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Restaurant complaints

If that really was the owner shouting a complaint about you, I'm not surprised that he didn't come to smooth things over after you returned your pink chicken! Perhaps if you wanted your chicken cooked, you should have made that clear to the server along with your bruschetta order. ;p

I agree that they should be made aware in some way that there's a problem, but don't go overboard. I'm with missmochi - it's not worth all the stress to escalate the complaints to the server and then the owner; you just run the risk of making a scene, and that's embarrassing (I took it too far once and felt awful about it). Return the food if it's unacceptable, leave a smaller tip if the service is bad, and write the place off if it's clear that they're not trying to fix things. I *might* give a place another try after poor service or if they voluntarily make some attempt to compensate for the bad experience, but some things - like undercooked chicken and hearing the owner complain about his customers - are pretty unforgivable.

Boston Restaurants for a Bachelorette Party

I haven't been there yet, but I've heard that Max Brenner Boston is a lot of fun. From what I can tell, it looks like a combination chocolate shop and restaurant; the food menu looks pretty basic, but tasty, and dressed up here and there with chocolate; there's an "aphrodisiac" section on the cocktail menu, plus a crazy-awesome looking chocolate and dessert menu.

I've been to bachelorette parties both at Dali (in Somerville) and Tapeo (in Boston, same owners). They were quieter parties; the brides in those cases really did not want all the costumes/penises/craziness that I've seen at some bachelorette parties, and a more intimate setting and sharing tapas and sangria were a lot of fun and REALLY delicious!

AHT Giveaway: Case of Pat LaFrieda Burgers

Mmmmm.... home-ground sirloin+shortrib mix (CI recipe), seared and crusty, with American cheese, mayo, and pickles on a homemade brioche bun.

One- Skillet Wonders?!?...

@GKlose - good call.

We have this Skillet Suppers cookbook from Cooks Illustrated, and we use it a lot. There are some tasty ramen noodle and other pasta dishes, pot-pies, and good ideas for easy, classic meat+side dinners. I think they have at least one or two other one-pot or weeknight suppers type of cookbooks, and in my experience their recipes are almost always good!

Bake the Book: 'Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts'

Apple crisp is incredibly easy to throw together at the last minute.

What's your secret snacking obsession?

@diane - oooh... dipping things in icing. I forgot about that one.

My first job when I was in high school was working at the local supermarket bakery. The cake-decorators were always leaving cake trimmings around and buckets of icing open, and dipping was practically encouraged. Now *pretzels* in icing... that I might have to try!

Worst thing you ever ate?

I once tried to order a Dark&Stormy at a hotel bar in Florida. They had never heard of it. We told them that it's ginger beer and rum; they came back with a concoction of rum, ginger ale, and light beer. *shudder*

My husband came back from a recent business trip with a tale of asking for a margarita at a Mexican restaurant in Omaha. Tequila+SunnyD.

Olives. Another personal taste thing. My brother can eat those things like candy, but accidentally getting one in my mouth is enough to ruin my day.

Durian - tasted like rotting burnt popcorn (it was in a bubble tea shake), and that was probably just a small amount that was in the drink.

Headcheese. Ordered it once from a charcuterie menu because I've always been curious about it, and I felt so guilty leaving most of the plate, but I just couldn't do it. Gelatinized beef broth with chunks - didn't taste all that bad, but I couldn't handle the texture.

Worst thing you ever ate?

I made a bowl of oatmeal a few days ago that was absolutely inedible. Put oats in a bowl with raisins and water, microwave - normally works just fine...and then while reaching for the raisins I saw my husband's orange-flavored Metamucil (he read some men's health article about fiber deficiencies leading to rectal cancer and somehow decided that this stuff is a good idea). My brain went "ah! added fiber that will just dissolve as it cooks, plus a little orange flavor might be tasty."

Worst.decision.ever. If one MUST ingest Metamucil (debatable), one must never, ever microwave it. I had oatmeal full of congealed, rubbery neon-orange globs; when I tried tasting it, you'd think I had mixed it up with orange soda. Hideous.

I recently discovered food. What should I eat?

Some sort of foodie regression therapy, Kenji? ;)

fried chicken
blueberry pie

What to do with cottage cheese?

The latest America's Test Kitchen video ( has a veggie lasagna recipe that uses cottage cheese for the cheese layers. Elaborate, in usual ATK fashion, but looks darned tasty!

Cook the Book: 'How to Cook Everything The Basics'

Not a book, but my 6+ years' worth of Cooks Illustrated magazines.

Mother's day brunch in Cambridge/Somerville-help please!

Mmmm, I agree with Craigie on Main as Jacqueline said. Very tasty, very interesting, but definitely pricey (I'd *almost* venture to say it's a little overpriced; they've been VERY popular and well publicized in the last year or two, but that's not to say it's not good).

Also on the high end is Harvest in Harvard if you decide to splurge. I had a great dinner at Daedalus and their brunch menu looks good, so there's another one.

Mother's day brunch in Cambridge/Somerville-help please!

I had brunch a couple of times at Christopher's, which is right in Porter square, and I remember it being pretty tasty! The Elephant Walk (French/Cambodian food) is nearby also has brunch if you're looking for something a little more unusual.

If you go to Harvard Square, there are a handful of great restaurants (Google "Harvard Square restaurants for a good list) though my brunch experience there is limited. The Russell House Tavern and Grafton Street Pub were both pretty good, and Upstairs on the Square has a weekend "afternoon tea" menu that looks tasty!

In Davis Square, there's Foundry on Elm, which is new-ish and fairly popular; they have a decent brunch menu. The other place I like in Davis (and they have an outdoor deck) is Sabur, which is a Mediterranean place. The brunch menu is a little different but really good; I've been there quite a few times for all meals, and it's almost always really delicious.

Snacking vices!

Cheese and crackers. More than once I've managed to polish off a box of Triscuits with possibly half a pound of cheese before I realized what had happene.

When I used to get stuck at work for long hours, a "meal" would be a bag each of M&Ms and cheese Doritos from the vending machine. I still love the two of them together.

This Week at Serious Eats World Headquarters

I'm suddenly rather depressed that I am *not* currently snacking from every available type of Oreo. May need to fix this situation.


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