(b)logs favorite eats: october 2014 edition

so a friend from college recently reached out to me (hi caroline!) and said she was coming to boston and asked for some restaurant recommendations. i get this question every now and then from friends, so figured i’d put together a little list of my current top ten favorite places for lunch, dinner, and brunch! will make updates every now and then, and will (eventually) do some top ten places for drinks, take-out, etc.

*note, there’s obviously a bias towards the north end/downtown, especially for lunch, since that’s where i spent 75% of my time… ok who am I kidding, 95% of my time… so restaurants in other neighborhoods, im sorry you didn’t make the cut- but feel free to lure me to your neck of the woods ūüėČ

photo-1
sam lagrassas sandwich
(pic cred)

lunch (in alphabetical order)

  • chacarero: financial district¬†http://www.chacarero.com
    what they serve: chilean sandwiches
    my usual order: small bbq chicken with everything, extra spicy
    (b)’s notes: the¬†bbq chicken itself is already pretty spicy, so first timers should probably skip the extra spicy part. but if you like spicy, then go for it! (and if you don’t, just order the regular chicken- still delicious)
  • ernestos pizza: north end¬†http://www.ernestosnorthend.com
    what they serve: pizza
    my usual order: fried eggplant & ricotta OR chicken bacon ranch
    (b)’s notes: i don’t care how hungry you are, order one slice, at least to start. it’s literally a quarter of a large pizza!
  • granary tavern: downtown¬†(sit down) http://www.granarytavern.com
    what they serve: american/pub
    my usual order: chicken fried chicken
    (b)’s notes: won’t sugar coat it, these are basically just chicken tenders. but like, chicken tenders on crack. oh so good.
  • james hook & co.: financial district¬†http://www.jameshooklobster.com
    what they serve: seafood
    my usual order: lobster roll & a stuffed quahog
    (b)’s notes: this place is a trailer, but don’t let looks deceive you. if you want reasonably priced, tasty seafood lunch in a jiffy, this is the place to go.
  • monicas mercato: north end¬†http://www.monicasboston.com
    what they serve: fresh cut deli sandwiches & italian specialties
    my usual order: small italian with everything, extra hots
    (b)’s notes: warning, there is no menu. but these are¬†the best sliced to order subs you will probably ever have. and they are huge. just get the italian, or the mozz/tomato/basil/prosciutto ¬†and thank me later.
  • the parish cafe: back bay¬†(sit down) http://parishcafe.com
    what they serve: sandwiches and beer. lots of beer.
    my usual order: onion rings & a beer
    (b)’s notes: they have lots of sandwiches that people love, but honestly, the reason im coming here is for the onion rings and a beer. (so read yelp for sandwich suggestions)
  • pasta beach: downtown (sit down)¬†http://www.pastabeachrestaurants.com
    what they serve: pizza, pastas & sandwiches
    my usual order: fungi pizza, but you can’t go wrong with anything really.
    (b)’s notes: just be prepared, the service can sometimes be slowwww… but i think its worth it
  • paulis: north end¬†http://paulisnorthend.com
    what they serve: sandwiches and wraps
    my usual order: the killer bee on a whole wheat wrap or the california wrap
    (b)’s notes: i eat here WAYYY too much. and get it delivered even though i live a few blocks away. it’s hard to go wrong with any of their sandwiches. oh, and the chocolate chip cookies are also pretty unreal.
  • sam lagrassas: financial district¬†http://www.samlagrassas.com
    what they serve: sandwiches
    my usual order: pastrami corned beef combo & fries
    (b)’s notes: this. place. gets. busy. but its one of the best sandwiches in the city, especially if you like corned beef or pastrami.
  • yankee lobster company: seaport¬†http://www.yankeelobstercompany.com
    what they serve: seafood
    my usual order: lobster roll or fried clams/fried oysters.
    (b)’s notes: this place is def a hidden seafood gem. shockingly, there aren’t all¬†that many seafood places in boston. this place is a hole in the wall but they’ve got everything you want and it’s all delicious. (just be prepared for paper plates, this place ain’t fancy)
  • honorable mention:
    • vitos tavern: north end ($$)¬†http://www.vitostavern.com
      what they serve: bar food
      my usual order: bacon cheeseburger, honey siracha wings & a vitos ale
      (b)’s notes: in a sea of italian this is a great little sports bar! the burgers are huge and delicious and wings are half price on wednesdays!

originalneptune lobster roll
(picture cred)

dinner (in order that i thought of them, aka the order in which i love them the most)

  • the gallows: south end ($$)¬†http://www.thegallowsboston.com
    what they serve: american
    my usual order: ¬†the poutine, pork corn muffin, carpet bagger burger, stoners delight dessert (peanut butter banana and fluff br√Ľl√©e) & the brazen bull cocktail.
    (b)’s notes:¬†could you tell i love everything here? the space is unique and awesome, the owners/staff are awesome, the food is awesome, and the cocktails are, you guessed it, awesome.
  • scampo: beacon hill ($$$)¬†http://scampoboston.com
    what they serve: high end italian
    my usual order: start with the ciccio bread and then get the lobster pizza.
    (b)’s notes: this place isn’t cheap, and you have to dress up a bit, but it is totally worth it. not only is it delicious (hello, lobster pizza) but its inside the beautiful liberty hotel, definitely a must if visiting!
  • panza: north end ($$)¬†http://www.panzarestaurant.com
    what they serve: italian
    my usual order: linguine alla pescatore with the fra diavolo sauce
    (b)’s notes: when you walk down hanover st. you will see a line wrapping around the block for giaccomos. don’t get me wrong, their italian is delicious. but i think panza is just as tasty¬†AND they take reservations. also pretty cheap compared to some other spots in the north end. like….
  • neptune oyster: north end ($$$)¬†http://www.neptuneoyster.com
    what they serve: seafood
    my usual order: lobster roll (cold)
    (b)’s notes: you will have to wait. a while. so get there right at 5 and put your name in- they will call you so you can continue to walk around the city. but this place is not to be missed! (if it wasn’t like $30 for a lobster roll it’d be number one on my list… but its the best lobster roll out there. and order it hot. i like cold. but get the one with hot butter if its your first time.)
  • navy yard bistro: charlestown ($$)¬†http://www.navyyardbistro.com
    what they serve: american
    my usual order: ginger sake salmon
    (b)’s notes: this place is tiny but almost everything on their menu is delicious. charlestown is not the most convenient spot, but def worth the trip!
  • al dente: north end ($$)¬†http://www.aldenteboston.com
    what they serve: casual italian
    my usual order: mussels marinara and literally anything else on the menu as long you order it with the homemade fussili (i usually do veal parm or pasta with the a’matriciana sauce)
    (b)’s notes: the homemade fussili is a must! like everything is delicious, but ordering it with the homemade pasta kicks it up about 50 notches.
  • blue dragon: fort point ($$)¬†https://www.ming.com/blue-dragon.htm
    what they serve: asian fusion
    my usual order: braised short rib potstickers & a trillium beer and some form of noodles
    (b)’s notes: ming tsai. seriously, do i need to say more. swooooooon.
  • myers & chang: south end ($$)¬†http://www.myersandchang.com
    what they serve: asian fusion
    my usual order: pork & chive dumplings and the cold dan dan noodles
    (b)’s notes: order a bunch of dishes and share! i recommend 3-4 for two people!
  • sonsie: back bay ($$)¬†http://www.sonsieboston.com/home
    what they serve: american
    my usual order: cheeseburger pizza, duh.
    (b)’s notes: this place is great because you can have a nice sit down meal if you want to or just meet up with some friends, have some nice drinks, and order a pizza that tastes like a big mac.
  • mooo: beacon hill ($$$$)¬†http://mooorestaurant.com
    what they serve: steak house
    my usual order: filet mingnon
    (b)’s notes: be prepared to drop bank. but the food/steaks are worth it. there are a bunch of steakhouses in the city, but i think this one is my favorite. love the ambiance as well!
  • very very honorable mention:
    • toro: south end¬†($$$)¬†http://toro-restaurant.com/boston/
      what they serve: tapas
      my usual order: the corn, and anything and everything else people want to share with me
      (b)’s notes: this place should be #2¬†but you just probably won’t get a table. like i have trained my brain to forget this place exists so i don’t get depressed i don’t eat their more often. but if you do go and magically get a table- get the corn! (but sorry, you. will. wait. forever.)

photo9south end buttery eggys benny
(photo cred)

brunch (i admit i’ve been slacking on my brunch game, so there’s not quite ten… also, they all serve, you guess it, brunch. so skipping that part.)

  • south end buttery: south end ($$)¬†http://www.southendbuttery.com
    my usual order: shaved ham & manchego eggs benedict on a homemade biscuit
    (b)’s notes: start with the buttery basket. all little pastries and jams that are perfect to snack on while you sip a mimosa and catch up with friends.
  • the beehive: south end ($$)¬†http://www.beehiveboston.com
    my usual order: short rib benedict or the eggs shakshuka (poached eggs and sausage over polenta with a tomato sauce)
    (b)’s notes: this place always has live music and you feel like your in moulin rouge. love.
  • tupelo: inman square ($$)¬†http://tupelo02139.com
    my usual order: oyster po’boy or¬†the dude (fried chicken, eggs, biscuits & gravy)
    (b)’s notes: sometimes you just need a little southern comfort food. and this spot nails it. boy did i take biscuits and gravy for granted every morning in college…
  • north street¬†grill: north end ($$)¬†http://www.northstreetgrille.com
    my usual order: brie stuffed french toast
    (b)’s notes: i typically go for savory breakfasts, but i love this french toast. everything on the menu is delicious though (but, like most places in the north end, be prepared to wait a bit- but not terrible as long as you have a smaller party or its just you stuffing face.)
  • joes american bar & grill: multiple locations¬†($$)¬†http://www.joesamerican.com
    my usual order: a greyhound
    (b)’s notes: ok i order food too, but if you like greyhounds, they are the best in the city. (they fresh squeeze the grapefruit juice, usually to order.) food wise, i like the crab cakes and the club sandwich (although sometimes that’s hit or miss)
  • honorable mentions:
    • stephanies on newbury: back bay ($$)¬†http://www.stephaniesonnewbury.com
      i don’t go here often, so i don’t have a usual order, but its kind of a boston staple (at least in my mind) and I’ve also never had anything bad! word on the street is the mac and cheese is divine.
    • bostonia public house: downtown ($$)
      http://bostoniapublichouse.com
      ok, so brodie rudely went without me (just kidding love you) so i have never actually ate here, but he said the brunch was fabulous. i have, however, drank here several times and it is def in my top ten places to get a glass of wine (that list to come another day)
    • mike and pattys: bay village ($)
      http://www.mikeandpattys.com
      so this place is more a breakfast to-go place than brunch, but it has THE best egg sandwich ive maybe ever had, ever. the fancy is comprised of a fried egg, bacon, cheddar, avocado, red onion, and house made mayo (!) on multigrain bread and it will knock your socks off. I’ve never ate anything else but its been voted one of the best breakfast places for years so im sure its all good (but seriously, why would you order anything else…)

phew! ok, there are SO many more places i love, but this is a good start! now, time to get ready for the family birthday party- cant wait to see¬†soph!¬†will be back on monday with a full weekend wrap up including my brothers delicious birthday pizza dinner (read: i ate an entire pizza.)¬†can’t believe my little brother is 18, sigh… where does the time go!

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