Looking for the inside scoop on where to eat and drink in Boston? Check out the top spots from Drew Parsons. The restaurateur — who spent much of his career playing bass for The Lemonheads and American Hi-Fi, among others — currently runs The Maiden, an American restaurant and wine bar which opened in South Boston in 2015. From steak nachos to wasabi dumplings, this New England native’s picks will help you discover some of the city’s most delicious dishes.
Drew Parsons’ Top 10 Spots in Boston:
1. Ham and cheese hot pocket – Flour Bakery, everywhere. If they are sold out by the time I get there for breakfast, I usually just go home, go back to sleep and give up on the day.
2. Edamame, mustard green and wasabi dumplings – Myers and Chang, South End. It’s very uncharacteristic of me to choose the vegetarian option on a menu, so you know these dumplings must be special to beat out the lemon shrimp and Mama Chang’s pork and chive versions. Plus their incredibly friendly staff just makes everything taste better. It’s science!
3. Steak frites – Moody’s, Waltham. While it’s a great lunch spot for sandwiches and charcuterie, their dinner menu is not to be missed. Go with friends and order everything meat-related on the menu.
4. Ribs – Blue Ribbon BBQ, West Newton. I have eaten a ton of BBQ during my extensive travels through the U.S. People are always surprised when I say my favorite pork ribs are in Boston. They are huge, fall off the bone tender, and their homemade sauces are amazing. (I like XXX sauce for the ribs, habanero vinegar on collards, and gold sauce for the sausages.)
Where to go for…
5. Brunch – Highland Kitchen. Sit at the bar, eat a dirty bird, fried catfish or huevos rancheros. You can’t go wrong.
6. Fancy dinner – Yvonne’s. I have always been against dress codes in restaurants, but I kind of wish they had one. It’s just fun to get decked out and dine with a bunch of friends in their beautiful dining room.
7. Late-night bite – Moonshine 152. I love Chef Asia Mei’s steak nachos!
8. People watching – Gold’s Gym in Southie. I loathe going to the gym, but the people watching there can get my lazy butt off the couch (sometimes).
9. Coffee – If I’m looking for something special, I’ll usually go for a cappuccino from American Provisions. It’s a great store to shop in, meet some Southie neighbors, and serves up the tastiest cappuccinos and lattes I have ever had.
10. All your pasta needs – Giulia, Cambridge. Chef/Owner Michael Pagliarini’s food is arguably the best in the city. Just sit at the bar and have [bartenders] Terry and Daniel take care of you.