Let’s begin halfway around the world. Or maybe not, since Asian food in the US is apparently nothing like what its native countries have to offer. My hunch is the same is true for these lunch boxes that have found their way onto our Asian menus, and that little is related to the Bento Boxes served for lunch over across the pond and then some. Regardless, they are d-e-licious and I need to start re-experiencing them through description, now.
Through careful survey of Japanese/Korean/Asian Fusion/whatever-everyone’s-the-same-race-these-days lunch spots, I bring you THREE of the best I’ve found:
3. Spice & Rice, 1172 Cambridge St. Inman Square, Somerville. Chicken Teriyaki Lunch Box. $9.95. I like that it comes with soba noodles which aren’t always an option, and the shrimp shumai is the self-voted the best part of it all. However after eating there twice already since moving down the street only a few weeks ago (caught), I say the best thing to order here is the Pineapple Fried Rice, the lunch box was definitely worth the trip but this rice is what made me crave it enough to go back in the first place.
2. Fin’s Sushi, locations in Kenmore, Brighton, and Beacon Hill. Chicken Teriyaki Lunch Box. $8.25. This one is pretty amazing, it differs with its pork dumplings and fresh fruit in the place of noodles, which is nice if you’re watching your carbs, not nice if you want to stuff your face. I’d rate it a step above the last, but still the best item to order here, (and I admit with no shame this time at the multitude of my visits as this is one of my favorite sushi places), is the Hawaii Maki, spicy tuna wrapped with avocado, mango in rice nori. THIS is one of the best rolls I’ve had in Boston. It’s right there left bottom corner. Ugh, how adorable.
1. JP Seafood, 730 Centre St. Jamaica Plain. Chicken Teriyaki Lunch Box. $8.95. My quite literal home away from home. One week I ate here enough that my hand cramped so badly from using chopsticks that I couldn’t hold a pen. Whoops, sue me. This little box of delights includes fried whitefish that melts in your mouth and Vegetable Koroke, which translates to crispy mashed potato slices of heaven with peas in it. This place might appear again on my list of Top Ten (under-appreciated) restaurants in Boston. It’s won its share of awards, but it puzzles me that people don’t stuff themselves inside here like sardines. So anyway, GO here. The sushi is amazing (try the Shrimp Tempura) but if you’re going to make the trip, the best thing to get here is, dun dun dun.. the lunch box! Ladies and jitterbugs, we have a winner.