Best Dining in Greater Boston | 2014 Editors' Choice Awards
Hungry? The Boston area offers plenty of restaurant options for hungry residents and visitors alike. Here are our picks for the best food & dining in Greater Boston for 2014.
UNION SQUARE DONUTS, Somerville
There are many great independent donut shops around Boston (Verna’s in Cambridge, Linda’s in Belmont), but Union Square takes the cake for quality and variety—flavors like maple bacon and salted bourbon caramel. Traditionalists, take heart: The old-fashioned cake doughnuts are a timeless pleasure. Doughnuts: $3–$3.50 each. 16 Bow St. 617-209-2257; unionsquaredonuts.com
BEST LOBSTER ROLL:
NEPTUNE OYSTER, Boston
In our view, a truly great lobster roll has a few simple but firm requirements: fresh, sweet meat and plenty of it; light mayo or butter (your choice—we like choice); and a properly toasted bun. That’s just what Neptune Oyster offers in a classic bistro space just off the crowded corridor of Hanover Street. Lobster roll: $27. 63 Salem St. 617-742-3474; neptuneoyster.com
ROW 34, Boston
Partners Skip Bennet, Jeremy Sewall, and Garrett Harker gave the Boston dining scene a shot in the arm when they opened Island Creek Oyster Bar in 2010. Now, with their new eatery in the Fort Point Channel neighborhood, they’ve brought their savoir faire closer to the waterfront. Don’t miss the tuna crudo, the fish and chips, or the exceptional beer list. Entrées: from $14. 383 Congress St. 617-553-5900; row34.com
A4 PIZZA BAR, Somerville
What makes the pizza here so good? Chef Jeff Pond uses a 12-year-old starter in his dough, then lets it ferment for nearly three days. Toppings, like the simple tomato and hand-pulled mozzarella pie, or the white clam pizza with bacon, are top-notch. And the custom Le Panyol wood-fired oven bakes everything up crisp and chewy. Pizzas: from $10.50. 445 Somerville Avene. 617-764-4190; areafour.com
Chef Tim Maslow earned his stripes at New York’s Momofuku empire before coming home to reinvent his dad’s Watertown restaurant, Strip T’s. Now, with Ribelle, he’s reinventing Italian food for Bostonians, filling tender agnolotti with short ribs and beef marrow or making rigatoni with nutty spelt flour and topping it with a smoked red tomato sauce. These dishes are why you go out to dine. Small plates: from $9. 1665 Beacon St. 617-232-2322; ribellebkline.com
Boston diners can be a fickle bunch, always scouting the next “it” chef, then moving on. Meanwhile, on a quiet side street in Cambridge, Gabriel Bremer has been quietly, expertly, consistently turning out some of the best French-inspired food in the city since his arrival in 2004. The roasted duck for two, one of Bremer’s signatures, is alone worth the trip, but there’s much more to discover here. A meal at Salts always leaves us saying, “Why did it take us so long to come back?” Entrées: from $28. 798 Main St. 617-876-8444; saltsrestaurant.com
BEST ICE CREAM:
Depending on the season, you can find Belgian chocolate, “Rather Dark Chocolate,” Aztec chocolate, or Mexican chocolate ice cream at this iconic Cambridge ice-cream shop. Then there are the malted vanilla, French vanilla, and sweet-cream flavors. And fruit? How about lemon pistachio or mango ginger? The Tosci’s team is always inventing, always raising the bar on quality. It’s merely the icing on the cake that brother/sister owners Gus and Mimi Rancantore are two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. 899 Main St. 617-491-5877; tosci.com
Please Note: This information was accurate at the time of publication. When planning a trip, please confirm details by directly contacting any company or establishment you intend to visit.