ResLife recommendations for dates
Published: Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, February 14, 2012 20:02
The direct path to my heart is my stomach; if you can relate, keep reading.
Sometimes eating makes me happy…let's be real, it makes me happy all the time. And while I miss my mother's cooking, which is usually some combination of arroz con habichuelas combined with a delicious fried chuleta o polllo al horno rice and beans, fried pork chops or baked chicken the next best thing is eating out. And where? Worcester of course. It's a "foodie's" paradise.
I've been asked to write about food in Worcester for a long time. Anyone that knows me knows that I am a huge "foodie." I'm either thinking about food, talking about food or eating food. And those who know me even more know that I often work hard to make the perfect bite and even go as far as making "yummmm" or "hmmmm" noises as I eat. This means I am really enjoying my meal. It is also often followed by me licking my fingers as to not let any taste go to waste.
There are so many restaurants in Worcester and I could seriously fill the Provoc with suggestions, but I am going to go with some of my favorites—those that make my heart and tummy smile. I'll stick to date places since this is coming out close to Valentine's Day and maybe you need some ideas. There are a ton of great places in Worcester, but when I think of a date I think of places that aren't too crowded, have great lighting and has atmosphere where you can enjoy someone else's company while still enjoying great food.
Here is my list: for Middle Eastern food, definitely check out El Basha on Park Ave. The lighting is very romantic and the food is amazing with good-sized portions. Not the youngest crowd, but who cares? You should be looking into the eyes of your loved one anyway. My second choice would be Sahara on Highland Street. The lighting is also perfect there and it is reminiscent of a super-cozy, vintage-looking place with a fireplace and piano. Their service is slow, but they make up for it in niceness and feel. This is a nice place to relax and have a great dinner and conversation.
This is for my vegetarian and vegan peeps out there who are looking to go on a date and don't want to worry about having a limited menu. I'm not a vegetarian, but I love vegetarian food. I have two favorite places in Worcester that are definitely worthy of a date. I love both places equally and for different reasons. I'll start with EVO on Chandler Street; this place has a great atmosphere and food selection. It has an array of options especially for couples who may not both be vegetarians or vegans. Most menu items can be made with tofu or some type of meat can be added and believe me no flavor is compromised. As I write this, my mouth waters thinking of their aged balsamic reduction. They honestly need to bottle that up and sell it to me by the gallon.
My other favorite place is called Loving Hut. This is also on Chandler Street, but closer to Assumption. The lighting here may not be as warm or the seating not as fancy, but the food and customer service is an A-plus. The family that works there is so nice and they take good care of you. My favorite rice dish there is the Thai Deluxe. Hope you give it a try.
I'll tackle Italian next… I was thinking about this for a while and honestly, Dino's wins. The portions are huge; it's in a secret spot off Plantation Street and it's always packed, so make a reservation. I haven't had anything I didn't love there, so do it; you won't regret it.
I also love Biagio's Grille on Park Ave, but mostly because their bread and dip is so tasty and I always order the Eggplant Rollatini, which is fabulous, but I honestly haven't ordered anything else. It's an adorable place so feel free to check it out as well. In the spring and summer they have a huge open window which makes the experience that much more enjoyable.
Looking to spice up your relationship? Definitely try Surya on Shrewsbury Street. It's the best Indian food in Worcester and they play Bollywood videos the entire time, which definitely makes the mood for me while I'm drinking my mango juice and enjoying some Tandoori bread. I usually go here for Valentine's Day because it's a guaranteed good time with explosive flavors and music.
I'll move on to Mexican food next. Being half-Mexican I am pretty critical and I have honestly not found a favorite, but I will recommend Mezcal on Shrewsbury Street for its guacamole. Get the tasting flight that includes the house, crunch and tropical. It is amazing. I'll be honest and say I do not like their food, but I can throw down on the guacamole alone and that is reason enough for me to go there over and over again.