Boston, MA

Discussion in 'The Thunderdome' started by hallowed_hill, Nov 4, 2011.

  1. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    Never been, but heading there in a few weeks for work. Probably a couple more times over the next few months as well. I'll have a couple of free afternoons and evenings while I'm there. I enjoy business travel and live by a couple of rules on most trips: 1) Sleep is optional. Fake it 'til you make it during the day, and 2) Per diem is best spent on alcohol. Any suggestions? Restaurants, nightlife, touristy crap, etc.
     
  2. IP

    IP Advanced Pruitt Apologetics Bot

    I enjoyed the Freedom Walk, but then I am a history dork. TennTradition lived there for awhile, I bet he has some advice.

    The thing I enjoyed most was going to Fenway for a game, but obviously that isn't in the cards for you. I think there may still be a tour.
     
  3. IP

    IP Advanced Pruitt Apologetics Bot

    Actually, you could visit the Green Dragon, the pub where the Sons of Liberty allegedly plotted the Revolution. They had good steak.
     
  4. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    I'll probably do the Freedom Walk my first afternoon there, while I can still appreciate it. Love history and enjoy soaking it in when i go places. Not dorky enough to be able to hang with the Military History thread, though.

    Now this sounds like an itinerary.
     
  5. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    As mentioned, Freedom Trail is a great way to do a walking tour of interesting parts of the city while taking in all of the historical sites. I definitely recommend it.

    Fenway does do tours. I highly recommend it. You should get to go on the field and walk the warning track - get your picture taken by the green monster, etc. Pretty cool.

    The bar scene around Fenway is good - but in the offseason from baseball, it can be a bit more hit or miss. It's still probably a better option than the more haughty bars around Beacon Hill, though there are some nice ones there. Boston Beer Works is also by Fenway and is a decent way to try some new beers. If hockey is on, you might enjoy going to the bars near TD Garden. That can be fun during the right time of year. There is also an OK bar scene around Harvard Square - but then again, it's Harvard Square.


    As for restaurants...
    -if you like tapas, I highly recommend Taverna, off the St. Mary's T stop (Green Line, C Train).
    -If you like bistros, I highly recommend Gaslight in the South End. You'll need to cab to this unless you want to try buses...no easy T access. It is excellent. Get the steak tartare if you like that sort of thing as an appetizer. Very good. I love their steak frite for an appetizer, though there cassoulet is very good as are most items.
    -If you like oysters, I highly recommend Neptune Oyster in the North End. There area a ton of options and they are nice and cold.
    -For seafood, I am going to be a fairly useless resource. I just never really went to them. Some folks seemed to like No Name down by the waterfront. Others King Fish Hall. Legal Seafood is known for their clam chowder.
    -If you like Italian, you have to go to the North End. Walk around at night, with the streets lit up and the streets busy with folks heading for dinner. I highly recommend Al Dente (my favorite dish is the Chicken Umberto with the homemade pasta- amazing!). You'll have to wait a bit at most restaurants, but they're good at moving people through. The sheer number of Italian restaurants in the North End is impressive....great food.
    -If you are a big pizza guy, my favorite is Pizzeria Regina in the North End. I love it simple there, just their Margherita pizza. You have to go to the original in the North End, not the expansion places like the one in Quincy Market. There's something special about their ovens at the original...the crust is perfect ... my favorite Pizza period (but I haven't really explored New York's establishments yet...so you may want to take my preference with a grain of salt).

    Those are my initial thoughts...feel free to post any specific questions you may have...I would say that Quannah, BPV, or myself could answer....
     
  6. volfanjo

    volfanjo Chieftain

    The best used book store you'll ever see is right off Harvard Square, Raven Used Books. There is a good Thai restaurant in close proximity to there.

    My favorite thing to do in Boston is get on the T -- Green line and Red line especially -- and randomly depart, stroll around, get back on throughout the day. If you have some time take the regional rail to Concord. A lot of cool history out there.

    One word of caution: I have found the tool to cool ratio to be about 2:1 in Boston. I love the city of Boston, but not always the people, though I suspect the tool quotient are actually non-Bostonians.
     
  7. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    I don't think it sucks - it's just not great. If you are looking for nice, cozy bar with lots of atmosphere, it's not your place. It's an industrial just drink your beer kind of place. With that said, they have a few beers that are decent that you aren't going to find elsewhere.
     
  8. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    Never been there.
     
  9. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    Thanks for the recommendations. Y'all have given me a lot of options. My trip in a few weeks will be something like this:

    Day 1: Fly up early in the morning. There's a 5:30 am knoxville/charlotte/boston option that gets you there by like 1230-1 pm most days. That gives me all afternoon to explore. Will probably do Freedom Trail. Dinner. Bars. Wherever it takes me.
    Day 2: Work in Billerica until about lunchtime. Come back downtown. Explore some more. Maybe Sam Adams tour or Fenway. We'll see. Dinner/Drink the night away.
    Day 3: Fly back.

    Nice little trip for about an hour of work that I have to do up there! I anticipate going back for similar trips 2 or 3 more times this FY as well. Ever done the free Sam Adams tour?
     
  10. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    Yeah. The tour isn't bad. You can drink several samples of beer at the end. They don't have a bar for additional drinking. Harpoon Brewery, on the other hand, does I think. You might be able to try out some non-distributed beers there as well. The Sam Adams tour is better though. That is their test-brewhouse (Sam Adams), so its not a huge operation. But, you do get to eat some grain, smell some hops, and drink some beer.
     
  11. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    I'd like to hit up that bookstore. May make Harvard a second trip destination. I admit I'm conflicted when I think about a place like Harvard. I detest elitism and as my blog (long-awaiting a second installation) alludes to, I'm much more a connoisseur of low culture. The academic in me, though, revels at the chance to walk the grounds once haunted by Adams, Roosevelt, Thoreau, Emerson, and Mather. I also have a masters degree in theology and am deeply interested in the history of Boston in relation to Puritanism. Should be fun times.
     
  12. volfanjo

    volfanjo Chieftain

    Yeah, the Harvard crowd can be pretentious d-bags -- some, not all. But that area is fascinating, and if you are interested in theology the Harvard library has perhaps the best collection of works outside of Yale or Oxford.

    Thoreau refused to pay for his degree by the way, though he completed the requirements. Walden Pond isn't too far away, 30-35 minutes maybe. Check it out at a later visit.
     
  13. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    Most people in Harvard Square aren't even associated with Harvard. Hit it up if you're interested, you won't encounter all that many d-bags...well...no more than you would in a lot of other areas of Boston.
     
  14. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    Hahaha. That should be fun.
     
  15. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    Operation: Own Boston, Pt. 1 commences today. Will be there through Friday. Should be quite a week.
     
  16. NYYVol

    NYYVol Super Moderator

    Tell Mr. Boston, jmoore, hello for us all.
     
  17. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    Within 30 minutes of being in Boston the other night, I stepped into an Irish Pub with live music. The first song was, "If you think the Yankees [uck fay]ing suck, Clap your hands." Knew I was in the right place. Crowd was going absolutely nuts.
     
  18. TennTradition

    TennTradition Super Moderator

    Which pub did you hit?
     
  19. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    Sam Adams tour was a blast, freedom trail was very interesting, i've been in more bars than i can count.
     
  20. hallowed_hill

    hallowed_hill Active Member

    That first one was the Black Rose, the first one i came to. Was followed by many more. Enjoyed the one that Sam Adams sends you to--Doyle's I think. They give your a free SA pint glass. I'm staying at the marriott long wharf. great hotel. lot to do in close vicinity, so I haven't made it over to Fenway area (other than driving by). Pizzeria Regina was as good as advertised. Plan on hitting up Italian in North End tomorrow night.
     

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