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Devra First on Boston Barbecue; MC Slim JB on Thao Ngoc; More

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Here's what the critics are saying this week.

Sweet Cheeks
Sweet Cheeks
Cal Bingham

Devra First doesn't review an individual restaurant in the Globe this week, instead surveying the Boston barbecue landscape and touching on a few different places. "Ultimately, I find my barbecue bliss at two restaurants," she writes: Sweet Cheeks and Blackstrap BBQ. Sweet Cheeks "does a great job with ribs and pulled pork," and the "fine fried chicken and heavenly biscuits" don't hurt. And Blackstrap, out in Winthrop, is "the friendliest little hangout," where the pork ribs "make [her] swoon, rubbed in spices, with chewy, black bark and the flavor of campfire."

For the Globe, Kara Baskin gives a "Quick Bite" overview of the brand new Bagelsaurus shop, "a minimalist storefront." The scene is a "mellow, coffee-sippin' groove," the bagels are "pleasantly chewy" (but not cheap), and "seating is limited."

"If you’re not regularly visiting Dorchester for traditional Vietnamese cuisine, for instance, you’re only skimming the surface," MC Slim JB writes in The Improper Bostonianreviewing Thao Ngoc, "a small, brightly lit space in Fields Corner, a hike that will reward your intrepidity with ravishing food at astonishing prices." Try the goat hot pot, "a head-turner that demands a large party," or the lobster with ginger and scallions, in which "Chinese influence is evident."

Boston Magazine released its "50 Best Restaurants" list in the most recent issue, so there's no individual restaurant review from Corby Kummer for November, but today Christopher Hughes shares some thoughts on Bogie's Place, the hidden steakhouse inside jm Curley, detailing "four reasons to visit." For one thing, there's the "a la carte, build-your-own martini service," which is "poured tableside." And of course, the steak: the restaurant "provides decadent cuts of beef without requiring an expense-account budget."

jm Curley

21 Temple Place, , MA 02111 (617) 338-5333 Visit Website

Sweet Cheeks

1381 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02215 617 266 1300 Visit Website

Bogie's Place

21 Temple Place, , MA 02111 (617) 338-5333 Visit Website

Blackstrap BBQ

47A Woodside Ave, Winthrop, MA 02152 (617) 207-1783 Visit Website

Thao Ngoc Restaurant

, Boston, MA (617) 506-1224


1796 Massachusetts Avenue, , MA 02140 (857) 285-6103 Visit Website