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M3 - Davis Square

sorry to start a new thread, but the search feature isn't working correctly. i used it this morning to do some recon on M3 as i was planning on going there with a couple of friends for lunch. i know a previous thread exists but wanted to post this before i forgot.

after reading the previous post i was so surprised at how enjoyable my meal was. i split the crab deviled eggs as a starter and had the fried chicken as my main. the deviled eggs were yummy. perfectly cooked hb eggs with great crab filling.

the fried chicken was excellent. a leg and a full breast and wing. the previous post had multiple comments on it being dry. they must have figured out their method, cause i'd kill to get my home fried chicken to have breast meat being so moist. yeah, there is not a lot of spice, but i like it that way.

both friends had the M3 sandwich and raved about it.

they only thing i would change was with one of the sides i got, for the "garlic lime fries" i would ask to have the "sauce" be deliver in a small dish so i could dip into it instead of them going soggy in 5 minutes. i also had the jalapeno polenta whish i thought was fine (not an expert on polenta).

any of you that tried it in it's first few weeks, i'd say don't give up just yet. give it another try.

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  1. I went for lunch a while back. I had the fried chicken plate. I had the potato salad and the pimento cheese fries as sides.

    The potato salad was tasty, but at the end of the day it was potato salad. The pimento fries were a freaking mistake. The fries were not good, the pimento cheese sauce was wretched and they went soggy to boot.

    The fried chicken itself was pretty good I thought. Not wonderful but much better than I had expected. It was moist, sizable and had a nice flavor to it (not a standard flavor but I enjoyed it).

    4 Replies
    1. re: jgg13

      Does the fried chicken still have that weird cinnamon flavor? I have to say, the dryness was bad (even the dark meat!), but even without that I don't think I would've liked it due to the weird seasonings.

      1. re: maillard

        I wouldn't say cinnamon but it had something "odd" to it - something sweet-ish. There was a hot sauce coating on the chicken under the breading that was also adding some flavor as well. I'll admit to going back and forth as to whether or not I liked the flavor before deciding on "yes".

      2. re: jgg13

        I'm surprised they still have those pimento fries on the menu. When I ordered them I had the same reaction as you, and when my waitress came over she asked if I liked them and I said "frankly no, they don't taste like pimento cheese at all, they're just soggy," and she nodded and said "I hear that a lot."

        1. re: Boston_Otter

          Did you tell her that when they hear "they don't taste like pimento cheese at all, they're just soggy," a lot that this isn't a good thing? :)

      3. Tried it for lunch a few weeks ago and it wasn't bad...had the M3 paninni which was tasty but the meat was a touch salty. The fries were terrible though...soggy mess w/ a bit of spicy sauce over it (they were soggy before the sauce).
        It's an open kitchen, so we noticed they had a bucket of pre-fried fried chicken. Maybe they do it twice to get it extra crispy but we thought it was a bit odd...

        2 Replies
        1. re: Spike

          Fresh French Fries Not Crispy Guaranteed

          Frozen French Fries Crispy

          I can’t believe how many hounds complain about fresh french fries. They may not be crispy but the taste so much better. Some fresh fries are better than others but all are better than frozen IMHO

          1. re: PAUL

            Or ya could, you know, double fry the fresh fries? That's why you see the frozen ones get crispy as they've already been cooked once.

          1. re: gini

            Earlier reviews reported air conditioning problems. How did those of you who went recently find it?

            1. re: pemma

              It was kind of hot although it was really hot out that day. Not as bad as others had made it sound but it was also fairly empty when I went in.

              1. re: pemma

                have had lunch a few times there when it was hot out and thought it was ok.

                Maybe the reviewers meant the waitresses...mostly cute :-)

            2. Just got back from brunch at M3. I think the place has promise, ....and was crowded and with a line waiting.....but the rancid frying oil smell was overpowering, as was the too loud music. A waitress propped open the door while we were waiting for our drinks; she walked right past us and I attempted to talk to her but she was plugged in to an ipod and ignored me. I thought I was going to puke from the rancid oil smell until the open door kicked in, so to speak.

              the chicken salad sandwich was nice...a huge amount of not too-mayo-y white meat with grapes and we enjoyed the not-too-soggy lime chile fries. duck drumsticks were, well, deep fried, and didn't come with any condiment, and the menu-promised apple jicama slaw was entirely absent. Also came without a plate so we had to ask as we were sharing. Also had to ask for water glasses although we were given a bottle of tap water, something I always appreciate. We also later found out there were specials written on the wall but not visible to me, and not mentioned by the waitstaff.

              when I finally had a chance to mention the ventilation issue to our waitress, she explained, the place is small so we try to keep the door open. "we are still working that out." well, what are they going to do when it snows? She said they change the frying oil "all the time" but it sure didn't smell like that. I would love to try the fried oysters but with that smell, I most likely won't be back.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Madrid

                The wall specials in the picture frames are only for dinner so you didn't miss much.

                And ditto the oil...feels sticky if you sit at the tables next to the kitchen too.
                Had the chicken salad club last time I was there for lunch w/ coworkers...had to take out the bacon which was wayyyy too crunchy so it seemed not freshly made.

                They're trying interesting food at least, though most of it is fried in duck fat...

                1. re: Spike

                  spike, have to ask about your duck fat comment. Were you told by staff or website that
                  < most of it (their food) is fried in duck fat> ?? Duck fat is very expensive, whether you buy it or make it from ducks. Even the somewhat famous Duck Fat restnt in Portland Me. -uses, for its famous fries, cooking fat that has only 25% duck fat in it (told me by the staff there.)

                  1. re: opinionatedchef

                    ok...bad assumption...seems like it given how much duck they have...duck legs, duck pastrami etc.

                    I guess it's just plain old oil :-)

              2. I had dinner there with my daughter a few nights ago. We split the fried green tomatoes, which were quite good on their own and tasty with the dipping sauce. She had the steak, I had catfish. Her steak was kind of strange, maybe we are just not used to southern food. My catfish was tasty but not amazing; I've had better and made better myself. THe fish itself didn't had much of that catfish flavor, some to think of it. The batter was good, though. I had sweet potatoes, the apple-jicama slaw, and fried okra. The okra was just okay, the sweet potatoes had that strange sweet flavor -- not cinnamon, not nutmeg, but something related -- but I think the slaw was terrific and the star of the meal. My daughter had the peach cornbread, which was okay, a salad which was fine, and dill pickle slices, which were quite good. I wanted cherry pie but didn't have room. The white sangria was also pretty tasty and the portion was generous. All in all, I'm glad I went once, but I'm not sure I need to go back. (Plus the hipster quotient was too high for my tastes, as a long-time resident of this fair city.)

                1 Reply
                1. re: somervilleoldtimer

                  Did not dig M3 on my first visit. Brunch menu only on Saturday precluded my ordering things I'd been planning on. User error. Should have done more homework. Chicken biscuits were kind of a bust. Biscuits were tough and chicken was in the form of nuggets. Presumably house made nuggs but still. Gravy was just poor. Pretty flavorless and tepid. I wanted to like the place but I fear I just didn't order to their strengths. Bloody Mary a damned fine specimen though. I will try again but with much lower expectations. And for dinner.

                2. Sadly, I think quality has slid at M3 in recent months.

                  I probably at there 6 or 7 times from July - december 2012 and I confess I really dug it. I say confess, because I felt a little like a sucker for falling for this Brooklynized version of a southern "meat and three" joint. But the service was friendly, the joint was hopping, and some of the food was downright terrific.

                  Memorable items included:
                  - duck fat burger (luscious);
                  - house made pickles (inspired me to try try pickling romanesco myself - so pretty; Overheard at bar "it's a fractal pickle!" "what's a fractal?" "o honey, you know that Jonathan Coulton song, 'Mandelbrot Set'? That's a fractal.")
                  - shrimp and grits (downright comforting comfort food)
                  - meatloaf (ditto)
                  - fried pickled pigs ears (yeah, I know, but do you like bacon and maple syrup? yeah? then you would have liked these.)
                  - Beer can roast chicken (moist and wicked tasty)

                  The key thing is that in those months it really seemed like the food was made with love. I know it's a cliche, but these were usually basic dishes, tarted up with hipster flourishes, but prepared with a lot of care and attention to detail. And freaking tasty.

                  Six short months later it does not feel the same to me. Been in twice in the last three weeks. Burger overcooked. Fries soggy.

                  I live a short walk away so I was hoping to have this in rotation with redbones when I want comfort food (and have cholesterol meds in hand) but sadly I think I'm done with M3.