Usually a bed is required for a full-body massage, but at Beijing Herbal Foot Spa, an armchair is all that's needed. Upon taking a seat in the massaging chair, clients can choose an herb to be added to their warmed foot bath: lavender, green tea, rosemary, lemongrass, or chamomile. As their feet soak, a certified reflexologist begins manipulating acupressure points along the face, head, neck, and shoulders.
Reflexology is the spa's specialty, so the next step is removing feet from the bath for a complete reflexology massage. The treatment is designed to stimulate organs throughout the body by targeting various pressure points in the feet, thereby relieving symptoms ranging from tension headaches to menstrual cramps. And though reflexology is the focus, it's not the finale: each session ends with the therapist fully reclining the chair and having the client turn onto his or her stomach for acupressure and a percussive massage of the shoulders, back, arms, and legs.
To be reminded what time of day it is inside Brothers Taverna?formerly known as Brothers Deli?all you have to do is look at what's on nearby tables. Starting at 6 a.m., a glance around the dining room during breakfast service reveals plates piled high with steak and eggs as well as french toast covered in saut?ed bananas. Reubens on rye, buffalo chicken wraps, and other sandwiches take over during lunch, while dinner time makes way for entrees from chicken parmesan to lobster ravioli.
Dining is just one part of the scene at Brothers Taverna, though. At the bar, rows of beer taps and bottled brews stretch along the bar while servers pour glasses of wine and mix cocktails. They also bring tables bottles of red, white, or sparkling wine, none of which come with a fully constructed ship inside them.
At Koto Japanese Grill, chefs toss steak, chicken, and lobster atop hibachi grills, just the way they do in Japan. The heated surface of the grill sizzles underneath sliced vegetables and piles of rice. Chefs only step away when building sushi rolls, such as the eatery's star KOTO roll filled with mango, kiwi, and radish sprouts. As if the fresh fish and vegetable rolls weren't art enough, chefs use their skills to decorate plates with flowers, intricate patterns, and soy-sauce fingerprints. After the kitchen closes, guests can move into the lounge, where bartenders mix drinks until the wee hours and musical acts take the stage on weekends.
Back when Cilantro opened in 2002, Boston Magazine praised the eatery for its "authentic, hearty, and diverse Mexican specialties," which they called "breaths of fresh air." More than a decade later, owner and executive chef Esther Marin still aims to keep her lunch, dinner, and dessert menus interesting, creating new recipes that infuse Mediterranean flavors into upscale Mexican dishes. Using only all-natural ingredients, she crafts entrees that range from cheese-stuffed meatballs in chipotle sauce to pork chops crowned with chihuahua cheese and pineapples. A selection of 48 tequilas wash down meals inside a dining room wrapped in exposed brick walls that keep diner?s conversations from escaping the restaurant.
Aikia Steakhouse's staff goes beyond providing food: the chefs make elegant presentation a core part of the dining experience. From arranging sushi rolls artfully on plates to sizzling hibachi entrees on teppanyaki tables right in front of customers, the team takes the doldrums out of dining without the use of motorcycles. Their menu catalogs 20 hibachi dinners, including filet mignon, 28 maki and hand rolls, and several lunch specials. The decor is as upscale as the culinary presentation, with rows of plants set against wood accents and shoji screens marking private tatami rooms.
Sixty2 on Wharf is owned by Tony Bettencourt, the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts–trained former chef of the acclaimed Tomasso Trattoria in Southborough. Since opening in 2008, Sixty2 has seduced Salem stomachs with contemporary re-inventions of Italian classics. Bettencourt's meals use local and fresh ingredients shipped to the restaurant via seahorse-drawn gondola. The antipasti platter ($22) allows the chef to drop some knowledge on your plate, as he fills the plate with whichever antipasti options he deems best for the climate and current astrological alignment. Pasta dishes include the potato-filled cappellacci ($24 for full size) and the ribbon-like tagliatelle with a traditional meat-based Bolognese sauce ($26 for full size), while an assortment of entrees ($22–$30) include duck, lamb, chicken, and sea scallops seasoned and spiced to flavorful magnificence. The warm toffee-pudding dessert is a sweet salvo guaranteed to lob a taste grenade at any lingering post-entree hunger.