So I am still sort of getting past vacation brain, as I like to call it, and getting back into a new routine. I’ve been in Boston with my husband and youngest son, and had such a wonderful time. I actually went with the mindset of not working, thinking about work or pondering anything. Well, I managed to do that so well I forgot to take pictures of the food, the one thing I promised myself I would do for another project I am working on, that I had on vacation. I actually took more pics of my family than the food I had. Believe me this is super rare. I can look through my pictures on my computer and see more foodie pics than family. Is there a 12 step program for that?
Anyhow I thought it would be fun to share the places we ate at while on vacation. So below you will find some places in Mystic, CT, Boston MA and one cute little place not to missed for cheap eats in Salem, MA.
First on our trip was Mystic, CT. My husband and I actually spent a day up there last year while our son was on his year summer trip and I thought my son would love the Mystic Seaport. So we stopped there for a day to show him around. Usually we go up that way to visit a friend, hit the aquarium or the sub base but never the seaport. Not sure why that is but we took care of that. He had a great time.
I have to mention that last year when I went there with just my hubby and we had lunch at S&P Oyster Company. Really delicious. We were lucky enough to get a window seat and were able to see the draw bridge and boats going up and down the river. It is tops on my list for some of the best seafood I’ve eaten in CT.
We had lunch this year at the Sea View Snack Bar. A great little fast food outdoor seating place. They have burgers if the kids don’t like seafood. My son got a burger and said it was great then nibbled on our food. He’s a bottomless pit at his age. My husband and I , trying to be healthy but wanting some fried goodies, ordered a Greek Salad and an order of fried calamari and split it to make a really good fried calamari salad. You think they would offer that but nope. I’ve been to some very upscale places and the fried calamari was like eating rubber. They do it perfect here. Well worth the stop.
Other great Mystic eats- The Mystic Boathouse We stopped here for dinner and it was a really nice relaxed place with great food.
Skipping ahead to Boston. Our first night in town my husband treated us to Legal Seafood at Park Square I’ve heard a lot about the place on tv and other travel guides.
What I learned was the owner of Legal Seafood donates the money (I am unsure of how much) from the gift cards he sells to fund research to help find a cure for childhood cancer. I will say this much, they treat kids well here. My son is often asked if he wants a child’s menu but when he said no they smiled and respected that. From there on they treated him with respect. Something I didn’t see at other places.
The food was really good. We ordered a dozen mixed oysters from local areas. They were perfect. My son wasn’t so sure about that one. He choked one down with a “are you crazy this isn’t good” sort of look on his face.
I had Tuna with a seaweed salad and jasmine rice. My husband had the tuna with a Cajun seasoning, seaweed salad and jalapeno polenta. Our son had the lobster dinner. That he was all smiles through. He was nice enough to share some of it and I have to say it was really tasty.
Dessert we had to try the Boston Cream Pie. Well my son did, I did take a small bite but being on a diary free diet there were no choices beyond coffee for myself. That was fine I was full.
I want to mention as well that we made our reservations using OpenTable. The owner or manager came over to welcome us, brought us a free starter as a thank you for using OpenTable.
Some other great places we went and enjoyed were as follows.
In Becon Hill try Cafe Vanilla. Great little French style coffee shop with the most wonderful selection of goodies to tempt you. They offer soy milk for those not wanting dairy in their coffee or latte.
The Paramount. This place was crazy. If you’re not a local know this, you have to go to the back counter and place your order, then pay and then you can get a table. Food was excellent. I even saw someone asking for help with dietary issues and it was crazy busy but they were helping her.
Five Napkin Burger– I have my ideas of what a really good burger is. This place had good burgers but, I might suggest going to a Five Guys and Fries just on price alone and the fact that you can get a burger your way at Five Guys. I am not sure what the Five Napkin is about. Nobody needed that many and my husband had their classic one. Great place to take kids that is for sure. They have other locations in NYC as well.
In Chinatown we went to East Ocean City. I read that Julia Childs was a regular there. We went there on accident. We had planned on going to another hot spot but they don’t take reservations and after arriving there and finding out we had a 45 min wait, my sweet hubby walked us around the corner where we got right into Ocean City. You walk in and there is dinner swimming in the tanks. Not just lobster but all kinds of different fish. The menu is mostly in Chinese and I read that there are many more specials if you can read Chinese. They had some great group dinner specials so we tried a seafood delight for 3. We got Sweet and Sour seafood soup, lemon fried haddock, steamed lobster with a spicy black bean sauce, and another dish that was shrimp and stir fried vegetables and of course white rice. All of it was really wonderful and I can’t recommend this place enough. It was a great experience.
Another great gem just past Cambridge in Watertown, MA is Deluxe Town Diner. I wish this place was near me. I’d be there all the time. It actually reminds me of a place I grew up eating in back in Cali. Funny thing was my husband said he hoped we could find something just like our childhood favorite. This did that and surpassed it. If you’re a foodie, love diners but want good homemade food, this is the place. The health coach in me even loves this place! My son had french toast that he said was the best he ever had. My husband had a salmon and egg sandwich that looked delicious and it came with a side salad! He was in heaven. I am always a sucker when there is something new on a menu, even in a place I have never been in and I had the Honey Buckwheat pancakes with a side of fresh seasonal fruit. I really figured I’d get something like fruit out of a can. Nope, I got real freshly sliced fruit. I was in heaven from not having fresh fruit most of the week. Something I eat daily. The pancakes were nirvana and they don’t serve corn syrup flavored with maple flavoring for pancake syrup they actually have 100% Vermont maple syrup. *gasp* I hardly needed any on my pancakes they were so good.
Up in Salem, Ma after hitting a few historical sites up there we popped into Red’s Sandwich Shop. If cheap eats are what you’re looking for, this is the place for total greasy spoon but tasty diner food. I’d suggest you order a dinner plate if you’re starving and wont be near food for half a day. I thankfully didn’t do that but my son did. It’s a real locals place but they sure make you feel welcome no matter what.
Ok now I do have one warning. I really hate doing this but when service and food are this bad it is worth a mention to have others avoid a similar experience.
When I started this blog a couple of years back I mentioned a place in NYC that had to be the worst Irish Pub I have ever eaten or been in. It has finally gotten kicked off that and moved to the #2 worst Irish Pub I have ever been in. I never thought it could happen.
Emmet’s Irish Pub might the worst place I have ever been in. The only saving grace is the bartender who looked like a great fellow with a wonderful smile. So if your going in there, sit at the bar. He’s not to great at pouring a pint of stout I saw. I am super picky about this. Of course I didn’t get a pint of stout as the waitress told me they didn’t have Guinness. The place is plastered in Guinness signs that even have Emmet’s on it. Which leads me to the service is horrible. I’ve been a waitress and my youngest daughter is currently a waitress, we would never even on a horribly bad day, be as rude as these gals were. The food was horrible. How long does it take to make a BLT and two corned beef sandwiches? Which I might add they totally screwed up? My son asked for no Mayo, he got extra mayo. My husband and myself were missing the spicy mustard they mention in the menu. Of course getting the attention of your waitress to fix this is impossible and getting an ice tea refill to help wash down your dry sandwich was not happening either.
After looking up the pub online I see they are part of collection of places and so this place is not anything special , it’s one of those new buy an Irish Pub in a package deals. Staff might have Irish accents but they lack the warmth that I know and love. Being Irish it breaks my heart and to know me I would not pass up a stout in an Irish pub. It was all around one of the worst experiences we’ve had.
Thankfully that was the first place we ate at in Boston so our trip didn’t end on that sour note. I have to say Boston is beautiful and there are so many wonderful looking places to eat that I have it to go back and do some more eating my way around Boston.
Till next time,