Boston Restaurant Blog -- August, 2011
Friday, August 19, 2011
Other than Area Four in Cambridge (which is excellent, by the way), I haven't been to many new restaurants over the past few months, mainly checking out established spots in and around the Boston area. But I did get to a new place in Walpole called Cruisers on Main recently, and it was quite an interesting spot, with a quirky comfort food menu that may be getting even more interesting soon (more on this later).
Cruisers on Main, as its name implies, is located on Main Street in the heart of Walpole Center. It has only been open for a short time, taking over the space where a general store used to be, and it indeed has a bit of an old-fashioned feel inside that almost seems left over by the general store. The front of the restaurant has a cozy dining area on the right and an attractive bar on the left, while the back of the eatery (via a short walk down a hallway of sorts) has a few more tables and is a quieter option for diners. A jukebox next to the bar contains a mix of country, soul, and rock music, and across from the jukebox is a cart that supposedly will feature Olneyville NY System wieners, which are quite popular in Rhode Island.
A large group of us checked out Cruisers on Main, and we tried a wide variety of items there. Starters included some meaty and substantial chicken tenders that we ordered with a medium-hot sauce, with the sauce being tasty albeit a little mild. While on the subject of sauces, I jokingly asked if they used ghost chilis for their very hot sauce (called "Holy Red Lips"), and the owner said no, but she might be able to get them and sell me a bottle of sauce made with the white-hot peppers, which immediately boosted this place up a notch or two in my eyes. For our meals, we tried the fried chicken, which was crispy on the outside and moist on the inside (as it should be), and tasted suspiciously like that of the now-closed Fontaine's in West Roxbury, which may make sense, actually, as an article in The Walpole Times indicates that the recipe is indeed from that former landmark. The grilled chicken breast sandwich was another decent dish that was also a fairly healthy option, especially compared to an interesting version of a grilled cheese sandwich that was ordered here. Called the "Biddie," this grilled cheese was stuffed with French fries, which may not sound appealing to some, but the combination of cheese, potatoes, and Texas toast seemed to work nearly perfectly in this case. (The grilled eggplant slices that came with the sandwich were rather bland, unfortunately.) I really wanted to try the Olneyville wieners, but the cart was not up and running just yet. Service was very friendly and mostly efficient (though just a bit shaky at times, as the place still seemed to be getting up to speed), and prices were about average for most of the dishes.
Fried chicken, grilled cheese stuffed with fries, Olneyville wieners (soon), and ghost chilis (possibly) all add up to a potential winner in Walpole Center. Now if only Cruisers could give people an indication that they actually exist (the signage at the place is nearly invisible), the place could become a popular restaurant in a town that has quite a few decent dining spots. I know that I'll be back, especially once that wiener cart gets up and running.
If you are looking for the address for Cruisers on Main, here it is: Cruisers on Main, 944 Main Street, Walpole, MA, 02081.
Related Blog Entries: Walpole restaurants
Had lunch there today with a couple of co-workers. Food was very basic but good. Wings are a specialty, but be prepared to pay $1 extra charge for dressing to go along with them. Also we were disappointed when after eating, (we had two orders of wings a salad and two sandwiches), the owner/chef came over to ask if the wings were hot enough, we said they were hot but we would like hotter. She suggested their Holy Red Lips. He asked if he could have a sample of the sauce - she said no - you will have to buy the wings! Enough said.
Posted on 8/19/11
Thanks for the review on Friday, Marc. We skipped our normal Friday night haunt here in Norwood and gave Cruisers a try. The owners told us the hot-dog setup would be "soon" but no specifics. They also said that starting this week would be "phase 3" of their (soft) opening. They officially open on 9/12. By that time perhaps they'll have permanent menus, better signage, hot dogs, etc.
Overall, it wasn't too bad, with some menu items that look promising. We started with some buffalo tenders that were pretty good, but not too hot for the "hot" heat level. My wife had the fried chicken w/ fries (and gravy on the side for the fries). Since it was just a chicken breast, I didn't have interest in the fried chicken, as I prefer legs/thighs. I had a taste and thought it was OK, perhaps needed a bit more seasoning.
I had the "Juicy Cruisy" burger (their take on a "Jucy Lucy"). It was pretty good, and the fries were very good. No problems with the service or the adult beverages.
I have my eye on the "Biddie" for my next visit, and on trying the more traditional on-the-bone wings, for which they have at least a dozen different flavored sauces. JJ
Posted on 8/22/11
I ordered the Alabama chicken, and I have to tell you, it DOES NOT taste like the Fountaine's chicken at all. My plate included the squash and potatoes, the chicken, although boneless, was just a few chicken strips. It was not a whole or half portion of the chicken at all. The taste was not very good at all, I will never go back there again.
Posted on 10/21/11
I have not been to cruisers yet, but plan on going very soon. I used to love the Fontaines fish and chips. Does Cruisers sell fish and chips? My friends and I plan to go there on next Wednesday. I would love to see a menu before we get there. Thanks
Posted on 10/22/11
I called ahead for an order of Alabama Chicken, as was told it would be ready when I arrive. When I arrived 20 minutes later, it was not even given to the kitchen to prepare. It didn't matter, I waited patiently for the Alabama Chicken. After 35 minutes later, the package was given to me, and paid for. When I got home, I was very disappointed. The Alabama Chicken actually was 4-5 slender pieces of chicken, each about the size of your finger, it definitely did not taste anything like Alabama Chicken. The mashed potatoes were drenched with gravy, and tasted lousy. The squash was sub par. I live locally, and thought I would give the local business a try, the food is terrible, I would not recommend this establishment at all.
Posted on 11/5/11
Pk R said:
Went to Cruisers, had the chicken alabama and the rolls. Just as I remembered at Topsies. The squash was also as I had remembered. Very good food and drink for very little money. My wife had the cheeseburger and raved abut it. We will be back as its a great place for us to bring the kids.
Posted on 12/21/11
It appears Cruisers is now closed.
Posted on 6/20/12
Yup, it's closed, though they may be moving to another location. We'll have to wait and see on that, I guess.
Posted on 6/21/12
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