Best of Boston Eats: How to Make Your Mouth Water in New England

Best of Boston Eats: How to Make Your Mouth Water in New England

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Boston is a foodies paradise. With its location being so close to the water, you can easily find lots of fresh seafood to indulge in– lobster and fish + chips included! Although I’m not the biggest fish eater (I prefer to snorkel with marine life rather than eat them), I did try (and then stuff my face with) clam chowder and crab cakes.

Although no city (in my opinion) has the limitless number of options as New York does, we still returned home to the big apple with full stomachs and wide smiles on our faces. From New England clam chowder and fried clams to cannoli’s and coffee, I guarantee your taste buds will be more than satisfied. You may just have to take a long walk in the Common and Public Garden afterwards if you want to keep your slim figure.

Sorry in advance if I make you hungry…

+ Best Cannoli: Mikes Pastry
Mike’s Pasty is always super crowded, and for good reason. I actually felt like I was standing in a sardine-packed NYC subway car in some instances, but I did it for the cannolis. How could you not?With over 17 types of cannoli’s, it was extremely difficult deciding on just two to share. Thankfully our minds were made pretty quickly once we heard peanut butter and mint chocolate chip. The shells were crispy and crunchy and not too oily, and the cream had the perfect amount of sweetness. The chocolate chips added another dimension to the pastry, and the powdered sugar added a subtle but super-tasty touch. I wish we included a classic cannoli with fresh rich ricotta-cream filling as well, but there’s always next time (and there will most definitely be a next time)!Along with numerous cannoli flavors, the shop also sells a variety of scrumptious-looking pastries and cupcakes. I’ve heard their lobster tails and macaroons are out of this world. The ultimate holy grail of pastry shops.

Location: 300 Hanover Street in the North End, smack in the middle of Little Italy

Pro Tips: CASH ONLY! After waiting in line, you’ll be more than annoyed if you only have cards. Once you get into the bakery, look at the ceiling where the strings come down and line up along there. Workers will get you cannolis even if you’re on the sides of the store!

Other bakeries worth mentioning: Modern and Maria’s, both known for their delicious cannoli’s and delectable pastries

+ Best Clam Chowder: Avenue One at Hyatt Regency Boston

Not being a huge seafood fan (okay, I’ve had lobster covered in steak sauce, and eat baked clams and fried calamari, both having huge amounts of breading…), you can say I was a bit hesitant when it came to trying the clam chowder.  It was the first course of 7 dishes Chef Kelly Armetta brought out to us (not including desert), and I was determined to try each and every one of them!

Chef Armetta, executive chef at Avenue One at Hyatt Regency Boston, explained to us the three components that make a chowdah an actual chowdah = dairy, pork, and potato. He ultimately convinced me to give it a shot (along with some crab cakes as well); I was in New England after all.

After one bite, I was wondering why I’ve been purposely missing out on this creamy deliciousness for 27 years. It was the perfect blend of fresh clams and comfort food, and now I swear I could eat a bowl of it every single day.

Having no other chowders to compare it to, I could easily say the bowl at Avenue One is my favorite. However, my husband confirmed it was indeed the best New England Clam Chowder he’d ever tasted. Good enough for me!

Location: Hyatt Regency Boston, 1 Avenue de Lafayette

Pro Tip: Come to Avenue One hungry. With the abundance of fresh and flavorful options available on the menu, you’ll want to eat a full dinner here. Eat a light lunch and save the calories for the Hyatt. It’s worth it –> trust me.

+ Best Noodle Bar: Wagamama

As Kristin R. from North Providence said >> “Wagamama?? More like: Woah Mama, this place is wicked good!” And that was our exact experience.

We ordered the yaki soba and the yaki udon, and both were equally delicious. My dish, the yaki soba noodles had chicken, eggs, beansprouts, peppers, red onions and scallions, and was garnished with fried shallots, pickled ginger and sesame seeds. Delicious is an understatement. I either need to go back to Boston or get my butt over to London soon to get more of these japanese noodles.

The bench-like seating is fun and makes your meal not-so-serious.  It’s a great place for warm comfort food on a cold Boston day, which we unfortunately encountered a bit when we visited in mid-April.

Locations: Fanueil Hall and 800 Boylston Street

+ Best Salads: Stephanie’s on Newbury

Although we didn’t have time for this cute eatery with outdoor seating, I’ve heard so many people rave about it, that I just had to include it. The restaurant describes itself as providing hearty meals in an inside banquette or outside street-side, perfect for people watching. Stephanie’s has received many accolades for it’s big flavors and sophisticated ingredients with simple yet elegant presentations.

The Pecan Crusted Warm Goat Cheese Salad sounds absolutely divine! Will definitely be dining here next time I’m in the Boston area!

image via bosguydotcom

Location: 190 Newbury Street, Back Bay

+ Best Coffee: Boston Common Coffee Company

You can always tell just how popular a place is by observing the line. And when the line starts forming out the door, you can be sure there’s something worth waiting for inside. We actually attempted to eat breakfast here twice, and after witnessing long lines both times, ultimately decided to give it a go the second time around. We had a fantastic meal of artisan breakfast sandwiches, and of course downed a few too many cups of the freshly brewed coffee to go with it.

This locally owned and operated shop has a wide variety of coffees, with lots of different roasts and flavor profiles. Flavored coffees include cinnamon hazelnut and coconut (among many others), as well as numerous additional coffees from around the world.

The coffee house also serves donuts; some of the most creative ones I’ve seen, including the Elvis (banana, chocolate, bacon, with a peanut butter glaze), vegan raspberry and cashew butter, and lager and lime stuffed.  Can you say YUM?!

If you’re in the mood to make some friends (or you’re with a large group), venture towards the back of the breakfast joint to the couches. They’re beat-up, but comfy nonetheless. We met a few individuals from Ireland, and loved sharing stories with them over breakfast!

Oh, and there’s Dunkin on every single corner. Getting your caffeine fix should be super easy.

Three Locations: North End, Downtown Crossing, Financial District

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+ Best Street Meat: Sausages outside of Fenway Park 

They say you haven’t truly experienced Boston if you haven’t been to a game at Fenway Park. I agree, with one slight addition- sausages for dinner!As soon as you arrive at the stadium, you’ll see food cart after food cart selling hot dogs, sausages, and kielbasa. My husband and I both had a sausage sidewalk-style (and by that I mean we literally ate on the sidewalk), and it was an iconic way to start our night at the game.  Get the sausages, and make sure they load up on peppers and onions.  It may be difficult and quite messy to eat, but this is the real way to eat a sausage Boston style!

image via goodmorninggloucester

Pro Tip: It may sound obvious, but bring cash. Most street vendors do not accept credit cards. We didn’t think about this beforehand, and only had 2 options to pick from. Skip Cask n Flagon and Bleacher Bar, as they are way over priced. And you came all the way to Boston- have a sausage! They’re wicked good!

+ Best Quick Bite: Snappy Sushi 

While meandering (and most likely shopping) around Newbury, you’re bound to get hungry.  Instead of eating a ton, and therefore feeling sluggish and most likely spoil your shopping trip, get a roll or two at Snappy Sushi.  Thankfully the sushi isn’t too pricy, and in the warm weather, you can sit outside under the parasols.  I wouldn’t recommend this place for dinner though.

Location: 108 Newbury St

+ Best Brunch: Elephant and Castle

After all the intimidating lines at nearby breakfast stops, the concierge at Hyatt Regency Boston (where we stayed for three lovely nights), suggested Elephant and Castle to us one morning. Being relatively empty compared to all the others, I was a bit skeptical to dine here. But once the food came, large helpings of eggs, toast, etc, my stomach was satisfied.

Elephant and Castle is a good all-purpose restaurant, with a large wooden bar with a seasonal beer selection. It is connected to the Club Quarters Hotel, and guests of the hotel receive a discount on all meals. I’ve heard that the pub-like restaurant offers great poutine to its guests in it’s at-home atmosphere. Open from 6am-1am, it provides excellent food at every meal, not just for brunch.

Only negative, the service was on the slow side considering we were one of the only customers inside.

Location: 161 Devonshire

+ Best NY Bagels: Bruegger’s Bagels

We had initially set our stomachs on going to Boston Common Coffee Company, but after looking at the line, ultimately decided against it (until the next day). And thank goodness we did! We stumbled upon Bruegers Bagels by chance, and can honestly say it’s one of the best breakfasts I’ve ever had.

The bagel shop is known for their wild combinations of bagels and cream cheese, with over 450 combinations. How about a cheddar pesto bagel with cucumber dill cream cheese? What about a chocolate chip bagel with pumpkin cream cheese? Does jalapeño or olive pimiento cream cheese tickle your fancy? Other note-worthy bagels my eyes flocked to included asiago Parmesan and cranberry orange.

Bruegers serves breakfast all day, and continuously bakes bagels so they are super fresh. Trust me, it was tough deciding between the dozens of varieties of delicious breakfast sandwiches. I finally decided on a whole wheat bagel with egg, spinach, bacon, and provolone, not very outrageous I know! but I was attempting to eat “healthy”. And “healthy” obviously includes bacon.

No wonder the bagels here are so good- they have locations in New York!

Location: 91 Summer Street

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  • atravelingb says:

    I'm glad you got to experience some of the great food that Boston has to offer! The cannolis in the North End are a must as is the sausage at Fenway Park!

  • Calli says:

    Wonderful post – although I should have had breakfast before reading 🙂 I especially love your "pro tips" little things like that are so helpful. And that sausage from Fenway Park looks incredible!

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