The Other Critics

The Blue Room Is Satisfying, Yet Salty; The Salty Pig Makes Magnificent Pepperoni Pizza

Cambridge: Devra First revisits the good ol’ Blue Room, one of the first fancy places she ever dined on her own dime. Chef Robert Grant, following in the footsteps of local legends like Chris Schlesinger and Tony Maws, helms the kitchen. At the bar, ” it’s hard to beat chickpea panisse, springy little cakes that taste like a fresher version of falafel, embellished with tzatziki made with creamy yogurt from Sophia’s Greek Pantry in Belmont and slivers of pickled onion.” Unfortunately, seasoning is uneven and dishes are sometimes too salty. [Globe]

Erogenous Zones: The Phoenix offers up a handy guide to dining in and eating out on V-day, complete with reviews of body paint, naughty frosting, and something called Comfortably Numb Deep Throat Spray, which sounds less romantic and more like something used to treat asthma. [Phoenix]

Back Bay: In G-rated news, Robert Nadeau visits the Salty Pig, which churns out a very good pepperoni pizza, a “thin-crust masterpiece topped with rectangles of homemade pepperoni and big thin rounds of even spicier soppressata.” Do note that “any vegetarian who walks into a place called Salty Pig should probably stick to the beer and fried mushrooms.” [Phoenix]

Various Neighborhoods: MC Slim JB offers a helpful roster of places that won’t charge an astronomical set price for the privilege of dining out on V-Day. His cheap-date list includes Strip-T’s, the new Dosa Temple, and Dumpling Cafe. [Phoenix]

Somerville: Backbar’s drink options are ultra-fresh, and Leah Mennies writes that the staff is “eager to please.” Less pleasing is a $30 platter of charcuterie, crudo, and olives; $4 pork cracklins are a better value. [Boston]

Watertown: Strip-T’s gets an unheard of five stars from the Improper’s BN Lee. Tim Maslow, protege of David Chang and son of owner Paul Maslow, “shows a deft hand with herbs, spices and staples usually associated with different ethnic cuisines.” Confesses Lee: “This is my first five-star review, and as a critic, I must admit I’m wary about giving it to Strip-T’s. That’s because the hole-in-the-wall almost makes too good a story—the hidden gem, the humble diner chef with a glamorous New York-trained pedigree, the father-son dynamic. But after multiple visits, the restaurant continues to impress.” [Improper]

The Blue Room Is Satisfying, Yet Salty; The Salty Pig Makes Magnificent