Citizen Main

As you know, I recently popped my Jimmy Buffett cherry, and the scene of said debauchery was set in the Greater Boston area. The concert itself was in Mansfield, but we began our fun weekend away in Boston proper. Heh. BLD wanted to see a Sox game at Fenway, and while baseball really isn’t my bag, anywhere that serves beer and hotdogs in abundance is OK with me. In Boston, we met up with BLD’s college friend C, who just so happens to be something of a foodie. You may have noticed I’m a bit of a control freak, and typically, when I’m in a travel situation during which all the meals are not under my control, I’m put out because I’m not getting to experience a city’s food scene in the way I’d like. But C’s presence proved not only to be fortuitous to our Friday night dining experience, but also to our tailgate festival of meat the following day, when he and his dad churned out some really great eats.

After escaping the environs of Fenway during the eighth inning to beat the hoards, C directed us to a spot he’d heard a lot of good buzz about: Citizen’s Public House. Wherever C gets his buzz, I want some. We finagled a great outdoor table, ordered up some adult beverages and started our feast with a dozen creamy, sweet, succulent oysters of various origins. We also treated ourselves to the burratta appetizer. Have you had this treat? It’s basically fresh mozzarella with a creamy center. The plate arrived with a huge hunk of crusty baguette, paper-thin slices of funky, robust duck prosciutto (thereby fulfilling my recent duck obsession), and a little dollop of fig and pepper jam. Each of us built a tiny sandwich that would make glutton drool: bread, creamy, milky burratta, sweet, viscous fig, and salty, chewy prosciutto. I could seriously eat this every day and never get tired of it.

They serve this with a knife the size of a cleaver so you can truly complete the caveman appeal
I’ve been in this weird mode lately in which I don’t really care to order entrees – I want two appetizers as my meal at most dinners out. I don’t know if I should attribute this to greed – I like to try as many things as I can off a menu – or to my smaller appetite since dieting, but whatever the reason, it’s yielded double the yum! At Citizen, I ordered the pork tacos, which C’s buzzbin had recommended, as well as the fried chicken livers. I’ve spent enough time in the south to love this delicacy, although you see that this wasn’t my favorite this particular outing.

The adbobo pork shoulder tacos, which C also ordered up, were dyn-o-mite. Tender, slow-cooked pork shoulder with adobo seasonings mingled with pickled red onions (one of my favorite taco toppings) and lime crema on sexy little corn tortillas. While I honestly could have used more seasoning on the pork and more lime in the crema, I loved the texture of the pork and slightly crunchy, acidic onions. The portion was really too generous to eat all of, but I did it anyway, because I couldn’t bear to leave any on the plate. And see the ample cilantro spig on top of each? I don’t know why cilantro is one of those ingredients that instantly elevates every dish for me, but I can’t get enough of its grassy brightness.

For me, the fried livers were less successful. I don’t know if they were a bit overcooked or what, but the salty creaminess that I love about livers was here replaced by a minerally flavor and grainy texture. They did have nice crunch, and the mustardy dipping sauce helped a bit, but I did not eat most of the plate – skip these if you visit Citizen.

Melinda sampled a monster burger which she loved, while BLD went for the tuna burger. I loved the slaw on this, and the buttery brioche bun, but the soy-mustard glaze was a little weak for me. BLD loved it, though. Melinda’s burger was tender and juicy to the extreme – I don’t remember the last time I saw a burger that thick. And the fries alongside were done right – hand-cut, crispy exterior and puffy, light as air interior. Delicious.

Self-assembly required tuna burger
We also did a fair bit of imbibing at Citizen once our dinners were done. The inside is swank enough to please the city folk among us, but not too noisy or snooty for me. Plus, not only are the website and menu adorned with a wood-block pig motif, the bar is designed with lots of swine. You know I love that!

Once the guys devolved to debating the relative quarterbacking strengths of the Buffalo Bills and New York Giants, Melinda and resorted to taking pictures of ourselves and plotting our partying-hard-without-passing-out strategy for the Buffett concert the following day. But whatever your poison, Citizen provides a great post-Fenway stop for your Boston itinerary. I'd give it a solid seven on the BHS scale. And if chance finds you searching for a breakfast refuge in much more bucolic Norwood, Mass, as it did us on Sunday morning before heading for home, do drop in at the Mug ‘N Muffin to try the Irish benedict, which ditches wimpy Canadian bacon and embraces New England staple corned beef hash with its hollandaise, poached eggs and English muffins. This diner is no frills, but lavishes you with coffee refills, and serves corned beef hash up right, griddled with crispy bits and supreme savoriness.

Hope you had a fun Fourth, Big Hungries! I’m off to Hilton Head, SC, for a girls’ vacation with college buddies next week, so I won’t be posting. I WILL be eating at Chef Robert Irvine’s Eat! Restaurant however, so look forward to that recap when I return. Meantime, enjoy the heat, try not to stroke out, and for God’s sake, eat something delicious. My hunger is big; my personality is bigger!

Citizen Public House and Oyster Bar on Urbanspoon

Mug N Muffin Restaurant Incorporated on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. That Irish benedict looks FABULOUS! I am a huge corned beef hash fan.

    I'm also into ordering two appetizers recently.

    I can't wait to hear about Irvine's restaurant. I love him.