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Devra First Gives Kika Tapas One and Half Stars

Photo: Facebook/Kika Tapas

Boston Globe restaurant critic Devra First takes on Kika Tapas in Kendall Square and gives the restaurant one and half stars. And it's not that she doesn't like tapas; contrast that score to her recent three-star review of Casa B. First describes the bold decor as "festive on the eyes" but notes that the music is often out of place: "the soundtrack matters in a place like this, and it veers wildly." Small plates "are solid, often better than good enough" though the tortilla, a tapas restaurant's canary in the coal mine, is merely "serviceable, its flavors wan and watered down." Sangria is "streamlined" and paella is "quietly tasty." Clearly, her socks remain un-knocked off. [BG]

Speaking of Casa B, Adam Bezigian pays a visit to the Union Square restaurant in the latest Somerville Scout. "If you needed more proof that Union Square is transcending from industrial wasteland (the good ol’ days) to single-stream recycling (yuppie trash), look no further." The decor is "gorgeous" and "well-decorated" but a little too intimate for Bezigian, who wants to talk loudly about gross dog behavior. "But the food, man, the food." Among many successes, mollejas de pollo (chicken gizzards and sautéed onions on toast) take the cake. [SS]

Globe food editor Sheryl Julian reviews Allston's Ecco Pizzeria for the latest Cheap Eats column. The restaurant has two hooks - environmental stewardship and pizzas for breakfast and dessert - that don't come off as gimmicky. The "thin-crust pies" are "delicious" and "good salads" abound. Julian notes that crusts have gotten more well done since the restaurant's opening, however grilled chicken has "almost no grilled flavor." [BG]

French is not an ethnic cuisine typically associated with Quincy, yet there it is among The Common Market Restaurants: Cafe de Paris. Boston's Hidden Restaurants finds the experience to be "mostly a good one, though with a few minor bumps along the way." The look is appealingly classic, but for "harsh" spotlights. Spinach and artichoke dip is "so delicious that it was gone in a flash" but pizza (at a French restaurant?) is "a disappointment, with a mushy crust and almost no sauce." More than the food, atmosphere and service are "the standouts." [BHR]

casa b

253 Washington Street, Somerville, MA 02143 617 764 2180 Visit Website

Ecco Pizzeria

1147 Commonwealth Avenue, Allston, MA 02134 (617) 903-4324 Visit Website

Kika Tapas

350 Third Street, Cambridge, MA