Monday, March 26, 2012

Boston Restaurant Week: Lineage

Sorry for the hiatus, but what a better time to pick up the reviews than Boston Restaurant Week! A few nights ago I started the week out strong (but slightly salty!) at Lineage in Brookline.

It is a small restaurant in Coolidge Corner. The interior has a high end, yet rustic feel, with white tableclothed tables set on wooden floors and a wood burning stove behind the bar.

We started out with some wine (I loved my glass of 24 Knots Pinot Noir, 2009), and some sea salt topped rolls, which were freshly plucked from the stove behind the bar. The butter was served in a small white cube at a perfect temperature, so it could be easily spread on the soft bread.

For my appetizer, I got a mushroom and parsnip soup topped with brioche croutons. The soup was super tasty, and I can happily say that I could distinguish the flavor of the mushrooms in the puree. The croutons were quite overpowering, and when taken with a spoonful of soup, were all you could taste: like pieces of buttered popcorn. I found it off putting, but I ate it all anyway.

I also tried their salad special. It was delicately dressed, with only a few accompaniments: candied almonds and pickled rhubarb. While the rhubarb was incredibly sour, it complemented the almonds and lightly dressed greens well.

For my entree I got the ricotta gnocchi served with green beans. They were light and fluffy, but were pretty boring as far as flavors go. The star of the show was definitely the duck confit. It literally fell off the bone. The meat was so flavorful, but I was disappointed with its counterparts: cannelloni beans over a shallot puree. The beans were hard and flavorless, as was the puree, and there was very little color in either this dish or the gnocchi.

As much as I loved the duck at the start, the tender meat's flavor became increasingly salty with every bite. I wanted to love it, but the salt took over. I was relieved I had the gnocchi dish to calm things down in between bites.

For dessert, we finished off with chocolate mousse, topped with almonds and served with a biscuit. It was rich, and the velvety chocolate paired well with my pinot. I was stuffed from the rest of my meal, but I was able to get about half of the little ramekin down with pleasure.

It wasn't a flawless meal, but it certainly had its merits. I would definitely get the soup again, and I'd be happy to give the duck a second chance if it found some new companions and went on a low sodium diet. There was plenty left on the menu that I'd like to try, so I'm sure I'll be back.

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