The Cornerstone [Somerville]

During an intense downpour, the Parsnipity family ventured out last night in the March cold to check out The Cornerstone, a newish restaurant from the chef of Yume Ga Aru Kara in the former R.F. O’Sullivan’s space. Braving ankle-deep puddles, we parked in the Sullivan’s Tire lot as the website notes is permitted, and found ourselves in the warm, dark, friendly and somewhat compact bar space. The menu is described as New American, with Asian and Hawaiian influences.

Nobody was drinking, apart from an incredibly sweet coconut pineapple mocktail concoction, so we started with wings and a scallop appetizer. The wings were very good with an excellent Bleu cheese sauce on the side. The scallop appetizer was 3 individual preparations of one large scallop each. Can you picture us cutting each scallop into quarters and sharing? Yup, that’s how we roll. All tasty, some of the sauces I would say overwhelmed the scallops and were too sweet- this proved a theme.

Our sprouts split a portion of seafood scampi with linguine, which they gobbled up. I had the tuna steak frites- a generous portion of tuna, but served with 3 sauces, 2 of which were oddly sweet, and very thick beer batter crust which clashed horribly with the tuna. I was happy to scrape the crust off, but the tuna was not seasoned at all and needed salt and flavor generally once the crust was removed. The arugula salad and fries that came with it were excellent, and I would absolutely get this dish again because it was a beautiful piece of fish, especially for the price, but I would ask for it to be simply grilled as a hoppy beer batter with added paprika (or something indistinguishable that made the batter red) does not go with tuna. The same hoppy beer batter was similarly a detraction from my husband’s fish and chips, and I also think their oil is not hot enough as the batter was a bit gluey, and his fish was also egregiously underseasoned.

Service was friendly and solicitous- I couldn’t bear to tell them their batters need work. When we declined dessert, they gave our sprouts each a mochi. The value was excellent- we had quite a lot of seafood for a very reasonable price. I think they will work out their batter kinks, and/or we will try other things on the menu. The actual menu presented differed a bit from what’s on the website, so don’t get your heart set on anything before stopping in. But do stop in!


Thanks for this; close to where we live and I had not heard of it.

What a horribly strange thing to do to a nice piece of tuna!


Agreed. Very sad treatment of the tuna; although the menu does state “light crispy crust,” I would not expect a fish-and-chips treatment (and a poor one at that).

I loved that space when it was O’Sully’s, though I’m not a burger eater. Maybe I will fall in love again with Cornerstone.

TY for the review.

The Sprouts for the dinner choice win! :raised_hands:(Hell yeah, I’m competitive.)


Thanks for the review and the pictures. Have you been streaming “Sideways”?

And as a lover of words (you) , Bleu or Blue?

1 Like

Yes, I was expecting like a quick flour or panko dredge, or even just some sesame seeds.

1 Like

Yeah, I made a mental note to go back and rotate the pictures but I always forget how quickly the edit locks, and I type on my chromebook, which does not have the pictures, then insert them from my phone. Probably there’s an easier way but honestly, horses were waiting, and a goat named Caramel broke her horn and needed looking after. That’s my excuse, and I’m sticking to it. Regardless, it’s sort of rare that I even take photos as I’ve drilled into the family that we don’t take our phones out while eating.


Excellent! (Even though it has the ring of truth.)

1 Like


Very cute!