When I met my husband eighteen years ago he lived in East Boston. Prior to our first date, I had never been to East Boston and was pretty amazed by the diversity. The city is a bustling sector with a large Italian and South American population. It is a great place to experience ethnic home-cooking with plenty of family businesses, boasting the recipes of their ancestors.
On our first date, my husband took me to Sonny Noto’s Restaurant on Meridian Street, right in the center of East Boston. It was not a fancy place; you just walked right up to the display counter and ordered from the menu above the grill. The counter was manned by a muscular man whose twin was in kitchen whipping up orders, while a very large older man worked the register- his name was Sonny.
The menu was full of dishes I had never tried before, arribiata, marsala, mussels marinara. But it also included some sub shop style items I was more familiar with. Like cheeseburgers, steak tips and salads. I ordered the chicken Marco Polo, sautéed chicken medallions, in a red sauce with broccoli and mushroom on a bed of linguini, and began my love affair with Sonny Noto’s Italian cuisine.