Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Boston Food Truck: Roxy's Grilled Cheese

What: Roxy's Grilled Cheese
Where: Cleveland Circle (sometimes)
Honeys Heart: Fried Grillos Pickles

Confession: I have a little crush on the Roxy's boys. Or a big crush. Whatever. Their grilled cheese is delicious so it's allowed.

Anyway, when I finally made it out to Cleveland Circle a few weeks ago (before the Roxy's truck went "missing"), I was faced with the very difficult decision of just what grilled cheese to order. Eventually, I decided on the Green Muenster with muenster cheese, guacamole & bacon.

It was quite tasty and not too goopy either (a potential problem when you're combining guac with melted cheese).

And, being the glutton I am, I of course couldn't pass up the opportunity to try some beer-battered Fried Grillo's Pickles. 

I was a little worried about how the pickles would hold up on the T ride home, but they arrived safe and sound and still nice and crispy. Yum!

Basically, Roxy's needs to get their act together and get back to Boston ASAP because I desperately need to try some of their other grilled cheese offerings. And eat more fried pickles. And maybe let the boys tease me about tweeting while I'm waiting for my order. (Shhh, don't tell the bf.)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Boston Restaurant: Saus

What: Saus
Where: 33 Union St, Faneuil Hall
Honeys Heart: Liege waffle with salted caramel and berry berry sauce

So I think it's safe to say that I was the last food blogger in all of Boston to actually try Saus. This is very sad to me as I have been following Saus's blog since this time last year (true fan alert!!)... but whatever, I'm over it (not really).

Anyway, the important thing is that I finally did make it over to Saus a few weeks ago with Anna and Andy.

Saus serves Belgian-style french fries (pommes frites, if you're nasty) and leige waffles. That's it. Since there's technically only two things on the menu, we obviously needed to try both.

First up was a Belgian Pommes Frites ($7), aka a large order of fries.

Now, the fries were pretty decent as far as fries go, but the real draw is the 9+ dipping sauces that Saus offers. Each dipping sauce is 75 cents, though you do get a free sauce if you order a regular or Belgian-sized fries.

Our sauce selections were:

Truffle Ketchup- Tastes exactly like it sounds. Ketchup + truffle oil. Good, but forgettable when compared to the other options.

Cheddar Duval-  Delicious. Reminded me of a beer and cheese fondue I tried to make in college if it had turned out like it was supposed to. Get it.

Bacon Parm- Heavenly. Get this one too.

And then came the leige waffles. Leige waffles are made with pearl sugar and as the waffle cooks, the little chunks of sugar caramelize. That means you get a nice sweet crunch with every bite of waffle. 

Saus's Leige Waffles ($3.50) are best enjoyed with one of their waffle dipping sauces (75 cents).

I went with Salted Caramel.

I love caramel but I hate when desserts get super sweet so the waffle with salted caramel was about as good as it gets for me. At least, that's what I thought until one of the owners offered to add some Berry Berry sauce to my waffle so I could try her favorite combination. Yeah, so a leige waffle with salted caramel and berry berry sauce is basically perfection. I licked my plate. (I'm not lying, it was kind of pathetic... but worth it.)

Anna went with the Lemon Cream sauce.

Too much sweet, not enough sour for me. But Anna loved it.

Andy took the Nutella route.

And really, when is nutella ever not amazing? Good choice, Andy.

So, overall, I was definitely justified in stalking this place's blog for all of last year and I have deemed Saus worthy to be added to my "Official List of Restaurants to Drag My Family to When They Come for Graduation."

Also, you should know that this place is open late- until 2am on weekends. Cheers to drunk food that actually tastes good when you're sober!

(Though I do have to say, 75 cents for sauce? You guys know your fries and waffles are nothing without them. They should be included in the price no matter the size!... Or not since they're awesome and probably worth paying extra for.)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Playing Catch-Up

Wow. It's been over 2 weeks since either Kel or I have posted... We've definitely been slacking but we promise to be better!

Here's what's coming up:

Vegas recap of Les' bachelorette
Boston posts about Saus, Roxy's Grilled Cheese and $2 Taco Night at Tremont 647
Portland post about Toro Bravo
NYC recap of my recent weekend visit

And if you are feeling really deprived and need to read some HHH-ish articles elsewhere (shameless plug alert!), check out my City's Best pieces about Batch Ice Cream and the pig's head at Craigie on Main, my Time Out piece about spring dishes, and my weekly column for Back Bay Patch.


Monday, April 4, 2011

Portland Happy Hour: Produce Row Cafe

What: Produce Row Cafe
Where: 204 SE Oak Street
When: HH Mon-Sat 4-7pm, Mon-Sun 11pm-2am (Food Only)
Honey's Heart: Potato Skins

Typically when Joe and Adam venture off to HH I stay home or have a HH of my own to attend, but recently the three of us tried out Produce Row Cafe (per Joe's suggestion) in the Eastside Industrial area. I'm glad I went though because we did receive one of my favorite group nicknames ever, "the power trio." I'm assuming this was because we sat at the bar and ordered a lot of food, because I didn't even order a drink!

I think what originally caught Joe's eye was the whiskey and beer pairings on their menu, but what caught mine was the food selection and renovated restaurant at this increasingly trendy location. The bar has 4 areas with slightly different vibes. The bar area has a large bar and communal style dining tables. Behind that is a lounge-y area with sofas, which looked nice to enjoy a drink, but incredibly uncomfortable to eat at as it required eating with your plate sitting in your lap. In the back corner there are booths and outside has a covered, heated patio area. It was BUSY when we got there so we decided to take a seat at the bar.

Adam and Joe both ordered, and greatly enjoyed, beer and whiskey pairings ($6, $7) and I stuck with a water. I was nursing a cold and decided to be responsible, but the drink menu looks pretty good and I wish I had ordered "The Elder" ($8.) I suppose that's a reason to return.

On to the food selections. Adam and Joe both ordered the Pulled Pork Sliders ($6 - they're so matchy matchy) while I opted for the Ruben Sliders ($5).

My "sliders" were bigger (since it was essentially a sandwich cut in triangles), and I think better, though both were absolutely satisfying. Of course since I didn't order a drink I had to order extra food to make my time there more interesting, so I also got a side of the Baked Mac and Cheese ($4.50). It was hearty, but I have to admit I'm a sucker for just plain old noodles and creamy cheese (like at Davis Street Tavern) so this wasn't my fav.

Finally, probably one of the tastiest, gilty pleasures of the night was two orders, yes two, of the Potato Skins ($4) with peppered bacon, scallions, cheddar cheese and cili-spiked sour cream. They were awesome.

Since I didn't try any drinks, and the regular menu looks good and fairly priced I'll likely have to return. I have recently talked to a Portland native who has just returned from 2 years in Korea and was sad to hear that this Portland establishment has changed and no longer offers what sounds like some of the biggest sandwiches EVER. I guess I'll have to get his thoughts after he goes back and tries their new menu...a real compare and contrast.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Boston Restaurant: Max Brenner

What: Max Brenner
Where: 745 Boylston St., Back Bay
Honey's Heart: The Fantastic Chocolate Popsicle Fondue

"So, are we doing dinner or dessert first?" our waiter asks Anna and me when he comes to take our order. Max Brenner, I have a feeling we're going to be friends...

Max Brenner (the restaurant) is an Israeli export that focuses on chocolate, though the menu also features a number of dinner items like salads, burgers and pizza in addition to the multiple dessert options.  

Yesterday was the restaurant's opening day, and while I know it's a gamble to visit a restaurant so early, Anna and I have been waiting forever for Max Brenner to finally open its doors. Also, we have a bitch of a class on Thursday nights, so we needed a special treat.

Because Anna and I are responsible adults (for the most part), we decided some "real food" was in order before we got to the good stuff.

We shared the The Brenner Burger ($13.95) which is topped with Max's secret barbecue sauce, lettuce, tomato, cheddar, and an onion ring and served with waffle fries dusted with chili and cocoa powder.

The burger was very rich what with the brioche bun, cheddar and onion ring, so half was plenty for both of us. I liked that they put barbecue sauce on the burger since that's what my dad always does when he barbeques burgers at home, but Max's is pretty generous with the sauce, so ask for it on the side if you're not a big fan.

I thought it might be strange for the fries to be dusted with cocoa powder, but the combination of chili powder and cocoa actually makes for a pleasant twist on the usual waffle fries.

Ok, onto the important part:

Max Brenner divides its "sweets" menu into a few different categories: Waffles & Crepes, Sweet Icons, Frappes, Classics with a Chocolate Twist, Fondue, and Max I Scream.

While I was tempted by the frappes (that's Boston-speak for milkshakes), I ultimately decided to go for The Fantastic Chocolate Popsicle Fondue ($7.95 for one, $13.95 for two).

The dessert comes with a vanilla popsicle (by Magnum!), pure melted milk chocolate fondue, crunchy chocolate wafer balls and candied hazelnut crunchy bits.

Such a great idea! I preferred the candied hazelnuts to the chocolate crunchies (I'm not that big of chocolate person), but overall I thought this was a really fun, really tasty dessert.

Max Brenner also offers a number of chocolate-y drinks including dessert martinis, hot chocolate, and coffee with chocolate. Anna loves sweet drinks, so she decided to try the Suckao ($4.95), a "Do It Yourself Concentrated Hot Chocolate Shot."

The idea here is that you add the chocolate to the heated milk in the cup (warmed by candle), determining for yourself how chocolate-y you want your shot to be. Then you suck it up using the silver spoon/straw. Maybe Anna and I took too long photographing our desserts, but when Anna added the chocolate to the milk, the whole thing just got clumpy as the milk was not warm enough to melt the chocolate. Anna said she probably wouldn't order this one again and I support that decision.

Of course, one chocolate shot is not enough for a sweet-lover like Anna, so she also tried the Apple Pie Cinnamon Waffles ($14.50) with white chocolate cream, vanilla flake crepe ice cream, and candied pecans.

The waffles were tasty, but a little sweet for my taste--one forkful was enough for me. Also, kind of random to throw those chocolate crispies in on the side, don't you think?

Max Brenner also has a little sweet shop in the front where you can buy souvenirs like the "Alice Cup"... well as 24 different kinds of bonbons.

Oh, and as far as service went, the waitstaff was obviously on their toes for opening night. We got asked a bajillon times if we wanted more water or if we were done with our plates. That got a little annoying, but I'll chalk that up to opening night exuberance. Our waiter also split our burger and put our desserts on two separate checks without asking us, which Anna and I liked at the time... but now that I think about it, what if I wanted to treat Anna? Could have made it awkward. 

Overall thought, Anna and I agreed that we'll definitely need to come back again with Shannon and Erica so we can try more of Max's sweets. I can already hear the Euphoria Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge Sundae calling my name...