Tasting Counter | Around the World in 30 Days
As someone who is constantly trying to be a better citizen of the Earth, I always love when a company has similar “do-good” values. So, when my family introduced me to Tasting Counter near the end of my visit to the US, I was excited. Tasting Counter, a fine-dining restaurant in the greater Boston area by Chef Peter Ungár, has a “0 carbon, 50 local, 100 natural” philosophy. This means the restaurant aims for a zero-carbon footprint, sources at least 50 percent of their ingredients locally, and only serves 100 percent all-natural foods and wines. On top of that, Tasting Counter has been mentioned in various Boston-based publications, Condé Nast Traveler, and Lonely Planet. In fact, the Boston Globe called it the restaurant of the year in 2015, only a year after it opened! So, check this place out if you’re looking for a gourmet experience that aligns with your minimalist/eco-minded/healthy lifestyle.
I enjoy fine dining, and I like trying new and different gourmet adventures. So, what really sets a restaurant apart for me is the ability for the chef to tell a story. Each dish complete on its own and, yet, building on the last. Surprising flavors, a building tension—the meals I remember most all have this flowing, story-like quality.
With extensive experience in the kitchen—including two Michelin-starred places in Paris—the menu at Tasting Counter showcases Chef Ungár’s culinary expertise in such a way. The menu, which is only handed to you at the end of the meal, is a carefully crafted course that tells a story with its fresh and natural flavors. The dishes are constantly changing, so each time you visit you’ll taste a new story.
At just under 200 US Dollars per person for dinner time, a meal at Tasting Counter is not an everyday affair. Having said that, the amount of food you get is extremely generous. Within the two-hour time slot, we were given 10 dishes plus an amuse-bouche and a similarly-sized plate of sweets to finish. Each dish was paired with a drink. By the end, I was dragging myself out of my seat stuffed, puffed, and happy.
Visit the Tasting Counter
Tasting Counter operates differently than many traditional restaurants. Patrons book their reservation online by purchasing tickets on the website in advance. The ticket includes the set menu, beverage pairing, tax, and tip. When booking, you notify the restaurant which beverage pairing set you would like (sake, beer, wine, or non-alcoholic) as well as any dietary restrictions. So, for your reservation, all you have to do is come hungry for a culinary journey. Please note, at the time of writing this, Tasting Counter does not yet offer a vegan option.
Address: 14 Tyler Street, Somerville, MA 02143