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A Little Bit About a Lot of Things

A lifestyle blog with a focus on my food adventures

Tag Archives: bar

IMG_1330Bostonia Public House took over the space that was formerly Kitty O’Shea’s (2 floors) and has been open since April – packing the house both at lunch time and after work.

IMG_1331The restaurant has a really great vibe, and the decor is fabulous – from the dark wood to the mustard colored seats to the amazing bar. HGTV’s Taniya Nayak designed the space. The team and I took Mark out to celebrate his upcoming wedding.

IMG_1333We started with the pickle pot ($5) that was lip puckering good. Love the presentation.

IMG_1334Most of the team had the burger, which did look delicious. I had the housemade ricotta dumplings ($22) that came with shrimp, peas, carrots and a crispy prosciutto cracker. A great dish, really nice bright flavors – very summery. With lunch entrees ranging between $16 and $29, the prices are a bit steep for lunch, but the food was delicious and Mark was happy.

IMG_1341They offer 38 wines by the glass (check out how cool that is!) and live music in the evenings. They are open late night, 11:30am – 2am daily.

Bostonia Public House
131 State Street, Boston, MA

Make a reservation with Open Table

Bostonia Public House on Urbanspoon

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IMG_4324I met up with a friend after work and we headed over to the Granary Tavern for a quick bite to eat. This time, we grab seats in the downstairs dining room. We start with the cheese trio & dips: tapenade, hummus, Maytag blue, smoked gouda, cotija, grilled crostini ($12).

IMG_4328I have the lobster roll: house shucked local lobster, chive-citrus mayo, bibb lettuce, brioche roll, potato chips ($18) that came with a lot of claw meat.

IMG_4325The Granary burger was good, nothing wowed me about it, even though I do love a burger with a fried egg on top. Archer Angus Farms, Vermont cheddar, bacon, fried egg, brioche roll, hand-cut fries ($16). Service was ok, slow at times as I think our waitress forgot about us, tucked all the way in the corner. Great place to go for a casual bite with friends or out for drinks. Looking forward to the weather warming up so that we can go and sit on the outdoor patio!

Granary Tavern

170 Milk Street, Boston, MA

Make a reservation with Open Table here.

Granary Tavern on Urbanspoon

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IMAG0042Fajitas and ‘Ritas was established in 1989. It sits on West Street, just around the corner from the Opera House.

IMG_0686We stopped in for lunch on Saturday afternoon. It has a different vibe in the afternoon – there are more families that come in, as opposed to a Friday or Saturday night when the place really comes alive.

IMG_0690The restaurant is casual, with white paper covering the tables and a roll of paper towels at every table.

IMG_0695I love the decor here, different artists have come in and painted murals on the walls in bright colors. Fajitas and ‘Ritas has an outdoor,  backyard, neighborhood-y, casual place to meet your friends out kind of feel.

IMG_0700There are plenty of seats at the bar if you just want to stop in for a drink, but you would be missing out on the good food!

IMAG0032Fajitas and ‘Ritas serves up Texas cuisine – they serve fajitas, smoked bbq, quesadillas, nachos, and tequila wings (there’s tequila in the marinade and the sauce!).

IMAG0036The portions are generous! For $7.71, I got a chicken and cheese quesadilla. The chicken had a little bit of a kick to it, really nicely seasoned.

IMG_0684How do you go to a place called Fajitas and ‘Ritas and not get a margarita right? They have over 25 types of tequila, a house margarita, 8 specialty margaritas and you can even make your own margarita. The bartender makes a stiff drink! Above is the frozen raspberry margarita – yum!

IMG_0705And how could you not try the fajitas? Here is the steak fajitas – for $9.35 you get a sizzling plate of perfection. I wish that you could smell these! They come with flour tortillas and a trio of condiments (guacamole, pico de gallo, sour cream all made fresh in house). The service was good – our waitress was chatty and personable. Our food came out quickly and our water glass was always full.

IMG_0697For your viewing pleasure, take a look at some of the artwork on the walls!





IMG_0687Check out my Favecast video here:


*Disclaimer: I was given a discount on the meal, but all opinions are my own.

Fajitas and ‘Ritas

25 West Street, Boston, MA

Fajitas & 'Ritas on Urbanspoon


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IMG_3820Central Wharf Co. is the newest addition to the Glynn Hospitality Group – you may know some of their other restaurants: Granary Tavern (right next door), The Black Rose, Dillon’s, Brownstone, Hurricane O’Reilly’s, Coogan’s, Clerys, and Sterling’s.

IMG_3822Address sound familiar? Central Wharf took over the space that was formerly Jose McIntyre’s.They just took the old sign down in the beginning of March!

IMG_3823I met a couple of my old interns out for drinks after work.


We were pleasantly surprised at the live music on a weeknight.

Central Wharf Co.

Check out Joe Carson – wickedly talented.

IMG_3821After a quick toast with my champagne cocktail, toasting to being reunited with friends, we decide we need something to hold us over.


We have the trio of dips ($10) hummus, olive tapenade, herbed cheese, served with grilled pita chips and veggies. The food was good, our bartender was great – we enjoyed her company, a good night over all.

See my Favecast video here:

Central Wharf Co.

160 Milk Street, Boston, MA

Central Wharf Co. on Urbanspoon

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IMG_0433This was my first event with Boston Bloggers, and I have to admit I was a little nervous, like first day of school nervous. But good thing I had my spirits expert Mark with me! We both have always wanted to learn a little more about whiskey. The other bloggers at the event couldn’t have been nicer and more supportive of each other. And who doesn’t like to swap stories about favorite places to eat and drink? The whiskey tasting was held at Saloon, the second venture for David Flanagan and Ken Kelly (owners of Foundry on Elm – also in Davis Square).

IMG_0432We had our own private room for the tasting.

IMG_0444I love the architecture and the design of this place – it gives the bar a lot of character.

IMG_0435We grab a drink at the bar since we are a few minutes early.

IMG_0436Mixed drinks run you anywhere from $9-$13.

IMG_0429The bar focuses on brown liquors and local beers.

IMG_0463Beverage Director Manny Gonzales takes us through the whiskeys – we are blind tasting and he reveals the brands after we have talked about each drink. He encourages everyone to participate, people call out what flavors and smells they are experiencing.

IMG_0445Why do some people spell whiskey with an “ey” and others spell it, whisky, with just a “y”? The Irish spell it with an “ey” at the end and the Scottish spell it with just a “y”, whisky.

IMG_0442Tonight we are sampling 4 brands. We will start at the top left and go clockwise.

IMG_0441Thank goodness there are some delicious snacks on the table while we are doing the tasting! They had this amazing bread, challah like in texture, with some sea salt sprinkled on top that was absolutely delicious. Above is a really nice meat board with crispy baguettes, mustard, pickles and pickled onion.

IMG_0446They call these “devils on horseback”, feta stuffed dates wrapped in bacon. They were amazing, and the flavors really highlighted the caramel flavors in the whiskey.

IMG_0457So starting at the top left, we later found out that it was Willett, a Kentucky bourbon, barrel #7674. Bourbon is an American whiskey, made primarily of corn (at least 51%). Bourbon is aged in oak barrels with a heavy char inside, they call the char “alligator skin”. The toasting of the wood gives brings out the wood flavor in the barrels, giving the alcohol an earthy quality. This particular bourbon is 72% corn and 13% rye. It was medium in color – Manny suggested that we keep the bourbon on our tongue for some time to get all the flavor notes. The alcohol was “sweet” (not girly drink sweet, ’cause it still burned on the way down) and had caramel and vanilla notes.

IMG_0453The second drink we tried was High West whiskey, a rye whiskey. Rye whiskey is at least 51% rye. This brand was a blend of a 2 year old whiskey and a 16 year old whiskey and made from 53% rye, 37% corn and 10% barley. This had a dry flavor, with notes of cocoa, cinnamon and licorice (a lot of spice – a characteristic of Rye) and was sweeter than the Willett.

IMG_0465On the bottom right, we have the Highland Park, a single malt Scotch whisky. Scotch must be aged for at least 3 years, this one has been aged for 12. A single malt whisky is made with malt from one distillery. This Scotch has an almost medicinal quality to it, with tangerine notes, pear and honeysuckle. It was fruity and earthy with a smoky flavor. To be honest, all I got was the smoke, thank goodness I had Mark there with me.

IMG_0459Bottom left was the Irish Whiskey, the lightest in coloring. Irish whiskey is made in…Ireland. It must be aged at least 3 years and is usually distilled 3 times (as opposed to Scotch that is usually distilled twice). This was the sweetest of all, with a smoother finish than the Scotch whisky. There are currently only 9 distilleries in Ireland.

IMG_0471Overall, it was a really great night. I learned a TON about whiskey and met some great people. Looking forward to more Boston Blogger events in the future!

*This event was complimentary, but all opinions are my own.


255 Elm Street, Somerville, MA

Saloon on Urbanspoon

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IMG_2661While everyone was clearing out of the city for the snowmageddon, and old cor-worker and I were meeting for dinner in Faneuil Hall. Missing the guacamole at Zocalo, which was by our old office, we head to Mija to see if/how their guacamole stands up.

IMG_2660Not surprising, there are only about 12 other people here. Most are sitting at the bar, so we get a nice big booth to ourselves. While this place will be great in the summer time when they open up the windows, it is freezing inside tonight.

IMG_2659I like the decor here – leather chairs and banquettes mixed with distressed wood, Moroccan style lamps and (fake) candles.

IMG_2657We start off with the guacamole $10, smashed hass avocado, red onion, jalapeno, cilantro that come with a bowl of chips. I read their reviews on Yelp, and they are getting killed on ratings, most people giving them 1 or 2 stars. With almost no one there, you would think that the service would have been excellent, unfortunately, our waitress seemed disinterested with us. When the guacamole arrived, we asked for salsa (twice) and it arrived after our entrees were delivered. I have the short rib enchilada baked with salsa rojo and Monterey Jack ($18). The food was ok for me, nothing to write home about, but it was certainly edible (and the portion was generous). I’m thinking that you should stick to coming here for drinks after work with friends – they have over 100 different kinds of tequila and $1 beef or chicken tacos during happy hour.

Speaking of tequila, are/were you an #Entourage fan? Remember when Turtle goes into business with a tequila company, #Avion? Avion is a real brand of tequila, and you can try it at Mija. See that Maggie Hoffman, of Serious Eats,  thought of Avion here.

Mija Cantina

Faneuil Hall Marketplace

Mija Cantina & Tequila Bar on Urbanspoon

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IMG_0054My office is around the corner from the Brahmin on Stanhope Street. I wanted to give them a shout out because they have really been good to us over the years. We are moving our office and we will certainly miss having them close by. It is so convenient to leave your stuff at the office and walk across the street for a few drinks after work. We have done multiple events at the Brahmin, reserving the front area by the windows for our group. They make sure to take care of repeat customers and are very affordable for parties, so make sure to call them when you are booking your next event.

They have a lovely patio out front if the weather is nice, and it is tucked away a bit, which is also key. Inside, they have a room off to the right in the back that you can rent out that has a really warm ambiance.

Tuesday nights they have Kiss 108’s Rich Dimare singing Sinatra, his voice is so smooth. On Thursday nights they have American Idol finalist Erika Van Pelt singing solo. Other nights they have a killer DJ playing music, so there is always something fun going on here on any given night.

They have a great drink list and we love their apps. Our company favorites include: any of the pizzas, the tater tots, the fried pickles, and the buffalo chicken meatballs. Talk to their event director Jill or their manager Mike for top notch service.

The Brahmin

33 Stanhope Street, Boston, MA

The Brahmin American Cuisine & Cocktails on Urbanspoon

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IMG_0217You may know Bar Louie – they have a location at Patriot Place. They had their soft opening on Friday, September 20th. They invited me to be their guest with a few of my friends to help them test their soft opening. Bar Louie has a prime location at 121 Brookline Avenue – perfect for a drink before the Sox game or dinner before a movie at the Regal cinema next door.

IMG_0219Like most of the bars on the street, they have high windows that open up onto the street – great people watching. I think it was confusing for Sox fans – Bar Louie looked like the perfect location to go because all the other bars on the block were packed with a line around the corner. The hostess had to continually tell people that this was their soft opening and turned people away. People were very confused. They were told that Bar Louie was opening at 8pm and they should come back. When I got to the front of the line they didn’t have my name on the list, but she said not to worry, they were having issues with their reservations. We arrived at around 6:30pm. The front area near the street was pretty sparse, most people were at the bar or in the back at high top tables. When I asked the hostess if we could sit at the table closer to the window she looked at me with a blank stare…so I explained to her that the table she originally wanted to sit me at would be fine.

IMG_0220They have a large bar in the middle of the room, with booths, high tops and couches around the perimeter. TV’s surround the bar, so no matter where you are sitting, you have a good view of the game.

IMG_0230The noise level was ok, but we weren’t at full capacity. Liked the ambiance here – a little more of an upscale bar,  and it’s nice to have other options in this area.

IMG_0222Our waitress was a little confused with what was on the menu and what/how we could order. We were offered one appetizer to share for the table and every could have an entree, with the stipulation that we all had to get something different. We get the bruschetta to start. It comes out in an enormous martini glass – a playful presentation. It was tasty – the bread was toasted just right and the bruschetta was flavorful. (regularly $8)

IMG_0223The food and non alcoholic beverages were provided for us, but we paid for alcoholic beverages. I had the strawberry margarita: Camerena Silver, O3, fresh sour, lime, and strawberry purée ($10). Really nice flavor, and loved the presentation. We waited some time between our app and our main course. It gave us time to take in the sights. It was hard to tell who was a waitress, other than the fact that they were all gathering around the host stand and chatting. They were all in black tops of some sort, but some were in booty shorts, some were in jeans. All of the servers were pretty young, the younger staff gives the place a good spirit, a really fun vibe. I think that they could have benefited from another day or two of training – but that is what soft openings are for right!

IMG_0225I had the mac and cheese (regularly $10). The dish was good, if not a little one dimensional. It came out a little on the luke warm side but it had a very nice presentation.

IMG_0226The meatball hoagie (regularly $10): premium meatballs, pepperoni, marinara, spicy giardiniera, mozzarella, parmesan, on a hoagie roll. The tots were way too salty but the sandwich was good – the meatballs had a really nice kick to them.

IMG_0227If you follow this blog, you know I am a sucker for anything with a fried egg on it. This burger is no exception! The Louie burger was tasty, probably the best dish out of the three. (regularly $12) Prices here are affordable, entrees running around $10-$12, beers on tap at $7 and mixed drinks hovering in the $10 range.

IMG_0228Overall a good experience. As I mentioned before, the servers could use a bit more training to make the process smoother – I can imagine how swamped they would get during Sox games and they need to be prepared. The bartenders were on point, cranking out drinks like pros. I look forward to coming back in a few months to see what it’s like when they are in the swing of things, this place has good potential.

Bar Louie

121 Brookline Ave, Boston, MA

*We were offered complimentary food and non alcoholic drinks.

Bar Louie on Urbanspoon

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IMG_9299Located downstairs from Sportello, Drink is Barabara Lynch’s craft cocktail spot. People outside waiting in the hallway with us seem frustrated that they have to wait 15 minutes. I chuckle and think to myself, you should see this place on the weekend! The bar is pretty sparse, relying on the exposed brick, the bar and symmetrical fixtures to “make” the space. If you’re looking for a beer, save yourself the trouble and head over to Lucky’s across the street. There is no menu here, you tell the server/bartender what you like and they mix you up a cocktail. Here’s what we had:

IMG_9300The aviation ($12) traditionally made with gin, maraschino liqueur, crème de violette, and lemon juice – some leave out the crème de violette. This was my drink. I think that the more drinks I have with gin, the fonder I am of it. See the other gin drink I loved at Tavern Road here. I was pleasantly surprised and really enjoyed this drink.

IMG_9301The negroni ($12) traditionally made with one partone part gin, one part vermouth rosso (red, semi-sweet), and one part bitters, traditionally Campari.

IMG_9302The elderflower sour ($12) traditionally made with Gin, Elderflower liqueur, and lemon juice.


348 Congress St  Boston, MA 02210


Drink on Urbanspoon

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IMG_9659Met a fabulous friend for drinks and tapas at Barcelona. We were planning on sitting outside on the patio, but it is getting dark so early these days. We grab a seat at the bar. There’s an interesting crowd here – two ladies who look like they may be trying a little too hard to look half their age, a couple rolling their own cigarettes next to us getting chatty and friendly with the bartender, some middle aged folks who look like they are having a blind date, and some younger college aged kids hovering behind us while they wait for a seat. The bar is hopping! We order a glass of wine (priorities) and then proceed to picking out what we want to eat. Everything looks so good. We order the mushroom salad ($5.50) with Celery, Mustard, Allandale’s Frisee. Delicious. Love every bite of this. The mushrooms are shaved thinly and the mustard, which I’m not usually a fan of, is light and subtle.

IMG_9660The potato tortilla with chive sour cream ($$4.50) was so delicious, such great comfort food.

IMG_9661Of course we had to try the lobster fideos ($14) which are toasted lobster infused noodles with larges pieces of lobster on top. The pasta comes crisp and almost stuck to the bottom of the pan, but that’s how you get all the good flavoring, but scraping the bottom of the pan! The noodles are short, they are like broken pieces of spaghetti. Really nice flavoring in this dish, we ate every last piece.

IMG_9662Simple plating for the manchego cheese ($6.50).

IMG_9663For dessert, they brought us crepas salguero ($7.00) Dulce de Leche, Chocolate Sauce & Vanilla Ice Cream on the house. A nice light and delicious dessert.

IMG_9664Of course we had to have the churros ($8) with dark chocolate dipping sauce. Pure heaven. Both the churros and the chocolate were warm and delicious – so good we shared with two guys sitting next to us.

IMG_9665And just because we needed more chocolate, we had the chocolate indulgence ($7) a warm chocolate lava cake with coconut ice cream and raspberry coulis. I wasn’t in love with the coconut ice cream, but the cake was delicious, so decadent. We had such a great evening, filled with laughs, great food, and good company. This may be my new neighborhood spot!


100 Beacon Street, Brookline, MA (Washington Square)

Barcelona Wine Bar on Urbanspoon

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