Remember when I wrote this? Eh. Probably not.
Well, I stand corrected on it. A tad, if not completely. OK, I’ll get there. Keep reading.
Every once in a while, something sneaks up on you and messes with something you knew you were absolutely right about. Maybe it’s J. Lo getting weirdly beautiful post-40 after you long ago decided she was a mall-rat-wannabe has-been. Or maybe it’s just a Robert Frost poem, which struck you as a lovely ode to how delightful nature can be, but is actually about, you know, keeling over dead. Or maybe only slightly less dramatically, it’s a plate of food that catches you completely by surprise.
I showed up at the bar of just-opened Forum with expectations of nothing other than getting a solid drink. (This was, after all, the new incarnation of Vox Populi. Which is all I’ll say about that.) And while they may still be working out a few kinks delivery-wise,the program is indeed already cocktails-solid. Incredible, flavor-sharp martinis. Beautiful, citrusy gimlets. After one of each, to make sure I got home alive, I also wolfed down an order of raviolo.
That’s not a typo. Ravioli’s a bunch. E replaced by O means you get one lone, gleaming pasta dome. It’s three bites at most, but who cares? In those three forkfuls, worlds intermingle. Because inside that pastry is an egg, meticulously poached during the cooking process of the pasta, so its yolk flows as soon as a fork splits it. Bacon shards and shingles of black truffle are scattered about it, and ricotta turns it into a something more like a savory dessert.
But really, it’s all about that damn egg. To which I, having thrown down my gauntlet strongly in the anti-egg-topper camp, must now admit that there’s just something ridiculously cool about having an egg ooze out at you surreptitiously, meaning from inside a dish as opposed to from its top. Maybe it’s the element of surprise a hidden treat imparts (though from a culinary standpoint that makes zero sense). Maybe it’s respect for novelty in the cooking process that demands. Mostly though, I’m guessing it’s that this dish just simply works, thanks to the strength of the bacon’s flavor, richness of the ricotta, and the texture of the pasta’s delicacy—all of which don’t just stand up to, but actually kind of demand the egg. Yes, yes, even if it were on top.
That just about justifies my 180, then, right? Good. Now I can go order another and still sleep tonight.
Raviolo, $16, Forum, 755 Boylston St., 857-991-1831, http://forumboston.com.