Highland Kitchen – Southern Twist

150 Highland Ave. Somerville, MA 02143

http://highlandkitchen.com/ (617) 625-1131

*At the intersection of Highland Ave and Central St, few blocks from Porter Sq

Seth & Ren, +2 guests

  • –Drinks–
  •  Mai Tai Dragon x5
  • Seelbach (Makers Mark cocktail)
  • Highland Fling (Gin cocktail)
  • BBC Coffeehouse Porter
  • Coffee x2
  • –Plates–
  • Pork Belly duck confit with hoisen sauce (!!!)
  • Smoked Bluefish cakes
  • Ricotta & Mozzarella Fritters
  • Handmade Potato Gnocchi w/ shortrib ragout and parmesan
  • Mussels (Returned and removed from the bill)
  • Spicy Jambalaya w/ duck confit, shrimp, andouille sausage, tasso ham and cornbread
  • English Style Beer Battered Fish & Chips
  • Fried Chicken w/ mash and collard greens (Monday Special)
  • –Dessert–
  • Warm Banana Bread Pudding
  • Beignets (a french donut of sorts) w/ cinnamon and sugar (FREE)
  • $171.05 w/ tax ($63.00 in Drinks)

Ave Price/Person: $18-25 w/ Drinks: $25-45

Seth: I’ve been here a few times before and have always loved it. A friend introduced me to this place a few years ago and when another spot we were going to wasn’t going to work this week, this was the next place on my mind. The wait was about twenty minutes but some bar seats opened as we walked in, so we sat for a pre-dinner round of drinks. I knew from before that the Dragon Mai Tai was the way to go. After sharing a sip of mine, everyone else’s second round of drinks were the Mai Tai. We were sat pretty quickly after that. For appetizers, we started with the Pork belly duck confit, smoked bluefish cakes and the ricotta & mozzarella fritters. The pork belly was smoky and amazing with the hoisen sauce. As you may be beginning to learn, pork belly is one of my favorite appetizers EVER! The bluefish cakes were really nicely done and came with an interesting sweet & sour sauce. The fritters were really light, crispy and tasty. For my entrée I got the Monday special: the Fried chicken! The chicken was moist and the batter light and crisp with a slight heat to it. The collard greens were done just right and accompanied nicely with the mashed potatoes and gravy. I had bites of everyone else’s dishes as well. The fried fish was done just right without too much breading. I really like the coleslaw that came with it too. The jambalaya was full of meat, from scrumptious duck confit to nicely cooked shrimp. I had a couple bites of the potato gnocchi and wish I could have had more! It was soft and tasty and the short-rib ragout was awesome. I loved my chicken choice but was a little jealous of Ren’s gnocchi. We also ordered the mussels but unfortunately it was a bad batch and we had to send them back. The waitress and manager were very accompanying with us though. We demolished the food in short order. Which is a little change; we often have a few leftovers. We decided to close out with a dessert and a couple of coffees. We often order bread pudding if a place has it and this one had a banana bread version that was sweet and divine. A couple of minutes into dessert and the manager came back with a free dessert! A french beignets with cinnamon and sugar. Maybe it’s that free is always more tasty but they were really good. Our stomachs quite full, we left sated and satisfied. My favorite thing: The pork belly confit w/ hoisen sauce.

Ren: I’m adding to our dining tails a story mixed with utter bliss and just a pinch of woe by recalling our experience at Highland Kitchen. We were here just one time prior to starting our blog and our previous experience left us excited to return. Even on a Monday night we were told that our wait would be about 25 minutes so we headed over to the bar for pre dinner cocktails. I chose a variation on Highland Fling which was quite refreshing and prepared my palate for the tastes to follow. After a minute of near excitable discussion we were finally able to narrow our appetizers down pork belly, ricotta & mozzarella fritters, and bluefish cakes. The pork belly was succulent with a touch of crisp which was a nice surprise and twist on a dish that is usually described as juicy and tender. The other two apps were simple exquisite delights both flavorful and tender with the perfect amount of breading and cooking time. I ordered the gnocchi with short rib ragout and mussels for my entrée. Unfortunately the mussels had long past reached their prime and I alerted my server who was quick to take it away. A short minute later the manager eagerly rushed to my table to rescue the situation. In short: I had no time to be frustrated and was very pleased by how attentively they dealt with the situation that could have turned ugly. I was very satisfied with my very tender gnocchi and filled the cracks in my stomach with  bites from all my cohorts flavorful dishes. We finished the meal with superb bread pudding, a cup of coffee, and complimentary beignets which tasted a bit like mini fried dough. My favorite thing: The pork belly!

Food: Seth 8.5 Ren 8.5 Food Ave: 8.5 *Certified Dericious* Such good food, all with a hint of southern flair. Nice local food joint with Daily Specials

Service: Seth 8.5 Ren 9  Great service. When the mussels were bad, the manager came over to apologize, took them off the bill and later gave us a free dessert! Our server was good and attentive as well

Decor/Atmosphere: Seth 8 Ren 7.5  Cute place with really neat light fixtures. A blend of old school, a little southern and some hipster for good measure

Total Average: 8.333 Great food, great drinks, great service. With this comes a wait at dinner time, but it’s worth it.

One bad thing: The mussels

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