Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Upper Dot Adventure: dbar

Although Lower Dorchester is the focus of our blog, Dorchester is a large neighborhood that has many great restaurants, stores, and recreation areas. Every once in a while we hope to highlight things in the northern part of Dorchester (Upper Dot) that we we think are cool and need some publicity. For our first Upper Dot Adventure we chose dbar on Dorchester Ave. just south of the Savin Hill neighborhood and just north of Field's Corner.

Its warm interior with deep tones sets the mood of a gourmet eating experience. Erin had the Seared Diver’s Scallops: Lemon glazed dayboat scallops, over cumin-carrot risotto, asparagus & long Island cheese pumpkin puree studded with black truffles. Chris had the evening's special duck. Dbar is a classy full-service restaurant, which turns into a nightclub/lounge after 9pm and is one of the hangout spots for Dorchester's gay community. There is also an amazing organic rooftop garden, which supplies them with fresh herbs and vegetables. We went on a fall night, but are anxious to return in better weather to enjoy their much-talked-about patio. Love it!
1236 Dorchester Avenue, Dorchester
Located between Savin Hill and Fields Corner on Dorchester Ave, at the intersection of Freeport St. A short walk south of the Savin Hill T stop.

Have you been to dbar? Rate it below.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Peabody Square Tree Lighting 2007

With the new Carruth building towering in the background, on Saturday, Nov. 24th the annual Peabody Square Holiday Tree Lighting was held. A large group of neighbors gathered for the lighting of the tree. As usual Santa and Mrs. Clause visited via a city tour trolley. This year there was an added treat from Chris Douglass (Ashmont Hill resident and owner of the Ashmont Grill and Icarus in the South End), who was kind enough to hand out hot apple cider. Afterwards everyone from the neighborhood went to the firehouse across the street and Boston Fire supplied some tasty treats of hot soup and fresh baked bread!

Here is our write up from last year: Peabody Square Tree Lighting 2006

Monday, November 12, 2007

News: More Restuarants Opening in Lower Dot

There are two new resturants on the way in the next few months for Lower Dot!

First, there is Haven, a new art lounge and bistro at 1820 Dorchester Ave. (617.929.0299). It is the brainchild of local artist and teacher Barrington Edwards (who grew up in the neighborhood). Haven will serve light healthy fare, but Stuff@Night reports their chef is known for his "out-of-this-world cheesecake". The bistro will also serve as a stage for local artists, hosting one or two openings a month. There will also be live music, poetry, and spoken-word performances, along with artist workshops.

Second, there is Dot-2-Dot, a cafe and coffee shop at 1739 Dorchester Ave. Owner Karen Henry-Garrett is a Cordon Bleu-trained chef who ran a high-quality catering business in London for five years before moving to Dorchester. This cafe has been in the works for some time now and finally a location has been found.

Finally, the Carruth Building is coming along. The brick exterior appears to be almost finished, windows are in place, and interior construction has begun (see picture below). Signs for Flat Black Coffee Company, Tavolo, and living at the Carruth are up on the building. The Metro also reported this week that the new Wainwright Bank in the building will be its fourth branch to have green design and energy saving features.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Public Art, Green Design, and Coffee in Peabody Square

With the new Curruth Building in Peabody Square coming along, plans have begun in the redesign of the square including a new traffic configuration, unique environmentally friendly design, and an impressive piece of modern art called the Peabody Square Moon by Dorchester artist Joe Wheelwright (Depicted above).

Check out the sculpture at:
The DAC: Peabody Square Moon
Peabody Square Moon
Joe Wheelwright

Check out other Peabody Square items:
A Boston Globe article about the new location of Flat Black Coffee Company in Peabody Square:
Keeping It Fresh for Coffee Lovers in Boston Globe

A Dorchester Reporter article about the green redesign of Peabody Square:
Peabody Square Made Green Could Grow Imitators in Dorchester Reporter

Dorchester Open Studios This Weekend!

Dorchester Open Studios is this weekend! In its 20 year history, Dorchester Open Studios has been an event that showcases the best artists in our neighborhood. This year there will be a a very special presentation on Corita Kent, the world renowned artist whose work is featured on the gas tank here in Dorchester, which can be seen from the Southeast Expressway. There are several studio locations throughout Dorchester, and two here in Lower Dot.

Check out our blog entry from last year for a description: Dot Open Studios 2006
Dorchester Open Studios 2007 (Saturday 10.27.07 and Sunday 10.28.07)
12-5 PM

Lower Dot Locations:
Walter Baker Artists Lofts
1231 Adams Street, Dorchester
Located in Lower Mills on Adams Street. Just north of the Milton T stop (Mattapan-Ashmont Trolley).

The Boston Home
2049 Dorchester Avenue. Dorchester
Located on Dorchester Ave. Just south of the Ashmont T stop.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Martinis on the Avenue: Dotini '007 - Shaken or Stirred

"Martinis on the Avenue", which is now in its third year, is an annual fund-raiser for the St. Mark's Main Streets (and Fields Corner Main Streets). $30 in advance or $35 at the door, which includes hors d'oeuvres, music, a live auction, and a cash bar featuring The Dotini, Dorchester's unofficial drink of choice!

Check out our blog entry from last year for a description: Dotini
Martinis on the Avenue: Shaken...Or Stirred...Dotini '007
@ The Blarney Stone (Tuesday 09.18.07)
7:00 – 10:30 PM
1505 Dorchester Avenue. Dorchester
Located in Fields Corner on Dorchester Ave. Just south of the Fields Corner T stop.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Boston Landmarks Orchestra at Dorchester Park

We packed our picnic dinner and walked to Dorchester Park for the concert on the baseball field. What a great evening; once the sun began to set behind the trees it cooled down to a comforatble temperture while the orchestra played an array of Red Sox - themed music, plus the traditional bandstand standards. Families sat on lounge chairs and on blankets clapping along or playing catch in the background.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

The Carruth

Big developments are happening with the Carruth, a new building being built next to the Ashmont T station. Recently Flat Black Coffee Company (Flat Black website) announced it will be putting a new café in the building and the building has launched their website (The Carruth website). This adds to Tavolo (Tavolo website) a pizza and pasta restaurant by Chris Douglass of the Ashmont Grill and Wainwright Bank (Wainwright Bank website), a bank committed to socially-responsible and progressive practices. The new businesses are slated to open this winter.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Mrs. Jones

We've eaten at Mrs. Jones, the new soul food restaurant that has opened in Lower Mills, and the food is excellent! The fried chicken was so juicy and had a wonderfully seasoned flavor, and the sides are tasty with a slight spiciness. For dessert, try the banana pudding, which is very good with a light banana flavor and vanilla wafers mixed in. Mrs. Jones is mainly take-out, but there is a handful of counter seating near the wall and windows. Chris loves the BBQ rib dinner with mac and cheese and candied yams and Erin loves the fried chicken.

2255 Dorchester Avenue, Dorchester
Located in Lower Mills just south of the intersection of Dorchester Ave, and Richmond St. Just north of the Milton T stop (Ashmont-Mattapan Trolley).

Have you been to Mrs. Jones? Rate it below.

Orchestra in Dorchester Park

Be sure to catch the annual performance of the Boston Landmarks Orchestra as they perform at Dorchester Park on Sunday August 12th at 6 pm. This years performance will be a Red Sox-themed show including Lifting the Curse: A Story of the Red Sox by Julian Wachner and Bill Littlefield and classic pieces by Aaron Copland, John Philip Sousa, and John Williams. The performance is free and open to the public and the rain location is the Caritas Carney Hospital on Dorchester Ave.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Rating Stars on Blog

We have added a new feature to the blog that allows for you to rate things in our neighborhood. You will notice to all the blog entries about restaurants or stores, we have added rating stars. We encourage everyone who has visited those places to rate them.

The ratings look like this...
Have you been to A Place In Our Neighborhood? Rate it below.

If you have any troubles, we have included instructions in the comments on this entry.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Peabody Square Going Green

In the Globe this Sunday there is an article about the city's plan to make the renovated Peabody Square green. It will be a model for environmentally sensitive urban planning including: special sidewalks that are permeable (to avoid storm water runoff into the Neponset RIver and Boston Harbor), extra tree plantings, wide pits to help trees absorb rainwater, and the Square's access to public transit and its new transit-oriented housing.

Check it out: Boston Globe: Square To Go Green

Friday, June 22, 2007

Milton Village Farmers Market

It is time once again for the Milton Lower Mills Farmers Market. Be sure to stop by Thursdays from 1 to 6 pm near the Milton Landing Wharf for fresh locally grown vegtables, fruits, homemade pies, and mango salsa.

Check out our blog entry from last year for a description: Milton Lower Mills Farmers Market

Early July - Mid October
Thursday 1 - 6 pm

Wharf St., Milton
Located in Milton Village (Across the river from Dorchester Lower Mills) off of Adams Street. Just south of the Milton T Stop (Ashmont-Mattapan Trolley).

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Dorchester Day Parade

On June 3rd, once again Dot celebrated Dorchester Day! It was first celebrated in 1904 to observe the incorporation of Dorchester as a town in 1630. Although Dorchester became part of the city of Boston in 1870, Dorchester Day and the Dorchester Day Parade has for over a hundred years celebrated the uniqueness of the neighborhood, inviting the city to come and enjoy the festivities. It has also become an annual event to lure those who grew up here, but have moved to the suburbs to come back and reminise.

The weather for the most part held out (although there were some sprinkles), while watching the parade that goes on for about 4 miles from Lower Mills up Dorchester Ave. to St. Margaret's. The parade really shows the diversity of Dorchester and all that makes Dorchester great. Some of the more notable groups include the Vietnamese Community of Massachusetts (with Dragons), Dorchester People for Peace, Dot Out, Dorchester Arts Collaborative, Irish step dancers, a Cape Verdean Youth Group, a Puero Rican Dance troop, the Estrellas Tropicales dancers, Dorchester Eagles Pop Warner Football, the Boy Scouts, and Caribbean group in masquerade, and of course Little Miss Dorchester and the symbolic Mayor of Dorchester.

Ashmont Hill Yard Sale

On June 2nd, over 40 houses in the Ashmont Hill area of Dorchester had their annual Yard Sale. It was great! We picked up some rugs for three dollars and a painting of San Francisco's Lombard Street for 25 cents. The streets were packed, as many people rummaged through all of the great used items. Luckily the rain held out!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

The Great Dorchester Avenue Scavenger Hunt

Would you enjoy running around Dot Ave. on a scavenger hunt looking for items on a clue sheet at local resturants and merchants. What if we said the winning group gets $500? Now we have your attention!

On Saturday May 12th, St. Mark's Area Main Street is holding a scavenger hunt from Ashmont Station to Melville Ave. It starts at the Ashmont Grill at 1:30 p.m. for a 2 p.m. sendoff and ends at 4 p.m. at the new Tony McKernan's Centre Bar. Teams can be up to four people. Registration is $5. You can register at the door.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Easter Egg Hunt in Dot

You know it is springtime when the annual Easter Egg Hunt is happening at Dorchester Park. We arrived at 10 am on the dot and kids were already running all over the place grabbing eggs. There were definitely a couple hundred children with baskets, buckets, and canvas bags in hand filling them full with plastic eggs containing candy and other goodies! There was even a designated area for children under 5. After the hunt everyone gathered on the tennis courts and took turns taking pictures with the Easter Bunny. It was fun watching all the kids running around with huge smiles as they collected their eggs.

Friday, April 06, 2007

News: New Restaurants Opening in Lower Dot

There is word on the street (mainly from the Dorchester Reporter and a new sign Chris saw today when he got his hair cut at Adian's Barbershop) that some new restaurants are coming to Peabody Square and Lower Mills.

In Peabody Sqaure there appears to be several restuarant related developments says the Dorchester Reporter. First Chris Douglass (the owner of Ashmont Grill) is opening a new hip and casual pizza and pasta restaurant in the new Carruth building (a six story eco-friendly building currently being built and opening in early 2008) near the new Ashmont station. Douglass hopes to serves a simpler and less expensive menu than the Ashmont Grill. Second, the new Wainwright Bank opening in the Carruth is planning a café inside the bank, which should certainly add a needed place to stop for coffee. Finally, St. Mark’s Main Streets is working to get a new restaurant in the old location of the Tara Pub across the street, perhaps an ethnic restaurant, which is certainly missing from the square.

From the looks of it in Lower Mills there is a new restaurant called Mrs. Jones Soul Food opening soon on Dot Ave. next to Taste of Thailand. This would be awesome because we lack any soul food in the neighborhood! Keep your eyes on this one.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

A Taste of Thailand

Don't be fooled by the plain exterior and the food served in to-go containers, you can still sit down and enjoy quality authentic Thai food at a very reasonable price. Of course they have take out, but we prefer to eat in. Erin loves the green curry and green peas and Chris likes the red curry and bamboo shoots.
2257 Dorchester Avenue, Dorchester
Located in Lower Mills just south of the intersection of Dorchester Ave, and Richmond St. Just north of the Milton T stop (Ashmont-Mattapan Trolley).

Have you been to A Taste of Thailand? Rate it below.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Snow Finally Comes to Dot...

Finally on St. Valentine's Day, Dorchester got its first real snow of 2007. It is pretty crazy that it took this long. Sadly it was coated with rain and as a result everything is made miserable by a half an inch of ice!

Coming Soon: Oscars on the Avenue

To raise money for grants to encourage business development in Peabody Square and the Ashmont neighborhood, St. Mark's Main Streets is hosting an Oscar party at the Ashmont Grill on Sunday, February 25th. It will include hors d'oeuvres and cocktails (the Dotini perhaps?), a red carpet, a Joan Rivers impersonator, and Dorchester's own Jeopardy champ Gerry Wagget hosting a movie quiz game. It is pricey ($75 in advance and $90 at the door), but will raise money for a worthy cause.
St. Mark's Main Streets Oscars on the Avenue
Located at: The Ashmont Grill (555 Talbot Ave.) in Peabody Square at the intersection of Dorchester Ave, and Talbot Ave., near the Ashmont T stop.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Calling All Dot Residents... Help Tell Trader Joe's About Here!

How many of you wished we had a Trader Joe's in Lower Dot? Erin grew up in California where it seems like Trader Joe's are in every city. If you are not familiar with the store, it is a great and very resonably priced place to get natural and organic groceries. Here in the Boston area they tend to be located mostly in the suburbs (especially north and west, like Cambridge, Newton, and Needham), but we think one would do really great here, and be a popular addition to our neighborhood.

The Trader Joe's website has a contact web page for places that need new Trader Joe's and we were hoping people from our neighborhood would take a minute to fill out this form and show Trader Joe's this could be a great place to consider for a future store...

If you agree, please click here and let them know!
And if you know others in the area who feel the same way please spread the word...

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Streamline Antiques

Step back in time 50 years to sock hops and malt shakes or even further back to flappers and the roaring 20s... Streamline Antiques offers original items from Art Deco to the 50s from fiestaware to clocks and salt-and-pepper shakers. We visited a while back with our friend Becky and neeeded to leave so she wouldn't buy everything in the store. They also carry vintage clothing, jewelry, hand bags, pottery, and glass vases.
1168 Washington St., Dorchester
Located in Lower Mills at the intersection of Dorchester Ave, and Washington St. Just north of the Milton T stop (Ashmont-Mattapan Trolley).

Have you been to Streamline Antiques? Rate it below.