Crawl In “Fenway Favorites”
When we’re not organizing bar crawls, we still find ourselves visiting bars and fun spots around the city.
The Fenway area is well known for the raucous pregame bars that line Landsdowne Street, but the area is also home to some great dining and amazing cocktail bars. We recently made a day of it to try out one of the newest additions to the area, as well as hitting up our favorite joints.
We started the outing at Sweet Cheeks Q. Ran by former Top Chef, and current and always badass Tiffani Faison, this popular spot has been open for about five years and is well known for its delicious take on southern BBQ. We had dinner plans later on, but we couldn’t help but order the bucket o’biscuits. These are monstrous and delicious, with an amazing honey butter on the side. Flaky and tender, these are a carb lover’s dream. An order comes with four, but that is plenty due to their size.
We meant to head next to Faison’s adjacent venture Tiger Mama, but it wasn’t open yet. But we can report form previous visits that this Asian fusion spot also has great food and well-made Tiki based cocktails. We continued down Boylston St. to Citizen Oyster Bar. This place is as well known for its whiskey selection as the bivalves in the name. This isn’t a stuffy or fancy place as many oyster bars in Boston tend to be, this place is almost more of a dive bar feel (in a good way). They have a whiskey focused cocktail menu, but will just as happily serve you a shot and a beer.
Next up was the main event of the evening, dinner at Eventide Fenway. A causal concept from the more formal Eventide Oyster Co in Portland Maine, this new counter style restaurant opened recently and we couldn’t wait to try it. True to the fast-casual style dining room set up, there are no reservations and mostly counter-style seating, so it may be tough to go with a group. We managed to snag part of a table and began perusing the menu. We sampled much of it, and it was quite a feast. We started with oysters, of course, and they were well shucked and served with the usual accoutrement. The highlight of the meal was the brown-butter lobster roll. Instead of the traditional New-England style split hot dog roll, this is served on something reminiscent of a steamed bao. Fluffy and light, this is a great an unobtrusive vehicle for the tender, buttery lobster meat. We also sampled the tuna crude, which was crisp and refreshing; the clam chowder (a rich yet thin broth, not too thick), the chicken katsu sandwich (crunchy yet juicy) and roasted cauliflower. Everything here was good, but the portions were small and the price tag was large. That is not unexpected for what is clearly fresh, well sourced seafood, but it’s a little jarring to rack up such a hefty bill in such a casual setting.
For dessert, we headed to one of our top spots in the city, Hojoko. We reviewed Hojoko when it opened in 2015, and it remains one of our favorite spots today. A perfect post dinner drink is their frozen pina colada, served with a roasted marshmallow. They usually have one or two other frozen drinks, and also a large selection of cocktails that seem Tiki inspired with interesting Japanese influence. This place always has good music, the bartenders are fun and knowledgeable, and it’s some of the most interesting food and drink in the city. This is our go-to spot for a reason, so if you haven’t been yet, make a point to head there, preferably before the crowd head back to Fenway in April.