Located right next to our Motel 6, was an IHOP. For those not familiar with this American icon, it's the International House of Pancakes.
They had a terrific senior's menu. Hans and I both picked the Sernior's Pot Roast, which is a smaller version of tender pot roast topped with carrots. onions and rich gravy, served with vegetable, choice of potato and garlic bread. It was absolutely delicious, plenty to eat and economical.
There's a reason the locals call this pit "Un-Fortunato's" -- ambiance, food quality, and service all suffer in this "italian" restaurant in Downtown Lowell. The menu selections are totally uninspired and includes a plethora of items we've all seen for about ten years running including fried calamari, fried ravioli, and salads drenched with balsamic syrup. The continual motto here seems to be "If it can't be quality, it can be fried or sugared". Yuck! Oh, and be wary of the "specials" -- they won't tell you the price for a reason. During a recent misguided trip, we ordered the special, an overcooked, stringy steak with some sad looking veggies on the side. Price per plate: $41.
We were very pleasantly surprised by this cafe and the philosophy of the group of enthusiasts who run it. Wherever possible they were aiming for organic and Fairtraded vegetarian meals and drinks.
I was amused when a couple of policemen dropped by whilst on duty to have a Live Alive Jubilant Juice.
Favorite Dish: I thought the homemade soup was particularly good.
The Gazebo Cafe in located in the lobby of the American Textile History Museum. It's a little jewel of a spot in what may seem to be an unlikely venue. While many museums have places where
visitors can sip tea and eat dainty sandwiches, the Gazebo's menu is built around hearty homemade-style soups and generous sandwiches always made from fresh ingredients.
Favorite Dish: The Gazebo Cafe makes its own breads and baked goods. There are always several specialty breads to choose from, such as anadama, bacon & cheddar, sun-dried tomato, cinnamon raisin, maple brown sugar, as well as their standards: white, whole wheat, rye and honey-herb. They make their own muffins, sweet breads, rolls, various cookies and baked deserts like apple crisp. The New England Indian Pudding is a treat not to be missed!
This is a great place to get your mid-morning coffee and muffin, or to have an informal business lunch or lunch with friends or co-workers. Or show up on Sunday for a brunch menu which includes eggs, omlettes, and similar fare.
There is plenty of parking and the entire facility is handicapped accessible. You do not have to be a member of the museum or to pay any admission fee to access the Gazebo Cafe -- but you just might want to make the modest expenditure and see the rest of the museum and its unique collections of textile art and industry while you're there.
This Italian cafe is located in a historic firehouse downtown. Decorated with authentic Italian imports, marble, and fixtures it offers superb coffee drinks, desserts, lunch items, and has a beautiful full bar specializing in a large variety of martinis. Sidewalk dining in warm weather. A nice, relaxing atmosphere to sit and talk with a cup of coffee. Open late, until 2 AM most nights.
Favorite Dish: The desserts and caffe latte are excellent, especially the canolis. I also really like their chocolate martinis!
This cute, little hole-in-the-wall cafe is a vegetarian's dream come true. All the food served here is 100% certified organic and almost all of it is vegan. They offer several meals containing such healthy ingredients as organic brown rice, smoked tofu, raw garlic, and quinoa as well as soups and stews. They have a smoothie and juice bar here, too.
Favorite Dish: I usually only get smoothies here. My favorite one is called the "Eros Alive" which has strawberries, bananas, dates, and almond milk. The "Elvis Alive" is good, too. That has peanut butter and cocoa in it. The coffee here is also very good. They only serve solar dried, organic shade grown coffee from Costa Rica and it really kicks.
This deli/grocery is located downtown in the heart of the city. They sell everything from made to order sandwiches on your choice of freshly baked bread, homemade soups and chowders, several deli side items, goumet cheeses, beer, wine, and a variety of interesting and uncommon varieties of soda. Their groceries range from the gourmet (mango chutney) to the everyday (bread and milk). They also do catering and will deliver orders locally. In the mornings they offer a variety of pastries and delicious coffee. Eat in or take out.
Favorite Dish: Everything here is good, but I love their Tuna salad. I know you're thinking, "Tuna, how boring," but really it's the best I've ever had anywhere. I also recommend the jalepeno potato chips.
Another cool thing about this deli is that it is owned by my hairdresser and her husband. I just hope she doesn't stop cutting hair anytime soon!
This newly opened Mexican place is great. The decor is authentic Mexican, but they have managed to also keep much of the orignal character of the historic builing in which it is located (exposed brick walls, posts and beams, skylights). It is a casual place where you place your order at the counter and then wait for your name to be called. It was a bit hectic when we ate there, but they have only been open since Aug, 16th, so they may still need to work out some kinks.
Favorite Dish: We had the barbacoa (spiced beef)enchaladas with black beans and rice. It was good, but really needed a lot more kick in the spice department. (There may be some kinks to work out in the kitchen as well.) They sell Mexican beer by the bottle (Corona, Sol, Negra Modelo) and wines by the glass along with a cool assortment of Mexican sodas. They also have take-out, delivery, and catering.
Small, family owned Chinese take out place does not offer much for eat-in atmoshere but has some of the best Chinese food in the city. They always use the freshest ingredients and the food is always cooked to order.
Favorite Dish: Chicken with broccoli is excellent.
My dad owns this restaurant and I work here during the summers (I will be in the kitchen August and Sept of 04!) This place serves good food well. My friends are the cooks and they love cooking and it shows. The regulars love it and come back so often sometimes it seems if they never go home :)
Favorite Dish: Caesar salad (I can't get them this good in England!) and the salmon with feta and asparagus.
Elegant little French bistro in the heart of the downtown. Beautiful bar, great wines, excellent service. Great for special occasions or before an evening at the theatre. Dining room overlooks Merrimack Street foot traffic. Reservations recommended.
Located in a refurbished mill building, micro-brewed beer is made on the premesis, featuring seasonal favorites. Upscale pub food is a cut above the average brewery's offerings. Downstairs features the dining room with a view of the brewing facility and beautiful bar. Upstaris is an entertainment complex with pool tables, live music, and several more bars. Waitress service at pool tables. Cover charge for upstairs after 10. Outdoor dining and live outdoor music in the summer.
Favorite Dish: Great selection of specialty pasta dishes and burgers. They also have a good wine list.
Excellent steaks and fish. Exstensive wine list. Beautiful downtown location with elegant bar. Decorated with works from local artists. Outdoor dining in the summer with live music on weekends. Daily lunch buffet is an excellent deal. Reservations a must on weekends. Closed Sundays.
Favorite Dish: The best fried calimari I have ever had. The chef's daily specials are always good as well.
Authentic Greek food served by a veteran waitstaff. Patrons often include members of Lowell's large Greek community. Generous portions at resonable prices. Good selection of Greek wines. Greek music and belly dancing Thurs - Sat eves. Take out available.
Favorite Dish: The lamb kabobs are excellent as is their egg lemon soup. They also make an outstanding Greek salad and authentic Greek coffee.
Small locally owned coffee shop featuring specialty coffee drinks, pastries, and sandwiches. Has wireless internet service for customers.
Favorite Dish: They make delicious steamed milk chai.