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Our City Guides is from the point of view of the people we interview. A restaurant cannot be listed in our guides unless it is recommended by one of the tastemakers we’ve featured. We don’t want you to see the restaurant world through our eyes, but rather through the eyes of your favorite tastemakers in every industry. Why us? Why not them?

b&g-oysters-seafood-restaurant-south-end-boston

B&G Oysters

Recommended by: Marc Vetri (Chef/Owner, Vetri Ristorante)

Boston’s sweetheart chef, Barbara Lynch, puts a modern twist on a classic oyster bar with her intimate seafood eatery that boasts a menu filled with a large variety of fresh oysters from both coasts, as well as classic New England dishes such as lobster rolls and clam chowder. Make a Reservation. www.bandgoysters.com  

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Craigie on Main

Recommended by: Alex Guarnaschelli (Top Chef)

If you ever happen to find yourself in Cambridge, Craigie on Main is where you’re going to want to feed yourself. Seasonal and elevated American fare is served in a comfortable dining room that mixes party painted and exposed brick walls, sleek wood floors and crisp white tablecloths. If tasting menus aren’t your thing, make your way [...]

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Drink

Recommended by: Michael Harlan Turkell (Photographer)

Fancy libations are offered at this industrial-style basement bar that’s dedicated to the art of cocktails. Top-notch bartenders mix the night away with much swagger, and tailor cocktails based on your spirit of choice. The snack menu offers a small handful of pickled and cured bites, and an off-menu burger is available if you’re lucky [...]

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Flour Bakery

Recommended by: Anna Chlumsky (Actress)

With four locations in Boston and Cambridge, pastry chef Joanne Chang’s Flour Bakery has created a name for itself when it comes to all things sweet, buttery and baked. Pecan-studded sticky buns, raisin-filled brioche swirls and warm, crusty baguettes are amongst the many goodies that have earned Chang the accolades she certainly deserves. www.flourbakery.com  

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Island Creek Oyster Bar

Recommended by: Michael Harlan Turkell (Photographer)

Putting its own twist on the farm-to-table trend, Island Creek Oyster Bar’s menu features seafood from small farms that are experts of aquaculture. The menu changes daily and often offers more than ten varieties of oysters, as well as dishes that are creatively prepared without losing the classic New England touch, such as fried-oyster sliders [...]

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Lucca

Recommended by: Adam Keough (Chef, Absinthe Brasserie & Bar)

Named after a charming town in Tuscany, Lucca offers traditional Northern Italian classics that take advantage of the season’s freshest offerings. Stained glass windows and candlelit tables lend the spacious dining room an ambience of romance and intimacy, setting diners up for a romantic night of rustic Italian cuisine paired with exotic liquors and wines. [...]

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Menton

Recommended by: Daniel Humm (Chef, Eleven Madison Park), Marc Vetri (Chef/Owner, Vetri Ristorante)

The French-Italian golden child of Barbara Lynch, one of Boston’s most respected chefs, consistently reels in the industry’s highest awards with its updated haute cuisine. While the prix fixe-only dinners are a definite splurge, you’ll find yourself getting lost and pampered in a night of endless courses, filled glasses and top-class service. Make a Reservation. www.mentonboston.com [...]

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Neptune Oyster

Recommended by: Anna Chlumsky (Actress)

While Neptune Oyster is a definite mecca for oyster aficionados, the seafood eatery also serves up New England favorites such as a killer hot lobster roll with butter and a buttermilk johnnycake topped with smoked trout tartare. The Parisian-style, 42-seater restaurant does not take reservations, and lines are known to go out the door during [...]

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No. 9 Park

Recommended by: Michael Harlan Turkell (Photographer)

Located in a charming townhouse in the historic neighborhood of Beacon Hill, Barbara Lynch’s upscale No. 9 Park exhibits a refined Italian and French cuisine that focuses on simplicity and flavor. No. 9 Park frequenters rave about the prune-stuffed gnocchi with foie gras, which has become the restaurant’s signature dish and a mainstay on the [...]

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Siena Farms

Recommended by: Michael Harlan Turkell (Photographer)

Siena Farms, a 75-acre market farm located just 25 miles west of Boston, sends its sustainably grown produce to its brick-and-mortar store in South End. The store, with both the charming qualities of a farmer’s market and the convenience of a grocery store, also sells specialty prepared local foods such as pastries from Middle Eastern bakery [...]

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Toro

Recommended by: Michael Chernow (Co-Owner, The Meatball Shop), Marc Vetri (Chef/Owner, Vetri Ristorante), Chris Cosentino (Winner, Top Chef Masters), Sara Sampaio (Model), Carla Gugino (Actress)

Be prepared to fight for a seat at this no-reservations, Barcelona-style tapas restaurant, and use your waiting time wisely at the bar by ordering a dizzying cocktail. The menu offers a mix of both traditional and less conventional Spanish fare, ranging from the classic grilled corn to bone marrow with oxtail marmalade. www.toro-restaurant.com  

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Uni Sashimi Bar

Recommended by: Michael Harlan Turkell (Photographer)

Sitting just a floor down from landmark Boston restaurant Clio is Uni, a tiny sashimi bar that has become one of the hottest spots in the city for Japanese fusion cuisine. The a la carte and omakase menus change daily, and feature ingredients sourced from around the world. Every Friday and Saturday, the sashimi bar [...]