Tuesday, May 25, 2004

A lovely day in Boston (except for the weather)!

I always try to plan my last day, when I visit my son, daughter-in-law, and the most adorable baby in the world, so that I can have a walk-around day in Boston before flying home. The weather didn't cooperate yesterday; it was cold, grey and damp.

However, I did get a lovely lunch at Kingfish Hall . This is a Todd English restaurant (that handsome devil!), but I wondered about the fact that it's right by Faneuil Hall, a major tourist destination. I should have known. Just as Olives and Figs are wonderful places, so is this!

I got there a little early, and just enjoyed a glass of McCrostie chardonnay ($10) as I perused the list of excellent seafood dishes. That's not all they have, but that's their specialty and who am I to argue! I started with "Not Your Mother's Clam Chowder," a more elegant version than most I've had. With bits of potato, scallion and streaky bacon to supplement the generous portion of chopped fresh clams, topped with one steamer, and really cute little cracker puffs. Eventually I narrowed the main course list down to the Pasta Crabonara: Linguine with bacon, cream, parmesan and a fresh Maryland soft-shell crab, or the pesto-crusted roasted halibut.

I thought about taking both and getting a doggie bag for later, since the flight home was foodless, but the side dishes pulled me toward the halibut: a baby yellow and red tomato salad, crusty potato cake and balsamic drizzle. YUMMY. But I still wish I had gotten the soft-shell crab dish, too! The waiter could not have been more gracious if I had been a table of corporate guys on expense accounts instead of a lone female, so I tipped him generously!

Afterwards, walked the few blocks to the North End, Boston's little Italy. There's a sort of pharmacy that carries a wide variety of real Italian cooking magazines and I always pick up a few to bring back.

Then on to Mike's Pastry Shop for pastries and pistachio macaroons to bring home. By then the weather was getting threatening, so I headed it back to the airport without my usual espresso in one of the very authentic Italian caf├ęs along Hanover Street, complete with handsome Italian hunks watching satellite Italian soccer games and rooting in Italian for their favorite team (and wondering about the unfamiliar woman in the corner, drinking espresso and reading Italian cooking magazines!). Fortunately, there WILL be a next time!

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