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Apr 4, 2013 11:34 PM

Must eats in Boston area

Will be in Boston for about five days. I'm looking to buy the freshest haddock, lobster, belly clams, to cook. Where is the best place? Also are there amazing seafood restaurants that I should not miss. Who has the best fried steamers?

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  1. Many Chs agree that Neptune Oyster (No.End) and Island Creek Oyster Bar are the best seafood restnts in Boston. I love both.
    We call them 'fried clams' and I think they are best at Neptune.

    Where are you staying/cooking? In Cambridge, best seafood market is Courthouse Seafood and New Deal(smaller)both near Inman Sq. Some Whole Foods Markets have good seafood section; they vary.

    If this is your first visit, this might be helpful:
    One Hound's Guide to Boston by Areas and Restaurants:

    1. New Deal Fish Market is best retail, Courthouse Seafood also excellent. It's also worth visiting the Courthouse Restaurant (right next door) for fish & chips, really the best fried fish i've had. The Fresh Pond location of Whole Foods has an excellent seafood counter, and better hours then New Deal, but I prefer New Deal if I can get there.

      (I see i am in violent agreement with opinionatedchef, which is a good sign.)

      "Steamers" are steamed whole clams, served with the steaming liquid and melted butter. Try some if you can, super easy to make at home if you can get good steamer clams. A whole different flavor than fried, a little in the direction of "moules"-style mussels but lighter and cleaner.

      Lastly, when dining out, don't feel you need to go to a place that bills itself as a seafood specialist. Our top tier of restaurants all know how to get a fresh piece of fish and what to do with it. Puritan in Cambridge is worth a visit for their creative approach to seafood, as is Erbaluce in Boston.

      Can't go wrong with ICOB, Neptune, and I'd add B&G Oyster. All three are expensive places, not seaside shacks, for which you'd probably want to get out of town to the north shore.

      1. New Deal and Court House, naturally, and can probably be accessed from the green line t stop. New Deal will provide ice to keep your fish fresh.

        Sakanaya has great sashimi and the owner will prepare sushi for you to go; no ice though. O Ya and Uni Bar do the Nobu thing of sashimi with interesting preps though they are very pricey. There are good fish in the tank restaurants in Chinatown/Boston such as East Ocean Seafood in Chinatown; the live shrimp are great and pricey.

        And as said earlier, most good restaurants also have good seafood even if there are not specialists.

        There are also clam shacks up North such as Essex which require a trip. I am not sure that they are open yet.

        I am a fan of the pan roasted lobster at the Summer Shack which is open. Lots of criticism of that place on this board, but I love their lobster.