Boston for Dining – Delight Your Taste Buds With the Best in the Northeast

Which major east coast city is home to the 2007 Best Northeast Chef? If you said New York City and that is your final answer, you just lost the game. If you said Boston, you win the prize. And the 2007 James Beard Award Best Northeast Chef is just the beginning of what Boston has to delight your taste buds.

In the heart of fashionable Back Bay, in an 1880 townhouse, you will find sophisticated and modern New England-French cuisine, with an emphasis on artisanal and New England ingredients. At L’Espalier (30 Gloucester Street), you will also find Chef Frank McClelland, the 2007 James Beard Award Best Northeast Chef. Also in Back Bay, you’ll find a specialist in classic steak house cuisine and an award-winning wine selection at Capital Grille (359 Newbury Street). And at Vox (755 Boylston Street), known for its martinis, Chef Eric Bogardus offers dishes like Woven Flounder or Ostrich Stroganoff on an American Bistro-style menu.

Seafood is a New England classic and part of Boston’s history is its noted seafood. The Union Oyster House (41 Union Street), established in 1826, claims to be the oldest continuously operating restaurant in the USA. They claim you can find the best clam chowder in New England, along with fresh seafood. Reserve the booth John F. Kennedy favored while practicing law in his early days. Overlooking Boston Harbor, Anthony’s Pier 4 (140 Northern Avenue) offers an exceptional dining experience with the freshest seafood and succulent Maine lobsters. At Atlantic Fish Co. (761 Boylston Street) the kitchen serves up raw bar classics like shrimp cocktail, iced Littleneck clams and Blue Point oysters. For a more upscale ambience, McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant (34 Columbus Ave, Boston Park Plaza Hotel) is just the ticket in the Theatre District.

Boston’s North End is famous for all things Italian, and the restaurants live up to the reputation. Cantina Italiana (346 Hanover Street) is a long-time favorite of locals and visitors alike. Open since 1931, Cantina Italiana is the oldest restaurant in the North End, and offers a warm and charming atmosphere with a relaxed dining experience. Ristorante Fiore (250 Hanover Street) offers authentic Italian cuisine in an elegant setting and the North End’s only seasonal patio and rooftop dining.

If Sunday Brunch is your dish, Café Fleuri (250 Franklin Street, The Langham hotel) was voted one of Boston’s best. The Sunday Jazz Brunch is just one of its specialties. It offers a brasserie-style dining experience, with an open kitchen and complete brick oven that allows diners a glimpse of culinary creativity firsthand. In addition to breakfast (voted “Best Power Breakfast”), lunch, and dinner seven days a week, Café Fleuri also offers a famous Saturday Chocolate Bar. Harvest (44 Brattle Street, Cambridge) offers another award-winning Sunday Brunch, as well as American cuisine showcasing the region’s freshest ingredients and seasonal product. Harvest was voted Top New England Restaurant by the Zagat Survey. If you’re packing kids, Bostonians recommend Toro (1704 Washington Street), voted Best of Boston 2007 Kid-Friendly Brunch.

For a meal with a view, Top of the Hub (800 Boylston Street, Prudential Center, 52nd Floor) offers a 360-degree view of the city, plus live jazz and original American dishes with unique flavors.

No major city is without its friendly arguments over the best pizza and Boston is no exception. At Pizzeria Regina (11 Thacher Street), Bostonians have enjoyed tasty brick oven pizza for over 70 years. For specialty pizza, head to Croma (269 Newbury Street), where the special is in the combinations like Peking duck, scallions, and hoisin sauce, or bacon, sausage, mozzarella, and an egg, sunny-side up.

For casual dining, try Bukowski Tavern (50 Dalton Street), voted Best of Boston 2007 Pub Grub. The burgers are big and messy, and the menu includes classic barbequed chicken tenders and the one and only White-Trash Cheese Dip. If you want your casual with a healthy twist, try B. Good (131 Dartmouth Street), where two childhood friends offers guilt-free burgers, fries, along with vegetarian dishes and salads.

Top off your Boston tastebud tour with a confection from Choco Choco House (83 Pembroke Street), voted Best of Boston 2007 Chocolate. Or indulge in one of Boston’s favorite dishes, ice cream. Bostonians eat more ice cream per capita than anyone else in the USA, and when they want the best, it’s Christina’s (1255 Cambridge Street) with 40 rotating offerings, some created with ingredients from the spice shop next door.

Boston Cruises – A Best Kept Cruise Secret

Boston Cruises are a fantastic way to begin or end a vacation. You know Boston, of course. The Old State House, Faneuil Hall, the Boston Tea Party, Old Ironsides. You could explore the city forever. But why not do your exploring as a prelude to some vacation time on a cruise?

Yes, a cruise. Boston has been one of America’s leading ports since before we were America. Holland America sails the Maasdam out of Boston. Norwegian Cruise Lines sails the Norwegian Majesty, the Norwegian Gem and the Norwegian Dream. Royal Caribbean offers the Jewel of the Seas. Your choices for cruise lines, ships, and itineraries are varied enough that everyone should find some rest and relaxation.

The Maasdam is the one of Holland America’s smaller ships, and the smallest of the ships sailing out of Boston. Placed in service in 1993, she displaces 55,000 tons and can carry approximately 1200 passengers. Being an older ship, cabins on this cruise vessel are a little larger than on the newer ships. The Maasdam sails from Boston on a circular, 7-day tour of Newport, Rhode Island; Portland, Maine; St. John, New Brunswick, Canada; Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; Bar Harbor, Maine; and returning to Boston.

This is a lovely cruise to take in the fall, when the New England landscape lights up with legendary colors. Bring some warmer clothes and enjoy a drink out on the deck while you watch some gorgeous scenery go by.

Another cruise the Maasdam sails on is the 7-night Canada and New England discovery, which visits Bar Harbor, Maine; Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; Sydney, Nova Scotia; Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; cruises up Saguenay Fjord in Quebec; then visits Quebec City and finally docks in Montreal. If you yearn for more time aboard ship, she also has a 17-day “Voyage of the Vikings” that leaves Boston, and visits Sydney, Nova Scotia; Corner Brook, Newfoundland; Qaqortoq, Greenland; Isafjord, Akureyri, and Seydisfjiordur, Iceland; Lerwick, Scotland; Stavanger and Oslo, Norway; and finally docking in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Another smallish ship (as cruise ships go) is Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Majesty. She was built in 1992 and completely refurbished in 1999. The Norwegian Majesty has been stretched to 680 feet and now displaces almost 41,000 tons. She sails round-trip from Boston to Bermuda, and back again. In 2008 Norwegian’s Dream will take over this route and the 7-day Canada and New England route will be offered.

In September and October, Royal Caribbean’s Jewel of the Seas sails for 7 days on its Canada and New England cruises. This is a roundtrip cruise from Boston to Martha’s Vineyard; Portland, Maine; Bar Harbor, Maine; Halifax, Nova Scotia; and Saint John, New Brunswick. There is also a shorter, 5-night cruise that eliminates St. John, New Brunswick from the cruise.

Jewel of the Seas is 962 feet long and displaces over 90,000 tons. She offers a sports court and rock climbing wall, solarium, fitness center, casino, day spa and dedicated youth facilities. There’s something on board for everyone, no matter your mood.

Consider sailing Royal Caribbean from Boston to warmer climes with their 10-night Caribbean cruise. Leave the cool weather of Boston and head for Puerto Rico, St Thomas, St Maarten and Aruba. The ship docks at the end of the trip in Miami, Florida.

Boston cruises are not particularly well-known. But this best-kept secret can offer you value that few other cruisers will find.

Enjoy a Memorable Holiday in the Lively City of Boston

Boston is the capital of Massachusetts. It is one of the oldest and most popular places in the United States. As the largest city in New England, it has been termed as the unofficial “capital of New England”. It is best known for its libraries, cultural manifestations, universities and colonial architecture.

The city is usually crowded by tourists all year round. So any time can be appropriate to visit, depending on what you are looking for. Fall is generally a good time to go on account of pleasant weather and special events. However, prices are higher at this time and availability of hotels and restaurants is difficult. While winter is a bit bitter, you might want to experience the indoor activities such as theater, food and wine festivals that it has to offer. You are also likely to obtain cheap tickets to Boston in this season. Summer is the hottest time of the year, so think twice before visiting during this season.

Logan International Airport, situated in the East Boston neighborhood, handles most of the flights to Boston. Aer Lingus is one of the flights offering huge airline discounts. Delta Airlines, KLM and Air Canada also operate cheap flights to Boston. If you are planning a visit in May, June, September and October you should book your tickets well in advance to get cheap airline tickets.

Culture of this amazing city has its roots in New England. There are a number of ornate theaters, like Boston Opera House. Thanks to a thriving underground music scene, the city has a variety of music. From bands like Boston and Aerosmith to countless local musicians, the world-renowned Boston Symphony Orchestra, indie rock and hip hop, there are tons of things for music lovers. Many of the world famous music schools are located in Boston. This city also gave birth to the hardcore rock genre of music.

The city has a lively and colorful African American Culture. The three cities Mattapan, Roxbury and Dorchester, which have Blue Hill Avenue running through them, comprise a giant community of African American people. Along with Caribbean, Chinese and soul food restaurants, the Avenue has many hair and nail salons.

There are many significant festivals and events in Boston. Annual events like St. Patrick’s Day and Boston Marathon are famous the world over. It is also one of the first cities to host the annual First Night Festival, a major arts and activity festival. The Boston LBGT Pride parade and festival, witnesses around 400000 participants each June.

Museums are another attraction in Boston. They are plentiful and cater to most interests. The famed Museum of Fine Arts has a prestigious collection, which people come to see from all over the world. Boston Children’ Museum and The MIT Museum are other places you should visit.

The city’s cuisine is inherited from New England as well. It gives a lot of importance to seafood and dairy products. The New England clam chowder is one of the best dishes of the city. There are also a variety of Asian and Italian restaurants. All in all, the city is a foodie’s paradise.

City’s nightlife is renowned around the world. It has plenty of bars and nightclubs to choose from. Most clubs even have souvenir shops for tourists. There are many dive bars and brewery tours available as well.