I previously wrote about this fun annual tasting that raises money for the AIDS Action Committee of MA, but I wanted to give one more shout out for those of you who may have been contemplating attending but had yet to buy tickets.
Taste of the South End, Tuesday March 3, 2015
More than 40 of the neighborhood’s restaurants will share tempting bites that range from the savory to the sweet. In addition there will be plenty to drink and entertaining cooking demonstrations from some of the neighborhood’s most admired chefs. If you have any questions about this social South End event, feel free to reach out to me. Otherwise, grab tickets while they last. Here is a quick video from a Taste of the South End from a few years back.
Calypso Grill’s deck in Grand Cayman
Grand Cayman has no shortage of great dining options and I would encourage anyone visiting to leave their hotel and do some exploring. Trip Advisor does a nice job of listing a wide selection of dining options. One of our more extravagant meals on the island was at Calypso Grill. If you decide to go, request a table outside overlooking the water. For this New Englander, dining outside by the water in February is a rare treat and added to my dining experience.
Bread and Chocolate French Toast
As much as I enjoyed Calypso and some of the other places, it was two of the more casual dining establishments that Sergio and I enjoyed the most. Neither of these places are by the water so if that is a must then simply bypass these options. For visitors coming by cruise ship the first option is within walking distance of where you will disembark and is called Bread and Chocolate. This tiny, hole-in-the-wall restaurant serves delicious (vegan) food and is a favorite among locals. I had no idea eating vegan was so delicious.
Casual dining at Cimboco in Grand Cayman
The other restaurant I wanted to give a shout out to is Cimboco. It is located just a few minutes by car from The Westin and Ritz Carlton in a small strip mall that also has a burger shack, smoothie store and coffee shop. Cimboco hosts a $5.00 breakfast Monday thru Friday from 7:30 – 11:00 am that is tough to beat. Additionally, they make delicious sandwiches and pizzas (I’d recommend trying the eggplant pesto pizza) all very affordable.
While there were many more options, I thought I’d limit this post to three of my favorites: Calypso Grill, Bread and Chocolate and Cimboco. For more dining tips check out Trip Advisor rankings or contact me, and I’d be happy to share a few more suggestions suitable to your taste, price range and near where you will be staying.
BosGuy’s Wicked Awesome Grilled Cheese Sandwich
The current issue of Boston Magazine has a fantastic article about the best sandwiches served in town. As you can imagine there are a number of delicious options and the South End gets a bunch of shout outs, including Myers + Chang’s Bacon and Egg sandwich – which is only available on weekends, Flour Bakery + Cafe’s BLT, Mike’s City Diner’s, “Mike’s Famous Pilgrim” sandwich just to name a few. Also South End cheap eats, Blunch which is only open for breakfast and lunch is spotlighted as a must try place.
Despite all the sandwich joints in this town I still have to say my favorite is probably Downtown Crossing’s Sam LaGrassa’s. Do you have a favorite sandwich that you like to make or a particular place you go to grab a sandwich? I love making grilled cheese sandwiches in the winter. I actually wrote about it last January in my post Best Grilled Cheese Evah.
Since 1995 local restaurants have come together to share some of their most tempting plates to help raise awareness and money for the AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts. This year more than 40 restaurants from the South End will converge for the Taste of the South End on Tuesday, March 3rd.
Get your tickets before the event sells out. You can find more details about the program can on their website here. Tickets for the 2015 Taste of the South End are on sale now!
Read Boston Magazine’s article penned by Christopher Hughes, A Chef’s Guide to Eating Well in the South End. Hughes, the magazine’s online food editor, asked Ken Oringer (Clio, Uni & Toro) and Top Chef season 10 winner Kristen Kish to share their favorite South End spots.
The article really illustrates how lucky South End residents are, showcasing a wide variety of options. If you are curious where Oringer and Kish go for cocktails and / or cuisine check out the article. My only surprise – even though I agreed with many of their choices – was how many other options we have in this tiny neighborhood that went unmentioned.
How can anyone overlook such neighborhood gems like Formaggio with their superior selection of cheeses and meats or Brix with their unique selection of small vintage wineries? Restaurants and bakeries like South End Pita, Orinoco, Elephant Walk and Render Coffee add color and options that most neighborhoods would kill to have but the South End has such a rich collection it is easy to forget all the markets, restaurants, bakeries and cafes crammed into this tiny n’hood.
Boston Restaurant Talk reports that Cafe Quattro, a popular Italian / Pizzeria with Beacon Hill residents will reopen in the South End.
Apparently the popular restaurant lost its lease in Beacon Hill after the landlord essentially forced them out to make room for a larger upscale restaurant. Beacon Hill’s loss is the South End’s gain. Cafe Quattro will reopen at 817 Harrison Avenue on the corner of East Springfield Street. The owners were scheduled to go before the licensing commission this week (not sure if the weather has delayed that meeting). One hopes they will be opening soon.
About Cafe Quattro: We serve a wide array of sandwiches, panini, wraps, and pizza, as well as cappuccino, espresso, latte, and coffee. Our breads are baked especially for us and delivered daily. Our thin crust pizza is hand tossed and made to order, using fresh dough. Pizza is available by the slice, small personal pies, or 20″ Large pies each made in the old fashioned Italian-American tradition.
Last Saturday I watched Unique Sweets on The Cooking Channel (locally that is Ch-239). This episode was dedicated to all things chocolate and included a local pie shop with stores in Somerville and East Cambridge called Petsi Pies.
Living in the South End, I’ve become spoiled by all the great bakeries in my nearby so I went to check out Petsi Pies to see if it lived up to the hype. In the name of ‘research’, I purchased some of their most popular chocolate goodies.
The Whoopie Pie Cupcake includes a decadent chocolate ganache frosting and whipped cream filling that reminds me more of gourmet hostess cupcake than a whoopie pie, but don’t take that as a complaint. Upon biting into this treat I promptly had to pour myself a large cup of milk. I can see how these could be incredibly addicting. This is a must try for cupcake lovers.
The Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie was too enticing not to try and turned out to be my favorite item purchased. The Bourbon is subtly infused into the soft chocolate filling and not overpowering at all. My favorite thing about this pie is the mixture of the filling and crushed pecans generously sprinkled on the top. I think this probably would go best with a large dollop of fresh whipped cream and should replace traditional pecan pies.
The Mississippi Mud Pie is for the person who believes there is no such thing as too much chocolate. The dark, thin pie crust tastes like a crushed chocolate cookies. And that pie crust is necessary to hold all the gooey, chocolate brownie-like batter that is piled on top of it. However, just to make certain a chocolate-induced food coma will ensue Petsi Pies then tops the filling with chunks of chocolate brownie and drizzles it with chocolate ganache.
All told, I have to say that Pesti Pies did live up to the hype and is worth visiting. If you like this type of ‘reasearch’ let me know, and I’ll continue this important work; ignoring my ever expanding waistline. Is there a bakery or pastry shop you love in the Boston area you think I should check it out? Let me know.