Tag Archives: Manchester

Republic Cafe (Manchester, NH)

Well, after completing a relatively enjoyable visit to Southeast Michigan, we headed back home to New Hampshire. We decided upon landing that we were relatively hungry, so decided to check out a place that had been on my hit list for a while: Republic Cafe. Republic is another example of what’s becoming a pretty common concept these days in the food world: a brasserie that focuses on showcasing local foods and beverages. Built in the classic “Parisian Cafe” model, it’s basically a long and narrow establishment with a large bar and kitchen on the left, and some seating on the right (booths and high tops). Everything about the place is a bit funky, our table had a funky brass lamp on it, our water was served to us in an old Patron bottle, and a major feature of the restaurant space is a large specials chalkboard…

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Cotton (Manchester, NH)

Back in late April, due to competing obligations and business travel, Carol and I weren’t able to celebrate her birthday on its actual date, so we decided instead to meet up in Manchester and give Cotton another try. I like Cotton, since they are a nice combination of “old school” cuisine (steaks, chops, and the like) along with some new and funky ideas, of the sort that are usually labeled “New American Cuisine” these days. The result is usually quite impressive, yet familiar…

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Cafe Momo (Manchester, NH)

Cafe Momo in Manchester, NH is definitely one of those “why didn’t I eat here before?” sort of places. I’ve driven by Momo a couple of times, but until today didn’t bother stopping by, just adding it to “the list”. However, last month we went down to Hooksett (kinda sad that we have to drive 45 minutes to see movies in a good theater…), and afterward decided to finally give Momo a try. It also has the distinction of being one of the very few Nepalese restaurants that I’ve seen east of New York, so it’s always a pleasure delving into a new cuisine (well, I’ve had Nepalese before in St Paul, MN, but it’s been a while). I’m glad I finally did.

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Milltowne Grille (Manchester Airport, NH)

Sometimes you find quality in places you really aren’t expecting it. I’ve been a fan of the French Dip sandwich since I was a kid. There’s just something nice about some good rare roast beef served in au jus on a nice crusty roll. Unfortunately, most places don’t do a good French Dip. They use overcooked, cheap roast beef; low-grade salty bullion; and soft buns that quickly get waterlogged. There is, of course, the occasional exception. That place that makes a good case for having inventing the sandwich in the first place, Phillipe, makes a seriously good French Dip (I particularly recommend their Lamb Dip). And, to this day, my gold standard for a good French Dip is the version that was made by the Harrison Roadhouse in East Lansing, Michigan (with extra-rare, cold roast beef on a delicious onion bun, served with a rosemary-infused au jus). Alas, the Harrison Roadhouse itself stopped making it more than a decade ago…

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Manchester Diner (Manchester, NH)

After years of visiting Manchester’s famous Red Arrow Diner, I figured it was worth checking out downtown Manchester’s other diner, the Manchester Diner on Hanover St. I recall that this place has been here as a diner for a while under other names (I think the last incarnation was the Golden Oldies Diner), so it’s one of those slightly gritty and worn-around the edges cozy diners that most any New England city like Manchester used to have dozens of, with your basic lunch counter and a few tables, and a few black and white photos and knick-knacks. It also appears to be owner-operated…

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Belmont Hall (Manchester, NH)

Every spring, I go with the local high school FIRST Robotics team down to compete at Manchester, New Hampshire, for three or four days. Usually this means that I have a few hours to explore the local food scene a bit more. In the past, that’s pretty much the way I discovered the Red Arrow Diner, Greg’s Place, Golden Bowl, and Gauchos Churrascaria. (And I should actually write up all of these, too.) This time, I made a concerted effort to find someplace good for breakfast that was off the beaten track. A quick web search lead me to Belmont Hall, at the corner of Grove and Belmont SE of the Verizon Arena.

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Red Arrow Diner (Manchester, NH)

One of the odd regional idiosyncracies about New England is that very few places actually have hash browns (“hash browns” defined as crispy fried shredded potatoes, as per the image below and right). Most places have “pan fries”, “home fries” or “american fries” instead, which are all variations of cubed or sliced potatoes deep-fried or grilled. Now, some of thes home fries are indeed delicious (for example, Daddypop’s Tumble Inn diner in Claremont, NH, or the Fairlee Diner in Fairlee, VT are both good examples of excellent homefries). But sometimes I just find myself craving good hash browns. Seeing that my last good HB fix was Al’s Breakfast in Minneapolis, it was time for another fix.

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