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The Tip

Making tracks to 80 Thoreau

Located on the second floor of the Concord Depot, 80 Thoreau offers commuters civilized end-of-workday dining, with New American dishes made of local ingredients. Located on the second floor of the Concord Depot, 80 Thoreau offers commuters civilized end-of-workday dining, with New American dishes made of local ingredients. (Adam Hunger for The Boston Globe)
By Devra First
Globe Staff / May 20, 2011

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80 Thoreau 80 Thoreau St., Concord

978-318-0008

There’s something very civilized about disembarking a train at the end of a workday and heading directly to a proper dinner, with linens and china and a proper cocktail to start. How often does this happen? It’s more likely to be greasy pizza on paper plates by the TV.

At the end of April, 80 Thoreau opened on the second floor of the Concord Depot, putting a proper post-work dinner within easy reach for area commuters. From restaurateur and Concord native Ian Calhoun, 80 Thoreau features New American dishes and classic cocktails. The team comes with impressive credentials. Chef Carolyn Johnson (Rialto) is in the kitchen, and Vincent Vela (Per Se, Craft) directs service.

As one might expect from a restaurant in Concord, the food draws from the bounty of surrounding farms. Dishes include fennel and white bean soup with crab and saffron creme fraiche; seared gnocchi with morels, peas, herbs, and artichoke cream; grilled lamb and turnovers with fava beans, mint, and Lillet; and roasted and braised chicken with mustard butter, asparagus, and barley.

By the open kitchen, there’s a “chef’s counter,’’ ringside seating for four guests. There is also a bar area, featuring small and large plates. Tonic water is house-made, and all of the beer is brewed in Massachusetts.

The menu is composed with care, the little details seen to. How very civilized. Aren’t you in the mood for a train ride? All aboard.

Devra First can be reached at dfirst@globe.com.

Ratings

  • 4 Stars Extraordinary
  • 3 Stars Excellent
  • 2 Stars Good
  • 1 Star Fair
  • No Stars Poor