Giulia. Done. Best meal by far that I have had in this area in decades. By far.
I was @ Giulia for dinner on Friday night, my first time there, I’d found it either impossible to get a table before or I was suspicious that a restaurant around here could execute decent Italian food. But Friday, booking the Early Bird Special @ 5:30, the restaurant said: OK.
Once you get past the initial snootiness at the host/hostess podium, it’s funny how so many Boston restaurants regard Nose-In-The-Air attitude as part of the package, the wait staff was very attentive and well informed. The room itself, brick exposed and with an open and long bar, is very pleasing to the eye, and the subdued lighting and good music of jazz and some white R&B add something.
The kitchen totally nailed it, start to finish. Starting with white anchovies and chicken liver crostini and raw oysters and ending with pasta and little clams and pasta with guanciale.
Finally: A restaurant that is ingredient driven, focused, and simple in the best sense.
Meanwhile, in the world of food, my pieces on picnics on trains in Japan, late night dining in Tokyo, cocktails in Tokyo, and the outer markets of Tsukiji are all on their way to Serious Eats and Saveur, respectively.
Which leaves me time to finish my book proposal on Japanese home cooking, research Japanese seasonality in cuisine, delve deep into my book on family life, and…return to Giulia.