Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Boston Restaurant Week Lunch

Cookie Monster and I recently ventured to Boston for a long weekend. While there, we did plenty of eating. But also plenty of walking. So it evened out.

On our last day, we took advantage of Boston's Restaurant Week and had a two-course lunch at Henrietta's Table in Cambridge for $15.10 each. It was a stellar deal and great food.

Here is my first course: Spinach Salad, Native Blackberries, Westfield Farm's Goat Cheese, Spicy Maple Pecan Vinaigrette

Wow. This was so simple yet so delicious. The goat cheese was mild and creamy, the berries were bright and incredibly fresh, and the candied pecans were sweet and nutty. 

The dressing (which I ordered on the side) had more whole pecans in it. The maple flavor was pretty subtle, and really, it was not all that exciting. But the salad was so good, it didn't really need anything extra.

The meal came with a bread basked with myriad flavors of bread: there was cranberry walnut (which I tried but gave most of to Cookie Monsters, since walnuts and my tongue do not get along), some kind of molasses-y bread, and a plain roll.

Perusing their cocktail menu, I saw this cocktail, and since it was my last day of vacation, I said to hell with it and ordered a cocktail at lunch. It was a very good call.

This would be the Sangria Sorbet Martini: A Scoop of Sangria Sorbet topped with Ketel One Vodka
Um, wow. The sorbet was full of  fresh fruit flavor, though I did have to heed the waitress' warning to stir it all together, lest I just be drinking straight-up vodka.

For my entree, I ordered the Assorted Grilled Vegetable Sandwich on Seven Grain Bread, Olive Relish, Creamy Cole Slaw.

Honestly, the sandwich was just ok. It came with lots of tasty grilled vegetables, but the strong olive tapenade flavor sortof took over the sandwich and muted the flavor of the vegetables. Also, it was a bit greasy. Maybe less butter on the bread and the addition of basil and goat cheese would've made it great. And the coleslaw was completely forgettable. It was quite heavy on the mayo, so I only took a few bites. I typically don't like coleslaw, and while I thought Henrietta's version could make me a convert, alas, it did not.

Here are Cookie Monster's two courses.

That would be the Cornmeal Crusted Monkfish Sandwich, House-made Tartar Sauce, Lettuce and Tomato.

 Oh yes, and the Henrietta's World Famous Chocolate Bread Pudding with Rum Caramelized Bananas, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. It was pretty much amazing. The caramel with the bananas and ice cream was an amazing combination, and the chocolate added a little somethin' extra to the bread pudding.

The stars of this meal were easily the salad and the bread pudding. An interesting dichotomy, but a tasty one.

I really liked Henrietta's pledge to use local, seasonal ingredients. Here's what they say about that:
Henrietta's Table prides itself on "Fresh from the Farm and Honest to Goodness Home Cooking." Chef Davis and his staff are committed to finding the best regional and organically grown produce, not only to support the local farmers and community, but to bring award-winning dishes to our guests.

That's definitely something I can get behind.Well, that and bread pudding.

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