25Forty brings quality cuisine at a quality price

Andrew Fergin

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There is a preconception that has begun to take root that good food must cost good money; that for a restaurant to be any good it must make the wallet at least ten degrees hotter than the oven used to cook the meal. Recently, however, a restaurant by the name of 25Forty Bistro & Bakehouse (25Forty) has opened. Their quality of food and extraordinary prices are fighting to make eating out a pleasurable experience for customer and wallet alike.

Immediately recognizable by its modern appearance, 25Forty has a black and white motif that gives it a very modern appearance. While looking at the menu, first time customers may be confused at as to how a restaurant with a menu that can fit on a leaflet could be particularly outstanding. Such confusion quickly fades away after the first few bites of food.

Breads are made with a natural starter instead of brewer’s yeast; the result is a loaf with feather-like softness outlined by a hint of sweetness owed to the lack of brewer’s yeast that is normally used when making bread (and gives bread its slight bitterness). The salads are equally delicious. Beds of spinach leaves lay where similar establishments would typically serve iceberg lettuce and are lightly showered with a balsamic vinaigrette.

Prices at a glance seem high, however, they are more than fair for what is received. Lunch for a single person will run between $10 and $12 for a full meal. Dinner entrees are more expensive, so an entire dinner meal will be around $16 to $18. This may not sound cheap, but it is more than reasonable for the quality of the food and the proportions of each meal are generous, especially compared to what similar establishments would charge. College students should talk to owner and chef Mark Pelliccia, who, understanding of the low-income life of the average college student, will give discounts if a campus ID is shown.

Sadly, having only been open for a couple of months now, not all of the paperwork has been squared away. The restaurant has not yet acquired its permit to serve alcohol. Though this does not take away dramatically, it is still disappointing to see an establishment of such caliber unable to round out its heartier dishes with a nice glass of wine or a stout beer. This will soon be remedied, so do not despair.

Given that it’s only been open for two months, 25Forty is a very solid choice for a casual lunch or dinner. The quality of food is outstanding without question and prices are more than fair for what is received. The lack of alcohol is a downer but it won’t last forever. For a restaurant that has only been open for two months 25Forty has developed quite spectacularly and it will be interesting to see what becomes of the establishment as it develops.

Located at 2540 Congress St., 25Forty sits along the outskirts of Old Town. Restaurant hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursday with longer hours of 10 a.m.-10 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays with the restaurant being closed entirely on Tuesdays

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