postcards: boston

Last year, we started a tradition with some friends to attend one out-of-town Monday Night Football game each year. We put all the games into a hat and draw. Last year our enaugural trip was to Chicago. This year, we drew Boston from the hat and headed up the weekend before Thanksgiving to watch the Patriots beat the Colts at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough.

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Boston has a selection of excellent hotels to choose from. Some that initially caught my eye were The Liberty Hotel, The Boxer Boston Hotel, and The Verb. Unfortunately, this weekend was also the Boston College/Notre Dame game at Fenway Park and Boston was packed. I referenced my handy Wallpaper Guide and noticed their review of The Ames Hotel, and booked it. I loved the location and the cleanliness of this hotel, but thought the decor was trying a bit hard and the hotel bar was a bit…empty. I love a hopping hotel bar/restaurant like The Berkshire Room in The Acme Chicago or Mama Shelter in Marseille.

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(photo from ames hotel website)

We arrived at Logan airport and took a water taxi into the city. This was such a special, unexpected way to start our trip. We had an amazing view of the skyline at sunset.

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I love a good football game, but I truly love finding the best restaurants and shopping streets in the cities we visit. After checking into The Ames, we had reservations at Coppersmith in South Boston. We loved the duck croquettes and the meatloaf meatballs. I had the falafel burger…which was excellent. The restaurant itself was such a cool space…with a food truck inside – similar to Tacombi in NYC.

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(photo from coppersmith website)

My favorite street in Boston, hands-down, is Charles Street. It’s located at the base of the most charming neighborhood in Boston – Beacon Hill – picturesque streets lined with historic townhouse and gaslight fixtures.  We had breakfast at Tatte Bakery followed by shopping at Black Ink, Follain, Good, Upstairs Downstairs Antiques, Rugg Road Paper Co., and North River Outfitter.

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Another great shopping area (less independent boutiques and more big-name stores) is Newbury Street. We popped into Steven Alan, Pinky Otto, and Zara (of course) whilst wandering the Bay Back area of town. We also may or may not have eaten lunch at Shake Shack. I’ve got to get my NYC fix whenever I possibly can.

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Dinner on Sunday night was at Island Creek Oyster Bar. Holy moly. I apologize for the dark and blurry iPhone photos, but this was the meal of the century. Lobster rolls, clam chowda, and champagne, of course.

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Monday was our touristy/sports/beer day. We started the day off with an exceptional Fenway Park Tour (which is a must, in my opinion). After the tour, we headed to the famous Bleacher Bar for a quick beer. I loved that you could sit by the window that looks into the field from the outfield and essentially watch batting practice if it were game day.

IMG_7825 IMG_7857 IMG_7859Next, we did the Harpoon Brewery tour in the early afternoon. One of our friends had done the Sam Adams tour before, so we thought we’d switch it up this time. I love Harpoon’s IPA, so I was pretty excited to see where it was made and obviously help myself to some generous samples. My favorite beer I tasted that day was their UFO Raz.

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Before we headed out to Foxborough to watch the Patriots beat the Bills, I had to squeeze in one last lobster roll from my favorite spot – Neptune Oyster Bar. It’s located in Boston’s version of Little Italy on a narrow street and only holds about 30 – 40 people maximum. They heat the butter poured over the roll. I can’t even attempt to explain it. Again, apologies for iPhone photos galore.

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Our final stop for the day and the reason for our trip was the NFL Monday Night Football game located at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. I had done some research that concluded the best way to get to the stadium was by train. However the train left at 6:30 and the game started at 8 – leaving us almost no time to tailgate (which is so fun). So we got an tip from the concierge at the hotel that told us about a charter bus that leaves Boston around 4:30 and would get us there at 5:30 for some tailgating. UNFORTUNATELY, Boston traffic is a nightmare and it took almost two and half hours to get to Foxborough and almost the same time to return to the city. I’m saying all of this just so you’re mentally prepared for such a trek upon your decision to make a trip out to the game. Bring booze on the bus and a patient attitude.

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Hotel Recs:
The Liberty Hotel
The Boxer
The Verb
The Ames Hotel

Food:
Tatte Bakery
Coppersmith
Neptune Oyster Bar
Island Creek Oyster Bar

Shopping:
Black Ink
Follain
Good
Upstairs Downstairs Antiques
Rugg Road Paper Co.
North River Outfitter
Patch NYC

Tours:
Harpoon Brewery
Fenway Park Tour

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