The Other Critics

Max Brenner’s Savory Offerings Fail to Offend; Bosphorus Is Delicious

Max Brenner gets another ho-hum review, this time from Devra First. “It ignores everything serious pastry chefs have accomplished, running roughshod over technique, balance, surprise, restraint. It deals in gooey, gloppy desserts that pile chocolate on top of marshmallow on top of peanuts on top of caramel,” she laments. Oh, well, at least the “savory offerings are generic but mostly inoffensive.” [Globe]

• Long after the initial hype has died down, Mat Schaffer visits Bosphorus in Inman Square. We’re assuming he’s here because the restaurant is now “on its third chef,” despite a January opening. Fortunately, almost “everything” he had was “delicious.” Manti (small boiled dumplings draped in tomato sauce) are “comforting in a Chef Boyardee way”; while “Sultan’s chicken is a tasty dish of chicken cutlets rolled around mushroom spinach filling.” But do note: There are no platters, so you’ll need to sample the menu a la carte and budget accordingly. [Herald]

• Ike DeLorenzo wends his way to Mattapan in search of an authentic Haitian restaurant. He arrives at Lelene’s, a comfortable place where neighborhood gossip is served to favored regulars alongside “chicken braised in epis, a deep-red brothy sauce.” But newcomers beware: “Instructing the uninitiated on the cuisine, and to Lelene’s odd operation, is not a task the staff here relishes.” Quality is uneven, but the “prices are exceptionally good.” [Globe]

• Robert Nadeau likes Aragosta, the new Fairmont Battery Wharf Hotel restaurant that’s come in for mixed reviews of late. Calamari salad is “cold and refreshing”; standard seared tuna is “done here with style,” made “wonderful” by “little piles of ground almonds.” Less successful is the Boston Cream Pie semifreddo: “inaccurate on all points, being a fully frozen mousse, so it looks like a slice of sheet cake.” [Phoenix]

• MC Slim JB savors the “outstanding,” Tiki-heavy cocktails from master mixologist Brother Cleve (late of the B Side Lounge) at Kendall Square’s Think Tank, which offers very good live music and very good food. He enjoys their Bento Box, a “colorful palette” of small bites. Also try cold peanut noodles, which “punch up a familiar Chinese standby with excellent bitter greens.” [Stuff]

• Bella Drew’s in the Financial District puts a Southwestern spin on mix-n-match sandwiches. Here Lindsay Crudele finds “sweet liberation amongst the skyscrapers.” Take a break from humdrum workday fare and try the chicken salad, which “would do well at any Cantabridgian pot luck: a light dressing of mayonnaise harmonized with mild curry spices and bits of coconut.” [Phoenix]

Max Brenner’s Savory Offerings Fail to Offend; Bosphorus Is Delicious