as some of you may know, andy and i finally got around to going to radius for a certain special day on a fairly quiet friday evening (which sound like is typical for them). i hope winnie appreciates these stealthy pics i took (whilst trying not to feel like a tourist). i suppose i should start by saying that overall we were both underwhelmed. very solid execution, but nothing wowed us. here’s the pornographic play-by-play:
amuse bouche #1: tiny roasted cauliflower + something green (bad memory, sorry — maybe mint?) + two tiny bits of kumquat. simply lovely. andy’s version had shrimp instead of the kumquat.
amuse bouche #2: two bits of tempura. mine were both tofu-esque. andy’s was shrimp (he thinks) and sweet potato.
my first course (L to R): liquid pee, i mean, pea. very strange (not quite in a good way), but interesting. half as much would have been plenty. then pea greens with marcona almonds and grapefruit (a bit OD’ed on the peas by then and i’m not big on salads anyway). “toasted” asparagus with a nice sauce. mushroom with a puff pastry, reminescent of the wellington i had at hamersley’s but miles away in terms of quality. the pastry was nice and dry and just the right density for forking into, although the mushrooms were more creamy where i would have much preferred savory.
andy’s first course: rabbit roulade wrapped in bacon with grapefruit glazed salsify on a puree of something green (sorry again) with a zucchini blossom dipped in a gooey cheese and fried. andy gave a solid A to this one.
my second course was a rosemary-infused spaetzle with baby carrots and something in the onion family. had some nicely browned bits. fairly intense rosemary if you’re a fan of it (which i’m not particularly). again, i wasn’t so impressed with this. instead of a subtle flavor in each bite it was more like in this (and most of the other courses), the accumulation of flavor got to the point where you didn’t quite want to finish it and in between courses you had a really strong aftertaste (which andy said he could taste simultaneously with everything by the end of the evening).
radius was kind enough, however, to not leave andy courseless and gave him a serving of their mint gnocchi (with peas! talk about exploiting the fruits of the season). again, we weren’t so impressed. more sweet than savory. maybe overall they were going for a lighter, more summer menu than either of us were at all ready for (i mean, it snowed last week!).
the best course for me. hedgehog mushroom ravioli with something green, lentils, celery root puree, and dollops of carrot reduction. some quibbles: two would’ve been enough, and a bit too much celery root and lentils. and is it just me, or is one meal with celery root enough celery root to last you for a year? i think i’ve had three in the past three months. enough already!
andy had the arctic char with pickled ramps and lemon. he was distinctly unimpressed with the quality of the char and the balance of the dish, which had an overall onion taste he found overwhelmed it.
dessert, L to R: glass of chocolate milk which i have to say was strongly reminescent to me of the sugary chocolate milk that’s left after you’ve eaten a bowl of chocolate rice krispies or cocoa puffs. very strange. next, chocolate cake with cashews. standard, but a nice consistency. last, milk chocolate ice cream, which was unusual and quite good.
andy had the goat cheese cheesecake with huckleberry ice cream. good, but again the balance left something to be desired. andy’s comment: the ice cream was too creamy to complement the goat cheese. a sorbet would have worked much better.
and to see us off, bits of chocolate-y squares, those fruit things i like (i feel so ignorant; winnie will have to remind me), and tiny macadamia cookies.
our server was adequate although the rest of the service was better. the initial wait for menus was noticeably long, and we would’ve expected the restaurant would have had a more rigorous no cell phone policy.
so that’s my fairly laid-back review. feeling fairly chill at the moment. sorry, winnie, looks like of the three, great bay is the one that gets our vote (even though i think you weren’t a fan of it). maybe it’s just the level of boston restaurants, but i still haven’t had a really memorable meal in boston in a long while. def. have some things lined up, though, so until next time faithful readers (haha) …