I had dinner at one of my favorite boston restaurants, the Franklin Cafe. I had been nervous due to the recent changes in the kitchen (steve ryan to vox populi, phil audino to general manager), but as always, they came through.
I started with a glass of Muscadet, which is usually considered the poor cousin of the Loire Valley Sancerres and Vouvrays. This was a great white wine, however: crisp, acidic, and with grassy and apple flavors...very reminiscent of its higher-priced counterparts.
I was happy to see that one of my favorite appetizers was back on the new menu: the grilled calamari with a white bean and arugula salad. The calamari was just undercooked enough to make the texture comparable to a scallop, unlike the rubbery texture I get when i try to grill it myself. The salad was coated in rich basil olive oil.
I had the special of the night, cajun catfish with jambalaya and fried okra. The catfish had a spicy seasoning that packed a punch, and it was so tender that it fell apart upon contact with the fork. The jambalaya was a thick risotto with onions, peppers, tomatoes, chorizo and cajun spices.
For me, the changes behind the kitchen did not reflect a decrease in quality. And, as always, the service was great.