Offering Victorian architecture and tree-lined streets, Boston’s South End is unique in its demographic, including a diverse mix of immigrants, young professionals, and a thriving gay and lesbian community. Such combinations result in a flourishing local restaurant scene. Here’s our pick of the 10 best.
This corner establishment draws the lines for its niche at bakery-come-restaurant, famed not only for its pour-over coffee and its delectable in-house cupcakes, but also for its inventive brunch and dinner menus. The eggs benedict on the brunch menu has gotten rave reviews, while the dinner menu holds its own with a fantastic pea risotto served with pea shoot salad. The South End Buttery is a neighborhood fixture that simply you cannot pass by.
Tremont 647 is an essential neighborhood restaurant and bar, whose multi-functionality has helped to establish it as a popular spot in the Boston South End. While offering fresh twists on classic American food, Tremont 647 and its sister property, Sister Sorel, put on special events right throughout the year, including wine dinners and tequila nights.
Authenticity runs free at Estragon, from its vintage Art Deco décor to its traditional Spanish-styled tapas and all-Spanish wine list. The floral wallpaper provides the main dining room with a rich and interesting atmosphere in which to share delicious food, while that formidable offering of paellas and pescados is fit to match the equally-impressive cocktail list. Address: Estragon, 700 Harrison Ave, Boston MA, USA, +1 617-266-0443
Meyers and Chang
Meyers and Chang combines the best of traditional Asian food with thoroughly contemporary interpretations, all centered on providing only the freshest of ingredients. The interior has distinct Pan-Asian aesthetics, with swirling red dragons imprinted on the windows, cherry blossom trees painted on the walls, and even Chinese newspapers as place mats. Look to order the popular Taiwanese style dan dan noodles or the stuffed rainbow trout with coconut rice, served with a tomato ginger jam and unforgettable penang spice. Address: Meyers and Chang, 1145 Washington St, Boston MA, USA +1 617-542-5200
B & G Oysters is no stranger to success, or the South End, since way back in 2003 this one has been serving delicate oyster bites to locals. Patrons are welcomed by a calm, grey-blue interior and a spacious, open kitchen, while equally inviting are the selections in the Raw Bar, including a crab meat cocktail and a house ceviche. For dinner, the crispy whole branzino comes highly recommended, as does B & G’s take on the classic Maine lobster roll.
Close to the South End’s center lies Vejigantes, the neighborhood’s only Puerto Rican restaurant. With a friendly vibe and a traditionally inspired menu, large portions, and reasonable prices, Vejigantes has won over neighborhood locals and tourists alike. Look for the variety of mofongo dishes they offer, or the hearty seafood-filled soups like the sopa o asopao de langosta or the sopa o asopao de mariscos.
Step into this classic French brasserie for French staples in a lively, inviting environment. Gaslight Brasserie du Coin offers the best Francophone flavors in all of the South End, by fielding delicious hors d’oeuvres like steak tartare and entrees like croque-monsieur and moules frites. With a dynamic selection for the plates of the day, Gaslight Brasserie keeps its seats full by staying abreast of its patrons’ changing tastes, but maintains a firm anchor in the French brasserie tradition.
The tapas bar competition in the South End is high, and Toro has been noted for raising the bar just a tad higher than the rest. The restaurant features walls made out of worn brick that has seemingly come all the way from Madrid itself, and an innumerable number of Spanish wine bottles stacked high on all sides.
For a dynamic Italian restaurant on the South End’s east side, look no further than Coppa. Coppa maintains its trendy status as an enoteca by offering tapas-style plates with excellent wine to pair. While the dishes found here pay tribute to original Italian classics, the chefs’ creative renditions do not break the bank, but instead inspire the appetite.
The Gallows is a welcoming gastropub that invigorates classic American food. Visitors are often surprised by this one’s weekly changing menu, which seeks to innovate the national kitchen and comfort food with an unwavering respect for seasonal ingredients.