The Other Critics

Area Four’s a Perfect Fit; Meadhall Is an Overripe Peach

• Kendall Square’s new Area Four gets a positive review from Devra First. In fact, in the mornings, she thinks it’s the “center of the universe” thanks to its coffee capacity. Later in the day, “Handsome young men wearing oxford shirts in sorbet shades come to fetch iced coffee and sandwiches.” Basically, “It fits into the neighborhood so well it’s hard to believe it hasn’t been here forever”; the kitchen embraces “simplicity and lightness” with an assortment of hot and cold small plates. [Globe]

• The Financial District gets a shout-out in the Globe as well, with reviews of Asian sandwichery Foumami and Italian takeout Casa Razdora. At CR, “Cream dishes tend to be extra creamy, cheese dishes extremely cheesy,” and nearly everything is made on-site. Meanwhile, at Foumami, Asian foodstuffs are “wedged” into tasty shaobing, flaky flatbread. Often, the results are “brilliant.” [Globe]

• CK Shanghai in Wellesley delivers “consistent polished quality all across a menu that ranges from Chinese-American clichés into unusual regional Chinese dishes,” writes the Phoenix’s Robert Nadeau. Vegetables are “tempting,” while soft-shell crab with spiced salt, though mild, showcased “impeccable dry deep-fat frying.” [Phoenix]

• Downtown’s Thinking Cup Coffee Bar doesn’t have Wi-Fi, so “laptop nomads” beware. However: They do have gourmet sandies made to order, “artful” pastries, Stumptown Coffee, and specialty drinks spiked with two shots of espresso. [Phoenix]

• According to Boston’s Beer Drinking Report, Central Square’s Meadhall “is like one of those disappointing peaches you bring home that goes from gorgeous to overripe and mealy overnight.” The staff is unhelpful: The question ““what do you want?” really “kills our buzz.” [Boston]

Area Four’s a Perfect Fit; Meadhall Is an Overripe Peach