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Vapiano Is a 'Mediocre Idea Done Disastrously'

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Photo: Facebook/Vapiano Boston

Phoenix restaurant critic Robert Nadeau does not enjoy the German-owned Italian chain Vapiano, giving it a solitary star. The Theater District restaurant is "a mediocre idea done disastrously." Though the pizza is "pretty good," it seems like a great effort for Nadeau to even call the pasta "edible." Desserts are about as good as desserts in "premade in plastic cups" tend to be, and the death by chocolate "is more like life without parole eating frosting." [BP]

For STUFF, MC Slim JB takes on the newly opened Nix's Mate in the Financial District Hilton. Chef David Nevins parlays some of the seafood skills he honed at Neptune Oyster into dishes like salt-cod fritters atop "excellent pork-rib-flavored baked beans." Bucatini amatriciana is "fierce" and polpette vongole are "wonderful." Slim recommends a seat at the bar or in the lounge for peppier service and notes that "it’s not often the FiDi gets a menu this interesting in such an unprepossessing setting." [STUFF]

Globe restaurant critic Devra First gets "mixed messages" from Gem, which she gives just one and half stars. On the one hand, there's a strict dress code for patrons, but on the other, female employees wear "corsets that hoist their flesh toward the fringed chandeliers." First also notes that "establishments that are truly exclusive rarely describe themselves as such." The food is "better than one might expect" though frequently too sweet, as in some "oddly sugary" duck confit quesadillas and a beef and boar pasta dish that tastes "like pumpkin pie." Comfort food like mac n' cheese is better, but lobster chowder topped with lobster tempura is the menu's zenith. [BG]

Boston's Hidden Restaurants unearths the jewel that is Stella's Pizza in Watertown. Despite an exterior that suggests mediocre Greek pizza, here you'll find "thin-crust Neapolitan that isn't too far off from what some would call New York-style pies." The crust has a "nice char" and "good amount of air bubbles," the sauce is sweet but not too sweet, and slices are big. Despite its lack of notoriety, BHR concludes that Stella's could be a contender in the area's top 20 pizzerias. [BHR]

GEM Restaurant and Lounge

42 Province Street, Boston, MA 02108 617 482 1213 Visit Website

Vapiano

191 Stuart Street, Boston, MA

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