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The Critics Drown in Red Sauce and Devour Kimchi Quesadillas This Week

Reviewed: Ashley’s, Novara, Olitoki, and BLR by Shojo


Boston Restaurant Talk’s Marc Hurwitz headed to Braintree to dine at Ashley’s, a popular neighborhood spot, for his latest Dig Boston review. The breakfast and lunch spot often has lines out the door and plenty of options on the table. There are the classics: waffles, omelets, and stuffed French toast, which is filled with sweet cream cheese. Hurwitz also called out the Portuguese omelet with linguica, peppers, and onions and the New England Patriots pride omelet, served with hot Italian sausage, steak, and cheese. For lunch, Ashley’s has burgers, hot dogs, BLTs, and more, as well as liver and onions and steak marsala.

Sacha Pfeiffer went to Milton to dine at Novara in her review for The Boston Globe this week. The former Milton Cinema was converted into "one of the most striking new entrants to the Boston-area restaurant market," Pfeiffer wrote. She called the menu "problematic," noting that "nearly every item we ordered was deluged in tomato sauce" on her first visit, including arancini, chicken parm meatballs, and an "overly cheesy margherita pizza." On a second visit, she had a pesto cream sauce-swamped rock shrimp gnocchi and tasty, filling polenta fries. She praised the pulled-pork ravioli, the Parmesan-crusted flaky cod, sauce-free salmon, and burger. Overall, she wrote that she felt the kitchen was heavy on the sauces.

Catherine Smart went for Korean fusion in Allston for the Globe. Olitoki has a lineup of foods that "can put you into a food coma," Smart wrote, "but eating here is worth it." She said everything was "well executed and well seasoned," including the quesa-kimchi-dilla and the crisp bulgogi beef and cheese egg rolls. The "packed bowl" is indeed packed with rice, cabbage, carrots, corn and a choice protein, for which Smart recommended the spicy pork. There is also a selection of "munchies," including fried rice balls, Spam sliders, and spicy wings. Smart suggested opting for the vegetarian kimchi mandu dumplings.

For The Improper BostonianMC Slim JB checked out the revamped Best Little Restaurant in Chinatown, now known as BLR by Shojo. He found "straight-up Best Little classics," from "delectable" pork ribs to the "bizarre-sounding but fantastic" honey-walnut shrimp that comes in a mayonnaise-based sauce. "East/West fusion" dishes fared well too, from the "terrific" scallion pancakes with roasted bone marrow to the surf clam ceviche, which benefitted from the "piquancy and tenderness" added by a soy-lime vinaigrette.


76 Brighton Ave, Allston, MA 02134 (617) 202-5038


556 Adams St, Milton, MA 02186 (617) 696-8400


900 Washington St, Braintree, MA 02184 (781) 848-8895