I’d like to take a break from posting recipes, to my second passion…eating great food out! My husband and I have just discovered a great restaurant in the Boston area called “Joe and Maria’s Trattoria” restaurant. It’s located on Rt 1 in Norwood, MA. I’ve seen reviews for this restaurant before but never had the chance to make it there before. I’m so glad we finally made it there!
It is located in the bottom of the Hampton Inn hotel right on Route 1. Many people probably drive by it and don’t notice it as it is set back off the road. Big mistake! This place is truly a gem! It is owned and run by an Italian family…you guessed it, Joe and Maria. Oh and their boys. One of their boys, Paul, is the chef. He is a graduate of Johnson & Wales University, and is magnificent in the kitchen. We have been there several times, and have enjoyed everything we’ve ordered! The bar is also very nice for anyone wanting a quick bite to eat. The decor is very nice. The dining room is cozy and comfortable. That is really important to me, as I don’t know how anyone can enjoy a meal if they are not comfortable in their surroundings. I don’t know about you, but I am not very comfortable in those Boston restaurants when they squeeze you into tables that are on top of each other. If I wanted to go out to eat with strangers, I would. The wait staff are very professional, knowledgeable , and very friendly.
We have had the Wedding Soup and Clam Chowder, both made from scratch. Yes, home made. The meatballs in the Wedding Soup we delicious. It’s the first time I’ve had meatballs in Wedding Soup that tasted like anything! That’s pretty tough to do since they’re so small. The Clam Chowder had big pieces of clams and the broth was delicious. We had the dinner salad which was ice cold and had a home made creamy balsamic dressing. We’ve also had the Panzanella Salad which was IMO over the top delicious! It was warm toasted bread, cherry tomatoes, eggplant, buffalo mozzarella, and Parmesan Reggiano served over a bed of spring mix with delicious home made dressing. One word, delicious! The bread and oil that is served is “home made” bread. Also delicious.
For entrees, we have had the Veal Parmesan, which was very tender, breaded perfectly and topped with Marinara and fresh Buffalo Mozzarella. It served with linguini. The portion was generous. My husband has had the 14 oz. Black Angus Sirloin twice. Both times the steak was melt in your mouth (his exact words)! It comes with Cabernet Sauvignon demi glace, and either garlic and herb or Cajun rubbed. I thought that meant that the outside of the steak had a crust of either herb/garlic or Cajun. Not true. It come with a beautiful mixture of fresh herbs and fresh garlic on top of your steak. I’m not sure what the Cajun is like, but sure its delicious. The steak comes with a sweet potato gratin and vegetable. Of coarse, you can substitute the potato for what ever you like. I have had the Chicken Piccata (my favorite!) which was tender medallions of chicken, cherry tomatoes, capers, very thinly sliced sauteed mushroom in a very lemony (yum) white wine sauce, and comes with roasted potatoes and vegetable. Needless to say, I ate it all. I have also had Chicken Marsala, twice. I must tell you. Honestly, I’ve had Chicken Marsala at a number of places. None I could actually say was as good as mine. This one was. By a long shot. Paul has a knack for making the Marsala sauce taste like nothing you’ve ever had. Dark, sweet Marsala demi glaze sauce with tender chicken, thinly sliced sauteed mushrooms, prosciutto and roasted garlic.
Make sure to save room for dessert. The first time we didn’t. The second time we did. The desserts are home made as well. I had the mascarpone stack, which was a combination of cake, mascarpone cheese with a raspberry filling. My husband had an apple tart, which was clearly made fresh. Delicious.
And in true tradition, we had Lemoncello at the end of our meal.
I’ve never had the pizza, but it looks delicious. They also have burgers and sandwiches.
We eat out a lot. And I mean a lot. We love to scout out different restaurants, and don’t have any problem driving to get to them. And there’s not many of them I would take the time to write about. A lot of them we’ve paid an arm and a leg, and got nothing special. This restaurant is a keeper. If your in the Boston area, you won’t be disappointed. I guarantee it.
Sadly, since this has been posted, Joe & Maria’s closed.