Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Restaurante Montecristo in Eastie

After dropping Rosie off at the beauty salon on Saturday, I ventured into a part of Boston that I've seen so infrequently in my 7+ years here.

The mystical land of Eastie.

Sure, I've been to Logan Airport far more times than I can count. But I hadn't spent much time in Eastie proper, and knew very little about the neighborhood. Basically, I thought of it as Southie but much cheaper and much louder due to the constant sound of airplanes.

My journey to the "other side" of the tunnel was centered around my new FastLane toll tag. I finally switched over from EZ-Pass, motivated primarily by the Resident Tunnel program that allows me deeply discounted trips through both airport tunnels. All this time, my $3.50 trips could have been 40 cents.

I made it to the Tunpike Authority building at just the right time, as the line that grew behind me just 10 minutes after my arrival was pretty crazy. When I received my FastLane, I was told that I had to wait 30 minutes before using it.

Whether that's a racket to keep people in Eastie thereby supporting the local economy, or simply a technological fact, I hung out in Eastie for lunch (which was always my intention).

I went to my Urbanspoon iPhone app, shook it to see what came up, and it picked Restaurante Montecristo in Kelly Square.

So off I went. I found a parking spot on Meridian St. and quickly learned how Latin this area was during my brief walk to the restaurant - signs everywhere in Spanish. I was then anticipating a quick and authentic meal, exactly what I had hoped for.

And that's exactly what I received.

Inside, I turned out to be the only gringo. Mostly all of the other patrons spoke in Spanish.

The decor was unpretentious, simple, and practical, and the music they played was a mixture of cumbia, duranguense, and norteƱo - styles I relate to Texas actually, since I had once worked for a few Spanish-language music stations in Austin, McAllen, and San Antonio.

Since I had skipped desayuno, I was starving. I ordered the carne asada and a pupusa, my eyes a bit bigger than my belly.

Shortly, the server arrived with a ton of food. A bowl of three freshly made flour tortillas, the pupusa con queso with a side of dipping sauce, and a plate of carne asada atop a bed of rice, with a small side salad, avocado, salsa, and frijoles con cebollas.

Everything was awesome and reasonably priced. I grabbed a slice of their sweet bread for the road, and ended up spending $17 plus tip.

I need to research Eastie restaurants a bit - I hear it's mostly Hispanic and Italian food, possibly my two favorite types of ethnic cuisine.


Anonymous said...

I hear Angela's has the best sangria and is very authentic.

Alison said...

I live in Eastie and we do have some really great restaurants. Angela's is right down the street from my house and people can't get enough of it. We also have a very good Italian restaurant called Rino's and a great American place called 303 Cafe. If you're ever in the neighborhood again, check one of those out.