Named Best Bowling by Boston magazine in 2010, Kings' fun centers boast a lively atmosphere for all ages. Both locations host ample bowling ($4.50–$6.50 per game) real estate—20 lanes at Dedham and 16 at Back Bay—and dozens of HDTVs. Back Bay features a full billiards room with Brunswick Gold Crown tables ($14 per hour), while Dedham provides miniature skee bowling ($5 per game) and regulation shuffleboard ($10 per hour), so shuffleboard fanatics can relive their favorite professional shuffleboard moments. With thousands of square feet of fun at each spot, recreational hustlers and mingle-minded masses alike can score bowling points, billiard touchdowns, or shuffleboard coup-fourrés.
As enrollment at the Berklee College of Music began to quadruple in the 1970s, it was obvious that the school was getting too big for its Hotel Boston britches—there was no space for a proper concert hall. So when the former movie palace of the Fenway Theatre and the former Sherry Biltmore Hotel went on the market, the administration snatched the spacious spaces up and solved their occupancy problems in one fell swoop. Renovated and modernized with an enlarged stage, an acoustic ceiling, and studios for recording, rehearsal, and extended noodling tucked below the stage level, the massive performance center now sports 1,215 plush green seats, a sleek hovering balcony, and advanced lighting and sound systems. When not being used as a laboratory for recording engineers and performers, the Back Bay culture nucleus showcases more than 200 events per year from various genres, cultures, and community organizations.
Boulevard Grill's owner pulls double-duty in the kitchen as head chef, heaping plates high with generous portions of classic American dishes that emphasize freshly netted seafood catches. As entrees of grilled swordfish, baked sea scallops, and new york strip steak simmer in the kitchen, foot-long toasted subs swell with trimmings of roast beef or veal parmesan. Of-age diners or orangutans in convincing top hats can sip on drinks from the restaurant's full bar, as young offspring enjoy a kids' menu of cheeseburgers and chicken tenders.
Beneath the gracefully hulking beams that hold up the belfry's sloping roof, a white tablecloth snaps crisply in the air before landing on an awaiting tabletop. Five days a week, the staff of Belfry Bistro bustles about between lunch and dinner services, preparing the airy dining room for the evening's guests. Lunch menus are switched out in favor of the more substantial dinner offerings, ranging from chorizo-stuffed littlenecks to locally sourced filet mignon and lavender-poached Chatham cod. Inspired by the seasons, contemporary American comfort food dots the menu in the colder months, during which diners can cozy up to the fireplace to relax by the flames or reheat a bite of steak.
Belfry Bistro is situated inside The Abbey, Sandwich's third Catholic church and one of three vintage buildings owned by the Belfry Inne. Many of the original pews and woodwork have been saved, repurposed, and repositioned to create a rich interior steeped in local history.
The foodsmiths at Mumbai Chopstix meld the cooking techniques, ingredients, and seasonings of India and China to craft a menu of refined Hakka cuisine. To create the calcutta szechuan shrimp dish ($19.95), they baste a collection of juicy mollusks in a spicy sauce replete with the gustatory firecrackers of garlic and chilies, and to summon the amalgamation of sweet and savory flavors in the mango chili chicken ($16.95), they coerce morsels of chicken to play a round of double dutch with slices of mango and bell peppers before glazing them all in a desi chili sauce. Guests can also hang a fang on sautéed hakka-style lamb ($17.95), or eschew meat altogether for the Buddha's Delight, a soy-garlic-soused consortium of sautéed tofu, mushrooms, and spinach ($16.95). Peking duck samosas ($6) prime appetites with flaky pastries that brim with roast duck, swan diving into the Mumbai salsa by their own volition.
In a city already filled with celebrity chefs, award-winning cooks and heralded eateries, the work of Jason Santos stands out – but not just for his shocking blue hair. The distinctive look that Santos sports has actually given rise to Blue Inc., one of Boston’s hippest Financial District restaurants. Things move from mundane to whimsical in a flash inside the space, where a giant mural of model Twiggy decorates the wall, and bartenders whip up adult liquid nitrogen milkshakes, sometimes spiked with booze, to patrons lining the bar. The food menu is equally edgy, with dishes like calamari “spaghetti,” which is thinly cut squid served with pastrami Bolognese, and the Southern-style boneless fried chicken that arrives with pepperjack waffles, smoked maple caramel, arugula and bacon.