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Lobster in Boston + various questions

I'll be in Boston this week and looking for any tips from you guys.

I'll get a subway pass and be on foot. I love exploring that way, and I love to find places to eat for the food but also for the unique experience. My budget is low to moderate. I value quantity over quality. :)

1. I'm dying to find a lobster buffet or all you can eat lobster. I searched but couldn't find an answer on that. Are there any? If not, how about a suggestion where I can get the best steaming lobster with the drawn butter for the least $, so I can maybe order a double portion?

2. Is the Cheers bar worth a stop for lunch or something?

3. How about a suggestion for a good Clam Chowder?

4. Any other authentic Boston experiences I should go for?

I've been to Boston once before and had a nice lobster dish in Faulel (sp) Hall area. Nice but a little pricey for my budget this time.

Also any other suggestions for exploring the city? Last time I walked the red brick path and it was fascinating.

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  1. 1. There are no all you can eat lobsters around here. The Nordic Lodge in RI does it but that's far for you. The Aujourd'hui Sun. brunch has crab legs and other seafood, and is about $65. Lots of places have lobster specials, a few around touristy Fanueil Hall (where you were before), Whiskey's on Boylston St. usually has one and Mt. Vernon in E. Somerville has double lobsters too. All of those are doable on the T altho Mt. Vernon not super easy.

    2. Cheers isn't worth it unless you're obsessed with the show.

    3. Legal Seafood for clam chowder. I'd suggest Green St. but their corn chowder w/ bacon and fried clams isn't on the menu in the summertime.

    4. Search the board, Durgin Park, Pizzeria Regina and Locke Ober are often mentioned.

    I'd just pick certain neighborhoods and walk around, everything is close to each other. Lots of stuff (restaurants esp.) in the north end, shops and eats in the south end, cheap ethnic eats in Allston and a few funky stores, Cambridge (I like the walk from Central to Harvard Sq), etc.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Joanie

      Good advice above and immediately below. Two thoughts:

      --Mt. Vernon Restaurant is in fact close by the T, on the Orange Line at Sullivan Station.

      --Legal's makes a good version of thick NE style clam chowder, but if you want to actually taste clams and not thickener, try a thinner style NE clam chowder like the ones at Neptune Oyster or B&G Oysters.

      1. re: bachslunch

        Walked by Mt. Vernon this morning on my way to the T (it is about 200 yards from the Sullivan Square station). Looks like the twin lobster special is on Mondays.

        1. re: heathermb

          The way the Twin Lobster special used to work is they have it all the time at a certain price (lets say $16.99 or $18.99, although its been in the $20s depending on market price). After 9pm they knocked a buck or two off that price and Mondays it was less (for instance $14.99 instead of $16.99). At some price points there are limitations on the lobster (eg boiled only, sometimes baked stuffed is excluded or an extra charge, they also have a more expensive baked stuffed with seafood stuffing). So I believe they (this year I have only been to the Revere branch) still always have a twin lobster special, but its more of a special at certain times.

        2. re: bachslunch

          I just had the chowder at Morse on Washington St and was pleasantly surprised by all the clams and the dominant clam flavor. A good low budget option for the thinner style chowder and seafood in general (I know they sell lobster, and have lobster salad but don't think you can get it boiled / steamed there though.

          -----
          Morse Fish Co
          1401 Washington St, Boston, MA 02118

        3. re: Joanie

          The one time I had the Aujourd'hui brunch they had lobster (tails and claws) as part of the raw bar for brunch, and you could take as much as you wanted. $65 is expensive for a brunch, but worth it if you are going to put down some serious lobster in a great setting. I felt a bit like a pig (wrong glass sir...), but it was enjoyable. That was some time ago, so thing could have changed.

          I agree that Cheers is a tourist trap, however the one time I was dragged there we ate upstairs at the Hampshire House and had a burger that was suprisingly good. That space is now primarily a function room however, and I have not been there since. If you are really a fan of the show, the Faneuil Hall location has a layout that is much more authentic to what you saw on TV.

        4. I did a search of "Cheap lobster"Boston and several threads came up. Here's are a couple:

          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/310112
          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/512567

          No harm popping into Cheers and looking around. It's not great chow but lots of tourists like it and there's nothing wrong with that!

          This isn't a board that values quantity over quality so I can't help you there. If you're willing to take the T to Revere Beach, Kelly's Roast Beef has good lobster rolls and other goodies.

          There's a current post re. cheap and best in Boston. Scroll down and take a look. Also, do a search on "cheap"Boston and a lot of threads will come up.

          1 Reply
          1. re: three of us

            There are several bars around quincy market that do $10 lobsters during lunch.

          2. Hey,
            Where's the love for Harvard Square's Charlie's Kitchen, always on the menu, twin lobster special? Right here Hounds, right here!

            Harp

            13 Replies
            1. re: Harp00n

              Sorry, 2nd attempt at "linking to a place"...

              -----
              Charlie's Kitchen
              10 Eliot St, Cambridge, MA 02138

              1. re: Harp00n

                It's cheap yes, but not good. Mike's in Davis Square has a $9.99 lobster roll, which I've not tried.

                1. re: gini

                  "It's cheap yes, but not good."

                  You're kidding, right?

                  To quote the OP "My budget is low to moderate. I value quantity over quality" AND "How about a suggestion where I can get the best steaming lobster with drawn butter fot the least $, so maybe I can get a double portion?"

                  Now I understand you might have trepidation were it lobster thermador, for example. But we're talking steamed or boiled summer shedders, which is what everybody offers in their twofer specials that I'm aware of. So help me out here. Charlie's pulls two live lobsters from their prominently displayed tank and steams them properly. They're then delivers to the table w/ drawn butter. You then eat them accompanied by, oh say, a Harpoon IPA draught. At the end you go ahhh, lobstah! Charlie's may not have the ambiance that some Hounds might desire but ambiance wasn't in the OP's concerns. Nor is it in mine. Some of us really like Charlie's and for varying reason. So come if you will or stay away if you must. :-0)

                  Harp

                  1. re: Harp00n

                    My post was referring to Charlie's lobster *rolls*, which I find to be a mayonnaise-y hell. I didn't realize until now that you were talking about lobsters, proper. Teaches me to be a better reader.

                    1. re: gini

                      Was at Summershack again on Sunday for Jasper's roll.
                      IMO, it still rocks my world just as well as any of the other prominently named suspects. Yeah I know. that's a whole 'nuther post!

                      Harp

                      1. re: Harp00n

                        The chowder at Summer Shack is surprisingly good.

                        1. re: C. Hamster

                          I agree but then I'm also not surprised ;-)

                          Harp

                          1. re: Harp00n

                            My fav chowder especiallt for the money is at Kelly's. Easily accesable on the blue line.

                            1. re: phatchris

                              Dolphin on the Red Line is an underrated chowder, but last time I was there they scrapped the fish chowder which was the better one and were just offering the seafood. Also do a nice scallop filled baked stuffed lobster for a pretty standard price -- I like it better than Summer Shack's baked stuffed which is a lot more, although having the pan roasted at SS is worth it if you are going to spend the bucks there.

                              1. re: itaunas

                                Is the lobster at Dolphin stuffed with bits of scallops and bread crumbs? It almost sounds like there's just scallops in the lobster which would be weird (for me), but I haven't had lobster of any sort besides in a roll in a while and that sounds good. Thanks.

                                1. re: Joanie

                                  Just like there are versions of baked stuffed which include crab and sometimes lobster meat, its bread crumbs and crackers, butter, herbs, and scallops. Don't expect dry boat scallops and its shows a bit of the Greek influences as opposed to Italian or Portuguese at other area restaurants -- bit of oregano, but no feta or unexpected things there.

                                2. re: itaunas

                                  Other than a properly steamed hardshell, of say about 2.5 lbs., Jasper's pan roasted is my favorite preparation in the world. In fact, it's 8:45am and you got me jonesing for one right now!

                                  Harp

                                3. re: phatchris

                                  I've had many a fine bowl phatchris at the Revere Beach location whilst in varying stages of sobriety. :)

                                  Harp