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The Critics Ate Stuffed Skate, Kimchi Pancakes, and Thin-Crust Pizza

At Mooncusser Fish House, Kaju Tofu House, and Pleasant Cafe

Striped bass with beans, cabbage, and truffle at Mooncusser Fish House
Striped bass from Mooncusser
Brian Samuels for Mooncusser Fish House

“A Veritable Gauntlet”

Jolyon Helterman visits Mooncusser Fish House for this month’s review in Boston Magazine and considers ranking the restaurant up there among his recommendations for out-of-towners looking for seafood in Boston. The straightforward menu features seven appetizers and eight entrees, including the “luscious” macomber turnip soup, which comes with poached oyster and pear cream. Helterman writes that his favorite appetizer is the “charry” seared gnocchi, while the potato-stuffed skate is “a veritable gauntlet of texture and seasoning traps,” a dish of flawless execution. Helterman rates the restaurant three stars (“generally excellent”) out of a possible four, but he notes that the restaurant’s more casual Moon Bar counterpart downstairs doesn’t deliver quite as strongly. “Figuring out the first-floor concept could be key to Mooncusser’s survival,” he writes.

Messy But Crushable

MC Slim JB reviews Kaju Tofu House for the Improper Bostonian, discovering an oasis of flavors, including “aromatic, savory and sweet, occasionally funkily fermented and fiery hot.” Starting with sundubu jigae, or tofu soup, which comes with plenty of toppings and five options for heat levels, Slim calls the dish a “bowl of savory goodness” with “a wondrously tender texture.” He writes that the bibimbop “is another brilliant and very substantial one-pot meal,” and the bulgogi taco is “messy but crushable.” Other favorites include the kimchi pancake, clay-pot galbi, and pan-fried noodle with chicken. Overall, Slim writes: “Kaju Kenmore delivers the often-hearty, only occasionally ferocious, mostly not-so-strange, and reliably delicious goods.”

Praiseworthy Thin-Crust Pizza

Marc Hurwitz checks out Pleasant Cafe in Roslindale for his latest in Dig Boston. With “classic Italian-American comfort food dishes that tend to be simple and unpretentious,” the restaurant offers substantial portions. Highlights include what Hurwitz calls a “wonderfully old-fashioned” chicken and eggplant parm combo that heavily features the restaurants house-made red sauce. The roast prime rib of beef is reasonably priced, he writes, and the thin-crust pizza is “some of the best” in Boston. Overall, the 80-year-old restaurant is “truly a destination spot for those who like a little history with their food and drink.”

Restaurant Review: Mooncusser Fish House [BM]
Sun Do Boo-Yah! [IB]
Pleasant Cafe, Roslindale: Old School Boston at Its Best [DigBoston]

Moon Bar

129 Columbus Avenue, , MA 02116 (617) 917-5193 Visit Website

Kaju Tofu House (Kenmore Square)

636 Beacon St., Boston, MA 02215