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Have you found any new favorite restaurants lately? In true winter fashion, we’ve been mostly sticking close to home and enjoying lots of homemade meals with some Dorchester dining mixed in for delicious measure.

What have we been eating lately?

Molinari's Dorchester

Dessert first, I say! We have come to absolutely love Molinari’s in Adams Village in Dorchester. It’s cute and cozy, the staff is super friendly, and the food is absolutely fantastic. This past weekend we met friends there and ended with the most scrumptious cannolis after a perfectly cooked salmon over salad and a to-die-for pizza topped with fried garlic, roasted garlic, garlic cream sauce, and meatballs. Hello heaven.

salmon saladMolinari's Dorchester

One of our Dorchester favorites is Shanti, and while we usually love it as takeaway eaten at home, we recently went for their lunch buffet, which is fantastic and a great deal at $9.95/person. I polished off a big plate with a little bit of everything. Their food never disappoints.

shanti dorchester

Warm weather recently had us craving a beach day, and after some sun and surf in Hull, we stopped at Tosca in Hingham, which is one of my all-time favorite date night spots.

Feeling up for something light, we split their incredible beet salad and fluffy, dreamy truffle tots with homemade steak sauce. It is a combo I highly recommend! We love sitting at the bar, which is cozy and romantic, and has no TVs! I hate that so many restaurants have TVs everywhere; if I wanted to watch TV, I would stay home! Tosca has a pretty great wine list too; on our last visit they were featuring a wine from Mauritson in the Dry Creek Valley, which we love.

Tosca HinghamTosca Hingham

Breakfast has suddenly become one of my favorite meals, and walking to Sweet Life Bakery and Cafe in Lower Mills has become a nice weather tradition.

It’s often the Irish breakfast for him (and I always steal a few bites) and banana pancakes for me. The song always has me craving them!

Irish breakfastSweet Life Dorchester

If we’re having breakfast/brunch at home, pancakes are often on the menu, but one of the most sinful-tasting brunch entrees we’ve had recently was a brioche French toast, made with Trader Joe’s brioche (SO good), eggs, milk, cinnamon, and raspberries. It’s super easy to make; I just eyeballed everything, soaked the bread for a couple of hours and stuffed it all into a baking pan, cooking it until it was firm and custard-y.

brioche french toast

I know we have so many new Boston restaurants to explore, and I hope that as spring arrives we will get a chance to do just that. In the meantime, we are pretty lucky to have so many yummy options so close to home.

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Tags: Boston, dining, Dorchester, Food, food blog

Did you discover any favorite new restaurants in 2017? With an ever-changing and growing restaurant scene in Boston, it’s hard to keep up, and while we definitely tried some amazing new spots (Yellow Door Taqueria, The Industry, and Reel House were all big hits!) we were also repeat visitors at established favorites.

I also rediscovered spots I hadn’t been to in a while like Doretta Taverna in Boston’s Park Square area.

I recently got together with a group of friends at Doretta to sample some of their most popular menu items, and I was reminded that I could eat there everyday and be perfectly happy.

Doretta has GREAT cocktails, and I regret that a work call came in as I was enjoying a beautiful and spicy Medusa’s Locks gin cocktail. I never got a chance to take a photo!

Doretta Boston

Everything I have eaten at Doretta is incredible, but as a big chip and dip fan, I could eat their zucchini chips and tzatziki all day long.

Doretta Boston

Of course, I would save room for their perfectly cooked, tender and lemony grilled octopus and a tasting of yummy spreads like my favorite Beet Pantzarosalata, a heavenly beet and yogurt blend. . . a healthy dip!

Doretta Boston

I normally pass on lamb, but even I had to have a bite of these lamb meatballs which are a big hit with Doretta guests. The cumin tomato sauce is definitely something you want to save and savor with your extra pita!

Doretta Boston

Lobster is obviously a New England favorite, and the Lobster Loukomades take it to a whole new level, with herb donuts, brown butter, and pops of flavor in the form of caviar. Yum.

Doretta Boston

I was *almost* too full to try this beautiful shrimp dish, which had hints of sweetness from honey and shredded pastry kattaifi. I loved the crunch that it added too!

From the presentation down to the last bite, each plate we were served was perfect.

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Doretta also has a really impressive and different wine list, especially for wines by the glass. I love that the list includes wines from Greece, in addition to places like Austria and Mendocino County California. It’s definitely not your standard wine list, and for someone who loves to try new wines, this is a huge selling point.

Since Doretta is consistently excellent and a sort of central location for friends coming from all areas around Boston, it’s the perfect place to meet.

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Tags: Boston, cocktails, Dining out, Food, food blog, Greek, Restaurants, wine

When planning our recent visit to Royal Sonesta New Orleans, we asked for and received TONS of recommendations on where to eat and things to do in the city. We were appreciative and a bit overwhelmed! One of the best pieces of advice we got was to just get a feel for the city and to go with it, and armed with plenty of recommendations and our own research, we set off to explore new Orleans.

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I tend to obsess over reading menus and looking places up on Google Maps prior to travel, and Café Amelie was actually one of my own finds and the place we chose for our first meal in New Orleans.

We had a rough night before we traveled, with our cat in the vet emergency room until 2:30 am and an Uber to the airport scheduled for 6:45 am. Café Amelie turned out to be the perfect spot to take a breath and exhale deeply while enjoying the quiet of their tucked-away courtyard and the glorious New Orleans heat.

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The vibe was so relaxed, and my shoulders started to drop a little, especially after my first “Sparring with Bubbles” cocktail, a new favorite cocktail, a blend of Ford’s Gin, Averna, grapefruit and pink bubbly. It was so delicious and absolutely perfect for the setting.

Ahhh. . .

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Café Amelie specializes in Louisiana fare, which is just what we were looking for, and we shared a few plates for lunch.

We of course had to try the local baked oysters, which were in a yummy spinach and artichoke sauce with a heaping side of crunchy crostini. We learned we are not huge fans of Southern oysters (Give me tiny, briny New England oysters everyday!) but we were huge fans of the addictive bread and sauce.

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Whenever we travel and know that decadent dining and drinking are on the cards, we sit down at a meal and both say “We need a vegetable”. At this lunch, it was a scrumptious, huge beet salad. I felt a bit healthier after eating it!

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Our third dish is one you must get if you visit Café Amelie. Chef Jerry’s Shrimp and Grits had the perfect bit of spice and the creamiest most devour-able grits. Good grits are pure heaven, and these were beyond.

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The pace of our meal was so lovely, as was the pace of everyone around us. We got chatting to another couple, locals, who call Café Amelie one of their favorite New Orleans restaurants, which we loved to hear.

I grabbed another cocktail to-go, because they were delicious and because I could. As frigid temps set in, I am craving New Orleans sunshine and humidity and some of the incredible food and warm hospitality we enjoyed on this trip.

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Tags: cocktail, cocktails, dining, Food, food blog, gin, New Orleans, NOLA, Travel, travel blog

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