A culinary rhapsody in blue
Inspired new American cuisine
131 Broad St., Boston
Monday – Friday: 11:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Saturday: 5 p.m. – 2 a.m.
For our latest night out on the town, we ventured into the financial district and visited Blue Inc., a place for wild culinary adventures helmed by Chef Jason Santos of FOX’s “Hell’s Kitchen.” It was a little hard to get there — it was a 10 minute walk from the Downtown Crossing T station — but the food and the handcrafted cocktails were definitely worth the trip. Blue Inc. serves mostly new American-style cuisine, although many of the dishes are inspired by Asian spices and flavors. With six in our group, we were able to share and sample a variety of dishes.
We began with a selection of appetizers, each more delicious than the last. The calamari “spaghetti” ($10) consisted of thinly sliced calamari rings, appropriately fresh and melt-in-your-mouth tender. This was served with a delectable pastrami Bolognese and a piece of garlic bread, toasted to crispy perfection but still soft in the middle. Next was the crispy pork belly ($12), a generous slab of succulent pork served with balled apples and a sweet sauce that nicely complemented the savory pork.
But the real highlight of the appetizers was the buffalo duck drumettes ($12), a twist on traditional chicken wings. Covered in a tangy spicy-sweet barbecue sauce and served with chipotle mayo on the side, the duck legs were simply finger-licking tasty.
For entrees, duck was the star of the show again. The honey and hoisin-glazed duck confit ($26), was an Asian-inspired delight for the taste buds. Served on a bed of sweet sticky rice with mango and cashews, the duck had a mild savory-sweet flavor that we greatly enjoyed. The crunchy Ahi tuna ($26) was also a nice choice, accompanied with steamed rice, sesame avocado, and yuzu green beans in a sweet and creamy sake-apple puree. With the exception of the beans, the flavors in this dish were perhaps too mild, and may have benefited from added spices or some traditional wasabi. We also had a bite of the southern-style boneless fried chicken ($26), which was just otherworldly. Served on a pepper jack waffle with bacon, poached pear, and smoked maple caramel, we plotted a return just for this dish.
Dessert, always a favorite, did not disappoint at Blue Inc. Amid a variety of nontraditional liquid nitrogen milkshake flavors, such as pumpkin pie, caramel corn, and chai green tea, we tried the S’mores milkshake and felt like very happy campers. Clearly our chef used top-quality chocolate in the shake, topping it off with graham cracker crumbs (this must have been what that $5 shake in Pulp Fiction tasted like). Ideal for a special occasion, Blue Inc. is definitely near the top of our list of happening spots with quality and boldly imaginative cuisine and is a unique restaurant experience not to be missed.