dinner club

After a nice long, (almost) three week break from work/school, where I was lucky enough to go home for a few days to spend some time with my family and friends in Kentucky, then fly down to bask in the South Florida sunshine with my love, I’m back in Boston and back in the cold. We got our first big snow this week: about 8 inches. Honestly, I kinda like it. Just bundle up and try not to let it interfere with life. It was dumping on Saturday, but Frank and I made a point to get out of the house and romp around for a bit, although we mainly stayed in the surprisingly long network of malls, hotels and walkways that meander all around the city. To put it another way, we weren’t outside in the elements much, but we were proud of ourselves for getting out of the warm, comfortable house. We’ve been told that we have to find things to do outside the home during the winter or else we’ll go mad. 

Anyway, since I’ve been back, a few friends from school and I have created our own little “dinner club.” We’ve decided to try a new restaurant every week, one that we’ve been curious about and wanting to try. Of course I’ve found a way to further incorporate food into my social life. Have I mentioned how much I love food?  I’ve had a list of “places I want to try” since before I even moved to Boston, so I have plenty of suggestions on weekly outings. Week one I suggested El Centro (remember my post about this mouth-watering meal?) which was outstanding, as usual. And last week Amanda suggested Craigie on Main, a joint in Cambridge that’s gotten all kinds of awards and recognitions, mainly for their farm fresh ingredients, and menu that literally changes daily. We were told by the waitress when we sat down that the menu was meticulously created only hours earlier, when all the freshest of fresh ingredients were brought in.  Vegetables direct from down the street; meat from New Hampshire and Vermont. 

Little did I know, they’re famous for their burger. Get this: they only make 18 of the scrumptious patties per night and only serve them in the bar area. We were unaware of this while making reservations in the dining room, and ended up begging and pleading with the waiter to bring us a damn burger. We started off sweet and tried “please, we didn’t know we had to be sitting over there for the burgers” and then switched to annoyed, verging on angry with “that’s crazy. We’re literally sitting three feet from the bar area, can’t you just sneak us one? jeeeezze.” But the waitstaff weren’t swayed; they stayed strong. 

Burger controversy behind us, we focused on choosing second-best menu items while quenching our thirst with a remarkably tasty Spanish Red, of which the name has since escaped me. We decided to split three apps and an entree in order to get to taste a little bit of everything: butternut squash soup with a small pork belly grilled cheese sandwich, grilled Spanish octopus with olives and pureed artichokes and a ragout of veal served over polenta. mmmm.
 
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This is the octopus app that we ordered.
 
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This is the infamous burger that we ordered but did not receive….. 
 
 
The apps were amazing! My favorite was the… well, I don’t know. I loved them all. Then came the steamed trout, a soft, beautifully light-pinkish orange colored piece of heaven. This is cliche, but true: it melted in the mouth. We devoured all of it, including the family-style side of brussel sprouts cooked in duck fat. I’m salivating even thinking about those… I thought brussel sprouts cooked with bacon were delightful, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned from Frank in the last 2.5 years, it’s that if there’s something on the menu cooked in duck fat, order it. Thanks Frank.

We opted out of dessert and were surprised by the yummy little hazelnut chocolate truffles brought to us complimentary of the house. Now, I don’t normally like hazelnut, especially in my chocolate (I’m sortof a “chocolate naturalist,” you know, “the darker the better” type) but these truffles were a perfect little ending to the very pleasing meal. And not to mention that I LOVE when restaurants bring free stuff, especially free treats at the end.. great touch! Loved Craigie on Main. Highly recommend it. But my friends and I agreed that next time we’d sit in the bar so we could incorporate the burger into our tasting. 

 
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2 thoughts on “dinner club

  1. that burger makes me want to book my ticket to boston…. today! all of it looks amazing!

  2. Yummmm…
    Come back to NYC, so we can try CATCH! …and of course post-dinner improv theater…

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