New Bedford’s Ma’s Donuts to open soon!

There are few businesses in New Bedford’s history that have culled the favor of everyone. The popularity of Ma’s Donuts is almost unparalleled and it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say fans of the doughnut shop can be fanatical about these heavenly creations they’ve been churning out since 1984.

So, in 2016 when news that owners Ed and Sheila Lemieux were closing their doors and retiring there were a lot of disappointed souls. New Bedford foodies spiraled downward into a deep depression but held out hopes that someone would buy the shop and carry on the tradition since owners were also offering the recipe to potential buyers.

Ma’s Donut’s Facebook photo.

When those hopes were dashed and no one decided to pick up the baton they plummeted even deeper into their foodie gloom and doom.

Well, those people were positively thrilled when Eddie and Sheila Lemieux’s son Scott and daughter-in-law, Lauren announced they would reopen the business!

On Monday, a post made on the Ma’s Donuts Facebook Page said “Who’s ready for the doors to open?!! Hopefully it will be very soon we can’t wait!” accompanied with what appears to be freshly baked doughnuts.

Ma’s Donut’s Facebook photo.

The bad news? Can you imagine the clamor to get our grubby hands on the donuts? The long queues? We all know it will be worth it.

Ma’s Donut’s will also come with a first: it is the only one of our “Who Remember’s…?” article that we can “unretire.” Gladly so! You can read that article and take a trip down memory lane with some mouth-watering photos here.

Ma’s Donut’s Facebook photo.

Ma’s Donut’s Facebook photo.

Would You Eat a 3D Printed Steak?

Earlier this month Aleph Farms in conjunction with the Israel Institute of Technology unveiled the world’s first ribeye steak using 3D bio-printing and cells from a cow without the need to injure the animal. From their blog:

“This breakthrough reflects an artistic expression of the scientific expertise of our team,” enthuses Didier Toubia, our Co-Founder and CEO. “I am blessed to work with some of the greatest people in this industry.

We recognize some consumers will crave thicker and fattier cuts of meat. This accomplishment represents our commitment to meeting our consumer’s unique preferences and taste buds, and we will continue to progressively diversify our offerings,” adds Toubia. “Additional meat designs will drive a larger impact in the mid and long term.

This milestone for me marks a major leap in fulfilling our vision of leading a global food system transition toward a more sustainable, equitable and secure world.”

On Facebook they shared the following:

“Today, we’re excited to share our proof-of-concept of the world’s first cultivated ribeye steak. Made possible by our incredible team using three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting technology, we now have the ability to cultivate any type of steak of any dimension.

Addressing the growing demands of varying individual preferences and food cultures around the world is critical to our mission to drive the greatest impact possible, so we couldn’t be happier to share this update with our community.”

Would you be inclined to try the product? Can you see yourself buying a 3D printer and creating steaks instead of growing to the grocery store? Does the idea of a slaughter-free steak make you more inclined to eat meat?

Dartmouth’s Cravings Cafe & Cakery closes its doors

“Here are the last of my cakes to be done at 98A State Rd.

Feels strange saying goodbye to the place a called my second home for 11 years. Once again thank you to each and every one of you who stopped in for a coffee or ordered a cake.

Maybe you enjoyed our paninis or my favorite, the Morning Special, no matter why you walked through our doors I thank you with all my heart. It has been quite a journey, and I am looking forward to what is ahead.

Don’t worry, I’ll be working from home. Time to simplify!”

Cravings Cafe & Cakery photo.

Cravings Cafe & Cakery photo.

Cravings Cafe & Cakery photo.

Cravings Cafe & Cakery photo.

Six best greater New Bedford spots to get an espresso

Americans have a love affair with caffeine, don’t we? Not just with coffee-based drinks like lattes, cappuccinos, and espressos but we also love it in our sodas, teas, energy drinks and even candy.

Coffee makes up the primary way we get our caffeine – three-quarters of America prefers that method – with a whopping half a billion cups per day. Who can imagine starting the day without a cup? Each morning all over the country Americans brew it at home or make a pit-stop to Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks, or one of the many other chains, gas stations, independent small businesses or convenience stores. In fact, you probably only don’t have to drive far from where you are right now if you wanted a cup – it’s always within reach.

While it’s grown all over the world, 67% of all the coffee in the world is grown in the Americas. Coffee is the most sought-after commodity in the world only beat by crude oil. We Americans spend $74 billion dollars a year on coffee alone – that doesn’t include all the other caffeinated products – comprising 1.6% of the nation’s GDP and employing 1.7 million people. We rank 5th in the world in terms of consumption and 50% of Americans over the age of 18 drink coffee each day and on average we drink three and a half cups.

Yeah, we love the stuff!

Out of those hundreds of millions of cups of coffee, a significant number of those daily servings come in the form of one dear to my heart, the espresso. No – it’s not spelled or pronounced expresso, so don’t “axe” me again.

How is espresso different than coffee? Well, for starters its serving size is smaller, it is a bit thicker, has more dissolved solids and as every connoisseur knows, has a foam called crema on top which contributes to the tongue-feel and even flavor. In fact, the drink was originally called crema caffè. It is richer and stronger in flavor and has a bigger punch: more caffeine than regular coffee per serving. Espresso is part of many of the drinks you order including a Macchiato, latte, cappuccino, caffè mocha, or caffè Americano. If you frequent Portuguese restaurants, your Galão has it.

The term espresso refers to the high amount of pressure used to force the water through the fine grounds and it is done so very quickly when compared to drip brewing. The machine that does this was invented in 1884 by an Italian named Angelo Moriondo who just wanted to be able to handle the demand of impatient coffee drinkers in Italian cafes. His machine was a steam-driven “instantaneous” coffee beverage maker, and it originally made “pots” of coffee and not individual servings. That didn’t come until 1901 when another Italian named Luigi Bezzera patented a version that could produce single and double servings to a customer.

In the coming decades, Italian-Americans would serve espressos, but since necessity is the mother invention, they started to offer locals versions. Other Americans added ratios of ingredients or other ingredients all together and the cappuccino and latte were invented – the latter by Italian American Lino Meiorin in the 1950s. Thank goodness for Italian ingenuity!

Even the espresso has its variants and the best of all, in my opinion, is the café cubano or Cuban espresso. Typically using stronger roasts, the Cuban espresso cuts the strength and bitterness from the stiffer roasts by placing a bit of brown sugar or raw sugar in the cup that the steaming hot brew is dripping. This heat hitting the brown sugar “kisses” the flavor with a bit of sweetness – barely noticeable unless you are a regular espresso drinker. It is then vigorously mixed to get the afore-mentioned crema, which Cubans call espuma or espumita (baby/little foam).

In my opinion, there is no better caffeinated drink on the planet. Or solar system. Or universe. Or any reality even alternate ones. Ok, I don’t know that for sure, but it is certainly as good as it gets here on earth. I bet, even Giorgio Tsoukalos would agree with me.

Anyhow, who makes the best espressos in greater New Bedford? I don’t drink lattes, cappuccino, Macchiatos, or coffee – I only drink espressos and I have tried them anywhere and everywhere in the area. These are not the only spots that serve great espressos, just the spots I frequent most and who make the best. This, as stated earlier, is my opinion and if you disagree or if you know of a place I should check out because you think it should be on the list, please let me know!

Mirasol’s Cafe

Dartmouth’s Mirasol’s Cafe has been one of my favorite go-to spots in the region, since it opened. Owners Rich and Meegan and the entire staff are the pulse and life that make the cafe too irresistible to visit regularly. There are too many items on (and off) the menu worth mentioning – how about the whole thing? However, this isn’t a review of establishments, just about espressos and Sgt. Friday, wants us to stick to “Just the facts, ma’am.”

While locals are caught in a tractor beam that pulls people in for the beloved Chippi, I go there for the Cuban Espresso. You can get them in a variety of sizes and on ice. This is where I was introduced to the Cuban Espresso and had my first. Very few places make a better crema, so for you crema lovers, hop in your cars and race to Dartmouth. Ram through the traffic in the parking lot, push aside everyone in the line that wraps around the building and ends somewhere around Bishop Stang, and ride the winged llama over a rainbow until you arrive in one of the Seven Heavens. That’s just the first sip!

Sorry, you can have soy, almond, or hemp added to your drinks, but not ayahuasca.

Holiday Bakery

Don’t let the name fool you. Those in the know, know. Holiday Bakery is actually a legitimate, genuine Portuguese bakery and cafe. The women behind the counter are all from Portugal and though I’ve never been in the bakery in the back, I imagine it is a team of avós with magic wands baking delicious breads and pastries for jaw-dropping low prices.

While Holiday Bakery specializes in breads and pastries, they do offer a few shelves of imported Portuguese goods and coffee and espressos. There is an indoor patio with 2-3 small tables, so you can sit and enjoy their amazing pastries while sipping some of the best espresso in greater New Bedford. While it may just be a standard espresso from Portugal, it is made perfectly and with the loves of a million avós. Name a better ingredient to a recipe that grandma’s love? You can’t!

Java Shack

The new kids on the block, Dartmouth’s Java Shack are doing a lot of great things from mouth-watering food, friendly service, devilish pastries, drinks which include Kombucha on tap, and much more. What matters in my life is the quality of espresso and whether they “pull” a decent one. Why, yes. Yes, they do.

Don’t be fooled: Java Shack might be the newest addition to the cafe scene, but the entire staff – owners, chef, and baristas – are veterans who know their stuff. They know the best bean to buy, the proper grind, and how to make it consistently perfect. With welcoming faces and equally warm decor, you can sip the world’s worries away.


Don’t hate me. Starbucks provides a great working space, always working WiFi, friendly baristas and rewards for free food and drinks. OK, I’m a sellout.

While I don’t order the traditional espresso here, I also don’t order the venti iced caramel unicorn Macchiato, 2 shots of vanilla creme, extra extra Stevia, 1 Raw Sugar, Sweet & Low, splash of soy, splash of almond Frappuccino, shaken, not stirred. This is the only place where I get my espresso iced. I get the iced Double Shot Espresso, which is actually 5 shots when you order it in the venti size. So, it’s like an iced quintuple shot espresso.

Outside of selling soul to the devil myself for rewards, this drink is actually delicious and I’ve convinced a few other souls to try it and sell their own souls.

Novo Mondo

Yes, Novo Mondo is not only one of the best restaurants, Portuguese or otherwise, in all of the region, they also serve a world-class espresso. I’ve never been to Portugal, but I’d imagine that walking into Novo Mondo isn’t very different from walking into a cafe or luncheon somewhere in Portugual or the Islands.

Walking in, you will hear Portuguese spoking more than you will hear English spoken. That’s always a good sign when visiting a Portuguese restaurant, because they want that slice of back home. While the small restaurant isn’t conducive to just ordering an espresso and then sitting down and relaxing, there is nothing stopping you from meandering up to the counter and slamming back a single or double or even lingering there for a “few.” You can close your eyes, soak in the aromas of master cooks, while listening to Portuguese banter and transport yourself to a cafe in Portugal somewhere. It’s a great experience! Hi Carla!

Flour Girls

The Flour Girls Baking Company in Fairhaven is not only the best spot to get espresso…well, it’s the only spot. Don’t mean to shine shade on the chains, but Jill and company pull one of the best espressos in the area. And sandwiches. And smoothies. And breakfast. And scones. And pastries. And cakes. And…

Hands down, the Flour Girls is one of the best cafes around with an eclectic menu, friendly staff, and lots of pizzaz. An ideal place to chow down, get some work or reading done, and enjoy a stiff, rich espresso…or five.

Dartmouth’s Fay’s Restaurant announces precautions being taken for staff who tested positive for COVID-19

“Dear valued guest,

In strict compliance with the guidelines set forth by the CDC, Dartmouth Board of Health, and OSHA and to provide the highest degree of transparency, we are informing our community that a team member at our restaurant has recently tested positive for COVID-19. We excused this team member from any work-related activity when the team member displayed underlying symptoms of Covid-19 and promptly sent the team member home.

According to the Dartmouth Board of Health and the Massachusetts Department of Health, we are cleared to resume operations as normal, but we took it upon ourselves to close Thursday, October 1st in order to sanitize, using an outside firm, and get additional testing. All other team members tested negative.

Fay’s Restaurant has exceeded the necessary steps to ensure the safety of our team and guests. These steps include:

– The team member will not be permitted to return to work until meeting all CDC guidelines. These include: allowing at least fourteen (14) days to pass, testing negative twice within a 24 hour period in secondary COVID-19 testing, and/or they must be without fever and symptoms (under 100.4° F without fever-reducing medication) for 72 hours, with or without secondary COVID-19 testing.

– Performing a comprehensive investigation of the employee’s contact with others throughout the restaurant. From this investigation, we have informed necessary team members, third-parties, and authorities to ensure that the issue is contained to the highest degree. Any team members who are symptomatic but have not been tested for COVID-19 will not be permitted to work.

– We will continue our rigorous cleaning and sanitizing program of the entire workspace throughout our hours of operation as well as having our PPE on at all times and taking team member temperatures before team members start to work, random checks throughout the day, and a final one upon exiting the restaurant.

As always, the community’s and our team members’ continued health and wellness are always our top priority and we will do everything in our control to make Fay’s Restaurant the safest customer experience possible.

Thank you for your understanding.” -Fay’s Restaurant.

New Bedford’s G & S Pizza announces re-opening of dining room

Back in August we announced that G&S Pizza owners Arthur and Fay had retired after 31 years. It is unclear whether their decision was sped up because of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, but they did it in the middle of the heavy restrictions placed on many businesses, and restaurants were among some of the hardest hit.

Restaurants had their dining rooms closed back in mid-March at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic and had to solely rely on take-out and/or delivery to survive. With Governor Baker’s phased approach to opening, restaurants were eventually allowed to be offer outdoor seating in Phase 2: Step 1. Many restaurants either expanded their outdoor venues or built one from scratch.

Phase 2: Step 2 followed almost 6 weeks later and allowed eateries to allow indoor seating with restrictions: maintaining a 6′ distance as per social distancing guidelines and wearing masks where that was not possible.

Sitting down in a restaurant is part of the foodie experience, a way to get out of the house, not having to clean up the mess, or simply wanting a different atmosphere. A sort of field trip for the family, a night on the town for a couple, or a change of pace for the bachelor. Of course, many “power” lunches for businesses and co-workers were part of that lifestyle.

Restaurants have been cautious about opening their restaurants in spite of Gov. Baker allowing them. Mirasol’s Cafe and Starbucks in Dartmouth have yet to open their indoor seating. Starbucks said “We don’t plan on opening the inside to sitting any time soon.” Mirasol’s said it would likely not open inside until spring as they had to address the lengthy serpentine lines that often wrap through the eatery or around the building. Their lines are long enough and with 6′ of social distancing between each patron the tail end of the line would likely end somewhere on Faunce Corner Road.

Joining the ranks of restaurants announcing that they are offering indoor seating is G&S Pizza. A Facebook post stated:

“We are so excited to let everyone know that dining room is now open!!!! Please stop by and visit us for some delicious food thank you.”

Rejoice pizza lovers!

Governor Baker allows limited restaurant bar seating in Massachusetts

While most businesses in the Commonwealth have been hit hard during the worldwide pandemic that is COVID-19, restaurants, bars, and night clubs are among some of the hardest hit, with many closing their doors for good or struggling.

Nightclubs and bars are part of Phase 4 of the state’s reopening which stipulates that they must stay closed until there is a coronavirus vaccine. Restaurants have now just been given a lifeline.

Wednesday morning Governor Baker announced updated guidelines for coronavirus to go into effect on Monday. He lifted restrictions to allow 10 people per table inside restaurants thereby allowing them to use their bar areas for food service.

“Bars are closed. Nightclubs are closed. But the evidence from other states with respect to this issue is clear – restaurants can use bar seating for regular food service with appropriate distance in place.” said Governor Baker. There was a disclaimer, however: “There should be no standing around the bar.”

Spotlight: Tiverton’s Litl Rhody Pasta k.o

Love fresh pasta? Here’s a look at some amazing pasta, ravioli, and manicotti being freshly made from at Litl Rhody Pasta k.o at 14 A Stafford Rd in Tiverton, RI. Call (401) 265-1870 or stop by today!

“Whale’s Tail Clam Bar” to open in New Bedford in June

By the end of June, the New Bedford waterfront will see a new eatery open its doors, the “Whale’s Tail Clam Bar.”

The New Bedford Port Authority was accepting proposals for the Wharfinger Building and Waterfront Visitors Center and Stephen Silverstein, owner of The Black Whale and Cisco New Bedford was the sole bidder with an offer of $2,500 a month and a 5-year lease.

The seasonal clam shack will open in the Wharfinger building, offer takeout and outdoor seating in picnic tables and serve alcohol. As for the Wharfinger Building, Silverstein hopes to eventually utilize the site as a cafe offering breakfast and lunch with coffee, muffins, pastries, and a variety of sandwiches.

The cafe is not a certainty yet and is only in its planning stages. Perhaps, the success of the clam shack will play a role in whether the cafe happens or not.

Silverstein is also the founder of the “Not Your Average Joe’s” restaurant chain now with 20 restaurants in five states, and if his success there is any indication for the future of both sites, it will be a smashing success.

If you are cook, server, host or busser you can apply for a job at the coming “Whale’s Tail Clam Bar” here.

Rockdale Avenue property in New Bedford to become a Taco Bell

For those of you who live in the South End and are fans of Taco Bell but have to drive to the Coggeshall location on the other side of the city or the one in Fairhaven or Dartmouth to enjoy their menu: rejoice! One will soon be open right next door.

The Howland Mill Village Historic District property at 123 Rockdale Avenue was once Lum’s Restaurant and more recently Torman Chiropractic who owned the site (Torman Trust). The very popular area is a stone’s throw from Auto Zone, Domino’s Pizza, P&K Nails, and The Donut Factory.

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