The Boston foodie revolution of 2011

Duck prepared by chef Lydia Shire, who helms Towne Stove and spirits along with chef Jasper White
Duck prepared by chef Lydia Shire, who helms Towne Stove and spirits along with chef Jasper White

In the past two years, exceptional venues have cropped up all over Boston’s neighborhoods and gayborhoods, making the city almost as famous for its eateries as its renowned landmarks. Bostonians have commenced a raging cocktail and foodie revolution, throwing a Red Sox’s curve ball into the city’s resto/lounge scene. Read about two of the most notable new additions below.

Towne Stove and Spirits - 900 Boylston Street, (617) 247-0400

The foodie marriage between two of Boston’s most famous chefs, Jasper White and Lydia Shire, has spawned yet another beautiful offspring – this time an elegant, high-energy mega restaurant dedicated to comfort seafood and over-the-top worldly eats in the heart of Back Bay. Combining Lydia’s love for butter, lobster, global ingredients, and originality with Jasper’s love for New England seafood and a renowned equilibrium between home style cooking and haute cuisine, Towne Stove and Spirits boasts a menu as fun and busy as the crowds waiting on long waitlists to sample the latest White-Shire conception. It’s hard to go wrong with any of the 50-plus, family-style, savory creations; however, the “wood grilled lobster & corn pizza with honeyed ricotta,” the seasonal “razor clams a la plancha in baqsque alioli,” the “twice fried green beans with white soy and ginger juice,” and the “peking chicken and pot pie” should not be missed under any circumstances! Spread between a bustling bar in the front serving the best in mixology, a contemporary frenetic dining room downstairs, and a quieter, sparkling upstairs, this gastronomic trendsetter is currently one of the hottest seats in town! Towne is steps away from the Mandarin Oriental, Boston.

The Fireplace- 1634 Beacon Street, Brookline, (617) 975-1900

Veteran travelers and resolute foodies looking for that true local experience, far off the beaten tourist path, seek refuge in the flavors and fantasia of The Fireplace -- an intimate, romantic restaurant in Brookline that commingles New England recipes with culinary traditions from the Mother Land. A cozy neighborhood spot with a seductive menu that delivers on all levels of taste, presentation, and originality, the Fireplace is the brainchild of chef and owner, Jim Solomon, a Boston native and stanch supporter of the GLBT community. This all-welcoming, eclectic eatery termed a “cosmopolitan New England grill and barbeque” prides itself on unwavering integrity and quality in the preparation of every dish. Menu highlights include nine “New England Artisanal Cheeses” (Long live the Bonne Bouche!), “Butternut Squash Bisque with Great Hill Blue Cheese and Crispy Pumpkin Seeds,” “Pear and Pomegranate Salad with Shaved Fennel, Arugula, Pine Nuts and Pomegranate Vinaigrette,” the “Lobster Mac & Cheese” (with four cheeses, caramelized cauliflower and lemony spinach). How better to spend your winter months than packing on the pounds in front of this restaurant’s beautiful fireplace! The Fireplace is a 10 minute "T" ride on the C line from the Hotel Commonwealth, Boston.

–Paul Rubio of

[Photo Credit: Flickr/Don't Wake Me, I Plan on Sleepin in]

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