Tag Archives: Restaurant

What’s The Right Amount To Tip When You Get Takeout At A Sit Down Restaurant?

I’m always confounded at what I should leave for the person that takes my order when I place it over the phone at a sit down dinner place.

It’s not like they are waiting on you and serving you drinks.  they’re basically taking the order over the phone, bagging it up from the kitchen and giving you change.

You gotta leave something, right? But not 20%, right?  It’s always awkward. 

How do you handle it?

Dinner at Latitude 43

On Tuesday, a friend of mine was visiting from New York. He loves good food, so we had planned to head down to one of Gloucester’s fine dining locations on Main Street.  We had settled on the Franklin, but when we got down to Main Street, we found out about the broken water main and saw that all the restaurants were closed.

We ended up going down to Rogers Street and trying Latitude 43.  I had only been there once before, quite a while ago, and it was the first time for my friend.  We were both impressed by the decor as soon as we walked in. The metal sculptures of the octopus, fish, etc., are quite something, as is the mural of the shoreline over the bar!

Our waiter, Zorba Kinigstein, was enthusiastic, friendly, and very knowledgeable about the menu, giving us tantalizing descriptions of how the different dishes are prepared and the different flavors and textures we could expect.  My friend ordered the lobster bisque and the pan-seared halibut special; I opted for the clam chowder and the crispy potato sushi roll (tempura asparagus, lettuce, avocado and cream cheese, topped with fried sweet potato and served with a spicy mustard sauce!) which you can see in my photo at the beginning of this post.

Everything was delicious! I’d read a lot about Latitude 43 on GMG before, but I don’t eat out often on my own and usually aim for more inexpensive options to fit my budget. I am glad that circumstances (and my friend’s generosity) led us to eat there!

Fr. Matthew Green


“Olivia’s by the Sea” is under new management, renovated, and almost ready to roll

“Olivia’s by the Sea”, formerly “Amelia’s” (near Good Harbor Beach), is under new management! It has been taken over by the same people who run the new Cape Ann Diner in Brown’s Mall.  It has been renovated, and work will continue until the summer.  The new layout includes an informal, tray-serving-style dining area, designed to be comfortable for beach-goers:

and a smaller, more formal area where there will be waiter service and a more comprehensive menu.

Outside, the plan is to have an ice cream window on one side of the outdoor eating area.  In short, something for everyone!

On Wednesday, the restaurant opened for a breakfast test run “on the house” so that a small number of people could try the food and meet the staff. I was invited, so I showed up for a late breakfast.  The menu has a wide selection of scrumptious sounding breakfast food, with reasonable prices (although not as inexpensive as the Cape Ann Diner, which is to be expected for the location and style). I opted for a scrambled egg with bacon, home fries, and beans, with a mug of decaf coffee.

It was delicious!  And the owner, Ron, and the greeters and servers were friendly and cheerful.

They will be opening fully for business sometime next month.  I look forward to it!

Fr. Matthew Green


Ohana Just Crushes Dinner

Sophisticated- Sultry- Magnificence For Your Palate and Your Eyes

The Mrs defines the butterfish dish as her favorite dish anywhere, ever.  Not much more needs to be said after that does there?

The butterfish at Ohana-


I went for the Price Fixe three course menu of







The Mrs Got the Molten Lava Chocolate Cake for dessert-


The drinks are potent and creative-


If you haven’t been to Ohana, you really need to.

Check out the Bar menu as well for lower priced offerings.


For more info check out their website-


Pizza from Mike’s Place

First, thanks to those who prayed for me this week while I was on retreat.  I got a good spiritual boost!

This evening, after my return, Fr. John Kiley (the pastor) and I decided to have pizza for dinner.  We have a sort of tradition of getting onion & roasted red pepper pizza from Sebastian’s (58 Washington Street).  However, after six phone calls I still could not get through to them, so we decided to try the same kind of pizza, but from Mike’s Place this time. I’ve read good reviews here on GMG and elsewhere, and it’s right around the corner from the rectory.

The pizza was ready on time, fresh and hot, and the staff were busy but friendly.

It tasted as good as it looked. It was especially good with a bottle of Gloucester Soda which I bought at the street bazaar.

In short, since the pizza was great, and the location is very convenient with respect to the parish rectory (and they have sufficient parking), Fr. John and I will probably start to frequent Mike’s Place more often!

-Fr. Matthew Green

Supper at Café Bishco

Café Bischo is a little restaurant at 51 Main Street. Yesterday I had supper there with a friend, and it was great as always! We ate at a table outside on the sidewalk, enjoying the sunny summer evening.

I had their “Mediterranean Vegetable Soup”:

It was delicious, and was accompanied by heated, buttered, fresh bread, which was perfect for dipping in the tomato-based broth.

The sun shone bright through my glass of water:

To be honest, all I can vouch for from personal experience is their soup.  That’s the only thing I’ve ever eaten at this venue (and at several other restaurants), because I am a huge soup fan, and their soup is always good!  But the people with whom I have eaten there have also enjoyed their victuals, whether soup or otherwise.  Plus, I have seen a steady flow of people buying their ice cream or frozen yogurt, so that must be good too!

Actually, I can also vouch for their friendly customer service.  So, if while on or near Main Street, you get a hankering for a bite to eat, hot or cold, you should give Café Bishco a try!

Lunch at La Trattoria

Isn’t that just one of the prettiest things you’ve ever seen?

A couple of weeks ago, I stopped to read the menu at La Trattoria as I walked down Main Street in Gloucester.  A customer who was on her way in, took the time to stop and tell me how good the food is!  So when a friend of mine came to visit the other day, I took him to La Trattoria for lunch to check it out.  We had bruschetta and shrimp scampi for our appetizers, and chicken soup for the main course.  We chased that down with tiramisu and gelato with limoncello.  My friend also had a cappuccino, pictured above.

To conclude: The food was delicious, the servings were generous but not overwhelming, and the service was friendly and attentive.  The restaurant’s design and ambience was classy and comfortable.  So, I am glad that that customer I met on the sidewalk sang this place’s praises!  She spoke truly.  If you like good Italian food, give La Trattoria a try!  It’s at 64 Main Street in Gloucester.  I am looking forward to trying their pizza…

Good Chinese Take-out

No city or town is complete without a few Chinese restaurants. When I first moved to Gloucester several months ago, I was happy to see a Chinese restaurant right around the corner from my residence at St. Ann’s rectory: Ocean Garden (1 Maplewood Ave. in Gloucester).  According to the employee I spoke to there, Lily Chen, they have been in business for eleven years.  That means that their food and prices are good enough to attract a faithful clientele.

Ocean Garden, 1 Maplewood Ave. Not much to look at, but the take-out is very tasty!

I have ordered meals there several times (most recently this Sunday) and the food has been consistently hot and good, and I have always had friendly service.

Chicken with mixed vegetables and rice

Their wonton soup is just the way I like it, with a very flavorful broth and not-too-thick wontons.  I wolfed it down before I remembered to take a photo…

They are primarily a take-out restaurant, although there is one table where you could sit and eat. They deliver, and if you ask for delivery you might meet this friendly man:

Mike Marshall, one of the delivery men

He and his father Robert Marshall handle the deliveries. As I arrived, Robert was driving away with a delivery in a black SUV with a festive Christmas wreath still on the hood ornament.  Remember, Christmas isn’t over yet! Not until January 9th (at least, in the Catholic Church).

So if you’re looking for a nice hot Chinese meal, this could be a good option.   Lily said their specialty is the combination plate “General Gau’s Chicken”, but she added that some of their most popular dishes are on the appetizer menu – stock favorites like crab rangoon and chicken wings.

Full information about their menu, phone number, etc., is available on their website.

Dog Bar Restaurant Grand Re-opening This Weekend!

Dog Bar Restaurant Grand Re-opening this weekend with New Menu. Thursday – Millie Manning Band, Friday – Pete Lindberg, Joe Cardoza and Jake Pardee, Saturday – Justin Tocco and Rockin Rewind. Please come down and see our renovated listening room and try a complementary bowl of Monk Fish Chowder.

Click the picture for the DogBar website



Russell’s Florist is a family owned and operated stand-alone brick and mortar business. Eric and Maria Russell are both natives to Gloucester and have lived and worked within their community their entire lives. With rich family roots in Gloucester, Russell’s Florist, leaves you with a familiar feeling of comfort each time you call or visit their store. With Eric’s artistic touch and Maria’s cheerful manner, you are sure to be satisfied whether you are ordering a simple birthday bouquet or planning your daughter’s Gala Wedding. Another great thing is….they have a coupon for FREE Delivery……So order your flowers today…..and say hello to Maria and Eric….