Haute Secrets Boston: Carla Gomes of Terramia, Cobblestone & Antico Forno

Carla Gomes knows what it takes to make a restaurant in Boston stand out. After all, the North End native has been doing just that since she first opened Terramia in 1993 giving Bostonians an authentic taste of Italy.

Carla Gomes

Since then, she has the beloved restaurant known as Antico Forno to her credit along with the recently opened Cobblestone Cafe on Hanover Street.

We caught up with Gomes recently to find out what she loves most about Boston.

Where were you born?  North End, Boston

How long in Boston?  Most of my life, pretty much

Where do you live now?  Canton, MA

Occupation?  Restaurateur: Owner of Terramia, Antico Forno and Cobblestone

Favorite restaurant  I don’t have a favorite because I like so many…but if I had to choose because I love steak I would choose The Capital Grille

Best Sushi:  Douzo

Best Italian: Terramia

Best dessert:  Bread Pudding

Best place for a romantic date:  Bastille Kitchen

Best Sunday brunch: Ward 8

Best place for a power business meeting:  Antico Forno or Terramia

If you have out of town guests, which hotel would you recommend? Boston Yacht Haven which is right on the Harbor…just beautiful

Favorite shopping venue/boutique: Love it all… whether it’s boutique shops in the North End or Charles St. or South End. But my all time favorite is Twilight on Fleet St. North End

Best place to buy Jewelry/Watches:  E.B. Horn

Best Spa:  Mirbeau Inn and Spa at The Pinehills in Plymouth, MA

Favorite Charity Event:  Joslin Diabetes Center High Hopes Gala

Favorite Cultural Event:  North End Feasts…A tradition close to my heart and my upbringing and also watching football on Sundays if you can call that cultural

Favorite Cultural Institution:  Isabella Gardner Stewart

Best Steakhouse: The Capital Grille

Best Pizza:  When I’m not eating it at Antico Forno, I’d say Volturno in Worcester and Keste in New York

Best Gym/Athletic Facility:  Elite Health and Fitness Center in Stoughton, MA

Best Massage:  Bella Sante…the absolute best massage ever

Best Driving Service:  Myself, I love to drive

Best Museum/Exhibit:  Isabella Gardner Stewart

Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: I have 2…Fenway Park and Boston Public Library…1st public library with a wealth of knowledge and original artwork

Describe Boston in three words: Three words is difficult….I love everything about Boston, and it being a “Walking City,” but I especially love the people…the way Bostonians band together in good times and bad is the best thing about this city.

All-around favorite locale in Boston, whether a neighborhood, restaurant, venue, or other: North End is definitely my favorite neighborhood

Best Aspect of Boston….The ocean…growing up in the North End and always having the ocean two blocks away. Now since its redevelopment you can walk the “Harbor Walk” on the waterfront which I love to do with my dog.

 

Haute Secrets Boston

JDRF Terramia Ristorante - Support Diabetes

Boston Business Journal’s Healthcare Heroes – Volunteer award

News Release – PDF

Joslin Diabetes Center Receives Three Awards from the Boston Business Journal’s 2015 Healthcare Heroes

BOSTON – (August 12, 2015) – The Boston Business Journal (BBJ) has selected three recipients from Joslin Diabetes Center to receive the 2015 Healthcare Heroes Awards, which honors those who have worked tirelessly to improve the overall health and wellness of those living in Massachusetts and beyond. The awardees include Lloyd P. Aiello, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the Beetham Eye Institute and Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School; Melinda Maryniuk, M.Ed., R.D., C.D.E., Director of Care Programs at Joslin Diabetes Center; and Carla Gomes, proprietor of Antico Forno and Terramia in the North End of Boston.

“We are honored to have three of Joslin’s distinguished faculty and supporters receive recognition for their dedication and accomplishments in research, patient care and volunteer work,” said John L. Brooks III, President and CEO of Joslin Diabetes Center. “These awards reflect the diverse and talented group of people who contribute to Joslin’s mission of preventing, treating and curing diabetes.”

Dr. Aiello, who is an internationally recognized researcher, received the Innovator Award for his research into the causes of diabetic retinopathy, which is the leading cause of visual loss among working-age individuals in most countries around the world. Most recently, he received the Champalimaud Award, the Nobel for ophthalmology research, for his contributions toward the discovery of treatments that inhibit vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) to improve ocular diseases. Dr. Aiello continues to make huge strides in research toward improving the current understanding of diabetic eye complications, and his research has redefined the standards of care for ‪diabetes‬ patients worldwide.‬‬‬‬‬

The Educator Award was presented to Ms. Maryniuk who has three decades of experience working as a diabetes educator and dietician. As the Director of Clinical and Education Programs at Joslin, Ms. Maryniuk established the dietician’s role as a valued team member in diabetes self-management education, mentored future leaders in the field of diabetes care, delivered more than 100 presentations and authored 75 publications promoting the importance of nutrition and the role of the dietitian in diabetes management.

The third recipient is Ms. Gomes who received the Volunteer Award. Ms. Gomes is a local and national leader in the fight against diabetes, inspired by her son, now 24, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when he was just 1 year old. In 2005, Carla established the annual CityFeast: Dining out to Conquer Diabetes event.

This year marked the 10th anniversary of CityFeast, which has raised more than $285,000 for Joslin to fund innovative research for a cure, pioneering education and care programs, and community outreach.

To learn more about the Joslin recipients, click here.

Sugar Babies Movie

FROM THE STUDIO THAT BROUGHT YOU “FORKS OVER KNIVES,” COMES A VITAL, MUST-SEE MINISERIES ABOUT THE DIABETES EPIDEMIC.Sugar Babies Movie

This three-part documentary miniseries examining one of modern life’s most pressing health issues

“This should be mandatory viewing for all those who have a stake in public health and the 21st century.” – Jon Huntsman

[one_third] [/one_third][one_third] [/one_third][one_third_last] [/one_third_last]

America is facing a growing health problem that is posing a major challenge for future generations, but is preventable if we take the proper steps now to fight it and pay attention to our health. SUGAR BABIES: THE BITTERSWEET TRUTH ABOUT DIABETES is a compelling new three part documentary miniseries that explores the differences between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, the rising rates of Type 1, and the skyrocketing numbers of Type 2 in children and teens. This entertaining and informative miniseries looks at what we can do to understand it, control it, and beat it. This production is NOW available from Virgil Films.

North End Restaurateur Honored by Joslin Diabetes Center

Joslin Diabetes Center will honor Carla Gomes at the 26th Annual EVENING AT POPS event at Boston’s Symphony Hall
Joslin Diabetes Center will honor Carla Gomes at the 26th Annual EVENING AT POPS event at Boston’s Symphony Hall

On Friday, May 11th, Joslin Diabetes Center will honor Carla Gomes at the 26th Annual EVENING AT POPS event at Boston’s Symphony Hall. Gomes, a Canton resident and a beloved North End restaurateur, will be recognized for her tireless work to support Joslin through her annual CityFeast event, a unique food-and-wine fundraiser founded by Gomes that benefits diabetes research and care through Joslin’s High Hopes Fund.

“We are all touched by diabetes in some way during our lifetime,” said Gomes, “Diabetes afflicts 24 million Americans and is the leading cause of kidney disease, blindness, heart disease, stroke and amputations. Currently there is no cure; and I want to do all I can to support Joslin Diabetes Center in their work to try to find that cure.”

One of those affected is Gomes’ son, David, who was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes over twenty years ago on his first birthday. Now a graduate of Canton High School, and currently a Pre-Med student at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Gomes is quick to point out that David was fortunate, but living with diabetes has immense challenges.

“Diabetes is always with you, it’s not something you get a break from. You always have to think about it. It’s a consideration in each move you make, day in and day out.” Gomes went on to say, “Our goal is to raise as much money to support the High Hopes Fund as possible, so that one day my son David and millions like him, will be free from diabetes and its complications.”

Carla is grateful to Joslin and its team of experts for helping her son live a relatively normal childhood despite the everyday challenges of the disease. She is happy to focus her energy on supporting its efforts, so that other mothers may be as fortunate; and in the hopes that a cure is not too far off.  Over the past eight years, Gomes has raised more than $150,000 for Joslin’s High Hopes Fund through CityFeast and she hopes to continually expand the event in the future by involving more restaurants throughout the city.

 “We are thrilled to recognize Carla Gomes for her continued efforts on behalf of Joslin Diabetes Center,” says John Brooks, III, President & CEO of Joslin Diabetes Center. “For almost a decade, her tremendous work through CityFeast has helped support the Center’s greatest needs in research, education and clinical care, making it possible for us to look forward to a future without diabetes.”

EVENING AT POPS treats guests to a spectacular musical experience by Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops. This year the Pops will celebrate George Gershwin by performing many of his vibrant, jazzy and uniquely American musical pieces, including Rhapsody in Blue. This event is Friday, May 11th at 8:00 p.m.

For more information on Joslin Diabetes Center or to purchase EVENING AT POPS tickets, please visit www.joslin.org/pops

A mother’s love brings a neighborhood to action

Restaurateur Carla Gomes will host CityFeast: Dining Out to Conquer Diabetes at her two North End eateries, Antico Forno and Terramia.
Restaurateur Carla Gomes will host CityFeast: Dining Out to Conquer Diabetes at her two North End eateries, Antico Forno and Terramia.

Shortly before David Gomes first birthday, in the summer of 1991, he came down with what appeared to be a cold. His parents took him to his pediatrician, who said he should be better soon.

When he was still sick a week later, they took him back to the doctor, who tested him for diabetes. That test came up negative, but he was still sick, still not eating and rapidly losing weight. In two weeks, he would go from a healthy 32-pound baby to a sickly 22 pounds.

On David’s birthday, his father Ronald Gomes, a doctor, noticed that his breathing was labored. His parents rushed David to the emergency room at Massachusetts General Hospital, where doctors told them their baby was very sick, that he was slipping into a diabetic coma.

The previous test had registered a false negative. If he lived through the night, the doctors said, David would live the rest of his life with diabetes.

“I was devastated,” recalled his mother, Carla Gomes. “We were just concerned about him surviving the night and dealing with the diabetes after. At that moment I wasn’t even thinking of how do we take care of him, I was just praying to God that he lives.”

David Gomes did live through that night, and the next. After a week, he was able to go home from the hospital, but that was only the beginning of his family’s struggle to deal with his illness.

“It was the most confusing roller-coaster ride that I’ve ever been on in my entire life,” his mother said. “Because the numbers didn’t make sense to me. I didn’t understand a high blood sugar or low blood sugar. Here I have a one-year-old baby, and I have to balance insulin, diet and exercise, and make all those three run in a baby that does not talk.”

Carla Gomes said the challenge sent her into fighting mode. She learned the terminology of diabetes treatment and how to balance her son’s blood sugar. She and her husband adjusted to the regular struggles, as they were forced to hold down a strong, growing child three times a day to give him a shot of insulin.

She kept sweets and sodas out of the house and monitored David’s diet closely, no hamburgers from McDonald’s and no chasing after the ice cream truck. That meant sacrifices for the whole family, especially their other son, just 17 months older than David.

Since that summer of 1991, Carla Gomes has watched as David grew from a underweight baby with a difficult illness into a strong, healthy young man. Today, 6-foot-2, 200-pound David Gomes is a 20-year-old student at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. He hopes to become a endocrinologist and to help other sick children.

His struggle with diabetes has altered the path of David Gomes’s life, and it’s changed his mother’s as well. The owner of North End restaurants Antico Forno and Terramia is a crusader for diabetes research who founded and helps host the neighborhood’s sixth annual fund-raisers for the Joslin Diabetes Center, where her son has received treatment for 18 years.

For next Sunday’s CityFeast: Dining Out to Conquer Diabetes, both of Gomes restaurants will join four others  Lucca, Taranta, Tresca and Caffe Grafitti  in offering a special five-course dinner with wine pairings for $150 per person, including tax and gratuity.

Proceeds from CityFeast benefit Joslin High Hopes Fund to support their efforts to improve the quality of life for people with diabetes and to search for a cure.

Gomes said from the beginning she’s had eager support from fellow restaurateurs. “When you go to restaurant people for help, everybody in the restaurant industry seems to come together, donates money, has benefits,” she said. We have a great restaurant community, in the North End especially.

The event has grown every year, Gomes said, raising close to $100,000 to date. My dream is to really get this expanded and raise tons of money, she said. Because in one night, in just a very few hours, if we can get so many restaurants to give us 50 seats, the amount of money we could raise in one night for diabetes would be incredible.

Just in the 20 years that the Gomes family has been dealing with diabetes, improvements in understanding and treatment have made life easier for David Gomes and the estimated 23.6 million other Americans living with the disease. Today, Gomes can drink a cola or eat a hamburger if he wants one, but he must remain constantly vigilant, giving himself a shot of insulin five to six times each day.

For Carla Gomes, the hope  and the reason behind CityFeast  is that David and others like him will see a day when a cure can be found. “My son doesn’t know life without diabetes, and I want him to know what that day is like”, she said.

 By Jeremy C. Fox, Town Correspondent

January 24, 2011 on boston.com