Serious Sandwiches in Ipswich

Posted: April 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Cafe, Ipswich, Stone Soup Café | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

We had heard good things about Stone Soup Café in Ipswich, so when we found ourselves in the area and in need of nourishment last week, we stopped in. Good thing we were hungry—this place serves up a serious lunch.

The menu is large and includes salads, burgers, dogs, roll ups, specialty sandwiches like grilled cheese and avocado, fried chicken and fish, plus pizzas with gourmet toppings and a selection of house-made soups.

Breakfast items for lunch are a favorite of ours, so we were thrilled to see not only pancakes ($4 for one, $6 for two—and they’re huge) and eggs benedict ($8), but a monster egg sandwich ($7). It lived up to its name: after a cup of excellent spicy lentil soup with sausage ($3), we had to take half of this delicious grilled sandwich home. It featured fried eggs, hash browns, bacon, cheese and sautéed onions.

We also sampled a cup of clam chowder (creamy and full flavored, $3.50) and a reuben filled with pastrami and sauerkraut on grilled bread with melted cheese ($8). And yes, we took half of that home as well.

The service was attentive and friendly, even going so far as to bring us a sample of the lentil soup so we could judge the spice level. The décor is less pleasing; it looks like not much has been done since the restaurant moved from its downtown Ipswich location last spring into what had been Marco Polo, an Italian restaurant.

Stone Soup serves breakfast and lunch every day as well as dinner Thursday to Sunday, with entrees ranging from $9 to $17. A full bar is available for lunch and dinner, including beer from Wachusett Brewing Company in Westminster.

Stone Soup Café
141 High St, Ipswich
(978) 356-4222

Stone Soup Cafe on Urbanspoon


Get in Line for Wrapture

Posted: August 11th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Beverly, Cafe, Wrapture | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Foodies know that ingredients are as important as technique—whether it’s an expensive dinner entrée or a sandwich. So it’s no surprise that there’s always a lunch-time line at Beverly’s Wrapture, where the ingredients are fresh and top quality.

On a recent sunny day, we snagged one of the café’s outdoor tables to enjoy some of the bounty. We ordered all wraps on this trip but noted several interesting bowls on offer, including asian, curry, and pad thai (all $7.50 without meat). There’s also a homemade soup that changes daily.

We’re big fans of the burrito with black beans, sour cream, salsa, jack cheese, and rice ($5.25). With the steak and guacamole we added, it was $7.50. The steak had great flavor, the combination was wonderful, and the wrap was big enough for two lunches.

The junior member of our party ordered one of the day’s specials, the turkey club wrap, featuring cheese and crispy bacon. Another satisfied customer.

We also tried the crabcake wrap, which was flavored with chipotle mayo and combined with onion, red pepper, corn, black bean, and romaine ($8.25). The crabcake was warm and tasted great, but we weren’t crazy about the corn/bean addition. The portabella mushroom with goat cheese, baby spinach, red peppers, onions, and roasted garlic puree ($7.25) was a success and a must-try for garlic lovers.

On our way out, we admired two more wraps and were assured they tasted as good as they looked: the middle eastern with falafel and the gyro with tzatziki. We were told they were best on spinach wraps (other choices include plain, wheat, and sundried tomato).

Wrapture, run by the folks who own nearby Soma, is certainly not the most cost-conscious choice for lunch, but if you don’t mind paying a dollar or two more for cooked-to-order, quality ingredients, it’s well worth braving the lunch line.

284 Cabot St, Beverly
(978) 524-7710

Wrapture on Urbanspoon


Not So Soup-er

Posted: December 31st, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Casual/Pub Food, New England Soup Factory, Salem | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments »

So not impressed, despite having heard good buzz about this place. Soup sounded good on a recent blustery day, so I agreed to meet a friend at the New England Soup Factory in Salem for lunch. For $8.87, I received a medium-sized cup of chicken soup and half a wrap sandwich (no drink). Pricey and really not worth it. The soup had good chicken flavor and was hot, but there was almost no chicken in it, and the carrots were huge slices that didn’t fit in my mouth (I need a knife to eat my soup?). The chicken avocado wrap had only one small piece of avocado and was bland.

There are a number of other lunch places right on Washington Street, so we’ll make it point to check some of them out and make a recommendation. In the meantime, if you find yourself in that area, skip the Soup Factory in favor of Fresh Taste of Asia (one of our favorites), or take a stroll down the pedestrian walkway to The Old Spot or The Tavern at the Hawthorne Hotel, both reliable choices. (Note: The Old Spot is not open for lunch Monday or Tuesday.)

New England Soup Factory
140 Washington St, Salem
(978) 744-0444