My friend Alyssa and I have been talking for ages about getting together one night with our partners, and last night it all finally worked out. I suggested meeting for dinner at Kenmore Square’s Eastern Standard, not knowing that there was a Yankees/Red Sox game finishing up down the street at Fenway. I can get a bit anxious about things like post-game crowds, parking and being late; Keith and I left home with plenty of time, arriving half an hour early. Luckily there is a great (and great-looking) bar at ES, so we were able to get a drink while we waited.
The four of us decided to split two appetizers: baked Raclette cheese, and escargots poached in garlic and butter. It is difficult to go amiss with melty cheese, and it’s even harder when it comes to anything swimming in herb-infused butter — these two were fantastic. Thinly-sliced pieces of apple were suspended in the cheese, adding a truly surprising sweetness to the rich dish. Mixed in with the escargots’ butter were herbs, garlic, and something whose flavor I couldn’t quite place my finger on. Were they leeks? Were they shallots? But honestly, did it even matter? They were delicious.
While I was very much tempted by the hanger steak frites, with marrow-thyme butter and blue cheese, I chose something a little less rich: a crab cake sandwich and a green salad. I was thoroughly in the wrong, by thinking I was ordering a lighter entrée; as I lifted the sandwich, I smelled the wonderful aroma of butter. Neither the crab cake nor the bread tasted overly buttery; it was almost as if the two were enveloped in a sort of butter essence. Each time I brought the sandwich to my mouth, I breathed in its smell, and I have to tell you, I loved it. Next time, though, I’m ordering the frites.
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Boston, Masschusetts 02215