The 17 Best Places To Eat & Drink In Boston This Year
Boston, Massachusetts has long been a popular tourist destination, with a huge number of cultural and historical attractions, including the John F Kennedy Presidential Library and the tranquil Boston Public Garden. Boston also has a large and growing number of places to eat and drink. With the food scene going from strength to strength, Boston offers a great choice of everything from quaint cafes to gourmet restaurants. We've put together our favourite choices across a range of different cuisines and budgets. Think we've missed something? let us know at the bottom of the page
Grill 23 & Bar
Grill 23 is a top-rated independent steakhouse, serving some of the finest food you’ll find anywhere in Boston. Prices are high, but you get what you pay for, with exquisite wagyu, dry aged prime New York and 100 day aged prime rib eye just some of the options on the steak menu. There’s plenty else on the menu too, including seafood, oysters and salad, but it would almost be rude not to have a steak! Grill 23 has won a host of awards for its food and service, including Best Steakhouse awards in Boston Magazine and The Boston Globe for multiple years running.
Styled on a classic American tavern, Stockyard Restaurant has been selling quality food and drink in Boston since the 1980s. Located just outside the city, it draws urban residents out for its delicious menu, featuring seafood, burgers and more. The crowning glory of the menu is Stockyard’s range of steaks and chops, all cooked to order. The restaurant itself is finely decorated, with a traditional bar serving up a range of drinks in a saloon style setting. Perfect for a family meal, the restaurant can cater for up to 200 guests, making it one of the larger eateries in the Boston area.
Voted Boston’s best Greek restaurant in 2013, 2014 and 2016, there is no better place to get your fill of Greek cuisine in the city than Esperia Grill. Traditionally prepared gyros is probably the highlight of the menu, though you can also indulge in staples such as Greek salad and pastichio. Generous portions and affordable prices open up this restaurant to all, with the modern, airy décor another drawcard for this fine establishment in the centre of Boston. It recently featured in Boston Magazine’s list of the best Greek restaurants in the city, proving its popularity with the locals, as well as with visitors to the city.
Table Boston is at the upper-end in terms of exclusivity in Boston dining. The Italian restaurant is best known for its eight (yes, eight) course dinners, served Thursday – Saturday at $95 per head. Dishes include everything from warm focaccia to seared octopus, with fruit sorbet and Italian donut as desserts. They also do a seven course Sunday dinner for $68, washed down with a shot of refreshing limoncello. An extensive cocktail and wine menu is also available, and the restaurant itself is spacious and glamorous. Table Boston won’t be for everyone, but if fine dining is your kind of thing, then it doesn’t get much better in the city.
Chilacates Amory St
Boasting a 5-star rating on TripAdvisor, Chilacates Amory Street is one of a number of this Mexican street food chain, serving delicious Mexican cuisine throughout Massachusetts. One of the first things you notice with this restaurant are the beautiful menus, nicely illustrated with the mouthwatering dishes on offer – enchiladas, burritos, quesadillas, tacos and more. Each item can be customized as you wish, with toppings, sauces, and all sorts of extras, such as guacamole and nachos. As well as its restaurant outlets, the company also offers a catering service, bringing Mexican street food to the heart of your party or event.
Stephanie’s on Newbury
A Boston establishment that opened all the way back in 1994, Stephanie’s specializes in comfort food done properly, served in a bright restaurant complete with multiple television screens showing all the latest sports action. Along with its menu of daily specials and weekend brunch, popular menu items at Stephanie’s include mac & cheese, plank salmon and Stephanie’s pot pie, though there is also an extensive list of burgers, sandwiches salads and more to choose from. Like many of the eateries on this list, Stephanie’s can also cater to your private event or party.
With a name like Pastoral, it may not surprise you to know that this is an organic restaurant. Serving locally sourced food, based on relationships with community hunters, farmers, fishermen and more, the food served here is as fresh and as local as it can be. Owner Todd Winer has a focus on community, and the shared experience of eating, sharing food at a table. The menu offers up a range of delicious dishes – pizzas and pastas make up the crux of the menu, but there is also a wide selection of mouthwatering antipasti boards, featuring prosciutto, olives, meatballs and much more.
A contemporary restaurant in the heart of Boston, Brewer’s Fork is located just a short walk away from the Bunker Hill Monument in the Charlestown area of the city. Offering indoor or outdoor patio dining, the restaurant has a variety of menus for different times of the day. Lunch is served until 2, with a variety of sandwiches and pizzas on offer, whilst a more expansive dinner menu includes a range of meat and poultry, seafood and oysters – all freshly caught nearby. The restaurant uses woodfired ovens to cook much of its food, explaining the great smoky flavours.
Advertising itself as a “neighbourhood gem”, Brownstone is a bistro popular with the locals, which is how you know it’s a good restaurant. Executive Chef Kelly Snogles has curated a diverse menu, serving brunch, lunch, and dinner. Salmon roti, crab cakes and steak frites are some of the most popular dinner items, whilst the restaurant is also known for its home-crafted cocktails, such as the Corpse River – a beautifully balanced drink designed to shake off last nights hangover. Perfect for dinner or just drinks, the restaurant also has a nearby sister pub – Clerys, which is also extremely popular.
Opened in 2008 in Boston’s South End, owner and operator Nikki Christo Leo has created a delightful neighbourhood eatery, selling a variety of sandwiches, fresh salads, and sweet treats, such as muffins and cookies. Toasties and bagels packed with fresh ingredients make the perfect lunch on the move, although you can sit and dine in with a coffee if you’d prefer. You can even get a catering service to provide food for your event. Prices are a tad on the high side, but the quality makes it all worth it, Blunch making sure it uses only the very best ingredients.
South Street Diner
South Street Diner is something of a famous landmark in Boston, having starred as a setting in films including The Equalizer, Hiding Out and Second Sight. Its food has also won it many accolades, the diner specializing in late night grub for after the bars and clubs have shut. A winner of the TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice Awards in 2020, this really is THE late night dining establishment in Boston. Being open 24/7, seven days per week means the menu needs to be diverse, and it is. A range of breakfast options, burgers, sandwiches and anytime dinners mean that it doesn’t matter when you’re hungry, there’s always somewhere to go in this part of Boston.
Thinking Cup coffee shop first opened its doors in Boston in 2010, and the company has now grown into a small empire, with three cafes located across the city. It specializes in “Stumptown” coffee, from Oregon, which has been voted as the Best Coffee in the World by the New York Times, USA Today and many other publications and networks. Expert baristas create the smoothest, richest beverages possible, served in cozy cafes with a peaceful ambience, perfect for a catch up with friends or a great setting to bury your head in a laptop and crack on with some work.
Fool’s Errand was once an “adult snack bar” (no, we don’t know what that means either) before the owners took a change in direction and transformed the venue into a new exclusive hub for private dining. Crystal chandeliers and piercing blue light offer an elegant atmosphere to enjoy a meal. A range of dishes are available alongside an extensive drinks menu – the venue has a pop-up wine shop at the weekends, so it certainly knows its way around a bar menu. Reservations are essential if you want to experience Fool’s Errand for yourself – they don’t take walk ins, so you’ll have to get in touch with them in advance if you’d like to book.
Larry J’s BBQ Café
One for the carnivores, Larry J’s specializes in wood-smoked meats – essentially, they’ll do a better BBQ than your dad. This old American favourite is popular with locals and visitors to Boston alike, just be prepared to get messy! Ribs, wings, burgers and more all drizzled in BBQ sauce and served with a range of sides, from fries to onion rings and mac & cheese. It may be comfort food, but it is of the highest standard, sure to have you coming back for more. As well as dine in, Larry J’s can also cater for your private event.
Styled on the Maori and their Polynesian island homes, Tiki Rock is a restaurant and bar serving a range of Polynesian-inspired dishes – think sushi, crab Rangoon and barbecue skewers. Happy Hour from Thursday – Sunday at 4 – 7pm sees the restaurant offering $1 oysters, as well as a range of other deals, whilst there is also an extensive cocktail menu, with typical island flavours. The highlight of Tiki Rock is probably its interior, with imaginative styling and comfortable booth style seating. Maori statues form the tables, and the lights are dimmed, creating a more intimate feeling.
Worden Hall sounds more like somewhere your grandma would drag you to look at old paintings on a dreary afternoon. In fact, this is a delightful American restaurant in the heart of the bustling West Broadway area of Boston. Named after a 19th century manor house in New York, the name doesn’t represent the modernity and delicious food on offer here. Selling classic pub dishes such as pies, mac & cheese and burgers, Worden Hall also has an extensive rotating drinks menu. 40 draft beers are served on rotation, along with more than 100 whiskeys and freshly made cocktails.
Harry’s Bar & Grill
Harry’s is primarily a destination for drinkers, a popular spot to enjoy a few craft beers or handmade cocktails with friends and family. The drinks menu is constantly on rotation, so you’re sure to enjoy a few different drinks if you visit more than once – which you’ll be sure to do given the great prices and wonderful atmosphere. The bar also serves lunch, dinner, and a late night menu for hungry guests. Options include staple dishes such as tacos, burgers, and pizzas, whilst they also serve brunch, with a range of breakfast sandwiches and plates.
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