is cold out and I have no time to make dinner in the evenings.  I love to make a big old pan of it and reheat and enjoy it every evening when I get home from a long day of work.  It warms the cockles of my little British heart.   I am once again trying to be healthier with...

The New Fall Menu at Aragosta Bar & Bistro, Battery Wharf

Posted by on Oct 19, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 4 comments

The leaves are turning to gold and falling from the trees.  The chill is in the bright sunshine air and our Boston restaurants are gearing up for the change over to the heartier fall menus.  One such change I was lucky enough to get a (complimentary) sampling of with my friend BosGuy.  The offer came from Aragosta in the Battery Wharf Hotel .  The hotel itself lines the waterfront and has scenic views of the harbor and city.  Upon entering the main doors there is a welcoming, spacious lobby filled with sofas and lounging chairs.  Aragosta is off to the left of the lounge.  We were greeted by very friendly hosts and led out...

Rosemary Chicken with Corn and Sausage Fricassee

Posted by on Oct 13, 2015 in In The Kitchen, Recipes | 0 comments

A few weeks ago my friend Lauren was in town from Kansas City.  With sadly not enough time to hang out at one of our “it” new Boston restaurants, I offered to make dinner for a group of friends so we could all catch up together and not worry about getting around town.  Of late I have been a little obsessed with my Food & Wine magazine and have been finding many recipes, which have turned out to be somewhat easy to make and huge crowd pleasers.  It is also proving to be a sure fire way to convince my friends that I am quite a superb rather than...

Dumpling Palace, Back Bay

Posted by on Oct 11, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 0 comments

Last week I received an invite from a PR friend to head over to the Mass Ave area of Back Bay for the opening of the new sister restaurant to Dumpling Palace in Chinatown. The invite was for guests to taste the new restaurant and takeout menu.  I happily accepted as dumplings are one of my crave foods and asked my friend Kathleen to join me on this dumpling tasting adventure. The restaurant is more of a very casual café right across the street from Berkeley School of Music.   For me it would not be a place I would go to dine but would absolutely do takeout.  I am sure...

Media Preview Dinner at Bonefish Grill, Waltham

Posted by on Oct 6, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 0 comments

Waltham is one of those towns’ I would never think of going to unless it’s a specific invite to a place people are talking about.  The last time I was in Waltham was to go to Red Bird on Moody Street, which I have to say was an amazingly tasty experience and worthy of the drive out there.  Waltham then disappeared from my mind until an invite came into my inbox for the latest opening Bonefish Grill.  Hailing from Florida, the Bonefish restaurant chain has been growing with confidence and customer dedication over the last 15 years.  The last time I went to one was probably about 8 years...

The fresh new look and feel to Grill 23, Back Bay

Posted by on Oct 4, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 1 comment

Grill 23 has been recognized over the years as one of the best Steak restaurants in Boston.  I can’t say I agree nor disagree as I don’t eat red meat.  Seems like an odd thing to say from a positive blogger as you would think I was going to go down a rarely taken negative path.  Not the case at all.  What I can say about Grill 23 and the almost 18 years of frequenting this place on and off during that time is that I have always been a fan of their bar area and the alternative menu to steak and beef, which they have always had on offer...

An Experiment in Expensive vs. Inexpensive Wine

Posted by on Sep 23, 2015 in Wine Reviews, Wine Wednesday, Wine Wednesday Fun | 0 comments

I am sure you have heard about all of the blind tasting experiments which have tested sommelier’s palates and proved some really cannot tell the difference between a highly expensive and low cost bottle of wine.  The most famous of all being the Judgement of Paris competition in France in 1976 where a Californian wine defeated a French wine in a blind tasting.  The movie Bottle Shock was based on this competition. There are a couple of standard traits that go into what can make a wine expensive.   The first is Oak.  Oak barrels can be very expensive, especially French oak, which can run as high as $2-3,000 (some even more). ...

Sunday Brunch at the Bristol Lounge, Four Seasons

Posted by on Sep 22, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 1 comment

On Sunday, I caught up with an old friend I hadn’t seen in months.  Given we felt this was a special occasion, just because, we thought we would treat ourselves to the Bristol Lounge.  Having made a reservation for noon, we arrived promptly and were seated in the back corner of the restaurants right next to the bathroom walkway.  While the table did have views to the Boston Gardens, we absolutely did not want to a trail of people walking past the back of our chairs to the loo.  Not good.  We immediately asked to be moved, which they fully accommodated.  The place was packed but they seated us close...

Beat Brasserie for Brunch, Harvard Square

Posted by on Sep 17, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 0 comments

I am a huge fan of brunch.  I like that it is not officially breakfast, which would make it a far too guilty a pleasure to enjoy a Mimosa or Bloody Mary and it’s not officially lunch, but it is between the hours of 11-3pm so you are given the freedom to enjoy that guilt free cocktail with your choice of eggs, a sandwich or salad.   However, more importantly than a cocktail is the leisure time and endless cups of coffee that brunch offers at a weekend… oh and of course Eggs Benedict.  You make a reservation at noon and you can still be chatting with friends late into...

Quinoa-Pork Meatballs

Posted by on Sep 14, 2015 in In The Kitchen, Recipes | 2 comments

In my ongoing quest to make as many fabulous recipes from this month’s Food & Wine magazine, I attempted my third one this past weekend…  Quinoa -Pork Meatballs.  This recipe was part the Handbook – What to Cook now recipes from F&W’s Kay Chin called “Market Math:  Quinoa”.  Well, I do enjoy Quinoa very much, I am a fan of pork and I make meatballs quite a bit but with ground turkey, so thought this recipe might be nice change for me.  It also seemed healthy enough to eat throughout the work week when I try to avoid “bad” foods. This dish is very easy to make, however, I...

Brunching at Eastern Standard, Commonwealth Hotel

Posted by on Sep 11, 2015 in Restaurant Talk | 0 comments

When asked “what is your favorite restaurant in Boston?”  My answer is always, I have many for different reasons.  I cannot just cite one to be my ultimate favorite.  How could I?  We are so ridiculously lucky with what’s on offer from Mistral to Island Creek to Row 34 to Local 149 and of course Eastern Standard.  I have loved ES for years and years.  It has a great bar scene, super cocktails and I have never ever been disappointed in the menu.  On Saturday, I continued my low key, sleep in, friend busy-enough weekend with brunch at Eastern Standard prior to afternoon Red Sox game.  I had won...

Ina Garten’s Mustard Roasted Potatoes

Posted by on Sep 9, 2015 in In The Kitchen, Recipes | 0 comments

When we were kids dinner or Tea Time as we called it in Manchester, England consisted of meat and potatoes almost every night.  It rarely moved away from these two ingredients whether it was with added stewed within an inch of their lives vegetables, in a pie or made into bubble and squeak.  This is what my crazy Irish mother always made us.  While she wasn’t a good cook, which I now know, she did make fantastic potatoes.  Her roasted potatoes were particularly superb, which she made with the meat fat. A few weeks ago I was having a group of new friends over for dinner and really wanted...