The Boston Globe’s Ellen Bhang visits Calibasil in Beverly this week for a sampling of the restaurant’s Vietnamese dishes. Basil is certainly a key ingredient in the noodle soups here, and Bhang writes that the beef stock version “is clear like consommé and intensely meaty,” having simmered for a full day. She calls attention to the “special” pho, which comes “with brisket, meatballs, and rare beef,” along with customizable toppings. She recommends the ham-paté banh mi and the spring rolls with a hoisin-peanut dipping sauce, and she writes that a version of the vermicelli bowl comes with grilled pork that adds “sauciness” to the dish.
“Crisp and Stretchy” Pizza
The Globe’s Kara Baskin checks out Prairie Fire in Brookline for some wood-fired pizzas and hearty pasta dishes. The “pizzas are crisp and stretchy, with just the notion of char,” she writes, with a selection of straightforward toppings that include charred greens, mushrooms, and fennel sausage. The pastas are made in-house, and Baskin recommends the squid ink campanelle with spicy lobster arrabiata, noting that the dish comes with crisp garlic that means business. Other dishes include grilled vegetables, oysters, and tuna carpaccio.
• At Calibasil, Vietnamese Fare Served Fast and Fresh [BG]
• At Brookline’s Prairie Fire, Unpretentious Goodness [BG]