Monday, August 20, 2007

OM Restaurant, Harvard Square

My sister and I tried "OM," a restaurant offering modern American cuisine by Chef Rachel F. Klein. Located on the inner skirts of Harvard Square, it is a regal and exotic treasure amidst the flurry of Hahvad students, crazies, homeless, and the rest of academic civilization.

I had known of its existence since the beginning of my stint in Cambridge two years ago, but had always assumed that it was an overfluffed Indian restaurant judging from the name and symbol of "OM" emblazoned on the large sign lit brightly enough for all to see.

I suppose I should have been more interested in/open about it before last week when I actually went in and tried it for the first time. I was missing a bonding place.

Immediately upon entering, I was attracted by the cleanliness of the interior. We were greeted by a running wall-fountain that spanned the entire entrance, wrapping me in a blanket of comfort and protection. Until the dining floor opened at 6pm, we were directed to enjoy the lounge whose windowed walls were was open (unfortunately) to the ground-level mini-quad that is also shared by Pete's Coffee, ex-Tower Records, and Grendel's Patio outdoor diners. Sounds quaint until you realize that the green grass is littered with trash, and the air smells faintly of dumpster trash, littered cigarette butts, and unwashed wandering bodies. And if you enjoy your privacy, the loads of people walking by isn't particularly helpful. Such is the current situation in good ol' Harvard Square.

The waitresses/hostesses were beautifully made-up and smiling. The cocktails were beautiful and appetizing. The lounge was beautiful, the sofas were sleek and I wanted to lean all the way back and fall asleep on them.

The most dominant and impressive feature of the lounge is the wall to wall Thangka painting of Kali, perhaps; the goddess of creation and destruction. Ironically, it was a truly enlightening experience to observe the looming image and see the hope pervading the surface amidst the chaos and existence of death and suffering. It was an experience true to the vision of the locale for sure.

Promptly at 6, we were led up to the second floor, the second "level of enlightenment," according to the restaurant's website. A quieter, more private setting.

[to be continued when it's not past my bedtime]

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