Friday, July 12, 2024

A weekly notebook about food during the Covid-19 shutdown. Remember, if you’re dining out, doing takeout or getting delivery, the people serving up the food are part of the front line; keep it in mind when tipping.

Alfresco vegetarian lunches: Back to the Bow

Last week we talked about our first indoor dining adventure after Gov. Charlie Baker let restaurants count bar stools for seating. We had a good time at Olde Magoun’s Saloon, but many people reading the article said it came too soon. Then POTUS caught Covid, and so did our starting quarterback, along with an uptick in cases statewide. So with fall around the corner, we’re going to continue to focus on outside dining and takeout options.


Bibimbap at Perillas, a popup at Bow Market in Somerville’s Union Square. (Photo: Tom Meek)


I was a happy to return to Bow Market in Somerville’s Union Square where Perillas, a Korean food provider doing home delivery kits, has popped up with a storefront. Perrilas keeps its bibimbap basic – white rice with an assortment of veggies (kimchi, kimchi cucumbers, zucchini, carrots and pickled beets) and optional bulgogi (marinated beef). That’s the big choice: beef or no beef. There are add-ons, such as a soft-boiled egg, which I added and was glad I did. Then you have your choice of sauces, gochujang (chili pepper paste), yum-yum aioli or some of both. I love gochujang and often find Asian dishes can be ruined by the inclusion of aioli, so I went solo with gochujang. The dish hit the spot with its moist rice and fresh, crisp veggies. It’s a worthy ’bap, though ChoCho’s in Porter Square remains my go-to.




A vegetarian Renny Dog at Saus in Bow Market. (Photo: Saus via Facebook)


The other place I was happy to visit – and revisit – was Saus, a vegetarian burger and hot dog grab-and-go with a fast food vibe. I had the chili dog: a Beyond hot dog with Impossible-meat chili and cheese on a buttery Central Bakery bun. The beauty of this bad boy is that it’s fully satiating yet feels light. Saus, a locally owned micro chain started back in 2008, has an omnivore location near Faneuil Hall in Boston. I was told that a plant-based eatery felt right for this locale, and that the owners themselves were moving toward a vegetarian-oriented lifestyle. Saus at Bow’s biggest offering seems to be its poutine, which comes out of the box with cheese curds and miso-mushroom gravy. You can push it to an 11 with crunchy toppings, that Impossible meat chili and kimchi. Saus is arguably named for its many side sauces, with hot beer mustard, truffle ketchup, garlic chickpea and cheddar ale among the long and inviting list.

The other thing about Bow Market that’s wonderful, aside from the peaceful courtyard, are the shops such as Rebel Rebel wines and the Hooked fish market. Be sure to check hours, because most places have limited or abbreviated hours at the moment.

Bow Market (1 Bow Market Way, Union Square, Somerville)