There are a few places in Cambridge that have always been my go to place when I want good reliable food. Daedalus was one of those places. The food isn’t fancy, and it isn’t pretentious. That’s what I liked about it. Yes, you did read the past tense correctly, and for very good reasons.
Now I need to preface this by saying that it’s been a while since I was here. Perhaps a year or more, but I just always thought Daedalus was always going to remain true and not be one of those restaurants that try to “reinvent” themselves. This reinvention failed miserably in my opinion.
I knew something was askew when I walked into the restaurant and was greeted not with the smell of steaks, or burgers grilling, oh, no. It was garlic. The entire restaurant reeked of it. I probably would have walked out and gone elsewhere, but I was there to meet friends, so I lingered at the bar and waited with a very strong cocktail.
I ordered the Chicken Kabobs with vegetables and couscous. Of course, if I would have been blindfolded I would never have known what I was eating as everything tasted like garlic. There was no discernable difference in the taste between the chicken, the green pepper, or the onion. I’m sorry, I may be unique here, but I like to taste the various flavors of my food; the sweetness of the peppers, the smokiness of the grilled onion, and yes the flavor of the chicken – shocking I know.
The risotto was just as bad as the kabobs. Yes, I know risotto has garlic in it, and I’m totally fine to use garlic as a subtle flavor in the background. Again it’s about the balance of flavors. But there just isn’t any balance in anything. It’s all one note, garlic.
I have always been a firm believer that the only reason to douse your food with garlic is to cover up the fact that you are not serving fresh, flavorful food. Why else would you want to disguise the subtle nuances of food? It’s the blending of flavors that make good cooking, truly good cooking. And here is where Daedalus fails. There is no point for me to go and pay twenty dollars for a meal and only taste the garlic.
The only reason I’m giving them 3 paws is that the wait staff is fantastic. The service is top notch. You’re actually treated like someone, not just another possible tipper. At least they are still doing this part of their business right.
My rating…3 Paws
With love from my dog bowl to yours….Happy eating.