Since 1981, this famed New England chowder has been served at every presidential inauguration. What makes it so good? You are about to find out. So Sam and I had dinner reservations at Rialto for dinner but having such huge stomachs as ours means you we need to eat every few hours. Thank God we have pretty decent metabolisms or we'd be houses by now. We headed up to the third floor of Charles Hotel crossed a path and got to Legal Sea Foods. Now Legal has 33 locations but they've remained a family business that stays true to its commitment of high quality and fresh fish at great value. Check out this location. The outside:
I love their philosophy…”We are not a restaurant selling fish. But rather a fish company in the restaurant business.” This means that they deal directly with the boat captains and where they've set standards on safety, wholesomeness and purity. Could you tell in their food? Straight up! First, the bread rolls they give you in the beginning are just perfect – hard and a little crunchy on the outside, but warm and soft on the inside.
We ordered 4 dishes (in classic Kim/Yoo style we like to sample lots of dishes)…but the two most notable were the clam chowder and the bottleneck clams. I shall show you the other dishes but they were just so-so. The Wood Grilled Assortment – 3 types of fish, scallops, and shrimp…well seasoned, a bit too salty:
The hot lump crab dip was just alright – the crackers around it reminded me of asian air crackers:
Now the bottleneck clams were so fresh and crisp, just perfect.
And finally the chowder. Oh the chowder. (See first pic.) Why was it so good? Because it had the perfect mix of potato to clams, the consistency wasn't too thick or thin, the potatoes were perfect size and had just the right amount of hardness. You didn't even need any pepper – it was so well flavored. *Sigh…I'm getting hungry again. Overall? A great experience because of the amazing clams and clam chowder. Who Should Go? People who enjoy fresh seafood in a pretty moderately priced restaurant. People who want to taste some of the best clam chowder in the world! Tip: Check here for the locations. And remember: “If it isn't fresh, it isn't Legal.” Legal Sea Foods (Yelp) 20 University Rd Cambridge, MA 02138 (617) 491-9400