This past week, the concierge department I work with was invited to visit AKA Bistro in Lincoln, MA for a nice afternoon lunch. We were joined by Chris Lyons who runs the PR for the restaurant along with other restaurants in the Metrowest area. It was so wonderful to meet someone who really had her thumb on the pulse of this area of Massachusetts. I could tell you up and down what’s going on in Boston. But Metrowest, North Shore, South Shore? I don’t really know the ins and outs. But Chris shows to be a great resource moving forward.
Along with that, I can say that whenever I think of finer dining, my mind does go straight to Boston or Cambridge. But now I think it’s definitely worth it to take a look at the Lincoln and Concord area. In addition to the wonderful restaurants and locally owned shops, the surrounding area is in a preserved land trust. That means that with no new development, there are places to run, walk, bike and just enjoy the suburbs of Boston without all of the traffic. And I’ve been told that during the summer there are free hikes of Mount Misery which is located right behind AKA. It may not be as strenuous as Mount Washington, but it’s a lovely little trek into historical New England. DeCordova and Drumlin Farm have their own trails as well.
Alright, now it’s on to the food! AKA is run by general manager Christian Touche and chef Chris Chung, who both came from Ken Oringer’s Boston restaurant Clio. The restaurant is a combination (not fusion) of both French cuisine and Japanese cuisine. Lunch time is the French menu. I was very excited to hear that since I’m not a huge fan of Japanese.
To start, we had some appetizers to share:
- Tartelette aux Champignons: Mushroom tart with caramelized onion, raclette cheese, polenta and arugula, radish salad
- Rillette de Canard: Duck rillette with country bread and poached prune
- Portabella Mushroom Frites with assorted aioli (miso, wasabi and Thai curry)
- Spicy Tuna Tartar with cucumber cornet and tobiko
All of the appetizers were delicious! The tuna tartar was wrapped in the thinnest sliced cucumber I have ever seen. And sure was spicy. My favorite was definitely the rillette. It was a bit more like soft pate than what I remember rillette to be like (My favorite is the rabbit rillette from Bistro du Midi). But the flavor was fatty, sweet and delicious. And I’m not the biggest mushroom fan, but the tartlette had an amazing buttery crust and the mushrooms were cooked just right. And who can say no to deep fried mushrooms? I certainly couldn’t.
For my main course, I decided on the Roasted Beets Salad with beet puree, whipped goat cheese, toasted pistachio and verjus vinaigrette with the side of the French Mac & Cheese.
How beautiful is that? And the whole dish was amazing! Each bite had a bit of beet, pistachio and goat cheese. I’m slowly starting to get into goat cheese and I just love the flavor! I need more of it in my life. And the salad was perfectly dressed.
And this mac & cheese could easily be on the top of my list of favorites. The cheese was evenly distributed throughout the whole dish; each bite had equal parts cheese and noodle. It probably could have been a bit saltier, but otherwise the taste was spot on. I had a hard time putting my fork down.
And Chris wanted me to take a picture of her dish: Frisee aux lardons which is curly endive with thick cut bacon and a poached egg.
There were no complaints from her.
All in all, I was very impressed with AKA. The location is right next to the Lincoln train station, with a lovely courtyard during the warmer months. And the food was filling without being overly heavy. This is definitely a restaurant that prides itself on quality over quantity.
This lunch was complimentary but the opinions are that of my own.
AKA Bistro is located at 145 Lincoln Road, Lincoln, MA.
Do you know of any dining jewels in the Metrowest area??