When I learned of Purslane opening in Wakefield, naturally the first thing I did was a quick Google search, which led me to a small green plant in the succulent family known for its culinary uses and nutrients. Though I had never heard of the dainty green sprig, once I realized the brick-and-mortar eatery is the successor to popular food truck Butterhead (named after the lettuce), the name couldn’t be more fitting.
Nestled where Robinson Street meets Main Street, Purslane’s modern facade is painted a gorgeous sienna and its sprawling patio is adorned with plants and string lights enticing passersby. Wakefield, with its idyllic “main street” feel, was humming with locals and college students looking to wind down.
My boyfriend and I opted to sit outside, but I’d be remiss if I failed to mention how taken I was with the decor inside, which is reminiscent of visiting the hip loft apartment of a bohemian friend. Eclectic artwork is interspersed on the white-painted brick dining room walls and shelves are lined with house plants, mason jars filled with spices and herbs, and tchotchkes.
The menu was a delightful contrast of high-end seafood and raw bar apps – including tuna crudo and caviar – and elevated handhelds for entrees, with a heavy focus on local ingredients throughout.
To start, we tucked into two specials: the House Sourdough – which came topped with ricotta cheese from Narragansett Creamery, beet agrodolce from Greenview Farm, and garnished with local bee pollen, toasted hazelnuts, and sunflower shoots from a URI farmshare – and the Mille Feuille, a savory, rectangle-shaped French pastry resembling baklava. The sumptuous bite was layered with ham and Camembert cheese, garnished with green sprouts, and served over a whole-grain mustard aioli and red pepper relish that nearly had us licking our plates.
In addition to the specials, we ordered the Smoked Bluefish Dip, which arrived with everything crackers and pickled mustard seeds. The bluefish from Fox Smoked Fish (based in Narragansett) was smokey and had an umami flavor that paired wonderfully with the tangy mustard. From the raw bar, we tried the Tuna Crudo, which was soaked in nước chấm – a Vietnamese fish sauce – chives, and a healthy squeeze of lime juice.
Between apps and entrees, we sipped on two signature cocktails. My boyfriend ordered the Tamarind Sour, a bourbon-based drink with tamarind and lime, and I enjoyed the Spicy Maple Margarita; let’s just say maple gives agave a run for its money because this was, with no exaggeration, the best spicy marg I’ve had to date.
After such a lavish spread of apps, we excitedly awaited our mains: the Kimchi Dog and a Nashville Spicy Chicken Sando. The former was a spicy take on your typical hot dog, starring kimchi from Chi Kitchen in Pawtucket. The batter on the fried chicken was exquisite in taste and texture, and worth every “I really shouldn’t” bite.
Since our visit, we’ve been raving to our East Bay friends and family, and our tagline has become “Purslane is worth crossing bridges for!”
318 Main Street, Wakefield • 515-7340
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here