2008 Best Restaurant, General Excellence, North

Thanks to new chef Seth Fernald, who hails from the dearly departed Federalist, it’s easy to attain euphoria at Soma. Menu standards like ‘Duck, Duck, Goose,’ a crisp-skinned duck breast served with foie gras butter and sautéed brussels sprouts, are impeccable. Specials such as gray sole-enveloped honshemeji mushrooms with a ricotta-stuffed squash blossom beguile at first bite (‘Like spring on a plate,’ one diner mused). If that doesn’t leave your head spinning, the house-infused bourbons and raspberry-kumquat martinis certainly will.

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