Best of Boston

2009 Best Union Square Restaurant, Neighborhood

The Independent

To those living in eternally up-and-coming Somerville: You may not have solved the public transportation quandary that is Union Square but, boy, are you lucky from a pub-hub perspective. Outfitted in the classy dark-wood stylings of a more upscale joint, the Independent is smartly cleaved into one room for drinkers, one for diners—and manages to do right by both groups. Expect well-executed, moderately priced cuisine, like the béchamel, cheddar, provolone, and Parmesan macaroni and cheese, as well as innovative drink offerings (such as the Sub Rosa: campari, lillet rouge, grapefruit-tarragon vodka, and soda water) that tickle more-alcohol-focused palates.

75 Union Sq., Somerville, 617-440-6022,