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The Citizen

Of Gastropubs & Boston History: jm Curley

By Tommy Tobin, MPP’15, Correspondent

One doesn’t usually expect beef heart tartlets on a pub menu. Same goes for clam chowder fritters. At jm Curley in downtown Boston, expect these unusual culinary concoctions and more to complement the selection of adult refreshments.

jm Curley is a place that doesn’t take itself too seriously, yet is a hip spot to dine and experience the Boston social scene. It is named for the colorful, 20th century Boston mayor and located in the happening Downtown Crossing neighborhood. This gastropub is recognized as one of the top restaurants in Boston by Conde Nast and Eater Boston. jm Curley is definitely worth the trip. In fact, Chef Sam Monsour won a Food Network competition this fall.

Known for its eclectic and meat-inspired menus, jm Curley offers cracker-jack popcorn with bacon, brown butter gnocchi, and many other selections that go far beyond the normal pub fare. As the weather gets colder, jm Curley’s cast-iron mac & cheese provides a rich and flavorful way to warm up. The portion was filling enough for a main course, and for those who want to ‘hook it up’, adding barbequed pork to the equation is definitely an option.

jm Curley is fairly small given its reputation, giving an intimate vibe without being cramped. The music is hip, not-too-loud, and adds a complementary soundtrack to the din of conversation whirling around the space. A retro foos-hockey table in one corner added ambiance.

jm Curley is a great spot for a night out, especially if you find yourself near Park Street or Downtown Crossing stations. Diners should be aware though that Chef Sam Monsour, who has been with the gastropub from the beginning, is departing at the end of December. Current Sous Chef Chris Bauers, who formerly worked at Cambridge’s Upstairs on the Square, will be promoted as part of the transition. It remains to be seen how the change will affect jm Curley, but odds are good that the current record of excellent fare will continue. Chef Monsour predicted the transition would go “seamlessly” and “flawlessly” – here’s hoping that he’s right!

4/5 stars

jm Curley

21 Temple Place, Boston

M-F 11:30 a.m. – 2 a.m./Last Call (Food til 1:15 a.m.); Sat 5 p.m. – 2 a.m./Last Call (Food til 1:15 a.m.); Closed Sunday