Saturday, August 17, 2019

CRISPY FLATBREADS AT THE RAIL TRAIL FLATBREAD COMPANY

Saturday, August 17, 2019
Zucchini & Tzatziki
Chicken Bacon Ranch flatbread
Half Mexican Street Corn half Farmers' Market
Lindemans Framboise
The Rail Trail Flatbread Company
Hudson, Massachusetts
www.railtrailflatbread.com

It was a feast for the senses the moment Eat Up New England stepped inside The Rail Trail Flatbread Company. More than a dozen flatbreads with all sorts of tasty toppings were on display, ready to be cooked inside of their wood-fired oven. Staffers donned in different shades of flannel were buzzing around, serving everything from poutine to juicy burgers.  All this as the smell of the wood-burning stove filled the air. It felt more like we were in Vermont or Maine, not Hudson, Massachusetts. 

The bar boasts 20 taps with a rotating selection of beer, many of them from New England. They were even pouring Sip of Sunshine out of Waitsfield, Vermont. You don't see that at many restaurants outside of Vermont. I was excited to find Lindemans Framboise on their menu. This raspberry-flavored brew is from Belgium and goes down real easy.

Comfort food dominates Rail Trail's menu. Appetizers include mac & cheese, buffalo cauliflower and zucchini & tzatziki. This fried zucchini dish was fantastic, as was the pile of tzatziki that was served with it.

The flatbreads are the star of the show. There are several to choose from or customers can craft their own. Choose a sauce, cheese and toppings. You can also order half of one topping and half of another. I LOVED the chicken, bacon and ranch flatbread. The flavors of the toppings, along with a little caramelized onion and scallion worked so well together. 

Rail Trail also serves burgers and salads, but be sure to treat yourself to one of their flatbreads, even if it's just a slice from your friend's pie.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

SIZZLIN' SUMMER SPOTS: POCO'S IN MANCHESTER, NH

Saturday, August 10, 2019
Bow Street Nachos
Poco's has been delighting Portsmouth's visitors since 1982.
Diners can eat outside by the water.
Classic margarita
Fried Haddock Sandwich
Poco's
Portsmouth, NH
pocosbowstreetcantina.com

There's nothing like sipping a cocktail by the water on a hot summer day. Poco's Bow Street Cantina in Portsmouth, New Hampshire offers plenty of outdoor seating on their waterfront deck for customers to do just that.

Poco's menu offers a mix of American and Mexican classics along with some New England seafood dishes. Be sure to order one of their massive margaritas. I loved their Classic Margarita, but customers can also build their own selecting their tequila, liqueur, mix and flavor. They also mix many of their own drinks like the fruity "Poco's Punch" and a refreshing "Limonada." Beer fans will enjoy a selection of bottles and rotating brews on tap. They also serve several wines and sangria, including PITCHERS of sangria.

Do yourself a favor and try their famous nachos. Choose from buffalo chicken, veggie and bbq pork nachos or their Bow Street nachos, which come with cheese and pico de gallo. All of the nachos come in half and full-size and are served with salsa and sour cream. The half is plenty for two people. Other apps include quesadillas, fajitas and enchiladas. Poco's also serves cups and bowls of seafood chowder, chili and several salads.

Entrees include pot roast, sweet potato mac & cheese, chicken and waffles and surf & turf. Poco's also serves many seafood dishes like lobster mac & cheese, New England broiled seafood (choose from haddock, shrimp and scallops) and fried seafood dishes. There's also a lobster roll, build your own burger and cauliflower burger. I devoured their fried haddock sandwich, which is served on a toasted bun with a pile of fries. 

Poco's is a fun and tasty place to stop while taking in the sights and sounds of beautiful Portsmouth. Grab a drink and pull up a seat by the water while it's still warm out! 

Monday, July 29, 2019

BOSTON'S "BABBO" TO CLOSE

Monday, July 29, 2019
Saying goodbye in September 2019
Babbo's Ricotta Gnocchi
Babbo in Boston's Seaport is reportedly shutting down this fall. The Globe reports the formerly Mario Batali-backed pizzeria will be closed for good by September 15. 62 employees will be out of the job.

Babbo is known for its wood-fired pizzas, pastas and gelati. Batali got into the Boston restaurant scene for the first time with Babbo in 2015. He later divested his interests in Babbo and many other restaurants after he was accused of sexual misconduct.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

SMUTTYNOSE BREWING COMPANY AND RESTAURANT IN NEW HAMPSHIRE

Sunday, July 14, 2019
Smuttynose is located in Hampton, NH.

Raspberry Lime Rickey sour beer
Blue Cheese Smash burger
Smuttynose Brewing Company
Hampton, New Hampshire
www.smuttynose.com

Smuttynose Brewery has been cranking out craft beer since 1994. You can sample all of it and bring some home at their campus in Hampton, New Hampshire.

Visitors can tour the brewery for free. There's also beer tasting inside of the brewery where you can try all of the classic and latest Smuttynose brews. Stop by their gift shop for Smuttynose beers and swag to bring home. Have some fun playing their pinball machines or go for a game of cornhole (in season).

Don't leave without enjoying a meal at their restaurant. Pull up a chair and listen to live music at their outdoor patio or dine indoors near their bar, which, of course, pours nothing but Smuttynose. Right now, they are brewing a Raspberry Lime Rickey sour beer which is so refreshing. 

The food is fantastic. There are salads, burgers and pastas. I loved their Blue Cheese Smash burger, which consists of two patties. The cheese, bacon and onions are all smashed together into the burgers. Appetizers include fried pickles, onion rings, nachos, and a pub pretzel. Want a free meal? Bring your appetite and try "Da S'muttonator." It comes with 4 burgers, 8 slices of bacon, 4 slices of cheese, 4 ounces of pulled pork, onion rings, a fried egg and a pound of french fries. Eat it all in 30 minutes and it's free, plus you'll get a T-shirt and your picture on their wall of fame.

Monday, July 01, 2019

SIZZLIN' SUMMER SPOTS: THE KNACK

Monday, July 01, 2019
Lobster roll
Onion rings
The Knack in Orleans, Massachusetts
The Knack
Orleans, Massachusetts
theknackcapecod.com

The owners of The Knack say their goal is to perfect the Cape Cod roadside stand. Mission accomplished! They grew up on the Cape eating the lobster, the seafood and the burgers, so they know what they are doing. 

The Knack is always hopping. In true Cape Cod fashion, customers order from one of their windows and eat outside. Start your meal with a shake, soda or a can of one of their local beers.  Burgers, hot dogs and sandwiches fill their menu. The burgers look amazing, but this time I wanted to sink my teeth into some Cape Cod lobster. The lobster was as fresh as can be. I gobbled it up with some of their onion rings, which are light and crispy. They also offer veggie tacos for vegetarians, along with fish and whole belly clam sandwiches. 

Save room for dessert! There's soft serve ice cream and homemade ice cream sandwiches. The Knack donates 10% of their profits on sweets to charity everyday.

Friday, June 07, 2019

IT'S NATIONAL DONUT DAY 2019!

Friday, June 07, 2019
There's a day for everything now, but TODAY is National Doughnut Day, and we call all get behind that! Many donut shops are giving out free donuts today. Honey Dew Donuts emailed customers and put a deal on its app for a free donut. Customers can also get a free donut by ordering a medium drink. There are a few Krispy Kreme's in New England, at Mohegan Sun and in Maine. They are giving out free donuts today with no purchase necessary. Rocco's Doughnut Company in Westborough and Millbury, Massachusetts is handing out free mini donuts with the purchase of any coffee. Gourmet Donuts is giving customers a free donut with any beverage purchase. Dunkin Donuts will give customers a free donut with the purchase of a drink. Kane's is handing out a free six-pack of donut holes with the purchase of a dozen donuts.

Sunday, June 02, 2019

SUMMER IS IN SESSION AT MURPHY'S EATS & TREATS

Sunday, June 02, 2019
Clam strips plate
Cookie dough ice cream

Murphy's Eats & Treats
Ashland, Massachusetts
www.murphyseatsandtreats.com


It's June and summer is in full swing. It's time for another season of Eat Up New England's Sizzlin' Summer Spots. Our first stop this summer is Murphy's Eats and Treats in Ashland, Massachusetts.

Murphy's is the place where everyone in town goes for ice cream on a warm summer day. Their ice cream window makes you feel like you're on the Cape. They serve all of the classics like cookie dough and moose tracks. Murphy's also sells soft serve, including unique flavors like orange creamsicle. 

Murphy's is also a good spot to quench your seafood craving. I enjoyed their clam strips plate, a large portion of clam strips over crinkle fries. Among their other seafood options are lobster rolls and a whole belly clam roll. They also offer burgers, hot dogs, salads. grilled cheese and kids meals.

After dinner and ice cream, check out Murphy's mini golf course.

Friday, May 17, 2019

HONEY DEW DONUTS LAUNCHES NEW REWARDS APP

Friday, May 17, 2019
Oreo Smoothie
Honey Dew Donuts has just launched a new rewards app. Every time you make a purchase, you get points which will eventually get you a free drink or free food. For a limited time, customers also get a free $5 just for downloading the app! I cashed mine in for their delicious Oreo smoothie you see above. Just search "HoneyDewDonuts" in the app store. 

Sunday, May 05, 2019

CINCO DE MAYO 2019: PART 2

Sunday, May 05, 2019
Chipotle chicken quesadilla
Nothing like free swag on Cinco de Mayo!
Mexican restaurants were filled to capacity today for Cinco de Mayo. Eat Up New England enjoyed lunch at Mexico City Taqueria in Ashland, Massachusetts. The margaritas were flowing and everyone was munching on chips and salsa. Customers got hooked up with free Corona swag like T-shirts, sombreros and sunglasses. It was a nice way for people to always remember Cinco de Mayo 2019.

CINCO DE MAYO 2019: PART 1

Sunday, May 05, 2019
Chicken fajitas
Chips & dips
Cinco de Mayo falling on a Sunday this year means that all of us really have TWO days to celebrate. Eat Up New England kicked things off yesterday at the lovely new Temazcal in Framingham, Massachusetts. Their huge basket of tortilla chips with three dips is always a crowd pleaser. For dinner, I scarfed down their chicken fajitas. The chicken was amazing.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

GREEN MOUNTAIN CHOCOLATE COMPANY: HANDMADE IN MASSACHUSETTS

Thursday, April 18, 2019
Chocolate bunnies of all sizes are ready for Easter.
A look behind the scenes, where all of the chocolate is made.
Green Mountain Chocolate Company
www.greenmountainchocolate.com
Hopedale, Massachusetts

Easter is in full swing at Green Mountain Chocolate Company in Hopedale, Massachusetts. Look around and you'll see chocolate Easter bunnies, chocolate eggs, chocolate-dipped Oreos, chocolate-covered Peeps & bunnies and boxes of Easter chocolates. Green Mountain even sells chocolate-covered potato chips. For Passover, there are chocolate-drizzled matzah and chocolate sedar plates. All of these fine confections are made in house at their Hopedale factory.

Green Mountain Chocolate Company specializes in Swiss and Belgian truffles. There are large showcases of them at their retails stores in Franklin and Hopedale. They also ship their chocolates to customers all around the country and Europe.

Green Mountain Chocolate Company creates special confections for all of the holidays, making them a sweet destination all year round. For Valentine's Day, they make chocolate hearts and chocolate-covered strawberries. At Thanksgiving, they create their own chocolate turkeys and chocolate cornucopias. At Christmas, they make peppermint bark, chocolate Santas and boxes of chocolates. Right before Easter every year, the Easter bunny comes to take free pictures with kids. The store sets out an assortment of samples of chocolates, fudge and chocolate-covered potato chips for parents and kids to snack on while they wait in line. 

Follow Green Mountain Chocolate Company's Facebook page to see their latest chocolatey creations.

Friday, April 12, 2019

BUILD YOUR OWN MEDITERRANEAN SALAD, BOWL OR WRAP AT CAVA

Friday, April 12, 2019
Greens & grains bowl
Salads come with a tasty pita.
CAVA's location at Legacy Place in Dedham, Mass.
CAVA
cava.com
Dedham, Massachusetts 
(With locations around the country)

CAVA is often described as being like Chipotle, only with Mediterranean food. It's an accurate comparision. This quick-serve national chain allows customers to build their meals and the results are really tasty.

First, choose your base. Wrap your ingredients up in a pita, or pile them on top of a salad or get a greens & grains bowl, which comes with salads and rice. Next, choose your dips. There's the traditional tzatziki, hummus and eggplant & pepper or try the spicy harissa or crazy feta. Step 3, pick a protein. Choose from chicken, falafel, grilled meatballs and seasonal roasted vegetables. They also serve braised lamb and spicy lamb meatballs, which coast a little more.

There are so many delicious toppings for your creation and you can choose as many as they want, so pile 'em high! There's tomato & cucumber, crumbled feta, pita crisps, kalamata olives, and pickled onions among the many toppings. Finally, choose your dressing with options like yogurt dill, lemon herb tahini and Greek vinaigrette. 

CAVA also offers several soups, along with fruity/healthy fountain drinks.

I loved the greens & grains bowl I made up. The flavor combination and selection of ingredients is wonderful. Right now, there are only a few CAVA locations in New England. Let's hope they expand so everyone can enjoy their food.

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

NOTHING BUNDT CAKES OPENS IN NEWTON, MASSACHUSETTS

Wednesday, April 03, 2019
Bundtlets come in these little containers.
Chocolate Chocolate Chip Bundtlet
Bundt cakes of all sizes
Nothing Bundt Cakes in Newton, Mass.
Nothing Bundt Cakes
Newton, Mass.
www.nothingbundtcakes.com

Nothing Bundt Cakes, as you may have guessed, whips up nothing but bundt cakes at its hundreds of shops around the country. One of its newest locations just opened in Newton, Massachusetts.

The bundt cakes come in different sizes: small (bundtinis), medium (bundlets) and large (8-10 inch cakes). There are a bunch of different flavors like red velvet, confetti, carrot, marble, lemon and white chocolate raspberry. They are topped off with creamy icing, which is amazingly delicious. I really enjoyed their chocolate chocolate chip cake. The cake is so moist and flavorful, like it just came out of the oven. 

Nothing Bundt Cakes also makes custom cakes for birthdays and other special occasions. 

Thursday, March 21, 2019

GRAND OPENING: ROCCO'S DOUGHNUT COMPANY OPENS IN WESTBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS

Thursday, March 21, 2019
Black & White, Fruity Pebbles, Chocolate Glazed and Strawberry Shortcake
Now open in Westborough, Massachusetts
Check out that selection!
Take your donuts home in a pizza box like this one.
Rocco's Doughnut Company
Westborough, Massachusetts
www.roccosdoughnutcompany.com

Rocco's Doughnut Company has been making handmade, flavorful donuts in Millbury, Massachusetts for some time. Today, they expanded, opening a new shop in Westborough, Massachusetts. The first 100 customers received free Rocco's T-Shirts. Those went fast. When I got there around 9:15, there was still a line, but it went fast. Everyone waiting was so excited that Rocco's is finally open for business.

Rocco's makes all of their doughnuts on location. They are big, filling and come in a variety of sweet flavors. There's a Fruity Pebbles donut, topped with the fruity cereal and strawberry frosting. They baked chocolate glazed donuts with chocolate sprinkles. There's even a strawberry shortcake donut. Fans of the classics will enjoy their chocolate glazed doughnuts, jelly, crullers and cinnamon buns.

Rocco's also serves doughnut breakfast sandwiches - bacon, egg & cheese or sausage, egg & cheese in between honey glazed doughnuts. There's plenty of hot & iced coffee to complement your tasty treat.

These doughnuts are the real deal. They are so filling that you can easily split one with a friend or save half for later. Follow Rocco's on social media to see how they are always adding special doughnut flavors.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

IT'S ST. PATRICK'S DAY YEAR-ROUND AT STONE'S PUBLIC HOUSE

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Fish & chips
Lovely day for a Guinness!

Carrot cake
Stone's Public House
Ashland, Massachusetts

St. Patrick's Day weekend is upon us once again. Stone's Public House in Ashland, Massachusetts is a perfect spot to grab a pint and enjoy some hearty food.

Stone's serves all of the tasty Irish classics. There's Shepard's pie, fish & chips, seafood stew, Guinness Irish beef stew and a full Irish breakfast. They even have a Vegetarian Shepard's Pie. I enjoyed their hearty plate of fish & chips. Stone's also serves lamb chops, ribs, salmon, mac & cheese, chicken and filet mignon. They also offer a bunch of sandwiches like turkey breast & avocado, barbecue pulled pork and toasted ham & cheddar.

There are some very tempting apps like an Irish Pizza with potatoes, scallions, cheddar and bacon. There's also poutine, Irish sausage rolls, fried oysters and brussels sprouts.  If you save room for dessert, I recommend their Limoncello Mascarpone Cake or their carrot cake.

While we were eating, I heard someone at the table next to us ask their server if she's seen any spirits. She said no, but it made me want to know more. Stone's Public House has an interesting and spooky history. It was built in 1832 by a businessman named John Stone. The building fell into disrepair until it was bought in 1976. The buyer started experiencing strange events. A hypnotist visited the inn and talked with the spirits. He determined that six or seven spirits visit the inn. He also talked to some of them and learned that John Stone killed a visitor who cheated during an upstairs card game.

I did not see any spirits. Just lots of good food.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

HUGE SLICES AT ANTONIO'S PIZZA BY THE SLICE

Sunday, February 24, 2019
Large pizzas are lined up with an array of toppings.
Ground beef roni and mushroom slices
Antonio's in Providence
Antonio's: Pizza By The Slice
Providence, Rhode Island
www.antoniospizza.com

Antonio's is one of the many wonderful restaurants on bustling Thayer Street in Providence, Rhode Island. They specialize in pizza by the slice. At any given time, there are dozens of large slices with different toppings available.

There are classics like mushroom, Hawaiian, and sausage. They kick things up a notch with slices with several toppings like beef taco, potato bacon and ground beef roni. Antonio's bakes more than a dozen chicken pizzas like chicken parm, chicken, bacon & ranch, BBQ chicken & pineapple and BBQ chicken & tortellini. There are also many vegetarian pizzas like eggplant & peppers, tomato and artichoke pesto. Antonio's also offers Sicilian slices and full pizzas.

The selection of toppings at Antonio's is really something. It rivals any NYC pizza shop. By the way, if you want anything besides pizza, TOO BAD. It's all pizza, all of the time here. Why mess with perfection?

PEEPS CEREAL IS NOW A THING JUST IN TIME FOR EASTER

Sunday, February 24, 2019
An Easter classic is now a cereal. Eat up New England spotted Peeps cereal during a recent trip to Stew Leonard's in Connecticut. It's packed with marshmallow pieces and is available just for the Easter season. Peeps are now available for just about every holiday. Yankee Candle even sells a Peeps candle. So, Peeps cereal doesn't seem like much of a leap. It does you wonder, what will be the next Peeps-flavored product?

Saturday, February 16, 2019

CAN'T SLEEP? ORDER SOME INSOMNIA COOKIES!

Saturday, February 16, 2019
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup

The many varieties of Insomnia Cookies.
Cookie cakes
Milk to compliment your cookie.
Insomnia Cookies on Thayer Street in Providence
Insomnia Cookies
Providence, RI
insomniacookies.com

Can't sleep? Order some warm cookies! Insomnia Cookies delivers cookies until three in the morning every day. Their location on busy Thayer Street in Providence, Rhode Island also stays open until 2 am. 

These are some tasty cookies. There are traditional cookies like chocolate chunk, peanut butter cup, M&M's, snickerdoodle and double chocolate mint. They also have their own tasty batches of deluxe cookies like chocolate peanut butter cup and s'mores.  I loved their chocolate peanut butter cup cookie. It's a peanut butter cookie with peanut butter cups in it. It's served warm with ooey gooey warm peanut butter cup chunks in it.

Order one or a couple cookies or box them up to share. They have deals like the Six Pack, which includes 6 cookies. There's a Major Rager, which includes 18 traditional cookies. Or go nuts with The Insomniac, which is made up of 24 traditional cookies. 

Many of their locations, including this one, also serve ice cream. Customers can buy ice cream cookie sandwiches using any of their cookies. They also have cookie cakes, which serve four to eight people.