December 14 - 21 , 1 9 9 5
[on the cheap]


East Wind Restaurant

The East Wind, featuring a Southeast Asian blend of Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese, Korean, and Indian, cuisines, is located in Allston, a community known for its ethnic diversity. East Wind's portions are so large and their cost is so disproportionately low that one regular customer has even suggested to the young owners that they raise their prices.

The menu boasts 60 items -- including salad, soup, and vegetarian, beef, pork, and seafood entrees. For an appetizer, try the enormous fresh spring rolls: rice paper filled with shrimp, bean sprouts, and basil (two for $2.95), complemented by a sharp red peanut sauce for dipping. Or devour the scrumptious plate-sized scallion pie, a steal at $2.

The carmelized shrimp ($7.95), called "coconut prawns" on the take-out menu, was exquisite. The many shrimp arrived in a fragrant, steaming pot full of fresh vegetables, with a good-sized portion of white rice. The "shaking beef" ($6.75), prepared with a huge amount of watercress, was full of flavor. The lemongrass-curry chicken ($6.50) and vegetarian-curry tofu with mixed vegetables ($3.25) are also popular choices.

In East Wind's small space -- the restaurant seats just 16 -- you can easily get to know neighboring diners as you enjoy your meal.

East Wind Restaurant, 229 Brighton Avenue, in Allston, at the corner of Cambridge Street and Brighton Avenue, behind the Allston Fire Station. Open Monday through Friday, from noon to 10 p.m., and on Saturday, from noon to 10:30 p.m. Closed Sundays. Most items are available for take out. Call 783-4085.

-- Nancy Kalajian