As guests pass under Lewis' Restaurant and Grille's festive blue marquee, they enter an inviting world of Americana, with a bar that has been in place for generations and a kitchen offering up the appetizing aroma of freshly baked pizzas and Angus beef burgers. Guests share plates of buttermilk pancakes and eggs benedict during Sunday brunches and savor the tastes of inventive burgers and sandwiches, such as caprese-salad burgers or chicken-pesto sandwiches drizzled with balsamic reduction, all week long. Upscale haddock and salmon entrees satisfy refined palates, and a spread of bar food pleases crowds with chicken-finger baskets, tots, and tuna melts.
Though it has welcomed in families and bar regulars for decades, Lewis' has recently updated its interior with new bamboo flooring in the dining room and crisp dollar bills in the bar's cash register. Patrons regularly join in special events hosted by the bar, such as Tuesday-night trivia, where first-placers win a cash prize.
Chef Paul Mancuso, a graduate of Johnson & Wales University's culinary college, curates the restaurant's menu of authentic northern and southern Italian cuisine. An appetizer of arancini, which stitches together English peas, buffalo mozzarella, and ground beef in a fried risotto cake covered in marinara sauce, cordially welcomes palates and their owners to the quaint eatery ($9).
This cozy eatery welcomes growling bellies and their owners, showcasing a menu of classic seafood, chops, burgers, and more in a friendly setting. Warm taste buds on a starter of spicy boneless buffalo tenders ($7.95), or crunch into a Caesar salad to conquer an ambitious appetite ($3.95). For a main course, satiation-seekers can delve into selections such as the Texas BBQ burger, featuring fresh, ground sirloin swaddled with Cajun barbecue sauce and topped with bacon and cheddar ($7.95), or the broiled scallops, spirited from sea to silverware on a sprinkle of lemon butter (14.95). The veal marsala builds a trophy plate that awards diligent mandibles with meat medallions polished with marsala wine and mushrooms ($14.95), and the Steak Dianne, a New York sirloin grilled in seasoned dijon sauce, provides sizzling satisfaction ($14.95). Finish with a slice of sweet Boston cream pie ($3.75), or a sip from the wine list to end the meal on a smooth, grape note. Diners of all ages settle into 204's wooden booths to trade forkfuls or engage in pre-meal shadow puppetry. With high-definition LCD TVs showing local sporting events, guests can tackle plentiful platefuls without missing Tony Award worthy touchdown celebrations or triumphant goal line stands.
The chefs at Acapulcos Mexican Family Restaurant & Cantina aim to cook authentic Mexican dishes unaltered by any Tex-Mex influence. Their recipes reach back generations within the owners' family and several miles into their underground tortilla vaults. Spanish-speaking servers deliver simple combinations of protein or veggies, topped with vibrant sauces: carne asada steak dressed in green pepper and guacamole, tender pork loin in tomatillo sauce, chicken in chocolate mole. The chefs' adherence to tradition doesn't preclude experimentation. Case in point: the dessert burrito, a lightly fried tortilla wrapped around apple-cinnamon or creamy cheesecake filling.
Both the menu and the decor change slightly from location to location—a painting of Mexico here, a tiled mosaic there. Each one, however, has a full bar where bartenders mix margaritas and flat-screen TVs broadcasting sports overhead.
Hoping to revive the culture of the neighborhood butcher shop, with its personalized service, attention to detail, and artful products, restaurant-industry veterans Justin Rosberg and Jason Parent took a gamble on their first New Hampshire butcher shop in 2003. Dubbed The Meat House, their store quickly earned a foodie following, spawning additional franchise locations across the country. Today, The Meat House’s Mission Viejo location stocks fine cheeses, prepared side dishes, other gourmet grocery items, and hundreds of wines alongside the usual selection of traditional and exotic meats. Butchers also explain how to prepare each hand-carved cut of meat, sharing recipes, best slicing practices, and cooking techniques for giving pork chops the flavor of justice.