Former Sotto manager Caitlin Cutler and chef/husband Daniel Cutler replaced Mao’s Kitchen on Melrose with a family-run restaurant called Ronan with a pizza focus and plated dishes that give diners plenty of reasons to look beyond the white Neapolitan oven that burns white oak. I was particularly impressed with their Pork of the Moment ($40), in this case a luscious, beautifully seared, wood-grilled chop plated with wonderfully savory “green beans” and sweet charred nectarine.
Each week, Daniel Cutler orders a half-pig from Peads & Barnetts founder Oliver Woolley. He says, “basically we get a half pig in and butcher all the chops from a little past the shoulder down and serve them in no particular order – equivalent of ribeye, New York strip and porterhouse in the steak world – the closer to the shoulder the more marbled you get. And the closer to the leg the more inclusion of tenderloin (porterhouse/T-bone).” The ultra-savory pork is graced with rosemary salt and a blanket of Coleman’s mustard powder, grilled and “rested in another coating of mustard, but this time Dijon.” Each chop’s sliced, dusted with a healthy dose of fennel pollen, and served with the aforementioned “green beans.”
These beans probably aren’t what might come to mind. Instead of string beans, Cutler soaks earthy Tuscan white beans overnight with salt before draining and boiling with seared vegetables, lemons, bay leaves, and more. After cooking, he purees some of the beans with olive oil and lemon, keeps other beans whole, and tosses with a punchy “green” salsa verde crafted with parsley, anchovies, capers, pickled onions, garlic, and basil oil.
Of course, everything here may change tomorrow. After all, another day calls for another moment.
Dose of Vitamin P spotlights my favorite pork dish from the previous week.