Serving up southern cuisine in a cozy retro-chic dining room that seats 40, M3 restaurant on Highland Avenue opened for business last week.
From floor to ceiling, the eatery's interior is packed with stylish touches that may make hipsters wriggle in their skinny jeans with envy.
A hazy glow from Edison bulbs suspended inside of Ball Jars illuminate the counter. Condiments and accoutrements reside in vintage wooden cheese containers. A hulking cream-colored fridge with chrome lettering and a Cadillacesque door handle nestles behind the bar.
And the walls -- nearly every square inch of them is covered in matte-black chalkboard paint -- a competitive advantage when the menu changes often. The finish is carried over to the tables, too. Patrons are encouraged to get creative while sharing drinks or waiting for food.
Unluckily for general manager Matt Camilleri, who painted the interior, the specialized paint comes only in quart containers, of which he blew through 40, he estimated.
"Three times, I bought out the Everett and Somerville Home Depots," he said, laughing..
Looking up inside M3 offers a subtle pleasure, too. Camilleri spent days tearing down an old drop ceiling to make way for stainless steel paneling, painted in Bayou blue and lightly sanded to reveal a gently impressed pattern.
M3, at 382 Highland Avenue in Davis Square, is open for dinner starting at 5 p.m., and will be open for lunch in several weeks.