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I never knew ye: Oregon Club

December 28th, 2008

The Oregon Club in Ashland is one of those placed that people knew well or never heard of.  It’s been around since the 20’s as it’s first incarnation as a SpeakEasy and then a restaurant.  I used to know someone who waited tables there and always thought it sounded worth checking out.  What kept me back was the prices and the sometimes non-favorable reviews which made me nervous to shell out that kind of money for dinner.  In the more pleasant-weather months I ride my bike by the Club every day to and from work and often thought of checking it out.  Finally last night (Dec. 27th) Ethan and I decided to go out for a little holiday treat dinner and made the choice of trying the Orgeon Club. 
Their website was down so I called to see what their hours were and was shocked that the out-going recording said they were closed (for good).
Just for kicks we drove down today to see if there was any special message on the door and it was basically what their  phone message is:

Such a bummer we were too late to try this place.  It must have closed fairly recently but I don’t know exactly when.
Goodbye to another local business.

→ 5 CommentsTags: *Ashland · Goodbye

Very cool

November 20th, 2008

So I went back to Boloco and while the burritos were still okay and I didn’t realise until I got home they forgot to put one in my to-go bag.  Since I had a gift card I decided to try a milkshake and that was pretty decent but the impressive part was the cup it came in.  It looks like  regular plastic cup but in the back it reads:

Very cool indeed.  I’m not sure if these are more expensive or what but it would be so great if everyone could use corn-made plastic cups.

→ 2 CommentsTags: *Natick · Yays


November 6th, 2008

We were craving Pad Thai the other night and have not been blown away with any of the metrowest places we’ve been to yet, so we decided to try Morn’s in Wayland.
We got take out but it looks nice inside. Although beware it is dimly lit so anyone who has trouble reading menus should bring a little flashlight.

We got the Pad Thai home and to be honest it didn’t look that great, it looked especially pale and the noodles were very broken.  But we were pleasantly surprised that it tasted pretty good, really good.  Not quite as good as our favorite place in Waltham but good enough we’d get it from here again, something we have not done with any of the metrowest places we’ve ordered from before.

→ 5 CommentsTags: *Wayland

Last Hurrah at Dairy Queen

October 27th, 2008

One of my friends from High School, Tom, has been raving about the pumpkin pie blizzard at DQ and we got another Hollistonian to come out to Ashland and try this treat that Tom has been raving about.
Behold the Pumpkin Pie Blizzard:

Even though I didn’t get it with whipped cream as Tom suggested it was still really good.  We were actually surprised DQ is open until Nov. 2 so there’s still time to get one if you haven’t had it.   If you like pumpkin, you will not be disappointed.

→ 4 CommentsTags: *Ashland


October 19th, 2008

You’d never guess by looking at this picnic area that this used to be one of the best McDonald’s Playlands around.  This Westboro location had it all:  hot metal slides, merry-go-rounds that taught kids about centrifugal force the hard way, the safe-haven of the Mayor McCheese tower which left parents powerless upon claiming their children.
Why would such a fantasy playground be destroyed??  I forget when it happened but it was transformed into some sort of padded cell nerfland with “safer” activities and they cut the size in half.

This past year the kicked it up a notch and got rid of any enjoyment for kids and put the 4 tables and a trashcan that you see above.  I’m all for kids being safe but I (or anyone I knew) never got hurt playing at the old playland and it makes me feel bad for my nephew who will never know how great this place was.
Some photos of my cousins, sister and I have one of our usual awesome afternoons at the original Westboro playland.

→ 4 CommentsTags: *Westborough · Flashback

Dowse Orchards

October 13th, 2008

Last week I stopped by Dowse Orchard on Rt.27 in Sherborn.  They offer PYO apples and also have a little stand where they sell apples by the peck and half peck plus all sorts of goodies like locally made fudge, ready-to-bake apple crisp, local honey and the best cider I’ve ever tasted, which they make themselves. 

Dowse is great local business selling local products and definitely worth a visit.
Check out their site for more info:

→ 2 CommentsTags: *Sherborn · Yays

Garden Restaurant

October 5th, 2008

I’ve wanted to go to this place for a while now.  They’re only open for breakfast and lunch during the week and closed on Sundays so I just haven’t found myself available or in the area on the one day a week I can go.
Finally last Saturday Ethan and I made the drive out to route 140 in Milfors, just for this place.
This is a  little diner type place, like Harry’s in Westboro and thought it would be worth checking out.  Inside is kind of small but had a good amount of tables and counter stools.

I got a tuna melt and Ethan got a grilled cheese with ham. 

These were okay, the tuna tasted kind of cafeteria-like but it was grilled nicely.
The big disappointment was the service.  These two grilled sandwiches took 40 minutes to get and the waitress seemed to be avoiding us.  We saw people who came in after us order, eat their food and leave before we got our food.
When the waitress finally came over with our food, there was no apology or even mention of the wait and never came back to check on us.
To me this is a huge turn-off.  I’ve waited tables on and off since I was 18 and  next to food quality, it was my biggest priorty to get customers their orders in a reasonable amount of time.  I would even get into arguments with chefs/cooks over this and if for some reason there was nothing I could do, I would go over to the table and appologize, offer drinks or an appetizer  or something.  It always just strikes a cord with me when a server doesn’t care about timing.  Ethan said that he had the worst Coke ever there and it tasted like chlorine.
I hate to diss a small business but we won’t be back.

→ 2 CommentsTags: *Milford


October 1st, 2008

We actually went here a while ago, sorry I’ve been bad about posting, things have been very busy and I spent the past week on Oregon etc…
I was interested in Boloco not because I like burritos but just that it was new and looked interesting so we went in to try it.

 The inside is clean and modern looking and they have an organized ordering system

I got a brown rice and tofu burrito and Ethan got something with steak, both were neatly (but quickly) foil wrapped

My wrap was okay, I think the thing I’m never crazy about is the amount of rice-to-protein/vegetable.  It looks okay here but the filling (besides the rice) was really just in the center and because of so much rice found it a bit dry.  It tasted okay though, I just drank plenty of water with it.

We hevn’t been back since but I guess we’re just not near the mall much anyway.  I’d still say it good for a bargain lunch in that area without going into the mall for the food court.

→ 5 CommentsTags: *Natick · restaurants

The Villa

September 23rd, 2008

We went out with my aunt and uncle a while ago to the Villa in Wayland.  I’ve always heard about this place but never been here.  It seems like they have their regulars and do a steady business.
We weren’t very exciting an pretty much all got the same thing- Parms of some sort but Ethan and my aunt got chicken parm:

and I got a combination of chicken and eggplant which I remember as being pretty good and I like a lot of sauce so I impressed with the amount they put on their dishes. 

My uncle, as usual, got a pizza.  Here, like at La Cantina, they make a square pie.  the crust is nice and crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.  While this wasn’t an amazing pizza, it was still very good.

The Villa was good all-around, I don’t know if I’d go out of my way to come here and wait in line for a table but we had a nice meal and it’s good to see an older restaurant do well and have some place for local people to meet up.

→ 2 CommentsTags: random

Abdow’s Big Boy site

September 14th, 2008

In the Westborough Shopping center is a Boston Market that used to be Abdow’s Big Boy.  I’m not sure how this became a thing to do but probably once a month my family would drive form Holliston to Westborough and pretty much spend an evening in this plaza, starting with a dinner at Abdow’s, then walk over to Caldor, check out the stuffed animals/misc. gift items at Putnam, maybe see a movie at the Flick 1 &2  or pick up any groceries we might need at Julio’s Star Market and then finish off the night by going to Cottage Donuts right before they closed because they’d sell us the donuts that didn’t sell at a discount.

Anyway, I thought of this because I recently found this photo of my little sister taken in 1983 outside Abdow’s.  She really liked the Big Boy:

→ 5 CommentsTags: *Westborough

Nordstrom’s Cafe

September 7th, 2008

My aunt and I were meeting up at the Natick Mall Collection and she reccomended the Nordstrom’s cafe.   I didn’t even know this existed, but it’s inside the store by the women’s clothing area.
The sevice set up is like York’s Steak House.  You go place your order at the register and then go pick a seat and a server comes to you and then waits on you for the rest of the meal. The decor is modern and clean with lots of brown.

We decided on both getting a French Onion soup and sharing some sort of mushroom pizza.  My aunt said one of her friends highly recommended the soup so I was looking forward to trying it.  When it came to the table it looked pretty good, a generous portion (although it was $6 or 7 so it should be) and the melted and browned cheese on top looked delicious.

The actual soup part was just okay. I certainly wasn’t bad but I guess I was expecting really amazing soup.  For the record, the best French Onion soup I’ve ever had was at my one and only visit to the dearly departed Pillar House.  I have never tasted FO soup as good since then. 
Next was the pizza:

This was also okay. Even though all the ingredients seemed right, it just didn’t blow me away.  Instead of red sauce they used some sort of herbed cream cheese that I think overpowered the flavors of everything else.  Maybe a simple plain goat cheese would have complimented this pizza better, I don’t know.

So think this place is okay, not worth a special trip for it, but not a bad place to get something simple if you happen to be there anyway.

→ 2 CommentsTags: random

Out Post Farm

September 1st, 2008

Saturday we went to Out Post Farm in Holliston for some corn and saw a welcomed (to me anyway) sign of fall:
Beautiful pumpkins!

Growing up in Holliston, my sisters and I would always get our pumpkins at either Arcadia Farm or Out Post.  The added plus to Out Post is their broasted chicken, which was always a treat.   I will review their chicken at some point because I haven’t had it in about 18 years so I’d be interested to see if it’s as awesome as I remember.  Today though, we just went for produce:

In addition to broasted chicken, they are known for their turkey and sell pies (both fruit and turkey varieties) and other baked goods.
You can see more on their website:

→ 2 CommentsTags: *Holliston · Yays

Krua Khun Yah

August 25th, 2008

Ethan and I went to the Shaw’s  plaza on a mission with a Dollar Store purchase and decided to try taking home some Pad Thai from Krua Khun Yah.  As some people have pointed out, there are not a lot of Thai places around here so we’re always up for trying out our noodle favorite dish.
We split an order of shrimp P.T. but of course you can get it with Chicken or Tofu as well.

This was really good.  Not as good Erawan of Siam, which we were lucky enough to live near in Waltham, but I think the closest to that more than any of the other places we’ve tried around here.
I think the one thing they could have lightened up on was the sugar.  We both found it to taste very sweet, but other than that we were really happy with this.

→ 1 CommentTags: *Ashland · restaurants · Support Local Business!

Lookout Farm

August 19th, 2008

When I worked at Wellesley College, my friends and I would often go down to Marino’s (now Belkin’s) Lookout Farm.
It’s a really nice place to take a break and look around the nice market they have inside:

In addition to their great house-made take out foods, they also have gelato, which on a summer day is real treat.  I believe this is also made here and they have a lot of flavors to choose from (dark chocolate is my favorite):

After getting a gelato, we’d go outside and get some shade under the grapevines and check out the animals in the barn.  It was always a great way to spend a lunch break.  There are not a lot of farms in the area (and none with gelato) so this was a real treat to have nearby.

I know they do a tremendous U-Pick business as well but I’ve never tried it out.  You can check out their U-Pick and other info at

→ Leave a commentTags: *Natick · Support Local Business!

Regatta Deli

August 12th, 2008

When I started working in Westborough, my fellow employee and Westborough native, Brendan showed me all the good placed to eat.  Regatta Deli was one of our first lunchtime fieldtrips.
Inside is a small but not cramped space that you can sit in but it seemed most people (including us) got sandwiches to go.
They have a dry erase board behind the counter with their hand-written menu.
Since this was my first time here, I felt compelled to get their famous regatta club which has various cold cuts, cheeses, lettuce, tomato, pickles and I think I got oil and vinegar on it.

This was excellent.  The bread was fresh and the combination of all the ingredients was delicious.
It was a tough call for Brendan but he went with some sort of turkey and bacon sub and had an equally satisfying experience.

He insisted on having me take a picture of it open to show all the goodness:

I actually ended up bringing almost half of my sub home to Ethan and he enjoyed it as well.  This is well worth the $4.  In fact the whole menu is a bargain.  This is a great place, you can check out their menu on their site.  Don’t mind the lady in the upper left-hand corner taking a passionate bite out of her sandwich, maybe she just got off the juice-fasting diet.

→ 3 CommentsTags: *Westborough · restaurants · Support Local Business!