- $ Buckaroo's - 223 High Street - 781-899-4505
2005 10 30 review by A F
Looks like they transplanted this roadhouse straight from Austin. A
wagon wheel out front, and cozy wooden booths inside. There's smoky
ribs, messy pulled pork sandwiches, burgers, and student-friendly
prices. Plenty of veggie and fish selections, too. Open for breakfast,
lunch, dinner and after. Very good for kids. I liked the atmosphere, but
the food was good, especially for the price.
- Casa Mia $$$ - 229 Newton Street - 781-891-0100
2002 03 29 -
Some distance from the Moody Street restaurant area, and nearby parking is scarce.
Open since the summer of 2001, tasteful but not ostentatious, with an upscale feel.
3 separate levels of dining rooms for a quiet dining experience.
Antipasti $5 - $10, Insulate $7, Pasta entrees $10-18, Other entrees,
Carne e Pasce, $14 to veal for $28. Bruschetta, $5, simple and good.
Caesar Salad ($7) with a creamy dressing
and a single anchovie atop. House Chardonnay, $5. Special of the night swordfish
$22 with a chopped tomato sauce similar to that on the bruschetta. Veal Parmigiana,
2004 03 20 -
A recent visit to Casa Mia was disappointing. The rooms were more
crowded than expected, service was spotty, and meal quality was not
what we anticipated. The wait of about 20 minutes was reasonable,
considering that we visited on a Saturday night without a
reservation. We were seated at a table in the upper room. All
wines by the glass are now $6, and we ordered the Pino Grigio and a
Chianti, both of which were reasonable. A caesar salad was crisp,
with a nice dressing, but it would have been better if we didn't
have to flag down our waitress to get some fresh pepper for it. A
chicken breast with pasta was well-cooked, but could have had a bit
more spice. A rack of New Zealand lamb with mashed potato and green
beans ($24) was cooked as ordered, but the chops were fatty. The
once airy rooms now seem a bit claustrophobic; the wait staff
actually had to take circuitous routes to reach some of the tables.
The service was friendly, but our waitress did not get to our table
very often. A long delay in receiving ordered entrees was
attributed to a new chef. All in all, we felt that the quality of
our dining experience did not equal the $60 before tip tab. We'd be
happy if the crowding were reduced, and we hope the new chef gets up
- Ciro's Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria $$ - 207 Moody Street - 781-647-0555
1999 07 03 - Ciro's is a large restaurant on the first floor of the Cronin's Landing
building on Moody Street. The decor is black and white with red trim on the chairs
and lights. Jennifer started with the Salad Insulata de Ciro ($2.50), which she
generally enjoyed, but could have done with a little less of the mushrooms, and more
lettuce. I had a glass of the house wine, a nice Trebbiano d'a Bruzzo ($3.50).
For dinner Jennifer had the grilled chicken with white wine sauce and lemon, with mushrooms,
scallions, tomatoes, and peppers over fetuccini ($11.95). This proved to be
delicious. I had salmon with pesto and plum tomatoes over linguini ($13.95).
The salmon was cooked just right, and the sauce was good, but I could have stood
a little less pesto. I'd recommend this, however. We've heard reports of sporadic
service at Ciro's, but we've been seated promptly on several visits, and the staff has been
attentive. This summer the outside patio opened, where you can dine overlooking
the Charles River.
2002 09 13 comment by Christy Santos -
I'd like to make a brief remark about Ciro's. I have been to the location
in Waltham as well as the one in Maynard. While their food is tasty, they
are not very sanitary. In Maynard, my Mother had a fly in her drink. In
Waltham, I had chipped pieces of glass in my drink. I have been turned off
of them every since. Just thought it might be useful information.
- $ The Coffee Ring - 655 Main Street - 781-891-1212
- 2003 04 12
Except for the decoupaged tables, the decor of this new breakfast and
lunch venue is much the same as when it was "Sam's Deli". It is open
7 days a week, and the menu features breakfasts from $2.50 to $6.95 and
lunches from $2.50 to $7.95. One of us had the stack of pancakes, home
fries, and bacon, and the other a western omelette with home fries and
toast. The pancakes and home fries were rated good, but the bacon could
have been better. The omelette was just right, but the toast was overdone.
This is a new place, and we suspect the meals will become more consistent in
time. The coffee was very good, and refilled frequently. Service was very
attentive, but there were only a few diners present.
- Franca's $$ - 16 Felton Street - 781-899-7200
- 2002 04 14 - Review by Allan Telio
Pizza. What do you think of when you hear that word? Do you think
gourmet treat or greasy, cheap, fast-food ? Unfortunately, most of us
probably think the latter. There is one place, however, that takes the
time to remind us, that when done correctly, pizza is one of the
greatest foods ever. The place is Franca's.
Located off of Moody Street in Waltham, next to the Charles River, is
the small brick oven pizzeria known as Franca's. I first went there
three years ago on my brother's recommendation. It was love at first
bite. The pizza was greaseless, crispy and covered in a rich tomato
sauce and stringy mozzarella. It was perfection. Mysteriously,
however, about a year ago, Franca's closed down. It seemed as if my
dream pizza shop was out of business. How could of this happened? I
blamed myself. I should have eaten there at least 3 times a week. It
was all my fault. "Please don't leave me Franca! Come back," I thought
to myself. Alas, it seemed as if Franca's was out of my life forever.
However, a few months ago, I heard that Franca's was open again, but
this time under different ownership. "Is it really true? Is Franca's
back?", and more importantly I pondered, "Would it be the same as
before?" I rounded up five of my friends to investigate if the rumors
were really true.
We drove up to the restaurant at eight o'clock on a Friday evening and
were greeted by a large glowing red F at the top of the brick building.
(Apparently, the "anca's" section of the Franca's sign had burnt out.)
As I entered the room, I was greeted by the familiar brick walls, faux
Italian frescos, orange benches, and the smell of pizza coming from the
wood heated brick oven. So far, things seemed to be as I remember them.
The new owner, David Rosenberg, seated us at our table. He recommended
that we start with the Hot Antipasto ($6.95) and claimed, "If you don't
like it, I will pay for it. It is that good." He was right. The Hot
Antipasto is a salad served with sautéed mushrooms, pepper, onions,
pepperoni, eggplant, prosciutto and more. The fried eggplant was thinly
sliced, breaded, and lightly fried. It was perfectly crispy and grease
free. The entire antipasto was sucked down by our group in seconds
We were here, however, for pizza, not appetizers. I crossed my fingers
and ordered my old favorite, a large pizza with fried eggplant ($11.00).
My friends looked disgusted at the thought of eggplant on top of pizza.
I will say to you what I said to them, "Trust me. It is the best
thing you will ever have." They agreed with me after their first bite.
Just as I had remembered, the pizza was crispy and greaseless. The
eggplant was perfectly seasoned with breadcrumbs and Italian seasoning.
This is what pizza should always taste like.
We ordered three other pizzas during the evening, a large mushroom
($11.00), a medium pineapple ($8.00), and a large eggplant and roasted
red pepper ($12.00). Each pizza was as perfect as the one before. It
is food like this that makes me wish I had four stomachs like a cow,
allowing me to eat forever.
Franca's is back in my life and should become part of yours too. Next
time you drive down Moody Street and see the giant red F in the sky,
pull over and order a pizza. After your first bite you will remember
that pizza is not supposed to be fast and greasy, but instead a gourmet
A 2002 05 05 rebuttal by Lois Berkowitz
I, too, thought Franco's before it was sold had great pizza.
However, we went there about a month after it reopened and the pizza
was terrible. The pizza maker didn't seem to have a clue about what
he was doing, and the pizza suffered for his lack of training. I
haven't been back since. So, my question is, have they really
gotten back to their former level of quality and taste, or was the
reviewer so enamoured of his fried eggplant that he wasn't paying
attention to the wood-fired crust?
2002 09 13
Early on a Friday night, mostly families are seated in the booths in the wood smoke
scented interior of Franca's. The giant wood fired brick oven dominates the center
of the restaurant, which is split into a front room with a door on Charles Street,
and a back room facing the commuter rail stop. Once we were seated in a small booth
with a view of the trains, we ordered a glass of
Blackstone Merlot for 4.50, and a refillable soda for 1.50.
Several selections of wine are available by the glass to 6.50, and bottles
range from 14 to 24. A variety of beers were available by the glass for 2.50 - 3.50,
pitchers 7.50 & 10.50. A garden salad is included with most entrees, but a range
of salads are available a la carte for 3.75 to 10.95 for shrimp caesar.
Medium and large pizzas are from 8.50 to 13.50.
Jennifer ordered the
Chicken Broccoli, sauteed in white wine & garlic, with ziti and salad, 11.95.
I tried the Veal Parmigean, ziti and salad, 12.95.
The salads arrived first, and were crisp mixed greens with onion & tomato,
available with the house dressing, a creamy italian.
A loaf of warm, tasty bread arrived as we were finishing the salads.
Both entrees were well prepared, and were of sufficient proportions
that we had extra to take home.
Desserts, choice of 3 (4.95).
The service was well-intentioned but chaotic, possibly due to a
positive review in a Boston newspaper earlier in the week,
and a larger than usual crowd.
2003 06 30 - Review by Joyce
This restaurant is a wonderful find! Owner David Rosenberg is welcoming and
helpful. The menu runs the gamut from pizza to terrific pasta dishes
(shrimp scampi and spaghetti carbonara are among our favorites) at very reasonable
prices. Wine and beer are available. Relaxed atmosphere great for
families, couples, large parties, just about anyone.
2004 12 02 - Review by KC
We used to get pizzas from Franca's all the time and loved them.
Then I think they closed briefly and we tried it once after they
reopened but were disappointed. It's been a few years since then and
we had a longing for a brick oven pizza so we ordered up one. Sorry
to say though the pizza crust was good the toppings were
sparse. Hardly any sauce even! One piece was completely bare ( no
sauce, nada ) except for a slice of sausage on the end. Hopefully
it's just an off night but we might not bother with another try.
2005 01 10 - Review by Daniel Greener
Franca's Pizza makes great pizza...not too thick, not too thin, not too much
cheese, not too greasy, and with just the right amount of sauce. I have also
ordered their garlic bread and found that to be equally tasty. In my honest
opinion, this may be the best pizza I've had since I last had real NYC pizza
in Brooklyn. However, on two occasions that I have ordered from them, their
drivers did not have enough change. I strongly recommend either having the
exact change on hand, picking up your order yourself, or just avoiding this
place all together if you want to save yourself from being scammed.
- $$ Jewel Of India - 380 Moody Street - 781-893-9500
2003 08 03 by Nicole - You should try Jewel of India , Indian restaurant. I like their service
a lot and their luncheon buffet is really good.
- Mediterranean Breeze [Greek] $$ - 139 Prospect Street - 781-736-7887
2003 12 11 -
Our first visit to Mediterranean Breeze, shortly after opening at the site of several
former restaurants, was for breakfast. We were pleasantly surprised by the relaxed,
comfortable atmosphere of the 2 rooms that make up the place. The radio was up a little
high and tuned to a station with a somewhat abrasive repertoire, but the service was
prompt and attentive. Eggs and sausage were nicely done, but the western omelet was
relatively bland. We were eager to return for dinner to try the Mediterranean specialties.
The service was as before, but we were disappointed by both of our meals. Jennifer had
the $8.50 Pastichio, baked casserole with layers of pasta, ground beef, grated cheese,
seasonings and a white Bechamel sauce. Unfortunately, the ground beef was thinly
apportioned, and seasonings were barely detectable. A rather bland choice. Instead
of the Mediterranean Broiled Haddock Dinner, $10.25, which I ordered, I received the
Fried Haddock Plate, $8.99. The breaded pieces of haddock were tough and not particularly
flavorful, and the generous portion of fries they were served over were greasy. With
the tartar sauce that accompanied this, it was a mediocre fish and chips. On the plus
side, the salad that came with the Plate was fresh and crisp, though the Greek dressing
was not particularly zesty. I'd like to see this restaurant succeed, but in this difficult
location with limited parking and several other nearby eateries, it will be tough unless
the quality improves dramatically. They need to spice up the entrees, and be more generous
with the other essential ingredients.
- Michaels Italian Grille $$
- Best Western TLC, 477 Totten Pond Road - 781-890-7800
1999 09 17 - Michael's Italian Grille is downstairs at the Best Western TLC.
The medium size dining room and bar feature a ceramic tile floor, booths and
tables with red leather seating, and artwork depicting the old country.
The atmosphere would be improved with windows in the restaurant.
The menu includes 7 seafood entrees, several beef and chicken, and pork,
in the $10 to $15 range. A caesar salad is $2.95. The complementary
bread and roll were both tasty and warm. Jennifer had
the Pollo Con Broccoli Pasta E Pomodoro ($12.95), served with a choice of
pasta, chicken with fresh broccoli, herb dried tomatoes and marsala wine,
garnished with fresh rosemary. My Salmone Grigilia ($14.95) was a salmon
fillet with olive oil, a balsamic viniger lemon reduction, and herb garnish.
The fish was cooked properly, but I thought the sauce could have been more
subtly flavored. It was a little much. The servers were attentive, but
had some problems with explaining the menu and understanding our orders.
All in all, I thought the food was good, but not exceptional. On the other
hand, the prices are reasonable, and I'm sure there are better choices on the menu.
- C. P. Nutting's $$$ - 16 Cooper Street - 781-893-5900
2000 01 05
Joe Malone and his partners recently opened an upscale steak house on the
site of a former Italian restaurant. Portions of the new restaurant are still under
construction, but the bar and a small dining room, separated by glass windows, was
open when we visited. The atmosphere is relaxing, with a muted cream, grey and brown
theme. On the brick walls are historic photographs of Waltham, and tiffany lamps light
each table. Entrees include a number of steak options, at 29.95, the special steak tips,
grilled over oak with garlic rosemary au jus and steak fries, 14.95, and atlantic salmon
Filet, available grilled or roasted, for 18.95. Most entrees do not include potato or
vegetable, which are 4.50 each. Appetizers range from 6.95 to 8.95 and salads list for
6.75 and 6.95. The waiter served a bowl of warm bread and rolls, and Jennifer had the
winter lettuce salad, with radishes, roasted pistachos & bleu cheese, which was delicious.
The steak tips arrived cooked as ordered. The salmon was a respectable chunk, nicely cooked.
The side order of garlic spinach was a good, not-overcooked, plate full. The mountain of
steak fries were crispy, cooked with their skins. Piano instrumentals were played on the
grand piano at the end of the room from 6:30 on. The service was plentiful, and mostly
efficient. All in all, this was a pricy dining experience, but on the other hand, every
thing we ordered was perfectly prepared, and delicious.
- Papa George's Pizza $ - 897 Main Street - 781-788-8787
2004 02 18 - Papa George's Pizza opened early in 2004 at a storefront vacated by Mama Josie's more
than a year before. Like the establishments that came before, Papa George's is a large restaurant
geared to a takeout and casual dining audience. They are open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
We arrived for dinner early on a Wednesday night, and were the only ones seated, but there was a
steady stream of people coming in for takeout. We sampled a variety of items, including a gyro
chicken sandwhich (6.00), small onion rings (2.50), garden salad (4.25), large grilled garlic
chicken pizza (13.75) and diet cola (1.43). Also on the menu are breakfast specials from 4.76 to
5.95, sandwhiches from 4.25 to 6.75, salads from 4.25 to 6.75, dinners at 7.25 and 7.50, seafood
plates from 8.99 to 14.25, and pasta dishes from 6.25 to 9.75. None of the choices we had were
bad, but none were outstanding either. The onion rings apparently had been the frozen variety,
served with catsup packets. The garden salad was large and crisp, but was served with a packet
of Italian dressing. The grilled garlic chicken pizza was surprisingly bland. In fact, all of
the items were on the bland side. The price was right, but I was hoping for a little more of
a home style sit down meal. I'm sure there are specialties of the house, but we were not
fortunate enough to have ordered any of them. The service in the large section of tables was
good, but we hope the quality of the cuisine improves.
- Ritcey's Sea Food Kitchen $$ - 560 Moody Street - 781-893-9342
- Victoria's Cafe Restaurant $$ [American & Peruvian] - 241 Crescent Street - 781-647-8880
(open for breakfast & lunch)
2004 02 29 review by Eric Salerno
Run by friendly staff, this small cafe with very reasonable prices is
attached to the Waltham Watch Factory building. The menu includes an
excellent variety of breakfast and brunch specialties. Their eggs
benedict is done very well, and omelets and egg sandwiches are prepared
with care. In the summer time a choice between flavored and regular
iced coffees is especially nice. The interior isn't huge, but most
tables are near a window. In the summer time, there is seating outside.
So take a walk on the bicycle path that connects Moody and Prospect
Streets (at the bridge over the Charles) and visit Victoria's for a
relaxed weekend breakfast off the main restaurant rows of Waltham!
2004 03 07 review by Dave Ventura
Victoria's is a cozy, clean, and brightly colored (red and white) cafe
that is serviced by the most polite staff and able cook. Besides
offering the usual breakfast fare common at any breakfast restaurant you
are offered some interesting choices. For instance, you have 3 choices
of French toast, Texas, California, and Crunchy. My wife had the crunchy
which consists of wheat bread crusted with corn flakes with very fresh
and large strawberries and bananas. I got to try some and it was very
good. I had the everything omelet with tomatoes, peppers, onions,
mushrooms, bacon, ham and cheese. It was large, moist, flavorful with
very fresh ingredients and definitely not greasy. The home fries were
mixed with sauteed onions and peppers to give them a little flavor. The
coffee was excellent. My wife had the decaf which had a slightly nutty
taste that I too got to sample and enjoyed. I had the regular coffee
which was very rich tasting. For a small operation only serving
breakfast and lunch they had a very large menu selection. We are
looking forward to going back!
- $ Watch City Diner - 136 Prospect Street - 781-647-2282
- 2002 01 11 - Review by Eric Salerno
When I am pressed for time, and want to stop in some place for quick, high
quality Italian food, I stop here. The first time I ate here (Fall 2000),
the sauce smelled like my Grandmothers (really- and she's Italian!). Since
then, things have changed a little, but I still frequent the place since
they really care about the food they prepare, and put the time into their
sauce. I enjoy their Veal Parmesan, and their perfectly cooked Ravioli.
(usually on special for about $9).
They also serve these bread triangles that I can't get enough of - I am sure
you will see what I mean if you visit.
They are also an excellent choice for a late morning breakfast on the
- 2001 09 04 - Review by Rita Long
I actually don't think of Watch City Diner as a diner, but as a take-out/delivery Italian
restaurant. The food is great, I usually get two meals out of every entree, it comes fast
(even though I don't live near the diner), and it comes hot. A great choice for family or
casual company at home.
- Wright Seafood & Italian Restaurant [American Seafood, Italian] $$ - 699 Main Street - 781-899-7292 fax 781-899-7294
2004 03 26 review by the editors
In the beginning of 2004, both of Waltham's long lived seafood
restaurants were closed. Just in time for Lent, Wright Seafood &
Italian Restaurant opened at the site of the former Waltham Seafood on
March 19, 2004. The decor is much the same inside and out as it had
been; it has a cozy kitchen atmosphere. On a Friday night there was a
line to the doors by 5:45, but we were seated at one of the booths in
the modestly sized dining room within 20 minutes. The largest part of
the menu is the fish and shellfish: fried, baked, broiled, grilled or
blackened, from $8.95 for Fish & Chips (regular or spicy) to $16.95 for
the Fisherman's Platter. Twin market price lobsters were available for
$29.95 on the day we visited. I ordered the Chef's Choice Assorted
Platter broiled for $15.95. An assortment of Italian Specialties
includes pasta, veal & chicken dinners. They prices range from
$7.95 for Pasta with sauce to $18.95 for Shrimp & Lobster Fra
Diablo. Jennifer ordered the Chicken Kabob for $10.95. Water and diet
cola were delivered along with 4 warmed rolls with butter. A cup of clam
chowder ($3.25) was creamy, with clams and small chunks of potato. The
fish platter came with a baked potato and crisp, cold cole slaw. The 3
large shrimp and 4 scallops were very good. A good sized piece of salmon
and a fillet of fish were also nicely prepared. It was more than I
could eat on the spot. The kebab was served over a bed of rice pilaf
and mixed vegetables. One also had the choice of potato, french fries
and cole slaw. The chicken was very good, except for the stray bit of
swordfish mixed in. There was an even longer line at the door by the
time we headed home. Wright's is a good choice for good seafood on a