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A Little Bit About a Lot of Things

A lifestyle blog with a focus on my food adventures

This is the new “it” spot from Lydia Shire (Scampo, Excelsior, Blue Sky, Locke Ober, Pignoli) and Jasper White (Jasper’s and Summer Shack). On a Tuesday night, Towne was packed. We arrived at 7:30pm but there wasn’t an open seat all night until we left at about 9:30pm. Located next to the Hynes Convention Center on Boylston Street, you can valet right in front of the restaurant for $16 or you can park in the Prudential Center garage for a validated rate of $12.  You walk in on the first floor to a bar area-bar in the center of the room, tables around the outside.  I have to admit that I can’t figure out how to get to the restaurant at first, but realize you have to walk to the left side of the room, behind the bar, to the hallway that leads you into the main dining room. After passing through the dimly lit hallway where the hostess stand is located, you enter this huge space that is the first floor dining room. We are led upstairs, to the right, at the top of the stairs, is a dining room with a wall of glass overlooking Boylston Street, and to the left, where we sat, is a room that showcases the open kitchen (some of it partially behind glass).

As we are seated, we are greeted by the chef, Lydia Shire, which was great…she says “good to have you here,…..Monica”…to which I said I wasn’t Monica, but maybe I should have… Our table is set with checkered napkins and  glass beakers for water glasses. Our waiter comes over immediately and greets us. I ask what are his favorite things on the menu-to which he not only tells us what are his favorites, but why. The salmon, the cod, the peking chicken, the steak, and the chicken ‘brick’ style.

Before I forget, I should mention the bread basket. Not bad. Three rolls that are so light-they taste like croissants-that rich buttery flavor. There are also two crunchy baked breads and a slice cut from a loaf. The basket comes with butter, an eggplant spread, and some spread made from fish, I didn’t quite catch what he said about it.

I look over the menu and am surprised to see that as starters they list clam linguine and fettuccini alfredo. I find that quite interesting. The prices at Towne are a bit on the pricey side, as a salad can cost you  anywhere from $9-$15 and just an appetizer will run you around $20.  What I like about this extensive menu is that there are small flags next to certain dishes that let you know where the dish originated or where the inspiration comes from. As an appetizer I have the garden salad, ripe with burrata, sweet onion, peach, nasturtium and almond oil ($15). The salad is like a work of art, I almost don’t want to eat it-almost. For me, all I need is the burrata-it is so creamy and delicious. I was skeptical about the peaches, but was so pleasantly surprised by them. I loved the sweetness it added to the salad-and they perfect-firm yet juicy and ripe.

I was going to get the lobster and corn pizza ($26) but thought that it would be a ‘safe dish’ for me. So I went with one of the servers recommendations of the peking chicken and pot pie ($31). So it’s hard to see in this picture, but the chicken is sliced on the bottom and then there is a bone in piece on the top-quite a lot of chicken. There is a side of spice, which I don’t even use because the chicken is so delicious just the way it is. The pot pie is the size of a hockey puck and is adorned with a paper umbrella-I love it! I wasn’t a fan of the ‘pot pie’, I thought that the chicken was the start of the dish and everything else was a distraction. At the top of the photo you can make out that we ordered the green beans as a side (all sides are family style and enough for 2) twice fried with white soy and ginger juice ($7). You might wonder if green beans go with chicken, and they did-they soy went together so nicely with the asian flavors in my chicken. I’m not a vegetable person in general, but these beans were excellent-crisp with a lovely subtle saltly flavor.

Dessert, my favorite part, but they had so many good looking choices, it was so hard to pick just one! Mango sorbet with vanilla ice cream-yum! The perfect way to end the meal. There were blackberries on the side, that I thought were frozen, but upon first bite realized that they were rolled in sugar!

I have to say that everything about my experience was top notch, from the guy at the front door holding it open for me, to the excellent service, to the high quality food. I can’t wait to go back and try the other things on the menu that have caught my eye. If you are concerned about the price of the food here, let me tell you that it is well worth it.

Check out their flickr gallery http://www.flickr.com/photos/52494331@N07/

Here’s a review from the Boston Foodie that I liked: http://thebostonfoodie.blogspot.com/2010/10/towne-stove-spirits.html

Towne

900 Boylston Street Boston MA

http://www.towneboston.com/

LUNCH
Monday – Friday 11:30am – 3pm
BRUNCH
Saturday and Sunday 11am to 3pm
DINNER
Sunday – Wednesday 5pm – 10pm
Thursday – Saturday 5pm – 11pm
BAR AND LOUNGE
Monday – Friday 1130am – 12am
Saturday – Sunday 11am – 1am

Towne Stove & Spirits on Urbanspoon

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