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I want THE best of everything at the cheapest price.

I have a very discerning palate.

For me exquisite food in humble surroundings, open air vistas, seafood along side make shift habachis make for the utmost ambience.

I once had dinner in a restaurant which was under a tree in Sweden, then I love Ghareeb Nawaz on Devon street in Chicago and Neapolitan pizza in Naples and the finest Cannolis in Sicily, and Argostine and Sfogliatelle in Naples and I also love lots of oddities from South East Asian cultures like ant egg omelet from Laos, Pho, Bun Cha.

So Boston, get ready to give me a taste of inexpensive foods that have exquisite taste:

I want to focus on:

best pizza, hot dogs, best ice cream, lobster, oysters and of course organic farm products and the best bread.

I especially love freshly made waffle cone where the cone is warm and has a good give to it and the fragarance of extreme intense dark chocolate ice cream permeates my taste buds.

I will be in Boston from Aug 27 to Sep 5th. I will fly in to Boston so I would appreciate a guide from hopstop.com

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  1. I'll reply since I'm assuming you're from my favorite city (Copenhagen). You'll have to have a Speed's hot dog which isn't cheap ($7) but can last you all day (in a weird area beyond Boston Medical Center). Oysters at McCormick & Schmick happy hour or $1 oysters at Lineage in Brookline, or at the restaurant 28 Degrees in the south end or Great Bay in Kenmore Sq. (these are all special early evening deals). Good cheap seafood in general at Morses's in the south end. Ice cream at Louie's in East Somerville altho not easy to get by T so maybe Christina's in Inman Sq. /Camb. or JP Licks all around. Toscanini's in Central Sq. Camb is good but pricey. Best bakery is Canto 6 in JP by the Green St. orange line and interesting breads at When Pigs Fly in Davis Sq. Somerville or Coolidge Corner, Brookline. Pizza at Regina in the north end and sfogliatelle from Maria's Pastry around the corner. Good farmer's markets in Copley Sq. on Tues/Fri. and Coolidge Corner on Thurs.

    1. go to the the north end around noon on a weekday, head to galleria umberto on 289 hanover street. order a slice and an arancini - with your exchange rate, you'll barely notice paying for it. walk a couple blocks over to columbus park and enjoy your vittles with a view of the harbor.

      1. Quite a demanding initial post - I highly recommend you initially invest some time using the search this board function for the categories you noted above - there are multitudes of well-informed, thoughtful posts in pretty much all of these categories that will likely answer or narrow your broad inquiries. You can seek additional details or updated information/opinions by replying directly to the topic you are researching. Happy hunting!

        1 Reply
        1. re: rlh

          I find the post charming and a call to action!!! It made me smile! While I don't eat sweets that often and cannot speak to the dolce side of your post, there are others who will generously offer suggestions... but for starters I will second Pizzeria Regina in the North End and add Oceanaire in government center for oysters - B&G in the South End is another good oyster haven. I hope you have a great time here and find all you are looking for. You will no doubt find a lot to like! Good luck!

        2. I'm afraid best and cheap don't go hand in hand in pricy boston unless you are interested in ethnic/asian fare.

          1 Reply
          1. re: nasilemak

            And yet "non-white" eateries make up a large portion of our restaurants. In fact, some of the best restaurants ARE in that category, regardless of ethnicity.

          2. Bostonians take their ice cream very seriously, and you will never get everyone to agree. But as a visitor, you could try a new shop each day and decide for yourself. Favorites include Christinas in Inman, Toscaninni in Central, Rancatores in Belmont, along with numerous suburban ice cream stands.

            1. Hi,
              I would recomend Ron's ice cream in Hyde Park (IMO it is better even than Berthillon in Paris), this one might be tough to find - it is on Hyde Park Ave in Hyde Park. The Dutch Chocolate is one of his ultimate flavors (ruined chocolate ice cream anywhere else for me - it's never as chocolatey). If you're going to go out of the city I would recommend The Causeway in Gloucester - that's where you'll find amazing seafood - huge portions, think lunch the next day too - anything fried is great, but the baked haddock "reigns supreme."
              have a great eating adventure!

              6 Replies
              1. re: teresacooks

                I'm sorry, but your first sentence ranks up there as one of the greatest overstatements I've ever read on this board. Ron's is good, maybe very good, ice cream, in a fun, retro environment. Berthillion is sublime, one of the great expressions of ice cream on the planet, rivaled IMHO only by some of the great gelateria in florence (Badiani and Neri, if you're wondering).

                Ron's doesn't make my top five in the Boston area. You're better off at Toscanini's, or find one of my favorite gems, little talked about here--Hilliard's in Easton, which makes some of the very best around.

                1. re: winedude

                  Will back winedude on this. Ron's does make really good ice cream, but the place is not in the best part of town and hard to get to without a car, and places like Toscanini's, Herrell's, and Emack and Bolio's (all easily reached via the T) do ice cream that's better. So does Berthillion in Paris.

                  1. re: bachslunch

                    I've always liked Ron's a lot, and it's easy to get to without a car. Just take the commuter train out of the Back Bay station. In 11 minutes you'll be at the ClearySq.(Hyde Park) station. Ron's is 1/2 block from there. I'm around there several times a week and have never considered it a problem area.

                  2. re: winedude

                    I agree about Berthillion, especially the prunes in armagnac, a life altering experience!

                    1. re: cassis

                      Hi Hounds, for discussions on Berthillion, please continue on the France board. This will enable people looking for places to eat in France and browsing through that board to benefit from the discussion. Thanks!

                  3. re: teresacooks

                    I liked the chocolate at Ron's. IMHO it was not really quite the chocolate I already know from ice-creams in Italy, France and India.

                  4. You should definitely try the arancini at Galleria Umberto: there will be a long line but it moves fast, get there early though, their hours are limited and when the food is gone it's gone. then you can head over to the original pizzeria regina's for a pie

                    For lobsters by the sea there is a little place up in rockport--the name escapes me, but i'm sure some hound can fill it in-- that is a fish market and they'll steam your lobsters then you can eat them on their cute little deck in the back.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Wannabfoode

                      The Rockport place is Roy Moore Lobster Company. It's on Bearskin Neck. The T goes to Rockport and you can walk from the train to the Neck.

                    2. Pizza: there are couple onions, from Regina's in the North End and Santarpio's in East Boston to Cambridge 1 (yuppified, but good) in Harvard Square and Ernesto's in the North End.

                      Hot Dogs: Speed's in Newmarket Square, Simco's at the Bridge in Dorchester, as well as the grilled dog at Formaggio in Huron Village.

                      Ice Cream: covered in posts above.

                      Lobster: The cheapest is easily the twin lobster special at Mt Vernon in Somerville, though you can also get cheapish lobster in Chinatown. Pan-roasted lobster at Summer Shack is more expensive as are other options at Neptune Oyster and B&G.

                      Oysters: check out some of the happy hours, including ones that Joanie mentioned above. B&G and Neptune Oyster also have great raw bars.

                      Organic farm products: There are many farmers' markets in Boston.

                      Bakeries: In addition to those mentioned, I love Clear Flour in Brookline.

                      You can google directions to all of the above.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: gini

                        You can also get the twin lobster specials (steamed only) and sort of overlook the water (a marina) at Mt Vernon at the Wharf. They also have fairly inexpensive raw bar items, but I found the oysters in particular quite bland (they weren't washed, thankfully)... cherrystones were better. The Twin Lobster special is also less expensive after 9pm or something. For something unusual and seafood, check out the Courthouse Seafood market where you can by fresh fish to have it cooked in the adjoining restaurant (they charge $1 more per-lb for this) but its not open air. And Kelly's on Revere beach is very much open air, be careful of the swooping seagulls, Bianchi's for pizza (someone mentioned them closing, though). The North End Festivals have the open air part of this, perhaps combined with a harbor islands picnic from Fresh Cheese or Tutto Italiano (eg pick up your food there and a boat from the far side of Christopher Columbus Park). Takeout calamari from the Daily Catch travels just well enough to make it to the Long Wharf area.

                        I also thought of the Cambridge Formaggio, which has the BBQ and sandwiches. Keep in mind they do pulled pork and Niman Ranch dogs on Brioche which may not be to all tastes, as well the sweetness of the sauces. Sandwiches are a more universal option, but perhaps not unique for someone visiting from Europe.

                        Its not Al Fresco dining, but instead of just searching out outdoor dining, Boston is a great walking city. Hounds have documented crawls for East Boston, JP, and Cambridge St in Cambridge. If you search the board, one of those could pique your interest. In fact, if you decide to do a crawl and post the details you probably wouldn't have trouble getting additional participants to join you and contribute their ideas.

                        1. re: gini

                          Paid another visit to Ernesto's recently, which I had liked previously. Didn't much care for it this time around (slices seemed tired and bland, with tough crust, though no one can argue with the huge portions) -- in fact, liked the slices at Crazy Dough's in Harvard Square better, which I've also revisited recently.

                        2. if you're looking for napolean pizza, stay away from santarpio's. the closest i've found to da michele's in naples is gran gusto's pizza margherita - their ricotta pie dessert is good as well. best cannoli i've found state-side is from modern in the north end.

                          go to floating rock in revere for some great cambodian food. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/542998

                          1. In Chinatown, I'd suggest any of the sandwiches (pork, steak) at Vietnamese Sandwich Shop on Washington and Beach Sts (I believe). They run about 3-4 bucks and are good size for lunch.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: BeanTownGolfer

                              The Bahn Mi sandwiches at Mei Sum in Chinatown are much better.

                            2. Thank you all of you for your enormous advice!

                              Where is the best place for lobster rolls?

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: kopenhavn

                                Hot lobster roll from Neptune Oyster

                                Neptune Oyster
                                63 Salem St Ste 1, Boston, MA 02113

                                1. re: fragolino

                                  That's a great lobster roll. For a cold lobster roll, Kelly's on Revere Beach is my favorite.

                                  1. re: gini

                                    So where is the best place to get a COLD lobster roll in Boston proper? Thought that Neptune's would have a good one...

                                    1. re: jinet12

                                      I did not find the great lobster roll in Boston, but then again I did not try Neptune. I await somebody's quest for both the hot and cold.

                              2. hilsener!
                                the best ice cream = rancatore's. toscanini's is also good.
                                the best hot dog = formaggio kitchen saturday lunch BBQ, fresh off the grill
                                the best lobster = chauncy creek lobster pound. it's a drive from boston, but you'll love sitting by the water eating fresh lobster, be sure to bring your own drinks.
                                for organic farm products check out the copley square market on Tuesday afternoons. there are also lots of nice organic farms within ~30km of boston too.
                                bread is generally better in denmark, but iggy's is not bad :)
                                but you are missing one of boston's specialties, the burger!
                                the best burger = bartley's at harvard square. you'll love the burger at the West Side Lounge (cambridge), too it's divine but a bit more refined with aioli and manchego.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: amychef

                                  If we're talking hot dogs, I can safely say I've never had a better one than at Speed's. Not even close, in fact.

                                  For lobster, Chauncey Creek is fine, but a solid drive from Boston to get to -- nice atmosphere there, for sure. Locally, Yankee Lobster offers up an excellent boiled lobster at a fair price (recently $25 for a pair with fries and slaw), though it's not exactly scenic.

                                  1. re: amychef

                                    Just had lunch at Chauncey Creek a couple of weekends ago.
                                    The lobster is good, as are the mussels and steamers.

                                    But, do not get the lobster roll, it's terrible. And served on a hamburger roll, blech!

                                    My favorite loster roll (sandwich), is at Zalek's in Wakefield. It's a Lobster Club for 14.95 and it's huge.

                                  2. Oceanaire in government center for oysters was good, but pricey. I got the 6 oyster special.

                                    I like Roy Moore Lobster in Rockport. Too touristy for me, but tasty inexpensive lobster.

                                    I liked this Malaysian restaurant in China Town very much. Name eludes me. The vegetable Kang Kung ? was noteworthy.

                                    1. Galleria Umberto was a good experience over all. Arancini and other items were all tasty. However, it is over rated. Arancini is too bland!

                                      1. Charlie's lobster roll was surely cheap, but too much mayo and fillers like celery for me.
                                        I did not get to try the one at Neptune's or Kelly's unfortunately. I was eating too many other things as well in the few days in Boston. Pizza Regina and Antico Forno were both not upto par for me. I have a special place in my heart for both the regular and the square pizzas at Di Fara's in Brooklyn, NY. IMHO it is far better than the Margherita at Patsy's in East Harlem.

                                        I could not try any hot dogs in Boston unfortunately.

                                        I could not find any fresh waffle cones in all of Boston.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: kopenhavn

                                          You went to E&B and still couldn't find a fresh waffle cone? They actually make them there, you know.

                                          Too bad you didn't eat everything you wanted, but seemed to stick to cheap and touristy rather than best in your choices. Better luck next time.

                                          1. re: kopenhavn

                                            kopenhavn, you wouldn't be the first poster here who thinks pizza from their one favorite New York pizzeria is the only acceptable version and that nothing else measures up to it. I'm afraid we've seen it all before.

                                            Will grant you that Pizzeria Regina's pizza is not Grimaldi's, for one. Whether that means PR's pie is inferior is another question. I like both, myself.

                                          2. The originator's visit is now over, but when it comes to lobster rolls I was surprised to not see anyone listing Belle Isle Seafood for cold, and Rachel's Kitchen for hot (on Fridays).

                                            7 Replies
                                            1. re: musicman

                                              I think Rachel's is closed, no?

                                                1. re: Bob Dobalina

                                                  Thank you - I only checked the Yellow Pages before writing that. I think they are the folks who opened Hungry Mother in Cambridge (a great place, by the way).

                                              1. re: musicman

                                                Have had the lobster roll at Belle Isle. It's kind of small, at a fairly reasonable price, full of good lobster meat, but if memory serves there was a lettuce leaf in the roll too. Liked least the fact that the eat-in area was extremely dirty.

                                                1. re: musicman

                                                  Mixed reviews here on Belle Isle's roll. What do you think of it?

                                                  1. re: yumyum

                                                    Interesting. I had a Belle Isle lobster roll last summer and thought it was the best I'd had in Boston by far. Lotsa tail and claw meat, light on the mayo, stuffed in a grilled (i think?) hot dog bun. It was really good, and the price was right --$15 maybe with fries? I agree completely that the ambiance leaves something to be desired. We ended up driving to the beach in Winthrop and sitting on the sea wall...

                                                    1. re: twentyoystahs

                                                      How are lobster rolls in Wiscasset, Maine? An informed source tells me that Red's Eats is the real deal if you will.

                                                2. Clearly, we're all very passionate about these topics. But let's remember that we've been asked for the best bread, too.

                                                  I recommend almost anything at either location of Hi Rise Bakery in Cambridge. If you want a meal from them, the pulled pork sandwich is shockingly good for a "bakery."

                                                  That or the oatmeal molasses loaf from Breadsong Bakery. They sell at the Davis Square Farmer's Market on Wednesdays, which is also a great place for organic produce and, when the guy's there, awesome $1 oysters.


                                                  13 Replies
                                                  1. re: Aaron Kagan

                                                    Oh my. We've had some very long discussions about bread before. (My favorite, for the record, is from B+R Artisan Breads.) Unfortunately the OP asked for help but didn't take the recommendations offered. This happens all too frequently but really, all you can say is c'est la vie!

                                                    1. re: yumyum

                                                      Okay, so between Neptune's and B & G Oysters, who has the best cold lobster roll?

                                                      1. re: jinet12

                                                        Opinions vary. I like them both -- indeed I like both restaurants a lot. My favorite cold roll this year was from Kelly's -- a classic on a grilled hot dog bun. Nice amount of sweet meat with a little mayo to hold it together.

                                                        1. re: yumyum

                                                          Had a "say goodbye to summer" lobster roll from Kelly's on Revere Beach on Sunday that was almost obscene in the amount of claw and knuckle meat heaped into the bun for $17. Really superb value for money.

                                                          (BTW I considered making a new thread on this, but I just love having this one come to the top for a good chuckle at the title.)

                                                          1. re: yumyum

                                                            Tthe title is befitting in all irony really.I intentionally chose such a title to bring a challenge into my quest in Boston. I know that Boston is not amongst the cheapest and not for the thriftiest of travellers, but it was my aim to do so in the cheapest way that Boston could be done. There will indeed be another time when I return to Boston and Cambridge and then I will indulge and spend away. Thank you everyone! Cheers! Bon Voyage!

                                                            1. re: kopenhavn

                                                              Just curious: did you like any of your meals here? I notice you've noted a few but mostly commented on how they weren't up to par as what you've had in nyc, france, fill-in-the-blank. Just curious what you did like here.

                                                              1. re: twentyoystahs

                                                                I suppose I have just been a little let down. I am sure the next time I am here I will have to take any of you serious hounds along with me. I could've been more lenient on my take on Boston, but please bear in mind I came with the goal of cheapest foremost and then quality. On the contrary, Roy Moore's lobster in Rockport was delightful to the shell as it were. I was only saying that Rockport, the town itself was touristy for me.

                                                                So the good food was:

                                                                Roy Moore's lobster,
                                                                Oceannaire (a bit of a splurge at $18 for the 6 oyster special but worth it),
                                                                Malaysian place in China Town (name ?) - ate this dark green vegetable with dried shrimp bits in it. Excellent!! It is called Kang Kung.

                                                                That's three good things.

                                                                  1. re: galleygirl

                                                                    Thank you! Ah, it's hidden shrimp goodness!

                                                              2. re: kopenhavn

                                                                Just one post of a positive nature, without what seemed a subtle put-down, would have been nice to read; especially after all the helpful comments posted. I'm not asking you to lie, just be gracious to the home crowd.

                                                                It did seem as if you liked nothing. Example: Roy Moore's is a cheap, good lobster place but deemed touristy. "Touristy" is in the eye of the beholder, I guess, because to me it's anything but. You go in, order a lobster, they boil it, put it on a paper plate and you go sit on some crates on the little back deck. Doesn't get much more straightforward than that, even on the docks.

                                                                1. re: three of us

                                                                  Thank you. Please see my latest post. I have given three good things that I liked. And, Roy Moore's itself was a lovely bay side lobster eating experience, just the town seemed a bit touristy for me.

                                                          2. re: jinet12

                                                            I've always gone to Neptune, but thought the cold lobster roll wa somewhat disappointing; too much mayo. So, I recently went to B&G to try their version, and found it to be far superior. It's also $29 which is a little outrageous. However, at B&G they serve it with a delicious homemade slaw, fresh pickles that were addictive and perfectly cooked french fries. So, as much as I love Neptune B&G is the place for me when it comes to lobster rolls.

                                                            1. re: Pegmeister

                                                              Thanks Pegmeister...I will go to B&G for a cold lobster roll then!