Back to the Baker-y

A Chocolate Croissant (not Canto 6)

If you’ve been reading the blog recently, you have probably have a good sense my feelings about the findings of the Baker-Hamilton Commission. My reaction is to sound off on a few of the eateries I’ve hit in the past few days.

Canto 6. 3346 Washington Street. Jamaica Plain. I must confess. I liked the pure simplicity of Bread and Butter. There was nothing better than grabbing a chocolate croissant at the defunct Washington Street bakery prior to a mayoral event at the nearby artificial multi-purpose athletic field. While some say the workers at the austere establishment were sometimes gruff, I always found them helpful. They probably responded to the intensity of my interest in the baked goods.

More physically ornate and with a larger array of offerings, Canto 6 is certainly a different place. They wisely offer an espresso bar in a still-Starbucksless neighborhood. (I wonder how long that can last.) They also offer fantastic hot chocolate which was the perfect place in which to dip my fresh French roll. I can also give a high grade to a pastry I have never eaten before: a corn muffin filled with raspberry jam. You know the deal with corn muffins. For generations, they have disintegrated upon touch. Canto 6 bakes their corn muffins in fancy French-style baking paper and the jam actually seems to keep the muffin together. I did not try everything, but I suspect they are less fanatical about their bread than their predecessor. Nonetheless, it is a welcome replacement.

Chau Chow. 669 Morrissey Blvd. Dorchester. Years ago Linda Mae’s was a central location to eat and meet for people from Dorchester, South Boston and, even, the South Shore. It was packed for breakfast and served as a meeting place for politicos during the Flynn Administration. The restaurant hit hard times during the ’90s, briefly came back, and finally was replaced by a Vietnamese steakhouse that didn’t take hold. I broke bread during its penultimate rendition with members of the Globe’s Spotlight Team. That meal was pleasant but, thankfully uneventful (any meeting with Spotlight that fails to result in a giant Page 1 gotcha is blissful). The food, however, was lousy.

I ate there again with a member of the Globe staff. While the conversation was strictly off-the-record, the meal was outstanding. We had several different versions of dim sum dishes, various kinds of shrimp and meat filled dumplings, noodles and cakes. The quality was Chinatown-level with the convenience and ease of parking of the old Linda Mae’s.

Finally, the Fabulous Dana took to No. 9 Park as a birthday celebration. As a general rule, this website is not going to be a forum to rave about super-fancy restaurants. Get that from Zagats. The meal was exquisite. My dish, a braised veal chop, was hearty, a happy fact as I was trying to avoid miniscule portions. I would like to single out for praise our server, the graceful John George, who spotted us right away as special-occasioners in a restaurant filled with heavy expense-account customers. Unlike many servers in upscale places, the people who make you feel not quite good enough to give them your hard-earned money, John George went out of his way to make us feel comfortable. He also guided us to the perfect dessert. Thank you, John George.


One Response to “Back to the Baker-y”

  1. Leanne Says:

    I could do without some of those extra large pictures of the food. Instead of looking great to eat, they look a little disgusting. How about small pictures instead? L.

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