Boston Restaurant Blog -- June, 2009
Friday, June 5, 2009
Over the past few weeks, I have been to several restaurants that, while mostly not regular haunts for me, are places that I have been to a number of times. And two in particular were notable in terms of my changing views of them. In one case, I was simply blown away by a restaurant (Jasper White's Summer Shack in Cambridge) that I had generally liked but not loved. And in another case, I was rather disappointed in a longtime favorite of mine a couple of miles away (Sweet Chili in Arlington). The focus of this blog is the latter (the Boston Restaurant Talk blog has my Jasper White's Summer Shack review), and one that I am almost pained to write about.
Sweet Chili is one of the older Thai restaurants in the Boston area, and one of two in Arlington Center (the excellent Thai Moon being the other). Like Thai Moon, it is a tiny place that does a lot of takeout, though the dining room is comfortable enough so that I tend to mix it up between doing takeout and sitdown dinner there. The last time I went, which was a few weeks back, I ordered takeout for me and a family member, calling in the order and driving down to pick it up about 15 minutes later. Out of the three dishes, we got, only one was even remotely impressive--the pad Thai, which always seems to be decent there. But the greasy, limp Thai-style vegetable dumplings were literally inedible, with an unpleasant consistency to the veggies inside and so much grease coming off the outer part that I could only take a bite or two before throwing the rest away. The hot basil fried rice was better, but not by much, as there was no heat whatsoever coming from the dish (I am used to the spices of this entree burning my insides a bit) and the rice seemed overcooked and bland. I did finish this dish (unlike the dumplings), but it simply wasn't very impressive.
Because I have had several good meals in the past at Sweet Chili, I may give the place another try at some point. This is not a given however; with Thai Moon only a few short blocks up the road and the very good Patou in Belmont Center just a hop, skip, and a jump away, I'm not really in any rush to get back here.
For those who want the address for Sweet Chili, here it is: Sweet Chili, 470 Massachusetts Avenue, Arlington, MA, 02474. The phone number is (781) 646-2400.
Love this place. The staff is friendly and always willing to give advice on ordering. The Mango Curry Chicken with Sticky Rice and Pad Thai are fantastic. I also enjoy the fresh Spring Rolls.
Posted on 7/3/09
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