T.W. Food, Cambridge

We have been meaning to go to T.W. Food in Cambridge.  What has been holding us back is the location of the restaurant, which is an additional $10 cab ride from Harvard Square. T.W. Food is known for American cuisine using New England ingredients.

For Restaurant Week, we enjoyed the 5 course Grand Tasting menus for $49.11 and each tried the vegetarian menu and non-vegetarian menu for optimal variety and tasting. Each course had such attention to deal, great flavor combinations and balance and clearly mindful of local, seasonally ingredients. The service was attentive, thoughtful and well-timed. We sat right near the kitchen and was amazed how much food came out of that little kitchen.  It is similar in size to Ten Tables in Jamaica Plain, but has lighter decor.

The restaurant and dining room

Rooster art and wine glass armoire

The amuse bouche was a small spoon of tuna tartare. It was a nice gesture, but was nothing special.

The soft butter and molasses tasting bread was served on slate.

The chilled heirloom pepper soup was creamy, spicy, an adult version of jalapeno queso dip. It was luscious, satisfying and we loved this course so much we are going to try to recreate it.

Heirloom tomato tartlette, roasted and marinated tomatoes, mascarpone and basil cream

Smoked sea scallops, corn, green tomatoes, peaches and honey beurre blanc. These scallops were the best scallops I have ever had. Cooked perfectly, buttery and the smoky flavor was unreal. I loved the corn and tomato salad that I could have eaten alone, but made the scallops even more delicious.

Potato gnocchi, wild local mushrooms and roasted cippolini onions. These gnocchi were truly special, they were not dense, soft, really embraced the lovely cheese and mushroom flavors.

Ribeye of grass-fed beef, seared foie gras, crispy sweetbreads -substituting new potatoes salad, heirloom tomatoes,  native corn and fried basil. The grass-fed beef was well cooked, and flavor was enhanced with a bit of buttery melt in your mouth foie, and the flavorful, earthy sweetbreads. In this instance, the dish’s sum was differently better than its parts.

Cheese, Toma Ala, cow, Piedmont, Italy, Pecorino di pienza, sheep, Tuscany. We really appreciated how the pecorino was presented in two thicknesses, paper thin and 1/4 inch thick which brought out different flavor and textures of the cheese. The Toma ala was soft and tasted great with the nut and small currants or little raisins.

The peach melba was unreal. What was really special was that honey lavender ice cream and would try to recreate it myself. The poached peach and blackberry coulis was so fresh, I demolished it. The blackberry coulis had a nice grainy texture which made me think there was sweet shortbread breadcrumbs, when it was the berries themselves.

Far Breton, custard cake with fig, nectarines, grand marnier ice cream

As a complimentary closing, we were given a mini palmier (almond flour pound cake) and candied pecans (it tasted like sticky pecan pie).

We would definitely be back for one of the wine series evenings or for a special occasion. The proximity is still a factor which makes us choose other restaurants before T.W. Food, but after this great experience, we will make the effort another time.

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