Friday, November 13, 2009

The Paramount, Boston

So, I have another confession to make, this one slightly bigger than breaking down and buying canned cranberry sauce. I enjoy a leisurely brunch. If I have the time in my day to dine out for brunch- then I want it to be leisurely. I want to enjoy my eggs and coffee without the stress of having to run somewhere or do something. I want to kick back and enjoy the simple act. It is for this reason, I tend to avoid The Paramount, located on Charles Street in Beacon Hill for weekend brunch. While it is incredibly tasty (fried tater tots!) it is just a bit hectic for me to be able to relax in. Now a random week day- perfect! Sign me up! But Ill stay far away from their Saturday/Sunday crowds.
Because of this, I've sort of discounted The Paramount as a dining location-for some reason I completely forgot that they served other meals than breakfast, and have just avoided it. Last night- that all changed. While deciding where to eat, and discounting all of our normal spots for various reasons, I finally came up with The Paramount. They were featured recently on The Phantom Gourmet and showcased a burger that John thought looked great- so we decided to see if we could get in our Paramount fix after dark.
Just entering the spot gave a completely different impression. The lights dimmed, candles adorning the tables, wine glasses twinkling- the chaos of breakfast was long gone. Now it was quiet, relaxed, and even a bit sophisticated. I was excited.
The menu is not extensive, but it is complete. It seemed to have something for every mood, every craving. Light salads, interesting seafood notes, burgers and sandwiches and of course those great American comfort food staples. Feeling as though I wanted to go a bit light for dinner I chose the fresh homemade Salmon Burger which I hoped would satisfy my real burger craving. John chose one of their specials that night- the Chicken Cordon Bleu, and we decided to start off with Calamari.
Once we had ordered, our waitress reappeared with a basket containing two slices of bread, and a wonderful white bean dip that was chock full of herbs and olive oil goodness. Delicious. Then, with perfect timing, we were served our generous helping of beautifully fried calamari. I have to say- these were some GREAT calamari. The batter was incredibly light and perfectly crunchy- the red pepper coulis served on the side accented it perfectly with creamy decadence. The most fascinating part though? They served the calamari with tomatoes tossed in and banana peppers as well- both of which were fried with the same batter. Lightly fried tomato- who would have thought? Either way- the flavor combination was fantastic. Score one for The Paramount!
Again, perfectly timed, our entrees arrived. Unfortunately they had been out of the special, so John had resigned himself to a burger topped with cheddar cheese and piping hot french fries. My salmon burger arrived with all the fixings for a burger- pickles, tomato, red onion, lettuce- as well as a wasabi mayo and a sweet ponzu sauce. Ponzu sauce, since I had to look it up, is a citrus sauce with Japanese origins, that is usually served tart. Interesting-The Paramount's version was a dark brown color, sweet, and looked as though it had been studded with Sesame Seeds. They had also allowed me to swap out the normal french fries served with my meal for a salad. The plate looked delicious. The salmon had been ground up, combined with herbs and spices and breadcrumbs, formed into a patty and grilled on their flat top. The flavors were very tasty combined, especially with a healthy dose of their wasabi mayo that had a great kick to it and the sweet Ponzu. Delicious. My only thoughts on the burger was it had perhaps too much breading to it which took over the flavor a bit, and made the patty a bit crumbly. My salad was great though- chock full of veggies, and with just a simple vinaigrette.
The burger that John had settled for turned out to be delicious. Juicy and well flavored, though he did find that the bottom bun was a bit too thin for the burger and ended up getting soaked. Additionally, though the fries were incredibly hot to start, they ended up being rather bland and not at all crispy. It was a shame-they looked delicious when served.
All in all, I'm incredibly happy with The Paramount's dinner scene. Incredibly relaxing, service was lovely, and the food was delicious (aside from the fries). I will definitely be back-its a great spot to add to our rotation!

Paramount on Urbanspoon

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