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Oct 20, 2011 11:50 PM

EVOO- Top Notch New American in Kendall Sq. 10/20/11

We were big fans of EVOO in their original space (where Bergamot is now) but we have not been as often since they moved. Tonight was like a visit with old friends and the food was stellar. 8:30 on a Thurs. and the place was max’d out except for a 4 top. With M.I.T. and the surrounding corporate world, they are apparently consistently busy, and it couldn’t happen to nicer people. And while Peter McCarthy, chef/owner is recovering from knee surgery, his long time sous and staff are ably handling the load.

Highlights from our prix fixe 3 courses for $42:
-- Rabbit Confit Salad w/ greens, dried cherries, cheddar and pecans (this is a signature carry- over from their first location. All i can say is I am eternally grateful to those customers who, along with us, won’t let Pete take it off the menu.) My fav salad i have ever had. Ever.

- Gruyere and ham fat potato croquettes on a pool of cauliflower and parsley purees. and i thought i didn’t like cauliflower....

--Braised Lamb and Crispy Eggplant Napoleon

-- King Salmon with Smoked Pork Skin Risotto and Parsnip Puree, topped with celeriac and apple slaw

-- Coffee Hazelnut and Cardamom Ice Creams

They continue to have a really good list of reds by the glass.And their bread sticks are still addictive.

Other pluses:
I realized tonight that their physical layout lends itself really well to large parties (2 separate rooms can be closed off) and I will be sure to recommend EVOO to the frequent CH requests for places that have rooms for large groups.

I think one of the things that most impresses me about Pete is that he is very conscious of healthy cooking (he uses very little cream and dairy) but he is big into robust flavors, using spices, smoke, glazes and reductions to maximum effect. Plate compositions are elegant , simple and clean, no pretense or big fuss.

And as many people already know, EVOO committed themselves to ‘farm to table’ before most anyone else locally. Their new menu format lists all their local vendors and what they source from them, changing with the seasons.

EVOO is a family business and you can feel the commitment. Pete and Colleen and Coleen’s brother Danny- are always on site, and their loyal long- time servers(with some new faces) are warm, welcoming, and professional. As in all aspects of the place, attitude is not a part of the scene. You lucky people who live or work nearby!

EVOO Restaurant
350 Third Street, Cambridge, MA 02143

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  1. One of our very favs. Will be heading there in two weeks.
    Sure To Enjoy,

    1 Reply
    1. re: CocoDan

      if you are a lover of eggpant and lamb, 'ya gotta get that napoleon! I only got 2 bites last night but I hope to have one all to myself next time :-}

    2. Thanks for the great report. EVOO is a good example of how Restaurant Week is a gamble for diners... I loved EVOO at their old location, and tried the new one right after they re-opened, during RW... and had a very mediocre experience. Poor service, sloppy (and silly) food... it was just not up to their own standard. Glad they're still rockin' it. I'll be back!

      1. I can speak to how well EVOO has executed a group dinner in those private rooms. We had about 25 people there for dinner after my wedding (big reception the next day) and we couldn't have been more pleased. I was a little hopped up on post-wedding bliss so I missed a lot of the specifics but they made a menu for us with a few options for each course. The service was really amazing for a group of that size and the food was cooked perfectly. We were very impressed.

        EVOO Restaurant
        350 Third Street, Cambridge, MA 02143