Saturday, May 12, 2007


Curse you, Sonny Morningstar. Yesterday was my last day of medical school, and now I have all the free time in the world to run my errands, pack, or just laze about. And he tags me with a meme. Curse you. I don't do memes. Actually, that's not true. I do do memes, I just have no desire to let my personality be reduced to a simple character, like:

You Are Cookie Monster

Misunderstood as a primal monster, you're a true hedonist with a huge sweet tooth.

You are usually feeling: Hungry. Cookies are preferred, but you'll eat anything if cookies aren't around.

You are famous for: Your slightly crazy eyes and usual way of speaking

How you life your life: In the moment. "Me want COOKIE!"
The Sesame Street Personality Quiz

Still, Sonny's meme is pretty interesting:

The rules:
1. Add a direct link to your post below the name of the person who tagged you. Include the state and country you’re in.
2. List your five favorite places to eat (locally) - any kind of food, whatever you like.
3. Tag 5 people (preferably from other countries/states) and let them know they've been tagged.

The Restaurant Reviewers so far:
How I made my selections: I decided to only list places that I've eaten at more than once. This excludes restaurants like The Federalist or Chez Henri. It's pretty obvious these are amazing quality restaurants, which I think defeats the purpose of this meme. I also avoided restaurants that are too expensive - fine dining is great and all, but you shouldn't have to mortgage your house to eat there (Locke Ober). Franchises or chains were a bit of a stickler. I thought that excluding chains was a good idea, places like TGI Friday's, The Olive Garden, or Chi Chi's (all of which should be struck from the face of the earth). However, I've also had fantastic meals at small chains like Boca Grande, so I'm thinking chains are okay, as long as they're small. Okay, that's enough. On to the restaurants!

Indian: Udupi Bhavan, Ashland, MA. This Indian restaurant is really not a secret. It's a hike from Boston, however. This restaurant was my introduction to South Indian cuisine - I could go on and on about the dosa, uthappam, etc. but their sambar is unparalleled, no question. Actually, I have to eat here one more time before I move. Any takers?

Korean: Cafe Han River, Brookline, MA. This is counter to Sonny's pick of Fugakyu for his favorite Japanese restaurant. I admit I was a little annoyed that he picked Fugakyu, but then I just felt sorry for him. I mean - it's a pretty obvious pick. I expected more from you, Sonny - I thought you'd find awesome sushi in some mom & pop place, tucked away in Billerica. Anyway, Cafe Han River is a wicked small eatery, that serves some of the best Korean food I've ever had. The menu isn't extensive, but that's not a problem. The kitchen is small - it really looks as if you're getting Korean home cooking. The rice cooker is not much bigger than my own, and, better yet, the rice is sticky, as it should be. The meals come with kimchee and a few dumplings, which round out the main dish.

Comfort Food: Zon's Restaurant, Jamaica Plain, MA. Comfort food done really well in an intimate setting. Was on my list of places to visit before the move, and I was able to cross it off a couple of weeks ago. The ice cream sandwiches using freshly baked cookies as the sandwich for the ice cream makes this place worthy of this list. My only regret is not getting to try one of their several versions of macaroni and cheese.

Pub Food: Matt Murphy's Pub, Brookline, MA. God, I'm going to miss this place. The look used to be really authentic - wooden tables with people carving their names or some crude message into the top, chairs that didn't look like they could last the night. They've made some decisions lately that are questionable - one long cushioned seat along one side of the pub. The removal of Guinness draft from their selections. Still, the food and the service remain stellar. My favorite dishes are the shepherd's pie (I think this is the more authentic version, not the brick you see in the hospital cafeteria), the steak, and the fish & chips.

Chinese: Ocean Wealth, Boston, MA. This is a tough one. First, the progression of Chinese cuisine in Boston, in my opinion, has stagnated. Yeah, Ming Tsai's Blue Ginger is local, but that's more like Chinese-French fusion. Second, to get the good stuff at Ocean Wealth, you have to ask for the special menu. And even if you know to request the special menu, you should be able to read Chinese characters, and order in Cantonese. I don't go here without a Cantonese-speaking individual in my group. I don't know the names of my favorite dishes: there's a lobster scallion stir-fry that makes my mouth water as I type. There's a deep-fried taro-duck dish that is artery-clogging amazing. The best thing is that, for dessert, NO FORTUNE COOKIES. Depending on the season, it's either tropical fruit or some Chinese tapioca thing that, again, I have no idea what it's name is.

Okay, now the tagging. I've decided to tag couples and count them as one - I hope some of them are still reading, despite the fact that I've slowed down with the updates:
  • Jocelyn and Peter - Because any good restaurant that I've eaten at lately is probably from Peter's recommendation.
  • Cathy and John -
  • John and Jill - because I want to hear about the foodie life in Hamilton, Ontario.
  • Rebecca and David - Because I want to hear about the foodie life from some parents.
  • ThaJinx - Because I want to hear that Idaho isn't just about potatoes.
Have at it!


Right now I'm listening to: Written in the Stars, The Bill Charlap Trio


Blogger Nicole Tan said...

firstly congrats that you are out of medical school!

and woo nice food description!! must try Cafe Han River if me around that area...and what??!! NO GUINESS DRAFT from the menu? IN A PUB?! That is BAD BAD BAD!!! any chinese restaurants that doesn't serve fortune cookies is authentic enuff for me to go too!!

Ps thanks for doing the tag. If you know of anyone else doing it please feel free to send me a message and I’ll update them too on the updated list of tag doers

7:25 PM  
Blogger mikey's sister said...


I'm trying to get a draft of a couple thesis chapters done, and I KNEW it would be a mistake to check your blog in a weak moment of procrastination!

Not only that, but you list NO GOOD REASON for tagging Cathy and John, so I can't tag them.

Stoopud chain letters. Can this wait a few weeks? It does sound like fun . . .


4:11 PM  
Blogger Sonny Morningstar said...

I can't believe you got down on me for Fugakyu. You're just sideways because you couldn't write about it. Sour grapes, bitch! As an alternative I could have listed Shino Express Sushi on Newbury Street (picture). A non-local could totally miss it since it's a more or less subterranean sushi bar, but they have great take out for very little money. Also, there's Seiyo in the South End on Washington Street near Mass Ave. Excellent sushi and a fine wine shop with bottles from floor to ceiling. Oh yeah!


5:43 PM  
Blogger Mikey said...

I may have wanted to list Fugakyu as one of my own, yes, but then I would have thought better of it - it's way too obvious a choice, and it wouldnt' have made my cut because of its lack of affordability. See - I would've have totally had more respect had you listed Shino or Seiyo in the first place. But you didn't, so THEY. DON'T. COUNT.



7:21 PM  
Anonymous velverse said...

I think Cafe Han sounds like a good place. Hemm so what is some of the best korean food here at Cafe Han? Hehehe... tell me more tell me more.. I wanna know more.

Ocean Wealth seems good too since I love Chinese food a lot.

Thanks for your list and I must say it is really detailed and nicely done.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Sonny Morningstar said...

and and AND... didn't you read my footnote? I also mentioned New Ginza in Watertown and Blue Fin in Cambridge. Ugh! As you can see, I am really distressed that you would call me out on sushi. Breathe deep, Sonny. Breathe and repeat, nam myoho renge kyo.

8:01 AM  
Blogger Mikey said...

Yeah, I read your footnotes. But that's thing thing - they were footnotes. They don't count in the original five. Ask Nicole!!!

You're stuck with Fugakyu - excellent, yet no-brainer, Fugakyu. Live with it.

Sir Sonny McObvious.

8:07 AM  
Blogger Mikey said...


I'm trying to get a draft of a couple thesis chapters done, and I KNEW it would be a mistake to check your blog in a weak moment of procrastination!

So make Peter do it. I'm assuming you guys have hit the same watering holes in Seattle....


8:42 AM  
Blogger mikey's sister said...

Actually, Peter eats WAY better than I do, when he makes time to eat at all.

2:38 PM  

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