No I can’t fly BUT I do almost feel like I have wings with a pleasant smile on my face after grabbing a bite at The Daily Catch located in the North End. Although this was my third visit to this restaurant today was quite special; it was my mom’s birthday. I thought what better place to go than an Italian (Sicilian styled to be correct) eatery to celebrate.
Taste buds have been satisfied at this original location ever since 1973. With two other locations (Brookline and Seaport) the business has been able to spread it’s love of cooking pasta with seafood throughout the Boston area.
Things I love about the North End: it reminds me of Sicily (visited in 2010) with small streets, hidden shops in alleys, and tasty Italian food. What I don’t like so much: hard to find parking and can be crowded during a holiday weekend (e.g. Marathon Monday). Luckily for people wishing to dine at The Daily Catch there is street and lot parking at “Parcel 7” which is a 5-minute walk away. Not too shabby. Plus for $3 you can get 3 hours of parking! Pretty decent.
Open daily from 11am to 10pm there are moments when a “line” forms at the door, and those who are patient get rewarded. Sorry, no reservations here. This cozy 20-persons, 3 employee (the server, the cook, and dishwasher) restaurant does fill up, nevertheless service is quick. I understand “waiting” is not something everyone can do, but if you can bare the 15-25 minutes without a complaint then come on down!
I personally LOVE the chalkboard menu. They’ve even taken a picture of it for their website if you wanted to check it out before you venture down. Appetizers vary from $9.75 to $19.50 meanwhile main entrée’s are between $18 and $22. Their black pasta, (yes, BLACK pasta…which I will try one day) made with squid ink, is $21 for entrée size and $10.50 for the appetizer. The menu continues with salads and seafood platters. This CASH ONLY establishment gives a fair amount of options to the Italian cuisine lover. Also, you can pair your meal with an assortments of wines and bottled beers.
The open kitchen is another plus. Right there, in front of your face you can SEE what goes into every meal the chef is preparing. You can watch as he grinds up the calamari, garnishes each frying pan (most meals are served out of them), and multi-tasks at each objective place in front of him.
I started off with the Shrimp Scampi. In a chain restaurant such as Maggiano’s or Olive Garden, this would come with linguine however here it’s just the appetizer…shrimp. I must say, the white sauce they’ve created keeps me coming back. Made with garlic, oil, butter, lemon, wine and cheese this blend is simply addictive. My mom said it was her favorite part. The shrimp tasted fresh not like freezer shrimp, which can ruin any meal. This was a great way to start.
Our entrée was Mussels Marinara and Linguine. Mussels and I became friends about 4 years back and I haven’t been disappointed yet. The Daily Catch is Now added to my list of Mussels Execution SUCCESSES! Big, juicy pieces of meat reveal themselves out of shells. Fully of flavor and taste! Although the pasta/marinara combination didn’t wow me, it didn’t stop me from continuing my meal with enjoyment. I think for me, white sauce always wins, Even with mussels, which typically requires a red sauce. During this late lunch I sat next to a women from Connecticut who had an interesting bias toward the food and she made me realize that you can’t win over the world one meal at a time. For me, a good percentage of the city and Beyond, The Daily Catch is delicious and well worth the trip to the North End for good eats.
As their website proclaims, “This will be an experience to remember” indeed. Food out of pans?!? Who’d knew? There’s definitely a “friendly dining experience” offered as well which makes everyone feel welcomed. Although dessert is not an option, never fear; you can either join the HUGH line across the street at Mike’s Pastries or walk a bit down to the other line at Modern’s which is what we did.
Happy Birthday Mom!
The Daily Catch -North End
323 Hanover St.
Boston, MA 02113