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Need some suggestions for Boston dining

My husband and I will be spending 2 nights in Boston April 22-24 and we're hoping you Boston hounds can point us in the direction of some good grub! We're staying at the Liberty Hotel (to give you an idea of our location) but we're will to branch out from there. I have gotten one suggestion so far, from a western Mass. hound who suggested Abe and Louie's for a good steak. WOULD YOU AGREE?? We don't mind fancy eating one night, but we like dives and diners too, and just about any ethnic food you can name. If you only had 2 nights in Boston, where might you dine? Some breakfast/lunch and dinner place suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

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    1. Scampo at your hotel is great, nice pasta dishes, bread/rolls are incredible but I can't pass up the lobster pizza even though I keep wanting to try the shrimp scampi version. You are within walking distance of the North End and there are plenty of posts on that area. You may also enjoy the Charles St area. I'm a fan of Abe & Louies, great steaks but their desserts really calln out to me.

      -----
      Scampo
      215 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114

      Abe & Louie's
      793 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02116

      1 Reply
      1. re: Pegmeister

        Thank you Pegmeister, that's good to know. I was hoping to have at least one meal in the hotel. I looked through the thread mentioned above and unless I missed something, there are only 6 or 7 restaurants recommended. The Afghan restaurant looked interesting, and maybe Tamarind, but I'm sure Boston has more to offer than that! I'm not necessarily looking for the current "it" restaurant, I'm looking for variety and just really solid good food. Maybe a good pho joint, bistro, BBQ, Thai, or even an outstanding burger! I'm allergic to shellfish so heavy on the seafood places don't appeal to me very much. I'll keep digging on the Boston Board and hopefully something will turn up. Thanks for the Scampo rec.!

        -----
        Scampo
        215 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114

      2. Legal Seafood has a number of locations and has its fans and detractors (I am a fan). This week they opened a new location on Northern Ave called Legal Harborside. Have not eaten there yet but stopped by to see what the facility looks like and was very impressed. It has a large open kitchen and nice looking bar area, but the most impressive aspect is the wall of windows looking out over the harbor. Would suggest you at least try a lunch there.

        It is also an interesting area to walk. If you take a cab your could after lunch walk back toward central Boston on the Harbor Walk which would be about a mile. Along the way you would pass the Fish Pier, World Tade Center, Instiute of Contemporary Art and have more terrific views of the harbor.

        -----
        Fish Pier Restaurant
        667 E Broadway, Boston, MA 02127

        1. junie, happy to help but it's a big city with many options!

          you need to help us help you. do you have and want to use a car?or the T? do you care if the great food is in an uglier part of town? do you have daytime plans that you'd like your foods to be in the same general area? the recent visitor threads have been for more high- end dining, as is the one referenced above. here is one with advice for a newcomer looking for good food in the same area where you are staying. in the meantime, you might want to search under certain areas of the city and or particular ethnic foods or 'best'.

          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/778015

          17 Replies
          1. re: opinionatedchef

            Thanks! I will follow your leads and see what I find! We will have a car but would prefer to use public transportation or cabs. I am somewhat familiar w/Cambridge but know very little of Boston, except the Aquarium - so I would like to explore Boston proper. I will be busy Friday afternoon but would like to freshen up at the hotel and then go somewhere for a nice dinner. I rarely eat steak but Abe & Louie's has been highly recommended. What do you think? Otherwise, maybe a bistro. I like high end food but I like an elegant but casual atmosphere! I don't like fussy places that are pretentious or make you feel uncomfortable.

            On Saturday we would like to head out mid morning, do a little sightseeing and find a nice brunch or lunch spot that would also offer a nice tour of some particular area of the city - maybe a walk through some quaint residential area or a walk near the harbor. We love bookstores, record stores, eclectic shops and museums. Back to the hotel late afternoon and then perhaps some really good ethnic food for dinner. The Afghan restaurant might suit that bill, or Tamarind in Cambridge.

            A Sunday morning stroll in a different neighborhood would be nice with a stop for brunch/lunch. Unfortunately that is Easter Sunday so it might be tough to just walk in and plop yourself down somewhere, so maybe we need to plan ahead and try to get a reservation.

            Maybe someone can tell me about the area where we're staying. Is it a good area for walking around? Are there shops, etc.?

            Thanks, I will now go off and do some more reading.

            -----
            Abe & Louie's
            793 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02116

            1. re: JunieB

              You might want to wander across the Boston Common and stroll through Chinatown on Easter. We like to do that when holiday crowds and limited menus make us avoid most restaurants. You could do dim sum!

              Penny
              http://www.bostonzest.com/

              1. re: BostonZest

                I love that idea. I don't know where Boston Common is, but I'm sure I can find it! Dim sum sounds like a terrific idea!! We just moved to western Mass. by way of NYC, Philadelphia and San Francisco - and there are no really good Chinese restaurants here, so we could do with a good Chinese fix. Any particular place you would recommend for dim sum?

                1. re: JunieB

                  Do you like carts? Or would you prefer to order off a menu for dim sum?

                  1. re: JunieB

                    Hei La Moon is IMHO the tastiest dim sum place in Boston :)

                    A & L does have really good steak, but be prepared to wade through the epic cruise near the Prudential center that weekend o get there!

                    -----
                    Hei La Moon
                    88 Beach St, Boston, MA 02111

                2. re: JunieB

                  Charles St is a very pleasant walk, old Boston feel, antique stores and a sprinkling of restaurants. Beacon Hill Bisto is a pleasant place to stop and have a drink at the bar; LalaRokh is good for an ethnic meal; 75 Chestnut (off of Charles) for more of a neighborhood feel. From there you can stroll through Boston Garden and on to Chinatown.

                  -----
                  75 Chestnut
                  75 Chestnut St, Boston, MA 02108

                  1. re: Pegmeister

                    Thank you Pegmeister! Exactly the kind of information I was looking for. I'm glad to hear we will be in a good area for walking and I like the "old-Boston" description. I saw other references to LalaRokh so I will check out their menu as well as 75 Chestnut. Feeling better about our visit already. I know we won't be able to do everything in 2 short days, but this will get us started and we will have a basis for our next visit! Thanks again!

                    -----
                    75 Chestnut
                    75 Chestnut St, Boston, MA 02108

                    1. re: Pegmeister

                      If it is a nice sunny day, a walk on Charles Street (and a meal in that area) could be supplemented by a walk through Beacon Hill (maybe even a tour!). It is quintessential 18th and 19th century Boston at a very pretty time of year. Also, in addition to the Common being near Chinatown, so is the Public Garden (which may seem like an extension of the Common). To me, April is the prettiest time of year to walk there. Don't miss the swan boats for an only-in-Boston experience.

                      1. re: PinchOfSalt

                        Thank you. That sounds lovely. Can you tell me how far the walk is from the Liberty to Beacon Hill? Or the Liberty to the Boston Common? I guess I need to start by learning the neighborhoods. I thought the hotel was in/on Beacon Hill!! As to carts or menu for dim sum, I don't really care as long as the food is good!

                        1. re: JunieB

                          I'm not good with directions so hopefully someone else will chime in. The Charles is just a brief walk, minutes, from the Liberty, and a straight walk to the common probably takes about 10 minutes, of course you will linger on Charles even if it's just to window shop. For an old time bar you may want to stop in at the Seven. They also make a good clam chowder

                          1. re: Pegmeister

                            That sounds reasonable. I was trying to get a sense of whether or not the Boston Common and Beacon Hill were within walking distance or if we would have to take cabs. Sounds like easy walking distances. I was just saying to my husband, maybe we should try to find some good clam chowder! Great, thanks!

                            1. re: Pegmeister

                              Where is the Seven? I can't find it on Google maps or the web.

                              1. re: JunieB

                                Seven is right on Charles. It's not the type of place that you would be apt to find a web site for, but people are friendly. Clam chowder is the thicker creamy style, served in a white ceramic mug.

                                1. re: JunieB

                                  Sevens is on Charles Street, between Mount Vernon and Pinckney. It's one of the few bars with an authentic patina in Boston, I think, and just about the polar opposite of the scene you'll discover at the Liberty on Saturday night.
                                  Charles Street is beautiful, a lovely stroll, and I'd recommend exploring the flat of the hill (the area between Charles Street and the river, not the store of the same name) and walking up Mount Vernon to Louisburg Square and the State House. Come back down on Chestnut Street and you'll have seen some of the city's most beautiful streets.
                                  On Sunday, you might try brunch at Beacon Hill Hotel at the end of Charles Street -- it's a very pleasant room and the brunch is quite good, and being a small hotel they'll be open on Easter.
                                  Other favorites from when we lived off Charles Street are Paramount for breakfast/lunch and Cafe Vanilla for surprisingly fabulous croissants. I don't think 75 Chestnut is anything special, and definitely not worth one of your two dinners in town.
                                  In the South End, another lovely neighborhood: Franklin Cafe or Coppa, both on Shawmut, or Hammersly's for dinner. You might have a few oysters at B&G followed by dinner at any of the three. Metropolis is a favorite for brunch, and definitely the most low-key on Tremont Street.
                                  Finally about Abe and Louie's: there is only one place I'll consider eating on that side of Boylston Street and it's Parish Cafe, down by the Garden. If you love steak, get the steak frites at Franklin Cafe.

                                  -----
                                  Beacon Hill Bistro
                                  25 Charles St, Boston, MA 02114

                                  Franklin Cafe
                                  278 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                                  Paramount
                                  44 Charles St, Boston, MA 02114

                                  Coppa
                                  253 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                              2. re: JunieB

                                The Liberty is very very close (practically across the street) from the Beacon Hill neighborhood. There is a very big traffic interchange just south of your hotel. Cambridge Street goes roughly east from the interchange and Charles Street goes roughly south from that interchange. Cambridge Street is the northern edge of Beacon Hill. Charles Street goes through Beacon Hill (though most of the neighborhood is to the east of Charles Street). If you walk down Charles until you reach some parks, you will have found the Common (to the east of Charles) and the Public Garden (to the west). Turn left when you get to the other side of the parkland and go a few more blocks - you will be in Chinatown, where there is a very nice variety of dim sum restaurants to choose among. This should be a very pleasant walk on a nice day. If you do wander through Beacon Hill I hope you will find it as charming as I do; the two parks are at their prettiest in April and May. Enjoy!

                                (Go to maps.google.com and search for Liberty Hotel Boston. You will see exactly the map you need to visualize this walk from your hotel to dim sum through Beacon Hill and along where the Common and Public Garden meet.)

                                As for which dim sum restaurant to choose, there are several that have fierce supporters. I like Winsor Cafe for menu ordering and China Pearl or Chau Chau City for cart-style. Some other folks would put Hei La Moon on top of their lists. (I have eaten there and been happy, too.) There has been a lot of discussion of dim sum on this board in the past. Perhaps you might want to check for old threads on the topic and ask for current opinions of the places that seem most interesting to you.

                                -----
                                Hei La Moon
                                88 Beach St, Boston, MA 02111

                                China Pearl Restaurant
                                9 Tyler St, Boston, MA 02111

                                1. re: PinchOfSalt

                                  Ha! Thank you. Maybe I shouldn't admit this, but I DID look at the map. However, I'm pretty bad at reading them and I couldn't tell if Chinatown was a 15 minute walk or a 60 minute walk! Thanks for the Chinese food recs. I almost have a plan now!

                                  1. re: JunieB

                                    If you make it to Chinatown there are also a couple of nice hot pot type places. I tend to favor Shabu Zen on Tyler St, or if you prefer Malaysian, Penang is a good stop. It's on Washington. The only caution on Penang though is it's apt to be mobbed with families on the weekend.

                                    -----
                                    Shabu Zen
                                    16 Tyler St, Boston, MA 02111

                      2. here is a very long intro to boston that i wrote awhile ago. hope it helps.p.s. remember that CH now has a map that shows up to the right side of the pg, showing locations of restnts mentioned. you can zero in to street names too.

                        I have lived here 40 years and really like to steer few-day visitors who are food-oriented>> towards great dining in attractive and historic walking areas- so they can have the best of both worlds. Below the dotted line is a detailed piece i put together for visitors. DO avoid eating at Faneuil Hall.

                        The most consistently raved-about lobster rolls for CHs seem to be from Neptune Oyster in the North End- a 7 minute walk from Faneuil Hall, and also B and G Oysters (tiny place) in the South End . Island Creek Oyster Bar is a new restnt that has rcvd a great deal of kudos on CH and your taxi there would allow you to ask to be driven down Commonwealth Ave., a grand Victorian boulevard designed after the Champs Elysees, and one of the handsomest features of Boston.

                        http://www.islandcreekoysterbar.com/

                        http://neptuneoyster.com/

                        http://www.bandgoysters.com/#bgo_home

                        I would strongly recommend that you have lunch at Pizzeria Regina in the North End; certainly one of our most iconic food spots with a totally unique atmosphere and authentic Italian pizza that is for many people, the best in New England.(see my comments further down

                        )

                        For very amazing creative and expensive food, CHs consistently recommend Oya (Japanese and Japanese fusion) and Clio (very International in influences with many unusual cutting-edge ingredients and preparations; lots of Japanese infuence.) Clio is right off Commonwealth Ave and near Island Creek Oyster.

                        while i was hunting for some of the links above, i ran across this report from a recent NYC visitor, mentioning a few of the places that interest you:
                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/741449
                        -------------------------------------------------

                        For the most attractive and historic parts of our city i would direct you to the area around the Public Garden, CommonwealthAve and Newbury Streets, the SouthEnd, Charles Street, all lovely historic areas that show off the best of our city. This is long!:

                        North End/ Waterfront/ Aquarium/ Faneuil Hall-Quincy Market
                        If at all possible. one must go to the original Pizzeria Regina in the North End.(note- closed Sun.) This is many aficionados' fav pizza place, period. It is the original(and ONLY worthwhile) location of what is now a chain, and most importantly, its pizzas taste like no others , partly because of the WWII oven they use, which is more than 'seasoned' by now. This pizza tastes like it does in Rome. It is also a tiny CROWDED, loud, FUNKY space; unique; not decor-changed since the 50's maybe. If you haven’t been there, don't go on a wkend ,and go for lunch or earlier dinner to avoid lines.

                        Regina’s is located on the outer edge of the compact North End, so after pizza, walk over to the Hanover St. (main drag) area and feel the history of this unique neighborhood. Its oldest extant buildings are from the early 19th c.; through the centuries it has been peopled successively, by : rich Bostonians, blacks , Jews, Italians. It has been Italian since the early 20th c. While harbor-dwelling yuppies have been encroaching of late, it still has lots of sidewalk life, Italian being spoken, bocce being played. There are some wonderful gelato/cafes on Hanover St. I particularly like the gelato at. Café Sport, and Modern Pastry is across the street, with wonderful quaresimali
                        ( a version of almond biscotti )and sfogliadel, a very unusual 3 cornered hat of layered/crunchy pastry filled with a farmer's cheese/candied fruit mixture. (While some may steer you to Mike’s Pastry, I won't.)The North End is also home to the 18th c. Old North Church and 19th c. Seamen's Home etc etc. If you like to discover-by-walking, the end of Hanover St away from downtown Boston- leads onto the waterfront area. This is also architecturally and historically fascinating because it is very intact with its 19th c. warehouses/wharves (now water view condos). With all I've described, you might find it worth your while to go to Regina's and the North End for lunch and the afternoon. You could incorporate the nearby Aquarium, and Sel de la Terre for dinner (excellent ,modern French style.)You could also go the local seafood route and try Neptune Oyster in the North End.

                        http://www.pizzeriaregina.com/

                        Quincy market is the old historic marketplace from 18th and 19th c. Boston. It was the prototype for most of the other U.S. 'Commercial Historic Restoration/Tourist Attractions'. It has endless vendor carts and shops and restaurants but i do not see them ever get CH recs.

                        The South End
                        The South End is Boston’s amazing well-preserved and very large Victorian district, chock-a-block w/ handsome brick and brownstone rowhouses grouped around pocket parks in the middle of all the side street cul-de-sacs. There is a large gay population and young yuppie couples with strollers. Lots of super restaurants(mostly bistro style). Union Bar and Grill and Aquitaine and Erbaluce are my own favs. Union is handsome, dark, comfy with amer.regional food(delish. cornbread in a skillet brought to you when you sit down).Aquitaine is an authentic French bistro with great Steak Frites and simple traditional roasted or grilled food (also a delic. brunch- duck confit sandwich w/ melted gruyere anyone?!)in a very handsome atmosphere and beautiful historic neighborhood. 4 blocks away is Tremont 647 and their famous fun Pajama Brunch, where all their servers, chefs etc. wear their pjs . Tremont is also known for its national-competition winning BBQ and grilled meat and seafood along with Asian and Mexican influenced foods; laid back and fun atmosphere. On the far edge of the South End is Toro, a very loud crowded Spanish tapas place owned by one of our most famous innovative chefs, Ken Oringer, whose Clio is one of 2 of Boston’s most innovative(Asian influenced) restaurant (and very expensive).

                        http://www.aquitaineboston.com/

                        Back Bay
                        Make sure to experience one of Boston's most beautiful features: Comm(onwealth) Ave between Mass(achusetts) Ave and Arlington St.(next to the Public Garden, the oldest arboretum/public park in the U.S. ) This part of Comm. Ave was designed after the Champs Elysees in Paris and is a 9 block long strip of tree, bench and statue- lined park with handsome 19th c. mansions lining both sides. It is parallel to and one block away from Newbury Street, Boston’s center of couture and art galleries , with many restaurants. Right around the corner from the Public Garden end of Newbury Street is Parish Cafe on Boylston St. with great sandwiches designed by different Boston chefs

                        Beacon Hill and Charles St.
                        Across the Public Garden, away from Comm Ave, is Beacon Hill, Boston’s well preserved elite neighborhood of 18th and 19th c. brick town and rowhouses.Also the spot for our famous gold domed State House. Historic Charles Street, full of restaurants and shops, runs along the base of Beacon Hill. In that neighborhood, Figs has good simple Italian pizzas, pastas etc. For dinner, Grotto has excellent well priced less-tomato-saucey Northern Italian food and seafood. Lala Rokh has delicious Mediterranean-Persian food with grilled and stewed lamb and eggplant taking the spotlight. It is a very quiet comfortable resting spot after a long day of walking.

                        Fenway Park
                        Next to our beloved old baseball park is a terrific Mexican taco place, La Verdad. Their tacos of carne asada(grilled beef), pescado(fish),are the best i have ever had, and be sure to also get their refried beans .Open for lunch and dinner (but not on sundays in winter)and a 5 minute drive from our amazing Museum of Fine Arts, world famous for its substantial collections of French Impressionism, American paintings and decorative arts, and Japanese art. (our new Art of the Americas wing has just opened in 2011.

                        Sel de la Terre
                        Boylston St., Boston, MA 02199 Remove

                        La Verdad
                        Lansdowne St, Boston, MA 02215 Remove

                        Island Creek Oyster Bar
                        Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215 Remove

                        Toro
                        Washington St, Boston, MA 02118 Remove

                        Lala Rokh
                        Mount Vernon Street, Boston, MA 02108 Remove

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

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

                        Toro
                        1704 Washington St, Boston, MA 02118

                        Tremont 647
                        647 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02118

                        Clio
                        370-A Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215

                        Parish Cafe
                        361 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02116

                        Modern Pastry
                        257 Hanover St, Boston, MA

                        La Verdad
                        1 Lansdowne St, Boston, MA 02215

                        Sel de la Terre
                        774 Boylston St., Boston, MA 02199

                        Lala Rokh
                        97 Mount Vernon Street, Boston, MA 02108

                        Erbaluce
                        69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

                        Island Creek Oyster Bar
                        500 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: opinionatedchef

                          I updated and revamped the above post; plse trash it. I hope this helps (it is Looooooooong!)

                          I have lived here 40 years and really like to steer few-day visitors who are food-oriented>> towards great dining in attractive and historic walking areas- so they can have the best of both worlds. Below is a detailed piece i put together for visitors.

                          For the most attractive and historic parts of our city i would direct you to the area around the Public Garden, Commonwealth Ave and Newbury Streets, the South End, Charles Street/Beacon Hill, all lovely historic areas that show off the best of our city.

                          *North End/ Waterfront/ Aquarium/ Faneuil Hall-Quincy Market*

                          If at all possible. one must go to the original Pizzeria Regina in the North End.(note- closed Sun.) This is many aficionados' fav pizza place, period. It is the original(and ONLY worthwhile) location of what is now a chain, and most importantly, its pizzas taste like no others , partly because of the WWII oven they use, which is more than 'seasoned' by now. This pizza tastes like it does in Rome. It is also a tiny CROWDED, loud, FUNKY space; unique; not decor-changed since the 50's maybe. If you haven’t been there, don't go on a wkend ,and go for lunch or earlier dinner to avoid lines.

                          Regina’s is located on the outer edge of the compact North End, so after pizza, walk over to the Hanover St. (main drag) area and feel the history of this unique neighborhood. Its oldest extant buildings are from the early 19th c.; through the centuries it has been peopled successively, by : rich Bostonians, blacks , Jews, Italians. It has been Italian since the early 20th c. While harbor-dwelling yuppies have been encroaching of late, it still has lots of sidewalk life, Italian being spoken, bocce being played. For a filling snack, Galeria Umberto Rosticeria is unique for its large arancini, calzone and Sicilian pizza by the slice. There are some wonderful gelato/cafes on Hanover St. I particularly like the gelato at. Café Sport. Modern Pastry is across the street, with wonderful almond biscotti ,torrone, and sfogliadel, a very unusual 3 cornered hat of layered/crunchy pastry filled with a farmer's cheese/candied fruit mixture. (While a few may steer you to Mike’s Pastry, I won't.) For very upscale Italian dining, Prezza is highly touted. And the tiny jam packed no-reservations Neptune Oyster is the temple of the freshest seafood, impeccably prepared for traditionalists and foodies alike and always in the Top 5 lists.The North End is also home to the 18th c. Old North Church and 19th c. Seamen's Home etc etc. If you like to discover-by-walking, the end of Hanover St away from downtown Boston- leads onto the waterfront area. This is also architecturally and historically fascinating because it is very intact with its 19th c. warehouses/wharves (now waterview condos). With all I've described, you might find it worth your while to go to Regina's and the North End for lunch and the afternoon and maybe dinner. You could incorporate the nearby Aquarium, and dinner at Neptune Oyster or Sel de la Terre (excellent ,modern French style.) Street parking is near impossible in the North End.

                          http://www.pizzeriaregina.com/

                          Quincy market is the old historic marketplace from 18th and 19th c. Boston. It was the prototype for most of the other U.S. 'Commercial Historic Restoration/Tourist Attractions'. It has endless vendor carts and shops and restaurants. Good place to sample some finger food or ice cream but not more. Nearby are CH lunch favs- Sultan's Kitchen , and I have lived here 40 years and really like to steer few-day visitors who are food-oriented>> towards great dining in attractive and historic walking areas- so they can have the best of both worlds. Below is a detailed piece i put together for visitors.

                          For the most attractive and historic parts of our city i would direct you to the area around the Public Garden, Commonwealth Ave and Newbury Streets, the South End, Charles Street/Beacon Hill, all lovely historic areas that show off the best of our city.

                          *North End/ Waterfront/ Aquarium/ Faneuil Hall-Quincy Market*
                          If at all possible. one must go to the original Pizzeria Regina in the North End.(note- closed Sun.) This is many aficionados' fav pizza place, period. It is the original(and ONLY worthwhile) location of what is now a chain, and most importantly, its pizzas taste like no others , partly because of the WWII oven they use, which is more than 'seasoned' by now. This pizza tastes like it does in Rome. It is also a tiny CROWDED, loud, FUNKY space; unique; not decor-changed since the 50's maybe. If you haven’t been there, don't go on a wkend ,and go for lunch or earlier dinner to avoid lines.

                          Regina’s is located on the outer edge of the compact North End, so after pizza, walk over to the Hanover St. (main drag) area and feel the history of this unique neighborhood. Its oldest extant buildings are from the early 19th c.; through the centuries it has been peopled successively, by : rich Bostonians, blacks , Jews, Italians. It has been Italian since the early 20th c. While harbor-dwelling yuppies have been encroaching of late, it still has lots of sidewalk life, Italian being spoken, bocce being played. For a filling snack, Galeria Umberto Rosticeria is unique for its large arancini, calzone and Sicilian pizza by the slice. There are some wonderful gelato/cafes on Hanover St. I particularly like the gelato at. Café Sport. Modern Pastry is across the street, with wonderful almond biscotti ,torrone, and sfogliadel, a very unusual 3 cornered hat of layered/crunchy pastry filled with a farmer's cheese/candied fruit mixture. (While a few may steer you to Mike’s Pastry, I won't.) For very upscale Italian dining, Prezza is highly touted. And the tiny jam packed no-reservations Neptune Oyster is the temple of the freshest seafood, impeccably prepared for traditionalists and foodies alike and always in the Top 5 lists.The North End is also home to the 18th c. Old North Church and 19th c. Seamen's Home etc etc. If you like to discover-by-walking, the end of Hanover St away from downtown Boston- leads onto the waterfront area. This is also architecturally and historically fascinating because it is very intact with its 19th c. warehouses/wharves (now waterview condos). With all I've described, you might find it worth your while to go to Regina's and the North End for lunch and the afternoon and maybe dinner. You could incorporate the nearby Aquarium, and dinner at Neptune Oyster or Sel de la Terre (excellent ,modern French style.) Street parking is near impossible in the North End.

                          http://www.pizzeriaregina.com/

                          Quincy market is the old historic marketplace from 18th and 19th c. Boston. It was the prototype for most of the other U.S. 'Commercial Historic Restoration/Tourist Attractions'. It has endless vendor carts and shops and restaurants. Good place to sample some finger food or ice cream but not more. Nearby are CH lunch favs- Sultan's Kitchen , and Sam La Grassa's for huge sandwiches.

                          *The South End*
                          The South End is Boston’s amazing well-preserved and very large Victorian district, chock-a-block w/ handsome brick and brownstone rowhouses grouped around pocket parks in the middle of all the side street cul-de-sacs. There is a large gay population and young stylish couples with strollers. Lots of super restaurants(mostly bistro style) and an active sidewalk culture. Union Bar and Grill and Aquitaine and Erbaluce are my own favs. Union is handsome, dark, comfy with Amer.regional food(delish. cornbread in a skillet brought to you when you sit down).Aquitaine is an authentic French bistro with great Steak Frites and simple traditional roasted or grilled food (also a delic. brunch- duck confit sandwich w/ melted gruyere anyone?!)in a very handsome atmosphere and beautiful historic neighborhood. 4 blocks away is Tremont 647 and their famous fun Pajama Brunch, where all their servers, chefs etc. wear their pjs . Tremont is also known for its national-competition winning BBQ and grilled meat and seafood along with Asian and Mexican influenced foods; laid back and fun atmosphere. The Gallows and Coppa are two recent bistro menus with many fans.

                          On a far edge of the South End is Toro, a very loud crowded Spanish tapas place owned by one of our most famous innovative chefs, Ken Oringer, whose Clio is one of Boston’s 2 most innovative and expensive (Asian influenced) restaurants . On a different edge of the South End is Myers+Chang, a casual hip 'new Chinese' menu ,and great drinks and weekend dim sum. On another edge of the South End is Mistral, a dramatic bustling elegant space with Northern Italian foods, popular with the expense account set, and Masa, a comfy Southwestern bistro.

                          http://www.aquitaineboston.com/

                          *Back Bay *
                          Make sure to experience one of Boston's most beautiful features: Comm(onwealth) Ave between Mass(achusetts) Ave and Arlington St.(next to the Public Garden, the oldest arboretum/public park in the U.S. ) This part of Comm. Ave was designed after the Champs Elysees in Paris and is a 9 block long strip of tree, bench and statue- lined park with handsome 19th c. mansions lining both sides. It is parallel to and one block away from Newbury Street, Boston’s center of couture and art galleries , with many restaurants. Right around the corner from the Public Garden end of Newbury Street is Parish Cafe on Boylston St. with great sandwiches designed by different Boston chefs . At the other end of Newbury St. is Sonsie, a handsome swank spot with a broad menu and loud bar, which is popular with the Euro crowd. Also near that end of Newbury St, are Clio, Deuxave and Island Creek Oyster Bar, the first two known for innovative high end dining and the latter for abundant fresh seafood.

                          *Beacon Hill and Charles St.*
                          Across the Public Garden, away from Comm Ave, is Beacon Hill, Boston’s well preserved elite neighborhood of 18th and 19th c. brick town and rowhouses.Also the spot for our famous gold domed State House. Historic Charles Street, full of restaurants and shops, runs along the base of Beacon Hill. In that neighborhood, Figs has good simple Italian pizzas, pastas etc. For dinner, the intimate Grotto has excellent well priced Northern Italian influenced food . Lala Rokh has delicious Mediterranean-Persian food with grilled and stewed lamb and eggplant taking the spotlight. It is a very quiet comfortable resting spot after a long day of walking. It's sister restaurant on Charles St. is Bin 26, for Northern Italian.

                          Boston has many ethnic cuisines represented here. Our most established immigrant groups are Italian, Irish, Chinese, Portuguese, and Armenian. In recent years communities from Russia, Cambodia, Brazil and Central America have grown substantially. Unfortunately, most great ethnic eats are located in the less attractive parts of Boston and its close towns. Some are easier to access than others via the T , but street parking is usually available.

                          For reference, here are some neighborhoods w/ CH fav spots:

                          *Chinatown*:

                          Dimsum carts or dim sum menu ordering: Winsor Cafe for the latter. Hei la Moon and Chau Chau City and Great Taste for the former. Peach Farm for meals.

                          Bakeries with many savories as well as sweets:

                          Mei Sum, Eldo Cake House, 101 Bakery, Ho Yuen

                          *Fenway Park*
                          Next to our beloved old baseball park is a terrific Mexican taco place, La Verdad. Their tacos of carne asada(grilled beef), pescado(fish),are the real deal and the best i have had here, and be sure to also get their refried beans . A 5 minute drive away is our amazing Museum of Fine Arts, world famous for its substantial collections of French Impressionism, American paintings and decorative arts, and Japanese art. (our new Art of the Americas wing has just opened in 2011.

                          Hope you have a great time ! for huge sandwiches.

                          *The South End*

                          The South End is Boston’s amazing well-preserved and very large Victorian district, chock-a-block w/ handsome brick and brownstone rowhouses grouped around pocket parks in the middle of all the side street cul-de-sacs. There is a large gay population and young stylish couples with strollers. Lots of super restaurants(mostly bistro style) and an active sidewalk culture. Union Bar and Grill and Aquitaine and Erbaluce are my own favs. Union is handsome, dark, comfy with Amer.regional food(delish. cornbread in a skillet brought to you when you sit down).Aquitaine is an authentic French bistro with great Steak Frites and simple traditional roasted or grilled food (also a delic. brunch- duck confit sandwich w/ melted gruyere anyone?!)in a very handsome atmosphere and beautiful historic neighborhood. 4 blocks away is Tremont 647 and their famous fun Pajama Brunch, where all their servers, chefs etc. wear their pjs . Tremont is also known for its national-competition winning BBQ and grilled meat and seafood along with Asian and Mexican influenced foods; laid back and fun atmosphere. The Gallows and Coppa are two recent bistro menus with many fans.

                          On a far edge of the South End is Toro, a very loud crowded Spanish tapas place owned by one of our most famous innovative chefs, Ken Oringer, whose Clio is one of Boston’s 2 most innovative and expensive (Asian influenced) restaurants . On a different edge of the South End is Myers+Chang, a casual hip 'new Chinese' menu ,and great drinks and weekend dim sum. On another edge of the South End is Mistral, a dramatic bustling elegant space with Northern Italian foods, popular with the expense account set, and Masa, a comfy Southwestern bistro.

                          http://www.aquitaineboston.com/

                          *Back Bay *

                          Make sure to experience one of Boston's most beautiful features: Comm(onwealth) Ave between Mass(achusetts) Ave and Arlington St.(next to the Public Garden, the oldest arboretum/public park in the U.S. ) This part of Comm. Ave was designed after the Champs Elysees in Paris and is a 9 block long strip of tree, bench and statue- lined park with handsome 19th c. mansions lining both sides. It is parallel to and one block away from Newbury Street, Boston’s center of couture and art galleries , with many restaurants. Right around the corner from the Public Garden end of Newbury Street is Parish Cafe on Boylston St. with great sandwiches designed by different Boston chefs . At the other end of Newbury St. is Sonsie, a handsome swank spot with a broad menu and loud bar, which is popular with the Euro crowd. Also near that end of Newbury St, are Clio, Deuxave and Island Creek Oyster Bar, the first two known for innovative high end dining and the latter for abundant fresh seafood.

                          *Beacon Hill and Charles St.*

                          Across the Public Garden, away from Comm Ave, is Beacon Hill, Boston’s well preserved elite neighborhood of 18th and 19th c. brick town and rowhouses.Also the spot for our famous gold domed State House. Historic Charles Street, full of restaurants and shops, runs along the base of Beacon Hill. In that neighborhood, Figs has good simple Italian pizzas, pastas etc. For dinner, the intimate Grotto has excellent well priced Northern Italian influenced food . Lala Rokh has delicious Mediterranean-Persian food with grilled and stewed lamb and eggplant taking the spotlight. It is a very quiet comfortable resting spot after a long day of walking. It's sister restaurant on Charles St. is Bin 26, for Northern Italian.

                          Boston has many ethnic cuisines represented here. Our most established immigrant groups are Italian, Irish, Chinese, Portuguese, and Armenian. In recent years communities from Russia, Cambodia, Brazil and Central America have grown substantially. Unfortunately, most great ethnic eats are located in the less attractive parts of Boston and its close towns. Some are easier to access than others via the T , but street parking is usually available.

                          For reference, here are some neighborhoods w/ CH fav spots:

                          *Chinatown*:

                          Dimsum carts or dim sum menu ordering: Winsor Cafe for the latter. Hei la Moon and Chau Chau City and Great Taste for the former. Peach Farm for meals.

                          Bakeries with many savories as well as sweets:

                          Mei Sum, Eldo Cake House, 101 Bakery, Ho Yuen

                          *Fenway Park*

                          Next to our beloved old baseball park is a terrific Mexican taco place, La Verdad. Their tacos of carne asada(grilled beef), pescado(fish),are the real deal and the best i have had here, and be sure to also get their refried beans . A 5 minute drive away is our amazing Museum of Fine Arts, world famous for its substantial collections of French Impressionism, American paintings and decorative arts, and Japanese art. (our new Art of the Americas wing has just opened in 2011.

                          Hope you have a great time !

                          -----
                          Peach Farm
                          4 Tyler St, Boston, MA 02111

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

                          Sultan's Kitchen
                          116 State St, Boston, MA 02109

                          Prezza
                          24 Fleet St., Boston, MA 02113

                          Sam Lagrassa's
                          44 Province St, Boston, MA 02108

                          Toro
                          1704 Washington St, Boston, MA 02118

                          Tremont 647
                          647 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02118

                          Modern Pastry
                          257 Hanover St, Boston, MA

                          La Verdad
                          1 Lansdowne St, Boston, MA 02215

                          Masa
                          439 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02116

                          Sel de la Terre
                          774 Boylston St., Boston, MA 02199

                          Eldo Cake House
                          36 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA

                          Lala Rokh
                          97 Mount Vernon Street, Boston, MA 02108

                          Erbaluce
                          69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

                          Tremont Cafe
                          418 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02116

                          Coppa
                          253 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                          Island Creek Oyster Bar
                          500 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

                          1. re: opinionatedchef

                            one small note. Regina Pizza in the North End is open on Sundays. That's the day I usually manage to get there!

                            Penny
                            http://www.bostonzest.com/

                            -----
                            Regina Pizza
                            44 Station Landing, Medford, MA 02155

                            1. re: BostonZest

                              you're kidding!!! that must be recent because i used to call/check the website to make sure. zest, you are a WONderful person.

                            2. re: opinionatedchef

                              Fenway Park blurb goes on for three lines about La Verdad and three lines for the MFA. There is no mention of Citizen, ICOB, ESK, Tasty Burger, Audubon Circle or any of the great places to have a beer- Bleacher Bar, Baseball Tavern, An Tua Nua, Remy's, Lower Depths.