Saturday, February 27, 2010

Boston Restaurant: Cutty's

What: Cutty's
Where: 284 Washington St., Brookline
When: Mon-Fri 7am-3pm and Sat 8am-3pm

Cutty's just opened last weekend and when I found out about it on Saturday morning, it was an easy decision to redirect my planned "run" in Cutty's direction.

Now, Cutty's was a little difficult for me to find because 1) I'm not good with directions, 2) I had never been to that neighborhood before and 3) Cutty's had no sign outside their building.

Hopefully they've fixed that, but here's what the building looks like in case you're like me and addresses are hard sometimes:

Cutty's thinks of itself as a "fast casual restaurant that sells inexpensive premium-quality breakfast and lunch fare." I'm not sure that I can completely agree with the "inexpensive" part, but their commitment to using seasonal, local and organic ingredients is definitely evident in their menu.

I was there around lunch time and had a hard time picking a sandwich because they all sounded so good. In the end, I went with the small eggplant spuckie ($3.75): olive salad, housemade mozzarella and roasted eggplant on ciabatta. I'm usually not a huge olive fan, but this sandwich was delicious. The olives perfectly complimented the eggplant and mozzarella without overpowering the sandwich.


I'll admit that $3.75 is not a bad price at all, but be advised that when they say small, they do mean small. The large eggplant spuckie goes for $7.25 and if you're hungry I would definitely recommend upgrading to the larger size.

Other sandwiches on the menu include:
  • roast pork 1 ($8.75) : with pickled fennel and roasted garlic on a sesame seed roll
  • roast pork 2 ($8.95): with broccoli rabe and sharp provolone on a sesame seed roll
  • roast beef ($7.95): with crispy shallots, thousand island and cheddar on black pepper brioche
  • ham 1 ($6.65): with pimento cheese and housemade pickles on a baguette
  • ham 2 ($6.45): with dijon, butter and gherkins on a baguette
  • spuckie ($3.95/$7.75): olive salad, housemade mozeralla and italian meats on ciabatta
There's also salads and snacks, plus a breakfast menu. And Cutty's site promises breakfast sandwiches are on the way. That upcoming addition especially makes Cutty's remind me of my favorite super-small but super-good sandwich place in Portland: Little Red Bike.

And one final note: Cutty's is owned by Culinary Institute of America-trained chef Charles Kelsey. This guy obviously knows what he is doing and I hope that Cutty's will allow him to show off his skills for a long time to come.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Boston Happy Hour: Kickass Cupcakes

Posted by Katie

What: Kickass Cupcakes
Where: Near Davis Square in Somerville
When: 5-7pm the last Monday of every month
Honeys Heart: free samples!

I missed Kickass Cupcakes' last two monthly happy hours so I was determined to finally make it this month.

Kickass holds a free sampling of 3 mini cocktail-inspired cupcakes from 5-7pm on the last Monday of every month. The flavors are always different which is pretty impressive considering that they've been creating 3 new flavors every month since they began this tradition last spring.

This month's featured flavors were:

The Strawberry Jello Shot: pink vanilla cake with a strawberry jello shot center and whipped cream topping

Chartwoozy: gin-soaked cupcake with Chartreuse frosting and lemon sugar

Chocolate Hot Toddy: chocolate cake, brandied chocolate ganache center and chocolate frosting dusted with nutmeg.

The Strawberry Jello Shot was my favorite. The jello shot center was a fun touch which brought me back to my days in the dorms (heart you Kenna!) and I liked that the whipped cream cut down on the sweetness factor. I loved the look of the Chartwoozy and the gin-soaked cupcake was delicious. The frosting was good too but super sweet. Definitely don't think I could have finished the regular-sized version of that one. Since I'm not a big chocolate person, the Hot Toddy was a little overwhelming for me, but I did appreciate the brandied chocolate ganache center because it helped balance the extreme chocolateness that was going on with this cupcake.

I felt weird sampling and then bouncing, so I decided to purchase a cupcake to take with me. Kickass offers regular-sized versions of all its happy hour cupcakes but I thought it would be fun to try a fourth flavor. Keeping with the alcohol theme, I went with the Limited Edition Bubbly: vanilla cupcake with a champagne soaked strawberry center and pink champagne icing. Yum.

In addition to their cocktail cupcakes, Kickass Cupcakes also has lots of other inventive flavors. You can check out their menu here.

While these cupcakes are obviously pretty decedent, as Kickass's site points out, a cupcake is generally smaller than the average piece of cake and you can feel good knowing that Kickass only uses all natural ingredients. That means no hydrogenated oils, no trans fats, no artificial flavors or preservatives. Probably that means it's ok to have more than one...right?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Portland Happy Hour (Revisited): Dragonfish

Posted by Kelly

What: Dragonfish Asian Cafe
Where: 909 SW Park Ave
When: 4-6pm daily, Sunday 3pm until close
Honeys Heart: Giving things a second chance!

Katie and I started Happy Hour Honeys to share our happy hour adventures with anyone who is interested and also maybe to justify our frequent happy hour attendance. Although regardless of readership we will write as a way to document our "foodie" activities and to keep each other updated on our eating and drinking across the country, but of course there are times that we wonder are we just writing to each other? Does anyone other than our moms read our blog? We like to think that we are at least slightly interesting and informative so we always feel a boost of confidence when we get a comment from someone we don't know! Especially when the person is related to the post...

A couple months ago some girlfriends and I went to Dragonfish Asian Cafe (the website is now up to date!) in SW and though the food was great the HH prices were less than impressive (you can read my full post here) and I was so happy when bar manager Andrew Tinling commented: "Hello Happy Hour Honeys! I wanted to thank you for coming by and checking out Dragonfish. I am the new bar manager and have made some new changes to our Happy Hour Food and drink menu. I would be happy to offer a $25.00 gift certificate for your thoughts and reviews. Ask for Andrew Tinling."

Like we have said many times, we are not rolling in money yet and happy hours are therefore a favorite. are gift certificates. Of course Katie B, Sofi and I returned and asked for Andrew who happened to be on vacation. We showed the blog and comment to the temporary bar manager who was great and offered to honor his offer. The menu now has food options from $2-$5 with what seemed to be some more substantial small plates, and better sushi pricing. We ordered $27 worth of food and each chose a drink, wine $4 and beer $3. Some favorites were: sushi (duh), miso soup, and the chicken wraps.
Overall we are glad we gave it another try, thanks Andrew! We like the improvements and, as we said before, the food is good, it is in a great central downtown location, and now with better prices for food and $5 cocktail specials the happy hour has definitely stepped it up. Check it out! Let us know what you think!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Portland Restaurant: Eat Pizza

Posted by Kelly

What: Eat Pizza
Where: 2037 SW Morrison St.
When: Daily 10-midnight, delivery available 503.243.FOOD

This week Adam and I decided we were ready to part with our has been good to our guests and I am sure Katie and Mary will miss it, but it was time to go. Attempting to find a cheap couch, that has a bed, that is decently comfortable, that would be delivered, and that would fit in our apartment had not been the easiest task so we finally cracked and got an IKEA couch. It is actually really comfortable, with a chase lounge and a neat pull out feature that turns it into a bed. It was delivered and like you all know, it is then time to assemble. I have assembled multiple IKEA products, sometimes having it result in extreme failure and tears. This wasn't too bad, but it still took two hours and by 8pm we were tired and hungry. We had been wanting to try Eat Pizza on SW Morrison and Burnside and decided it was a perfect pizza delivery night.

We ordered the Hawaiian pizza in the "in-between" size for $17.99 with a $2 delivery charge. $20 and 40 minutes later we had our pizza. Unfortunately it was small (for $18) and surprisingly disappointing for pizza. Generally I feel like one can't go wrong with pizza, but I definitely don't plan on getting pizza here again anytime soon!

Have you had a different experience here? Let me know! Maybe I just ordered the wrong thing...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Boston Weekend Rundown: Saturday Afternoon in the North End

  • With my internship, work, and school, it's almost impossible to get to a dance class during the week. I love Jeannette Neill's Saturday Video Dance class because it doesn't start til 1pm (hello sleeping in), the moves are super old school and that makes it fun, and the instructor is awesome.
  • The class starts with a cardio aerobics workout, funk combo (really more cardio) and then some ab and arm strengthening. Then we work on a dance routine. This weekend we danced to Ke$ha's Tic Toc and two weeks ago was Lady Gaga's Bad Romance. Like I said, LOVE this class!
  • Some dance experience might make things easier, but it's not necessarily required.
  • Every class is $15 and Video Dance lasts 1 hr and 30 min, which I think is a pretty good deal. Just make sure to bring cash or a check because they "don't take cards." (I saw them do it once, so if you get really upset, they might just take your card too.)
  • This is my favorite store in the North End. They sell replicas of vintage celebrity jewelry, for example, Jackie O's wedding ring or the earrings that Vivian Leigh wore in Gone with the Wind
  • I haven't bought anything there (yet) but I love to window shop and read the little descriptions they provide about each piece of jewelry. 
  • Hands down, best cannolis in the North End. (Don't even try to talk to me about Mike's, don't want to hear it.)
  • I waited in line for 30 minutes which was probably longer than it would usually take on a Saturday afternoon, but it was the day before Valentine's Day so I wasn't too surprised.
  • When you wait in line at Modern, you will inevitably hear people wondering out loud as they walk by if "it can really be worth the wait." Let me tell ya: it is. 
  • I can't pass a happy hour sign without taking a closer look, so during my walk I found out about The Wine Bottega's Best-of-Boston award-winning happy hour.
  • Every Mon-Thurs from 5-7pm The Wine Bottega offers 10% off bottles of wine $15 or less.
  • They also have free tastings of 6 to 7 wines every Friday from 5-8pm.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Portland (Mini) Weekend Rundown: Lucy's Table, Stepping Stone Cafe

Posted by Kelly

Lucy's Table: NW 21st
  • Adam and I had planned to order pizza from New York Pizza on 23rd, but since I had a veggie chimi from King Burrito for lunch and was still full, we tried Lucy's Table "Social Hour" from 5-6:30pm instead.
  • $4 cocktails were needed after a long week! I ordered the Peachopolitan (peach vodka, lime juice, cranberry juice) and Adam opted for a whiskey drink.
  • Older reviews suggested the menu would offer fancy corndogs and mini sandwiches (sandos) but they seem to have revamped their menu. 
  • We ordered baby back ribs ($8), shrimp pil pil ($6), and avacado humus ($6). I wouldn't order the avacado humus again. The avacado made the dip really creamy, but it lacked flavor. I'd prefer guacamole OR humus. The ribs and shrimp were great though! 
  • This is the place you go when in the mood for really good food, moderate portions, and a classy vibe.
Stepping Stone Cafe: NW Quimby and 24th
  • I have been wanting to try Stepping Stone Cafe for a while now and inspired after watching an episode of Man vs Food, we finally made it.
  • Due to reputation, we had to order the short stack (2) of buttermilk mancakes ($6) with blueberries (add $1.50). We could have done with just one! 
  • Fans of breakfast foods, we also shared a Stepping Stone favorite, the Chicken Scramble with sundried tomato basil chicken sausage, peppers, and jack cheese served with hash browns and toast ($8.75). This was also good!
  • Oh yeah, and I ordered a homemade biscuit...I needed something to put my raspberry jam on right?
  • The restaurant seems to have a comfortable natural flow with great food, nice service, and a fun atmosphere. Definitely worth the usual Saturday/Sunday morning wait!
The weekend was mellow with plans to recover from a long week, work, and enjoy the super bowl. I didn't really care about the game since, like Katie said we don't really do football, but I'm glad the Saints won (go underdogs!!). The commercials were kind of disappointing, but all the food was great! (Thanks Sof!)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Boston Happy Hour: Masa

Posted by Katie

What: Masa
Where: 439 Tremont St., South End
When: Everyday 5-7pm and all day Thurday
Honeys Heart: Tres Chile Margarita ($12), Tapas Combo Platter ($5)

I've been wanting to try Masa for awhile now, so when Shannon and I realized that our schedules allowed us to meet for dinner on Friday night, Masa was a no-brainer.

Masa serves Southwestern inspired cuisine but now that I think about it, we didn't even really look at their menu as we already knew that we wanted their tapas combo platter. The platter is usually $10 for 10 tapas but from 5-7pm everyday and all day on Thursday, Masa offers their platter for only $5. Nice!

Top row from left to right:
  • shrimp with aioli
  • goat cheese-stuffed pepper
  • corn salsa on mini tortilla (Masa's online menu is not updated so i'm guessing on some of these...)
  • goat cheese and queso chihuahua quesadilla with chile anaheim puree and pasilla chile balsamic glaze
  • goat cheese and almond-stuffed date wrapped in bacon
Bottom row:
  • spicy corn cake
  • grilled chorizo with cranberry chutney salsa
  • queso fundido jalapeno empanada
  • pulled pork and montery jack springroll with Masa bbq sauce
  • shredded chicken taquito with chili ancho aioli

Shannon and I loved the empanada and stuffed date but we could have done without the cold corn tapa and the goat-cheese stuffed pepper. Everything else fell somewhere in the middle which was fine with me because when you've got 10 things to sample, it's not the end of the world if you don't like one or two things.

Of course, it wouldn't be happy hour without a cocktail so I let the waiter talk me into the Tres Chile Margarita ($12). The margarita is made with tequila that has been muddled with anaheim, long hot, and jalapeno peppers and oranges mixed with a little agave nectar and sweet and sour mix. It is definitely spicy but refreshing at the same time. Shannon and I were still a little hungry so we ordered the housemade chips with salsa and guac ($7) which was a better compliment to my margarita than the tapas because the chips and salsa were not spicy at all so the drink jazzed things up a bit.

Overall, Shannon and I had a lot of fun sampling our tapas and at that price we will definitely be back again.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

DIY Happy Hour: Corona Margaritas

If we were having a Superbowl party (which we aren't, cuz we don't do football), we would probably make our famous Corona Margaritas. They're really more of a summer thing, but we think the beer aspect makes them a great candidate for Superbowl drinks too.

Oh yeah, and they're incredibly easy to make, so you won't be slaving away in the kitchen when you could be watching commercials...

Here's the recipe for 1 batch. Kel and I can polish a batch off by ourselves, no problem, so plan on making 1 batch for every 2-4 people.

What You'll Need:
- 1 can of lime concentrate
- liter of club soda (or Sprite for a sweeter version)
- tequila (cheap kind is fine, just hide the bottle so your guests don't get the wrong idea)
- bottle of Corona
- ice
- salt and limes for garnish

Step 1: empty lime concentrate into a pitcher

Step 2: fill up the empty concentrate can with club soda, add to pitcher

Step 3: repeat with the tequila

Step 4: pour a bottle of Corona into the mix

Step 5: Stir and pour into cups over ice, garnish

Told you it was easy!

And if you think the combo of beer and tequila sounds gross (I did at first), rest assured that we have never met anyone who has tried these and didn't love them/drink way too many of them. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Portland Happy Hour: Pambiche

Posted by Kelly

What: Pambiche
Where: NE Glisan and 28th
When: Mon-Fri 4-6pm, Fri and Sat 10pm-Midnight
Honeys heart: Empanadas! ($3)

Occasionally I get in a rut and frequent happy hours with the same types of food on their menu like burgers, cheese, mini sandwiches, various fried vegetables, with the occasional unique item, so it was a breath of fresh air to go to happy hour at Pambiche, a Cuban restaurant.

Adam and I met friends, Shannon and Steve, at Pambiche Friday night. One of their favorite happy hours with great food, prices, and distance from their apartment. It seems as though they are becoming regulars while enjoying living in a very wonderful apartment a story above the restaurant in the vibrantly colored building on NE Glisan. At 5:30, with happy hour nearing it's end, it was busy and completely full inside, so we opted to brave the wind and sit under a heat lamp outside.

We ordered Empanadas ($3 each), which Steve quite wonderfully described as hot pockets but way way better. Adam and I shared one beef and one chicken and corn, but Steve and Shannon's spinach and cheese empanada looked pretty wonderful.

Both pairs ordered Croquetas ($3) available with ham, chicken, shrimp, or codfish and potato. Adam and I wanted the shrimp, but they were out so we went with Steve and Shannon's ham suggestion. These were so good, and I definitely want to return for the shrimp croquetas.

Finally Adam and I chose the $2.75 Moros & Cristianos (black beans with rice and spiced pork) and Steve tried something new by accidentaly ordering Cuban red beans and rice ($3). I think he was glad he did though!

We skipped drinks, coffee or dessert though all looked amazing and wrapped up with an $11.50 bill (for Adam and I), not too shabby! I heard a woman speaking quite highly of their white wine sangria, their coffee is Stumptown (already a fav) but apparently incredibly prepared and the dessert case was full of tiny tasty treasures so I think that means I must go back... I am usually not a dessert person but I almost went for one of the beautiful looking desserts in the case.

I believe Pambiche has also been featured in Portland Monthly for their breakfast, which our friends also spoke highly of, so we'll definitely be heading over to the east side for breakfast some weekend morning!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Boston Weekend Rundown: Tory Row, Sweet, Publick House, Deep Ellum

posted by Katie

Tory Row: Harvard Square
  • Katie H and I met up after work on Friday to share a pitcher of molson canadian lager($15) and catch up now that we don't have any classes together
  • The food smelled delicious so we decided to order dinner. Katie went for the veggie burger with jalapeno aioli, mixed greens and roasted potatoes ($9) and I tried the yukon golden potato leek soup with fried leeks ($7). Delicious!
  • With its relaxed but sophisticated vibe, Tory Row is a great place to meet up after work

Sweet: Harvard Sqaure
  • Katie had never been to Sweet so we headed across the street to check out their selection of cupcakes
  • Such a cute setup and all the choices sounded so tasty.
  • We went with the snickerdoodle cupcake: cinnamon-infused cake and frosting rolled in homemade sugar was a good choice
Publick House: Washington Square in Brookline
  • We weren't quite ready to go home so we met up with our friend Heather at Publick House
  • Super-crowded but great beer selection
  • We were all happy with what the bartender recommended until we got our bills. Next time we'll know to check prices so we don't end up paying $9 a beer like Katie had too. (In my mind $9 is appropriate only for a cocktail, never for one beer).
Deep Ellum: Allston
  • I've been wanting to try Deep Ellum for a while and I finally convinced Shannon to go with me on Saturday (but only after reading her its great yelp reviews and noting that it was one of Drink Boston's top bars)
  • I tried The Original Aviation ($9): gin, maraschino, creme de violet, lemon. It was delicious.
  • And Shannon went for The Prado ($9): tequila, maraschino, grenadine, lime
  • Definitely need to go back and do some more sampling because this place warrants its own post even if they don't have happy hour (no surprise there though).