Restaurants & Bars

Boston Area

Great Bay, Kenmore Sq., Boston

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Restaurants & Bars

Great Bay, Kenmore Sq., Boston

Limster | Jan 21, 2004 11:59 PM

A row of wavy stalks on the ceiling end in lamps the colour of orange candy. Glass frosted to with patterns of the sea, a similar design projected in light and shadow on a back wall. Bright and cream couches in the lounge area, transparent table tops framed with clean lines.
 
Soft mashed chestnuts are bundled in fairly firm blankets of ravioli. Small bay scallops reflect the sweet chestnuts, parsley conveys green sharp counterpoints, dark golden mushrooms (chanterelles?) hold a woodsy ground. Savoury, buttery sauce.
 
Skate wing is marked with lovely browns on the mount of each ribbed surface, crisp caramelization curving down to white moist fish, with a good gentle shrimpy overtone, the flesh like a skillfully woven cloth. Competent, firm potatoes. Reasonable matsutake mushrooms with their distinctive piney fragrance, touching the skate nicely. Arugula for a faint vegetal bitter, heat-wilted, soft and leafy, freshly set against the mushrooms and the fish. The weak year for truffles made apparent in the impotent black truffle shavings. I could only wonder how the combination would have been, with better matsutake and good black truffles, the mingled musks of earth and air. But on the skate was very enjoyable nonetheless, and for $27, I wasn't expecting highest grades of these luxurious fungi. The suggested match of pinot blanc worked very well.
 
A chocolate tour to finish. Under plentiful chocolate shavings, cold lump of (I think) ice cream played beautifully against the hot chocolate, the sharp clarity of chill against warmth. A good brittle-crumbed pistacchio-laced chocolate chip cookie, chocolate dipped, sandwiching a modest amount of pistacchio ice cream. A dark velvet espresso or coffee pot de creme, mysteriously stiff-looking despite the sensuous softness. Chocolate truffles in 3 colours: white with coconut, milk enhanced with earl grey tea, dark spiced with cinnamon, all flavours nuanced and deliciously fitting. Mild quibble: the chocolate shell was not as well tempered as some of the best, and thus not as satisfying to break into, that hard snap missing before reach the soft flavoured core.
 
A suitably smokey oolong at the end.
 
Very good flavour compositions, overall a very satisfying if expensive meal. Very tempted to go back to try the smaller plates at the island bar.

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