This Is Framingham

This Is Framingham
Life in the 'ham

Another Chinese restaurant!

August 1st, 2007


Driving by the old Ipanema the other day I noticed a sign saying a new Chinese restaurant called Red Pepper will be opening there.  As I’ve mentioned before I love Chinese food so I’m looking forward to another place to try. 
It’s kind of funny this place has gone from Irish tavern to Texan BBQ, to Brazilian and now Chinese. I think it was even a martini bar at one point too.  Anyway I’m looking forward to trying it whenever it opens. 

23 Comments »

  1. I noticed that the other day. Even my kids said that that’s a doomed spot for a restaurant. I’m thinking that Ipanema couldn’t make it after losing their liquor license.
    Speaking of Chinese restaurants, did you notice that Yummy Tummy now has a new name? I was at the plaza and noticed that they’re in the process of installing a new sign. I don’t know if they have new owners or just a new name.

    Comment by Karen August 1, 2007 @ 11:18 am

  2. I remember my parents taking my brother and I there a few times when it was Liam’s. It was their Friday after work watering hole but at dinner time earlier on a week night we would go and watch Adam 12 and Hogan’s Heros’ on the big tv while we ate dinner!

    Comment by Jennifer August 1, 2007 @ 12:09 pm

  3. I also remember going when it was Liam’s. The food was great but it wasn’t “family fun”. I love Chinese food but there’s just so many restaurants around.

    On the Yummy Tummy note, I loved the name. I can’t remember what it’s changing to. Something boring and forgettable is all I remember.

    Comment by Susie August 1, 2007 @ 12:26 pm

  4. Liam’s was there forever, at least as I remember it. I spent much of my youth next door at the Cape Cod Restaurant. Liam’s was always full as we closed for the night on weekends. Funny thing is I don’t remember ever being inside Liam’s, or any of its successor establishments.

    Comment by Mitch Cohen August 1, 2007 @ 12:42 pm

  5. I give Red Pepper maybe a year. I guess people just don’t learn from Liam’s, The Coyote, The Cactus Grill, Martinis or Ipanema. Can anyone think of any more?

    Comment by mike August 1, 2007 @ 12:46 pm

  6. I really don’t see how this area can support ANOTHER Chinese restaurant. Good grief! Do we really need another? There are too many to list, on Route 9 alone–Szechuan Gourmet, Imperial China, Uncle C.’s, Taste of China, Lotus Flower, Chief Orient, Ginseng, Eo Noodle, it just goes on and on.

    Can’t we get just ONE Thai restaurant in town?

    How about a decent taqueria/Mexican place? Sorry, Boloco does not cut it. And I regret to inform everybody that I emailed the Chipotle headquarters about the possibility of one of theirs going into the Borders building (which I learned about here!) and the contact person said, “not that I know of.” He could have been wrong, but that doesn’t sound good.

    Sorry for venting, but the abundance of (mostly vile) Chinese food around here, to the exclusion of other types of food, is mystifying to me.

    Comment by foppy August 1, 2007 @ 3:27 pm

  7. I agree Foppy! A really good Mexican place would be great!

    I know Liam’s wasn’t a “family fun” type of place but it was a restaurant. When we would eat dinner there I remember there was hardly anyone there so we either ate their really early or week nights were quiet there back in the late 70’s.

    Comment by Jennifer August 1, 2007 @ 4:30 pm

  8. I had forgotten all about the cape cod..I remember my brother ordered the budget burger and the meat was the size of a pickle..and if you ever went down stairs to use the restroom the walls in the hall way were covered with graffiti every where…they had great ice cream also….

    Comment by joe August 1, 2007 @ 4:38 pm

  9. The problem is not so much that there are too many Chinese restaurants; it’s that the Chinese restaurants themselves are all the same: same menus, same over-salted sauces, soggy vegetables, gristly meat, etc. If someone opened a Chinese restaurant that didn’t serve fried rice and pu pu platters and sweet and sour chicken and shrimp in lobster sauce, I think I would drop dead of shock.

    Comment by dango August 1, 2007 @ 4:48 pm

  10. The name of the resturant that took over Yummy Tummy is Shanghai City, haven’t tried it yet though. As for Mexican Acapulcos is not bad, I’ve been to the one in Sudbury not Framingham (route 9). I’d love to see another decent one open up though!

    Comment by Nicole August 1, 2007 @ 5:56 pm

  11. Glad folks remember the Cape Cod. Yes, the downstairs hallway was… unique. If I remember my facts right, the hallway and bathroom were the responsibility of the building owner, not the restaurant. For a long time we didn’t have permission to clean it. Eventually we got the OK and had a big cleaning/painting party. A strange but enjoyable place to work, and sad when they closed the doors.

    But yes, great ice cream. While working there I had a great time experimenting with various combinations. Mint chocolate chip frappes were one of my favorites. And their peppermint stick flavor was called “Pink Pep-o-Stick.”

    Comment by Mitch Cohen August 1, 2007 @ 6:32 pm

  12. I love Chinese food, but have to agree we have enough choices for that (unless they want to reopen Pacific Buffet somewhere, because I really miss that one!). The one kind of restaurant I haven’t been able to find anywhere in MetroWest closer than Waltham is Vietnamese. Can’t the Framingham/Natick/Wayland/Sudbury area support at least one Vietnamese restaurant? We have a couple of Thai (one of which also has some Korean), but I haven’t been able to find Vietnamese anywhere!

    Comment by Laura August 1, 2007 @ 6:59 pm

  13. I agree, Vietnamese would be great!

    As for Acapulcos, we went to the Framingham one once and the salsa tasted like marinara sauce.

    Comment by foppy August 1, 2007 @ 9:11 pm

  14. I think they should bring back the Coyote. I used to love the “Oink & Moo.” Beef ribs and baby back ribs . . . YUM!!

    Comment by Michael August 2, 2007 @ 4:22 am

  15. I think that Thai and Vietnamese restaurants are desperately needed! There are way too many Chinese restaurants.

    Comment by Chris August 4, 2007 @ 1:33 am

  16. Acapulco was actually pretty good when they first opened, but it became a noisy wateringhole after a period of time.

    Since we are a East Coast new England town, wouldn’t it be nice to see a true “seafood restaurant” come back to the area? Yes, we have Legal’s and SkipJack’s in the Natick section, but I am talking about places like the old BeefSteak Charlies or Papa Brillo’s, those Eat in the Rough joints that you could actually afford!

    Comment by Mac August 15, 2007 @ 4:31 pm

  17. We do have too many Chinese, though the number of *good* Chinese restaurants is pretty limited so I’m not totally disappointed to see Red Pepper coming in. (Aside from Sichuan Gourmet, I haven’t had good Chinese in this area; most of them go beyond bad into vile.) I’d love to see Vietnamese come to Framingham but the Ipanema space is just too big for a small pho and bun placie. With the current Brazilian exodus, I wonder if something like that might fit into downtown…

    Comment by Bricoleur August 17, 2007 @ 5:28 pm

  18. Regarding Mexican food, I really like The Aztec on the Framingham/Natick border on 135. It’s certainly not a chain and the food was made quickly and deliciously. And as for Chinese, no thanks. We don’t need any more of those places. Korean would be very welcome, though. Dah Mee in Natick has a good Korean menu.

    Comment by Ian August 18, 2007 @ 4:17 pm

  19. How about a kick @#$ BBQ spot with a stage for shows? Too many college students and trouble? That’s why Coyote folded.
    Firefly’s is alright, but doesn’t seem to do bands well because it gets too loud and there’s no room to dance…and the Chicken Bone is awesome, but it’s too far for a lot of people…That building is so big.. I agree with everyone that a Chinese restaurant won’t last and that we have MORE than enough! For Thai we go to Sweet Pepper in Sudbury. It’s so fresh and good..but not a lot of character. My husband calls it “The non-descript Thai place”..can’t have it all.

    Comment by betty September 8, 2007 @ 1:52 am

  20. So we tried this place, as it is now open. Got take-out twice, no dine-in yet. The verdict: OK. So it won’t last. The “authentic” part is indeed authentic (read pork blood soup and dishes of beef tendon) so probably doesn’t have a huge audience around here. And the Americanized food is hit or miss. Worth a try here, but good luck Red Pepper — we will be interested to see if you last longer than Ginseng.

    Comment by Jeff September 26, 2007 @ 2:49 am

  21. We have gone to Red Pepper, twice. The target audience would have to be Chinese natives, for the most part. I absolutely love their hot and spicy foods. Very much on par with Sichuan Gourmet. If you don’t like hot, spicy, and unusual foods (kidneys, tripe, snails, pork blood, etc.) you should not even bother going and then complain about them.

    Red Pepper and Sichuan gourmet are both authentic, Chinese restaurants, and while they try to accomodate those with American-Chinese taste, I would stick with their specialties and patronize American-Chinese style restaurants whose specialties are pu-pu platters, spare ribs, chicken wings, etc. somewhere else.

    Based on location, I predict Red Pepper will be closed by end of 2008. Too bad, I really liked their food. Also, because of their limited staff, probably due to the fact that they’ve just opened and may have a low budget, service seems to be on the slow side.

    Comment by Joe February 11, 2008 @ 6:36 pm

  22. I finally had the opportunity to stop by Red Pepper last week and met the owner, Jennifer. She is a real upbeat lady with grand plans for the restaurant.
    They are remodeling the upstairs bar area, and the plan is to bring entertainment to the place like Blues and Rock.
    I ordered some of the more standard fare, but the meat quality was outstanding – their wings are the very best, hot really means HOT when you ask for it, and last but not least……you have GOT to try the MaiTais. These are truly “2 to a customer” octane.
    Check this place out – I’m glad I stopped by and hope it stays!

    Comment by Mac April 8, 2008 @ 7:08 pm

  23. I think they’re closed! I went there last night and the door was locked, but the lights inside (and the sign outside) we on. Another vote for the Aztec on rt 135 near the Natick end for Mexican. Another BBQ option is Tenessee’s next to Lotus Flower.

    Comment by Ray C January 8, 2009 @ 11:38 am

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