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Blue Ginger: Reviews and Discussion


cabrales
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My husband and I were there a year ago - we arrived w/out reservations on a Friday for lunch (Nov.) on route to Cape Ann - and had a short wait that was well worth it. Not a large place, minimum furniture, little art, and a full wall length kitchen to watch and be watched!

I had a fish of the day (drawing a blank on more details) but remember a beautiful presentation, and sensational flavors! (firery!)

My husband reminds me, he had a pork dish with an array of fresh veggies and fruits.

Service was professional and cost appropriate for good food and service -

"When women are depressed, they either eat or go shopping. Men invade another country. It's a whole different way of thinking."

- Elaine Boosler

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cabrales, from what I know (from television, reading, and speaking with a few people who've dined there) the flavours are certainly "non-authentic" but it's not just some ill-fitting "fusion" either. French technique, primarily American ingredients, pan-Asian influences and finishing. I don't think you'd like the cuisine. And I don't think it's subtle. But it is has nuances and a certain style.

"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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Blue Ginger - I would hesitate to say american ingredients from the standpoint of spices, but as for short ribs and chilean sea bass I would concur.

The outside of the place is very non-descript. I drove by it twice not even looking at the big lit sign in the middle of a mini-mall. The decor is tasteful and simple with seating for about 100 divided into two dining areas. The chef himself was present & signing cookbooks (I bought another one just for the chance to meet him)

The wine list was an unexpected surprise - I was half expecting Mondavi. White star, etc...what we got was Billecart Salmon, Mosel Reisling, Vouvray, some nice half bottles.

Service was top notch - for me that means attentive yet non-intrusive.

The food was excellent - signatures were the Chilean Sea Bass, Caviar Parfait in addition to a trio of fried spring rolls, a foie gras with star anise (I think it's been over a year) some shumai, a satay(hanger steak maybe ?), a very nice lobster dish that included the lobster head filled with rice for presentation. Most dishes were asian in description and french in execution. Excellent sauces, broths, etc.

Dessert was very good. We ordered 4-5 different types and all were perfect in preparation and interpretation your creme brulees, fruit tart, and molten cake.

Ming was therre pretty much the whole night - schmoozing. expediting, cooking etc.

Blue Ginger is truly a destination restaurant - met and exceeded all my expectations.

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  • 1 year later...

I'm having dinner here with my parents next week, but am somewhat worried given that most the reviews I've found on the net (there don't seem to be many on this board) have been lukewarm at best -- mostly along the lines of "food was decent, but way overpriced."

That said, which items on the menu are the most promising or worthy of their prices? I'm heard good things about the foie-gras shumai but after having had the spectacular foie-gras soup dumplings at Annisa in NYC recently, my standards may be a bit unreasonable.

Basically, I'm afraid that my parents are gonna leave disappointed -- they've been wanting to eat here for years now.

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I'm having dinner here with my parents next week, but am somewhat worried given that most the reviews I've found on the net (there don't seem to be many on this board) have been lukewarm at best -- mostly along the lines of "food was decent, but way overpriced.

I've eaten there three times --- just to be sure. Each time I was greatly disappointed. The quality of the food is, at best, mediocre. Decor, pretty dismal. Service --- OK.

I really wanted to love it --- I like Ming Tsai's shows and believe that the flavor combinations and cooking "alchemy" that he enthusiastically showcases on his television shows is truly innovative and (if he's preparing the food, as he does on his show) delicious. The problem at Blue Ginger is that 90% of the time there is no Ming Tsai in the kitchen. In addition, the restaurant's reputation may simply have exceeded the reality of it's day-to-day dining experience.

If you have visiting parents in the area --- take them to Blue Ginger (if they really want to try it) for lunch. But for your special occasion/destination dinner, there are far better choices throughout the Greater Boston area that won't disappoint you the way I think Blue Ginger will.

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Like I said, it was definitely more than a year ago, but I know on one trip I had the sea bass that had a sweet, light soy-based sauce on top that was incredible! I dreamed about it for weeks! On another trip, I had the Indonesian curried pasta. It definitely was good, but caused no dreams. I know we also had some creative spring rolls that were tasty too. And each time I was there, Ming was there, so perhaps that's why everything was "on" for the night. I don't know. I'd go back, but Wellesley is a kind of a haul.

I definitely thought it lived up to any and all hype, and am a pretty picky gal. That's just my experience though.

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If you have visiting parents in the area --- take them to Blue Ginger (if they really want to try it) for lunch.

I haven't been to Blue Ginger in a long time, but as I remember, dinner is much more interesting than lunch (and priced accordingly). Unless you're in the area, I'm not sure would hike all the way out to the 'burbs just for lunch there. Anyone with a more recent lunch versus dinner experience?

Also, another thing that I remembered is that Blue Ginger is much more a family restaurant--and I mean that in a good way--than the typical high-ticket establishment. You're as likely to see families with well-mannered children as romantic dinner-for-two couples. I, for one, enjoyed the atomsphere because it seemed a lot less stuffy this way, and as I said, all the children were perfectly behaved.

morda

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  • 3 years later...
I am going to be in the boston area this weekend, I've always wanted to try Blue Ginger- finally have a reservation- I'd like to know what people think of this restaraunt- the only reviews I could find are 2-3 years old...Is it still as good?

Blue Ginger is still a very solid, consistently good restaurant. It's one of the few places in the city that has never disappointed me.

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I am going to be in the boston area this weekend, I've always wanted to try Blue Ginger- finally have a reservation- I'd like to know what people think of this restaraunt- the only reviews I could find are 2-3 years old...Is it still as good?

Blue Ginger is still a very solid, consistently good restaurant. It's one of the few places in the city that has never disappointed me.

thanks- i'm looking forward to it :smile:

ksoss

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I am going to be in the boston area this weekend, I've always wanted to try Blue Ginger- finally have a reservation- I'd like to know what people think of this restaraunt- the only reviews I could find are 2-3 years old...Is it still as good?

It gets a lot of mixed reviews on Chowhound's Boston board. So let us know what YOU think after your dinner.

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I so wanted to love it... The food was

ok.. But not nearly as vibrant as the menu promised. The service was mediocre at best. The chef was in the house...

Mostly schmoozing ... And working the pass. Interestingly the waiter didn't want to serve my daughter- she is 21 and offered her I'd. We had been shopping since morning so she was totally sober-overall it was an interesting experience...

Also Expensive! I live in a resort town known for pricey restaraunts and this was expensive even by these standards :wacko:

ksoss

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I so wanted to love it... The food was

ok.. But not nearly as vibrant as the menu promised. The service was mediocre at best.

I'm sorry about your experience though it echoes many reviews of late at Blue Ginger.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I don't know, I haven't been to Blue Ginger in just over a year, but I've enjoyed dining there many times, often for my birthday, and I've always found it a thoroughly wonderful experience. I especially love the foie gras shumai in a shallot and Sauternes broth, and the garlic-black pepper lobster with friend rice and pea shoots. The Soy-miso fish is great, too, and desserts are heavenly. I've always found it very friendly, warm, excellent service, whether Ming is there or not. Paula, the manager-hostess, is an absolute sweetheart. I'm not at all a fan of fusion cuisine done mindlessly - Ming is one of very few chefs I've encountered who succeeds at it, consistently. It is not a formal restaurant, and if someone is expecting that, they'd likely be disappointed. Also, Blue Ginger is one of those restaurants that Those People love to hate - I take their loathes and raves with a very large grain of salt, and would always check it out for myself.

"Life itself is the proper binge" Julia Child

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  • 1 month later...

I had a good time. Food was not out of this world, but was good. Service was excellent and Ming was there and was a great host. Pricing was reasonable for Boston.

The food tasted to me as if you would make it at home. That is, sometimes in restaurants you get the super rich meal or something super complicated. My experience was not like that. To me, if I did the fusion thing at home, that is how it would've tasted.

Edited by ejw50 (log)
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