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Best of Hartford, CT | 2013 Editors' Choice Awards

Best of Hartford, CT | 2013 Editors’ Choice Awards
1 vote, 4.00 avg. rating (79% score)
by in May 2013
mark twain house

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveyThe Mark Twain House & Museum in Hartford is a fan favorite.

BEST ATTRACTIONS IN HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT

BEST HISTORIC CAPITOL
CONNECTICUT’S OLD STATE HOUSE, Hartford
The legislative chamber within this elegant red-brick edifice looks as though 1776 was just yesterday. Up-to-date exhibits include Joseph Steward’s Museum of Curiosities. Hands-on opportunities for history buffs of all ages. 800 Main St. 860-522-6766; ctoldstatehouse.org

BEST LITERARY HOME
MARK TWAIN HOUSE & MUSEUM, Hartford
Sense the humor, happiness, and hard times that reflect Twain’s family life in the home where he wrote his famed novels, stories, essays, and travel commentary. Tours and related exhibits deepen the experience. 351 Farmington Ave. 860-247-0998; marktwainhouse.org

BEST DESIGNER BOUTIQUE
JAPANALIA EIKO, Hartford
Men’s and women’s fashions flow with exceptional fabrics, colors, and lines recalling the shop’s Tokyo roots. Design inspiration is gathered from far and near. Intimate musical performances flow at the boutique, too. 11 Whitney St. 860-232-4677; japanalia.com

BEST ART EVENTS
REAL ART WAYS, Hartford
An ever-evolving center for contemporary art exhibits, live music, performance art, independent film screenings, and poetry readings. Every third Thursday, join the “Creative Cocktail Hour.” 56 Arbor St. 860-232-1006; realartways.org

BEST FOOD & DINING IN HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT

BEST BEER & SNACKS
CITY STEAM BREWERY CAFE, Hartford
Meet the bar’s “Naughty Nurse,” “Uncle Dunkel,” and other in-house beers–all perfectly matched with globetrotting appetizers: flavors from Thai to Mexican. Appetizers: from $5. Happy Hour beers: from $3. 942 Main St., 860-525-1600; citysteambrewerycafe.com

BEST RIVERVIEW RESTAURANT
ON20, Hartford
Only the restaurant’s breathtaking views can distract from the impressive plates, where standards are reimagined. Rare pairings astonish, and desserts delight. Add excellent service and an elegant bar for premier dining. Entrées: from $24. 400 Columbus Blvd. 860-722-5161; ontwenty.com

BEST MUSIC & SOUTHERN MENU
BLACK EYED SALLY’S BBQ & BLUES, Hartford
Monday jazz and Wednesday blues jams are just two of the noteworthy sessions drawing audiences. Cajun-influenced catfish, ribs, pulled pork, fried chicken, and jambalaya entice everyone else. Entrées: from $13.95. 350 Asylum St. 860-278-7427; blackeyedsallys.com

BEST CHIC & COMFORT MENU
GRANT’S RESTAURANT & BAR, West Hartford
Choose an innovative plate arranged with “Jerk Duck & Egg,” or go with an old favorite: “Mom’s Meatloaf.” Either way, loyal fans praise Grant’s alluringly crafted midday and evening meals. Lunch entrées: from $11.95. Dinner entrees: from $17.95. 977 Farmington Ave. 860-236-1930; billygrant.com

BEST ITALIAN DESSERT
MOZZICATO DEPASQUALE BAKERY & PASTRY SHOP, Hartford
What to eat with your latte? Come with friends and share cannoli, gelato, and pastries–then take home a selection. 329 Franklin Ave. 860-296-0426; mozzicatobakery.com

BEST LODGING IN HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT

BEST ALL-ACCESS
MARRIOTT DOWNTOWN, Hartford
Flanked by the Connecticut Science Center and the Connecticut Convention Center, this 409-room hotel offers award-winning dining at Vivo, plus spa and indoor pool. Rooms: from $309. 200 Columbus Blvd. 860-249-8000; marriott.com

BEST HISTORIC DISTRICT B&B
CHESTER BULKLEY HOUSE, Wethersfield
The city’s colonial past and today’s excellent eateries reside nearby. Five bright bedrooms and an antiques-furnished sitting room encourage restful days. Rooms: from $105, including full breakfast. 184 Main St. 860-563-4236; chesterbulkleyhouse.com

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