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Jun 28, 2012 06:53 PM

Grocery food items that are unique to Boston/New England?

I am from Michigan and am visiting Boston, North Shore, NH and Maine next week. My wife and I always enjoy grocery shopping for unique items that are indiginous to the part of the country we are vacationing in.
Can New Englanders suggest we purchase any grocery foods unique to Boston/New England that we might enjoy?

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  1. sassy, welcome in advance! Hope these might be helpful:

    Shopping for Boston food souvenirs:


    Guide to Boston by Areas and Restaurants:

    If you need help w/ Boston,North Shore or N.H. restnts, tell us where you will be staying and/or what activities- in these places, so we can best advise you.

    1. Fluff and brown molasses bread in a can are two that come to mind. Gotta get fluff and make a fluffernutter ( marshmallow fluff and peanut butter) .

      7 Replies
      1. re: macca

        These would be my two choices also.

        I was recently in Newport, MI and was suprised to notice Fluff on the shelf at a Meijer's store.

        1. re: Infomaniac

          We vacation in NC every year- and when the kids were small they loved Fluff. We ran out during the week, and were really surprised to find it in the baking aisle at Food Lion.

        2. re: macca

          You need to get out more, Fluff is everywhere. I grew up on it in Chicago in the 60's/70's (as did my kids decades later).

          1. re: ferret

            Yep, I lived off Fluff and peanut butter sandwiches during my poor college days in Philly. Not as far as Chicago, but I never had a problem finding the stuff there.

            1. re: ferret

              did you guys order the nachos or the beers?

              1. re: ferret

                Fluff is made by a small company in Lynn MA. Fluff was not available in Florida when I was a kid and I send it to my friend in Louisiana all the time. Her kids love it and fluff still hasn't made its way down south.

                1. re: mnguay370

                  The web site has a map that lights up when you click over states in which it's distributed (presumably). Appears to be in many southern states, but spotty.

                  I'm surprised that Colorado doesn't light up. I could have sworn I had it as a kid growing up in Denver in the '80s. Maybe they've changed the distribution since then?


            2. Boston Baked Beans, which are actually red candy coated peanuts. Also Necco Wafers, a locally made candy. Also Johnnycake mix comes to mind.

              2 Replies
              1. Cape Cod potato chips (although you might have those in MI), Cains mayonnaise. For a real hoot, check out how many frozen ice cream novelties are offered in a large supermarket, such as Shaw's! Bostonians eat more ice cream per capita than any other U.S. city, and novelties are particularly popular in the summer months.

                1. Can you get Moxie outside of New England? That's pretty unique. Otherwise, I'll second the Fluff-brand fluff (not Kraft marshmallow cream) and canned bread (gotta have it in a meal with canned beans and some hot dogs).

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: Luther

                    havent heard Moxie mentioned in ages. My grandmother used to love it.

                    1. re: macca

                      My sister is a legislator in Maine and got Moxie declared the official state drink. She says she got letters from all over the US thanking her and recounting childhood Moxie memories. She now gets to lead the annual Moxie parade......

                      1. re: fantundo

                        I swear I've met her! Is she a private school French teacher?

                        1. re: Prav

                          No, she's an administrator at Bates College.

                    2. re: Luther

                      Add the Moxie(on ice) to the canned bread, franks and beans and you've got a Massachusetts/New England meal!

                      1. re: maxevan

                        ...that no one actually eats anymore, hah!

                        Maine has some good stuff, e.g., blueberries and molasses. Stonewall Kitchen has some nice local food gifts like blueberry jam and gift packs.

                        Boston is tough, but for Japanese friends I've brought them teacup sets with "Boston Tea Party" tea, supposedly from the same company that supplied the colonists (this is unlikely to be historically accurate, but I liked the idea). Some people like salt water taffy.

                        EDITED to note: I just read Opinionated Chef post below and realized my ideas are repeats. Sorry about that.

                      2. re: Luther

                        I definitely never saw Moxie before moving to this area. And even after moving here, I don't think I did for 10+ years.

                        Love the stuff now -- but only the glass bottled version, which is sweetened with cane sugar. (I can usually only find it in Maine or Vermont.)