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Boston Restaurant Blog -- September, 2013

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Dinner at The Naumkeag Ordinary in Salem

A new restaurant called The Naumkeag Ordinary opened in Salem this past spring, with a couple of people from Coda in Boston's South End--Matt Brady and Dan Bitler--being behind it (and Matt also worked at O'Sullivan's in Somerville as well). I've been trying to get to this place for awhile now, as I had been hearing good things about their takes on comfort food and American fare, and we did end up getting there earlier this month for a quick dinner. And first impressions of the restaurant were definitely positive, with the food being very good, the staff being friendly and laid-back, and the atmosphere being quite nice.

photo of The Naumkeag Ordinary, Salem, MA The Naumkeag Ordinary resides in back of Lappin Park in downtown Salem, with the courtyard-type space being relatively quiet even though it is located where two busy streets intersect (Essex Street and Washington Street). The restaurant has a small bar in front with a few tables to the left of it, and further back there is a cozy and charming (and private-feeling) dining room with some more seating. Out front is a patio that is used during the warmer months, with the patio being a great place for people-watching.

We grabbed a table outside at The Naumkeag Ordinary on our recent trip there and started out with a couple of Ithaca pumpkin ales (mild and refreshing) and a simple but impressive board featuring baked brie in pastry dough, fennel-flavored crackers, sliced apples, and California figs. Our meals included a hearty plate of fettuccini with red sauce and ricotta-stuffed meatballs (which were firm and had a perfect mixture of pork, veal, and beef) and a meaty bone-in pork chop with roasted potatoes, bacon-braised cabbage, and apple sauce. A few other items on the menu that looked interesting (and will definitely be considered for an upcoming visit) were the tacos, house-made pickles, coq au vin, Cuban sandwich, and macaroni and cheese with tasso ham.

The Naumkeag Ordinary seems like a nice addition to the Salem dining scene, with upscale comfort food offered at reasonable prices and a friendly, inviting atmosphere. A second trip to this dining and drinking spot will likely be in the works this fall, so expect to see an update here in the not-too-distant future.

The address for The Naumkeag Ordinary is: The Naumkeag Ordinary, 118 Washington Street, Salem, MA, 01970.

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