It’s an Assembly Line at Its Best!

21 02 2010

Some tunes in Español for you- Listen to this

The Paramount, Beacon Hill

It’s 10:20 in the morning, and I get a phone call from my brother, “Where are you?” The T has once again screwed me over, passing by without a single sign of remorse from the driver. I’m the one running late this time. It’s ok, though. Soon, I will be at Paramount, a place that I have actually wanted to go to since I first heard about it during a Food and Beverage project that I completed last semester. To tell you the truth, I had only looked at their website, a nicely designed, colorful site featuring some fun background jams and lots of pictures of the venue. Yet, I was not prepared for what was about to come.

Getting back to the phone call, I ask my sidekick to work his way into the waiting list meanwhile. “What? No waiting list here, sis. Get ready to go down memory lane: think…high school cafeteria.” The train was going underground, so I didn’t pay too much attention to this comment. Hunger sometimes makes people say the wildest things, I thought to myself.

Paramount opened its doors in 1937 and is located in the beautiful and cozy Beacon Hill neighborhood. You will find lots of small markets here displaying fresh fruit outdoors as well as brick roads, hills, and boutique stores, giving this area in the middle of Boston a European-almost-Parisian neighborhood vibe.

Since Boston’s winters can get a little harsh at times, the first thing that you see as you open the doors of Paramount is a golden tapestry hanging down like a curtain which makes total sense once you are in because you notice that this is a small restaurant with a couple of diner style tables without a waiting area; so the curtain protects diners from the cold air coming in.

Now, walking in after that curtain also means that you are immediately incorporated into the long line. But, how about I give you the scoop so that you are a pro when you visit. Basically,  no one is allowed to sit before getting their food first….this means, that you cannot save the table while the rest of your party goes to get your food order and that a waiter will not come up to you to take your order. This is a no, no. So, the system is very simple.

"The Policy"

Everyone coming in to dine at the Paramount has to make a line until you get to the ordering area where an assembly line of employees will make a combination of enticing and mouth-watering creations to satisfy your cravings. Part of the torture of waiting in line though is that you get to see what others have ordered and the master creations and aromas right in front of you as guests grab their food in a tray, yes a TRAY, and wait for a couple of minutes before being told by another staff member where to sit.  This is back to basics (like my brother said, “cafeteria style”), but surprisingly enough, a very efficient operations module.

Make the line and you'll get what you want

Two things, then: go with someone who does not mind to stand in line with you for about 10-15 minutes and who will make you laugh (great spot to catch up!), and ask the pros waiting in line what are their favorite creations….you might be persuaded to pick outside of your comfort zone!  Definitely though, from my observations, you cannot go wrong ordering anything that has waffles, pancakes, and French toast in its title.

Now let’s dig right in to today’s brunch menu. I was tempted to order the French toast with an assortment of freshly cut fruit on top (strawberries, cantaloupe, and pineapples) and powdered sugar after seeing more than eight go by during my 12 minutes wait time.  And my sidekick went for the 3-cheeses omelet (cheddar, American, and swiss) after having a little bit of difficulty deciding between the vast eggs’ and omelets’ section, which even includes your favorite version of the Spanish omelet (fun times abroad!). This last plate is served with your choice of toast (wheat for him) and homemade potatoes.

One bite into my French toast, and I knew that the multigrain bread definitely made a difference. The sweet combination between honey, grains, and fruit complemented each other nicely and made me feel good about getting some fiber and healthy vitamins from this alternative twist on America’s favorite French toast recipe.

A fun twist of America's favorite French Toast recipe


Working his way into each cheese layer made my partner-in-crime appreciate his final choice, and we both agreed that the homemade potatoes had a very unique smokey, bacon-infused aroma and flavor that made those potatoes anything but ordinary.

Three Cheeses Omelet at Paramount

You cannot go wrong with the portions size either since they are more than we bargained for. Other house favorites seemed to be the large fruit salads which were, interestingly enough, a part of almost every order at everyone’s tables, which goes to show that sometimes you just need that healthy kick to balance out the very rich and elaborate brunch meals at the Paramount.

This unique brunch experience left a trademark in our eating adventures, and we are sure that Beacon Hill will be coming up again soon in one of our future endeavors.

Signing out, one brunch at a time.

Neighborhood: Beacon Hill
44 Charles St
(between Chestnut St & Mount Vernon St)
Boston, MA 02114

(617) 720-1152

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7 responses

22 02 2010
Stephanie Nunez

Cindy such a great review….the food looks great and you make me want to move back to Boston just to go try this place!

22 02 2010
Cindy

Please come! We will have our brunch extravaganza when you visit! and hopefully, I will be an expert by then. Looking forward!

Until then,
Keep on brunching!

22 02 2010
Andrew

That looks so good! I love the policy sign too- maybe autocratic dining policies really are the most efficient. The way you described that french toast is getting me in the mood for one. As long as they have good prices I think that might be my next weekend destination.

22 02 2010
Cindy

I think it’s great that they emphasize that it has been working for them since 1937! Cannot question their method at all! The prices were not that bad at all–given that the portions were very large and satisfying. You can have the 3-cheese omelet for $5.50 and the french toast for $6 or $9 if you want fruit on top. Check out the full menu at http://www.paramountboston.com/. Thanks for the comment and keep reading 🙂

Until then,
Keep on brunching!

6 03 2010
Linda

This place sounds fabulous, Cindy!! I am actually hoping to have brunch there soon after seeing this so thanks for describing it so well. The prices sound very reasonable, the food looks great, and the atmosphere seems very cool for a place that was established a pretty long time ago. Also, great spanish song. Keep on posting because I’ll be reading.

6 03 2010
Cindy

Thanks so much for your comment, bonita! I am very glad that I have persuaded you to try Paramount for brunch! Check out today’s blog and see if you would like to go there for dinner, as well.
Besitos!
Until then,
Keep on brunching!

2 01 2011
2010 in review « 2 Siblings. 2 Palates. 1 Irresistible Love: Brunch!

[…] It’s an Assembly Line at Its Best! February 2010 6 comments 3 […]

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