Heading East: Going underground in Boston

For the 4th of July this year, I headed east with the family to celebrate America’s Independence in the place that started it all- Boston.  Having spent only a small amount of time on the East Coast (must remedy that ASAP), I was excited to make my first trip to Beantown.

Let me begin by saying that I absolutely LOVED Boston – the people, the food, the city – it was all pretty fantastic.  I loved the cobblestone streets and how you could turn a corner and there was history staring at you right in the face.  After taking the famous Freedom Trail, I realized just how much historical significance was packed into a small-ish city.  And yes, the weather was hot!  I had forgotten what summer feels like (hint hint California).

But let’s get down to business.  The food.  I found all of the food for the most part in Boston to be excellent, although I did not get to enjoy as much seafood as I would’ve liked.  I also was impressed with how aware the waitstaff and chefs were of food allergies and sensitivities at many of the places I dined at.  Now onto the food.

The Paramount: http://www.paramountboston.com/

This no-frills breakfast spot was quick, easy, and cheap.  It was your typical New York style deli with the no-nonsense line cook who just wanted your order without a million modifications.  I chose to keep it simple with a big bowl of oatmeal, fruit, and english breakfast tea.  And I have to say, the oats were pretty fantastic.

Very Patriotic oats too I might add

 Slow cooked with milk and topped with fresh berries; not too bad for a deli-style cafe.  The eggs and pancake dishes also looked pretty delicious, and clearly I wasn’t the only one who thought so.  In the two times we dined at the Paramount Deli the line was out the door.  No-frills definitely takes the cake sometimes.

Rustic Kitchen: http://www.rustickitchen.biz/

Entrance to Rustic Kitchen

We dined at the Rustic Kitchen which was adjacent to our hotel, and the entire meal from start to finish was excellent. Many of you may recognize Rustic Kitchen from “The Cooking Show” which is actually filmed on a kitchen set every Friday inside of the restaurant.  Unfortuantely we were not there while they were filming, but it was cool to see all the behind the scenes action.  Anyway, on to the food.

I started with an ’06 Merlot from the Raymond Estates in Napa Valley along with some fresh olives and cheeses that were brought to the table. When I first looked at the menu at Rustic Kitchen I pretty much wanted to eat every single item off it.  The restaurant was incredibly accomodating to my food allergies, and even prepared my entree separately so there wouldn’t be any chance of cross-contamination.  So what was my entree du jour?  After going back and forth between the Baked Macaroni and Cheese, a Portabello Mushroom Pizza, and the Rustic Burger, I finally decided on the pizza. 

And boy was it delicious.  Carmelized onion, goat cheese, thyme, and mushroom on a thin crust.  It was decadent but not TOO decadent, and I shared the Rustic Bistro Salad with my mom beforehand so I definitely got some greens in with my meal.  If you are ever in Boston, take the time to have dinner at this place.  You definitely won’t regret it.

Finale Patisserie: http://www.finaledesserts.com/

Lastly, and most appropriate, we have Finale.  After an exhausting hunt for Boston Cream Pie (and no time to go to the Omni Parker Hotel where it was invented), we stumbled upon this cute Patisserie that looked like it would’ve fit right in along the river Seine in Paris.  While Finale offers a lot of tantalizing looking desserts, my family and I had only one thing on our mind.  Boston. Cream. Pie. 

Beautifully executed Boston Cream Pie

Now of course, Boston Cream Pie is more like a cake and less like the literal word “pie”, but when you’ve got a dessert sitting in front of you looking like that, does it really matter? The Boston Cream Pie (cake) was light and fluffy, with layers of cream sandwiched between yellow cake and chocolate ganache. I am now determined to somehow recreate the deliciousness that was placed before me at Finale. Somehow, some way, I will enjoy Boston Cream Pie again.

If Boston Cream Pie doesn’t float your boat, be sure to check out the other desserts that Finale has to offer such as freshly baked cookies, tarts, and other cakes. Plus, Tom Brady of the New England Patriots is a big fan, so it can’t be all bad right?

Aside from the 3 places listed above, other notable food mentions go to Legal Seafoods, Joe’s American Bar and Grill, and Dunkin’ Donuts (as sampled by my dad).  If you ever find yourself in Beantown, be sure to check out some of these places. 

And someone please tell me the perfect recipe for Boston Cream Pie!

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