Would we go back:
1851 Central Ave NE
• "fish & chips" Alaskan cod, fried gnocchi, peas, smoked potato butter $20
• Flourless chocolate Torte coffee streusel, vanilla ice cream $7 (shared)
This poor location has seen its share of restaurants since being built to replace a real ugly gas station a few years ago. Unfortunately a combination of factors have resulted in failed restaurants. I am hoping this will not be the case here, but I fear they are a bit pricey for the location. That said, I loved the food, everything I had was excellent and worth the money, however, will the neighborhood be willing to pay the money for the dinner menu. Now, they do have a mid menu and a brunch menu which are more reasonable, so perhaps this is how they make it work. I certainly hope so, because I will enjoy going back.
• Maine Diver Scallops forbidden rice, shishito peppers, crisp squid, orange, ink creme frache $24
The Mill Northeast is one of the places in Northeast that has some reasonable support from the neighborhood and the food is quite good, but it's hard to tell if it will succeed. The restaurant's roots are from the Mill City Kitchen, which was tucked away on California Street NE, but that was primarily a coffee shop with breakfast/brunch/lunch options. The Mill Northeast is a brunch/dinner restaurant, and they succeed with their menu. Why it's hard to tell if they'll succeed: the neighborhood will need to support an upscale restaurant on Central Avenue, which is a departure from the multiple fantastic ethnic restaurants that are cheaper.
I had the Maine Diver Scallops, which were delicate and nicely prepared. The accompanying rice, peppers, and ink creme frache were all very good, too. The kids had not seen calamari (crisp squid) before, and they liked a sampling of it. The portion size was generous.
If you go, and I think that you should, they have ample free off-street parking. Service is good. Happy hour prices and selection are very good as well.
January 12, 2014