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Restaurants & Bars

The Urban in Worcester -- sophisticated fare

Rick_V | Mar 31, 201506:59 AM     4

The Urban Kitchen + Bar is located on Shrewsbury Street in the same space formerly occupied by Coral Seafood, and the same family runs it -- but The Urban is a major departure. It's more upscale, sophisticated food. I've been three times; everything has been at least good, and many dishes have been outstanding.

From the appetizers, I can recommend the fritto misto and the octopus. Beautiful flavors, beautifully presented. The pastas are available in two sizes; the butternut squash gnocchi with lamb was superb, as was tagliatelle with cauliflower. The duck tortellini were just OK.

The Urban gets kudos for featuring underutilized fish species rather than the usual farmed salmon and tuna. The artic char is excellent, with a crisp skin served over creamy lentils. Really nice. NY sirloin with brisket was a mixed bag -- the sirloin was perfectly medium rare (so perfect I suspect sous vide) and nicely seasoned, but the brisket was a bit bland. A side of Brussels sprouts with lemon was terrific.

Nice, thoughtful wine list that starts in the 30s, and nice desserts, too. This place is instantly one of the best restaurants in Worcester.

Portion sizes are small -- a three-course meal here is the way to go -- and it's not inexpensive. It's more like a Boston dining experience than Worcester, with the bonus of ample off-street parking.

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