The blazing flames of the kitchen’s open grill may be the first thing that catches your eye as you walk into Shepard. Chef de cuisine Peter McKenzie, formerly of Brookline’s Ribelle, manipulates that fire and a wood-burning oven to turn out dishes befitting the terroir and “merroir” of the Massachusetts coast. Take the chicken liver toast—thick slices of mousse topped with sieved hard-cooked eggs and tangy mustard on sourdough from nearby Hi-Rise. It’s the embodiment of New England farmhouse chic and revelatory with a glass of Ligurian Bruna Rossese, one of the many nimble bottles on partner/wine director René Becker’s list. Becker keeps it affordable, too, focusing on lesser-known, mostly biodynamic and organic wines under $100—fitting for a Cambridge restaurant that moves fluidly between neighborhood local and celebratory night on the town.

1 Shepard St., Cambridge, Massachusetts

New American


This review appears in the print edtion of the August 2016 issue.
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