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“Good Food With Personality”

Friend's Restaurant & Pub
Ranked #50 of 282 Restaurants in Lowell
Cuisines: Portuguese
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed 19 May 2017 via mobile

The restaurant is located on the edge of the downtown area of Lowell, near parts of the University. There is a small parking lot right next to it and a lot of street parking as well but it's all metered using the "number" system and pay stations. Half of the place is a friendly little bar with a pool table and the other half is a quaint little cantina style sit-down dining area. It's decorated pleasantly, subdued lighting, fairly cheerful. We were waited on by a friendly young lady who represented the menu very well with great enthusiasm. Four of us had lunch. The beer selection was very pedestrian but did offer a couple Portuguese options. Nothing unusual otherwise, disappointing for me. The menu included lots of varieties of Portuguese inspired entrees and appetizers mostly based on chicken, beef or pork. Most meals presented a mix of other ingredients including shrimp and clams and other seafoods. I had a beer glass that was clearly not properly cleaned, exhibiting topographical contamination which I hadn't noticed until pouring my beer. They promptly replaced my beer and glass. There were a few flying insects that buzzed about occasionally, gnats, but it wasn't excessive, just noticeable. Everyone loved their meals although I was not pleased with the cubed pork which was largely overdone and somewhat tough. I didn't finish it although the wine sauce with mushrooms and big cloves of garlic and clams was fantastic. The expresso style coffee was also really good. Especially with the additional option of Bailey's! Overall this is a neat place, it has personality and the food is unique and very good for the most part. Next time I would opt for one of the steak options that looked very tender and enticing. The sea food melanges seem like great choices too but perhaps avoid the cubed pork. It appears that this might be a sociable place in the evenings and I would definitely like to give it another try. Prices are not cheap but not excessive for the quantity and quality of the food. Most meals were $14 to $20 as I recall.

Thank Durge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (15)
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1 - 5 of 15 reviews

Reviewed 10 April 2017

My son picked out this spot, solely based on it's proximity to his college. We were headed back to his dorm after a long day, and hungry. The entry offers two options - a small restaurant with table seating, and a small bar with high tops. The hostess told us it would be a 90 minute wait in the restaurant, so we opted for high tops. Our waitress was great, but the place was hopping. It was almost as if a movie let out, and everyone showed up here, but that wasn't the case. The place was filled with locals - the owner popped his head out of the kitchen and made a quick tour of the place, chatting with almost everyone.

This is some good, home cooked Portuguese food! So many options on the menu, complemented by another half dozen specials. It was hard to choose, but we followed the recommendations of our waitress. I had hoped to have baccala, but they were backed up in the kitchen, and it would have been a long wait, so she offered some of her favorites.

Service was slow, but dinner was definitely worth the wait. The bartender pointed out that two guys do all the cooking, from scratch, out in the kitchen. So, when it's really busy, the kitchen can get backed up. All I know is, we will be back!

Thank Tracy F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2016 via mobile

Best Portuguese food around! No other restaurant can satisfy your craving for an amazing Portuguese meal! love it! I've been to most Portuguese restaurants in the state of Massachusetts and none of them can touch Johns cooking! Best by far!!!! Can't wait to go back!! really you can order any meal! They are all amazing!

Thank Nicole P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2016

We ordered take out from here. And although it took a long time it as very delicious. food was prepared as we requested. we wanted some substitutions and they had no problem with that. it wouldn't be my top choice as a place to go, but i wouldn't argue if someone wanted to go here or order take out from here.

Thank Nina P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2016

Having been to Portugal, Madeira, and the Azores and having had a relationship with a guy from Lisbon for several years who was a good cook, I'm very familiar with Portuguese cuisine. This is one of my favorite Portuguese restaurants. The food is excellent, and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming. My favorite dish is the Portuguese sirloin with white wine and garlic and their Portuguese potatoes (fries). The kale, vegetable, and lemon chicken soups are wonderful. Portions are plentiful. It reminds me a lot of restaurants I went to in Portugal -- great food, lots of culture.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank NHjo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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