Myers + Chang

IMG_5325Menu: The menu is set up Dim Sum style with offerings from $5 Crispy Spring Rolls to  $11 Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps to $18 Chicken and Waffles. You can also choose from cold or hot noodles, dumplings, rice, vegetables and sides. While this is an Asian-inspired menu, many items are American dishes with Asian influences that won’t be unfamiliar to the unadventurous diner.

Food / Presentation: 
Salmon + Green Apple Tartare – spicy soy, spinach, sesame crisps
One of the best tartares I’ve ever had! Each element in this dish really brought it all together. Even amount of apples and salmon. Touch of sweetness from the apple and just the right amount of spicy soy. And the sesame crisps were a great texture and large enough that you didn’t run out of a vehicle for the tartare. This is a must try!
IMG_5349Crispy Arctic Char Roll – nori, hot Chinese mustard
We at first thought this would be similar to a rice sushi roll, but I’m glad it wasn’t. Essentially this dish is 2 fried Arctic char rolls cut in half to create 4 “open-faced” rolls. Another great dish, with a spicy but not too spicy dipping sauce. I couldn’t figure out what the pink veggies were, but they offered a nice relief to the spicy mustard.
ImageDumplings-Potsticker Style – edamame, mustard greens, wasabi
I originally wanted the Mama Chang’s Pork + Chive dumplings, but ended up ordering another pork dish, so I went with this veggie version instead. Had we known there were 5 pieces we may have not have ordered this plate, as we clearly over ordered! Regardless, we had 3 and took 2 home (which was perfect for a late night snack). The dumplings weren’t bad, a pretty simple veggie dish with a bit of a spicy kick. I’d try the pork ones next time.
IMG_5347Wok-Roasted Mussels
To me, mussels are mussels. They really differ based on the bread served with it and the sauce they’re swimming in. This dish came with 4 slices of grilled garlic toast and a lemongrass broth. Pretty good as mussels go.
IMG_5338Fish Tacos + Kimchee Sesame Salsa – crispy hake, soft corn tortilla, whipped cilantro
Each of the two tacos came with three crispy chunks of hake. I love fish tacos, and I typically prefer grilled to fried fish, but these were really good. The fish pieces were thick enough that the fried part was really only a thin layer. The menu indicated this was a 1 out of 3 on the hotness scale which holds true.
IMG_5348Thai Ginger Chicken Salad – lemongrass, rice vermicelli, butter lettuce
Layered from bottom to top with lettuce, vermicelli, and chicken salad mixed with the lemongrass. This dish gave us light and refreshing flavors among the other sauces, spices, and fried pieces we ordered. Marked as a 1 out of 3 stars for spicy ness, I think it could have been a 2 for sure!
IMG_5334The General Lee’s Pulled Pork – collards greens, bean curd, pickled mustard seeds
We did not need this last plate, and I took 3/4 of it home, but I’m glad we ordered it. I loved pulled pork, and while it was served simply on a dish mixed with the above fixings, it would have also been great on a sandwich. 1 out of 3 hotness stars… My mouth/lips were on fire at the end of this entire meal.
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Restroom: Full of Asian influences and decor, including the soap!
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Service: I was thankful our server asked if this was our first time at the restaurant – which it was – because we definitely needed some guidance with ordering. He said typically people order 2-3 dishes per person. With that advice Matt & I ordered the above 7 plates, 3 each and then 1 to split. Dummies! We went home with 2 dumplings, 1/2 of the chicken salad, and 3/4 of the pulled pork. I wasn’t mad. We had our $100 OpenTable gift card to use up, and I now had lunch for 2 days!
Service in general was great. Keep in mind, when ordering, they bring out plates as they’re ready. Matt & I ordered everything at once and got a bit overwhelmed when we had 4 different items at once on our table. I think our server thought we were crazy when I listed off the 7 dishes. As soon as I finished he reminded “Ok, I think that’s good to start!”. Yes. That was good to start, and good for the night!

Overall: This was my first time at Myers + Chang and it definitely lived up to the expectations set by reviews, friends, and reputation. Chef/owner Joanne Chang (of the infamous Flour Bakery) created a menu inspired by Chinese, Taiwanese, Thai, and Vietnamese cuisines. The atmosphere is casual and the dining room is more of a funky diner adorned with some kitschy objects. An Asian tea tin held plastic and wooden chop sticks, as well as forks and knifes for those who have yet to master the sticks.
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The food was great, but next time I would definitely space out my orders and pace myself. The only disappointment was when I ordered the Pineapple Express cocktail (pineapple-infused vodka, thai basil) only to discover they were out. Out of what?? House-made infused vodka? Make me more! I instead went with the Luckiest Kitty (herb-infused sake, St. Germain, grapefruit, smoked salt) which I was nervous about since I don’t like sake, but I love St. Germain and am developing a nice friendship with grapefruit, so this drink really worked for me.

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The Perfect Bite: By far, the Salmon + Apple Tartare on a sesame crisp.

http://www.myersandchang.com

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Hamersley’s Bistro

Bread: The bread basket had 3 varieties, wheat slices, rustic rolls, and a small onion loaf. I only tried a piece of wheat with a smear of the softened butter, and it was a bit plain. Would have been much better toasted! Matt wasn’t a huge fan of either of the other kinds as well. A bit disappointing, but I do appreciate the variety.
IMG_5200IMG_5201 Menu: Small Plates, Appetizers, Vegetarian, Entrees, Sides, Desserts. My eyes went right to the soup in the Vegetarian section, which offered appetizer sized plates. I eat meat and fish but again I was drawn to the vegetarian entree. I saw “artichoke” and couldn’t look away! There were quite a few fish dishes that looked amazing (such as the Skillet-Cooked Arctic Char with orange, radish, and red currant salad, quinoa and aged sherry vinegar), and 1 option each among popular meats (chicken, pork, lamb, beef).

Hamersley's Bistro menu

Hamersley’s Bistro menu

Food / Presentation:
Spring Dug Parsnip Soup with Crème Fraîche and Basl-Pistachio Pesto
I love soup! Especially purees. Among the smooth but slightly grainy consistency, the pistachios added a subtle crunch which I enjoyed. When delivered, the server instructed me to stir all of the components together to bring out the intended flavor. A good start to the meal.
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Roasted Artichoke and Ricotta Crêpes with Spring Vegetables, French Lentils and Parmesan-Chive Sauce
Two savory crêpes, stuffed with ricotta cheese and a few artichokes, were divided by lentils and surrounded by cut carrots, peppers, asparagus and peas. The dish could have use more artichokes in my opinion, but either way this was a light and satisfying vegetarian entrée.
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Service: Our server was really great. We didn’t have too many questions about the menu but you could just tell they are well trained to know their stuff. Specials were memorized, crumb scraper cleaned our tabletop after entrees were cleared, and each course was delivered at appropriate times. She was also friendly and quit personable which is always a plus.
Bathroom: A single individual bathroom, one for women, one for men, one handicap. The women’s room was clean, mostly white with a emerald green door. And a lovely piece of art above the toilet 😉
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Overall: The menu has a nice variety, including multiple veggie, fish and meat entrees. The dining room is sophisticated and just casual, with wood accents, high ceilings, and simple chandeliers. Hamersley’s Bistro has been in the Boston restaurant scene for 20+ years and is constantly being reviewed as one of the top restaurants in Boston.  I think because of it’s longevity it tends to attract an older crowd, people who have been fans for years and years (I’d say the average age this Friday night was 50+). If you’re in the mood for a lively and energetic atmosphere this may not be the first restaurant I’d suggest, but if you’re looking for solid service, a menu filled with fresh & local ingredients, and food that won’t disappoint then Hamersley’s Bistro is the way to go. It is and always will be a Boston classic!
The Perfect Bite: Crêpe, ricotta, artichoke, peas, lentils.