The Independent - Somerville
Had dinner at the relatively new restaurant in Somerville called The Independent.
I had Arugula salad with Jamon Serrano, fresh figs and Parmesan that was excellent. Big portion of Jamon.
Then had rack of lamb with swiss chard, lamb, pine nut timbal that was also really excellent. The lamb was perfectly cooked.
Want to check this place out again.
The restaurant is really nicely decorated. Does seem like they may be having some trouble filling the place, but the waiter said pretty much everyone who has visited the place has come back for more.
75 Union Square
Somerville , MA 02143
Phone: (617) 440-6022
I'm a very big fan of the Independent. I've eaten there several times. Good value. Great food. Unfortunately, I fear that it's days might be numbered. We ate next door at Macondo on Saturday and for most of the time we were there (7:30-9:30) we were the only people in the entire restaurant! We went over to the Independent for drinks aftewards, and there was a band playing for a virtually empty crowd.
Union Square is a very tough place to survive for a restaurant. The wonderful Rauxa couldn't make it. I fear that Macondo (which was quite good) and The Indpendent will have difficulty making it, too. Too bad.
I guess I am in the minority here, but I found the Independent to be extremely uneven and poorly managed. I dined there twice about two months after it opened. Overall opinion: menu was/is impressive and inviting, service was bad to painful, spoiling the entire meal.
During our first visit, my dining companion was served her entree nearly 10 minutes after I was served. Temperatures were spotty, so much so that the core of my meal was nearly cold, a complete turnoff. In addition, the staff seemed disinterested in doing their jobs; I asked three times for water, only to be neglected to the point where I finally walked over to the bar to get a glass. We left completely unimpressed.
Willing to give a second chance based on the good reviews of others, I went again a few weeks later. Same sloppy service, same uneven kitchen timing. We were served 45 minutes after our order was taken, and again the entrees were less than hot.
I totally blame the floor manager for these bad expierences. It appeared to us after both visits that these problems were rooted in waitstaff that treated their jobs as though they were secondary to socializing and talking to the regulars. Too bad, because it seems like the menu would be good in another setting.