Restaurant: Loyal Nine
Location: 660 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02141. (617) 945-2576
Date: October 20, 2017
Cuisine: Modern Colonial
Rating: Really good kitchen and very interesting
My Boston friends chose this extremely interesting farm to table place — modern — but focused on colonial Massachusetts ingredients. At Loyal Nine, their focus is on direct relationships with farmers and artisans. They show a dedication to ethically sourced coffees and teas, and in our restaurant with a true focus on New England culinary traditions.
The space is the typical new hard surfaces, paper menu kind of thing.
We opted for the “supper” (i.e. shared tasting menu).
Ma Oysters and Me Oysters. Dressed with anise hyssop vinegar and smoked porter vinegar. Nice vinegary punch.
Salt-rubbed cucumbers. Egg custard, horseradish vinaigrette. A bit like Chinese cucumbers but with this almost cheese-like custard.
Mashed soldier beans, radish, clams or mussels. Interesting.
Grilled surf clam. Broccoli, parsley broth. Really awesome flavors and texture. Nice and chewy/crunchy with any almost ham-like quality. Fabulous dish.
Sourdough bread with scallion cheese and whipped solider beans. I liked the cheese.
Hand rolled sallet, cider vin, kohlrabi, aged goat cheese. Like a rolled salad spring roll. It was covered in dressing too. Tasted just like a nice salad. It was weird eating a dressed lettuce with your hands though.
Roasted russet apple, cured pork belly, fresh cheese & herbs. Very nice take on pork and apple. Lots of good smokey flavor.
Fried clams, whole belly with piccalilli aioli. Awesome fried clams. Cornbread fry was super nice and crunchy.
Poached ri squid. Shisito peppers, sunchokes. Very tender.
Crispy steel cut oats, garden turnips, spinach, garlic. Nice flavor — particularly for pure veggies.
Pan roasted duck breast, glazed golden ball turnips, mustard greens. Very rare and tender duck. Smoked almost like pastrami. Very nice.
A kind of chocolate bread pudding with expresso ice cream.
Covered in chocolate syrup.
Then house made butterscotch.
Plus some toppings. This was an awesome dessert. Any kind of cake/pudding with butterscotch — always awesome. Pretty much like a sticky toffee pudding.
Mint tea to finish.
Overall, this was some really fabulous and very distinct cooking. The technics and style seemed pretty modern but the ingredients and combos also extremely Massachusetts. Kudos for really mixing it up.