Ann Supple Massey, the owner and founder of Rouge Cosmetics, has personally tested every product in her store, from the eye shadows to the moisturizers to the body fragrances. Her discerning eye is one of the reasons the store was awarded "Best of Boston" for makeup shopping in Boston Magazine in 2009. In addition to time-tested favorites from industry leaders such as Nars, Stila, and bareMinerals, clients also find products from more exclusive brands such as Darphin and Blinc, whose ?Kiss Me? mascara has graced the lashes of celebrities Jessica Alba, Rachel McAdams, and Jessica Rabbit.
Most of the aestheticians and makeup artists at Rouge have experience working at photo shoots and fashion shows, so they?re primed to help customers with a range of beauty needs. During private makeup lessons, they guide customers through popular techniques such as the smokey eye, and also acquaint them with tools and beauty products tailored to their personal style. The shop offers several other services, including bridal makeup and false lash applications.
Sixty2 on Wharf is owned by Tony Bettencourt, the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts–trained former chef of the acclaimed Tomasso Trattoria in Southborough. Since opening in 2008, Sixty2 has seduced Salem stomachs with contemporary re-inventions of Italian classics. Bettencourt's meals use local and fresh ingredients shipped to the restaurant via seahorse-drawn gondola. The antipasti platter ($22) allows the chef to drop some knowledge on your plate, as he fills the plate with whichever antipasti options he deems best for the climate and current astrological alignment. Pasta dishes include the potato-filled cappellacci ($24 for full size) and the ribbon-like tagliatelle with a traditional meat-based Bolognese sauce ($26 for full size), while an assortment of entrees ($22–$30) include duck, lamb, chicken, and sea scallops seasoned and spiced to flavorful magnificence. The warm toffee-pudding dessert is a sweet salvo guaranteed to lob a taste grenade at any lingering post-entree hunger.
City Wine Tours' experienced wine ambassadors take groups on enlightening viticultural explorations in New York City and Boston. Each two-hour walking tour stops by upscale restaurants, neighborhood boutiques, and hidden grape-springs known for their unique wine offerings. Guests sip and sample along the way, trying up to six different varietals, while guides expound on wine tasting, pairing, and history. That focus on entertaining education has proved a winning formula?City Wine Tours' walking excursions have been praised by media outlets including Zagat and the Boston Globe.
Nico Ristorante's crimson walls, plush red drapery, and sparkling chandeliers seem designed for romance, as do the extensive list of fine wines and the menu full of classic yet sophisticated dishes. Chef Salvatore Firicano and his crew use locally sourced produce and other fresh ingredients as the tools of their trade, selecting farm-raised mussels and littleneck clams to serve over grilled tuscan bread and stuffing 2-pound lobsters with shrimp and scallops. They use a variety of artfully hand-crafted fresh pasta, from fusilli and rigatoni to tiny, toothsome bundles of potato-dumpling gnocchi.
The restaurant is a part of The Varano Group, a collection of Boston dining establishments created by celebrity restaurateur Nick Varano. Varano's other lauded endeavors include the star-studded Strega Ristorante, Strega Waterfront, and the newest location Strega Prime Italian Steakhouse, located just ten minutes north of Boston.
For dessert in Boston’s North End, make your way to La Summa, tucked away in an unassuming neighborhood location on Fleet Street. The ground floor eatery actually has residential housing above it, with beautifully designed black wrought iron railings that dazzle. Named after the owner’s grandmother, this neighborhood restaurant is popular with locals who come here for a cup of hot coffee, a sampling of limoncello or a nice frothy cappuccino to linger with over a cannoli. Dessert might also include a sampling of tiramisu or creamy ricotta cheesecake, with long conversations and an amiable waitstaff rounding out the evening.
Even with a plethora of restaurants to choose from in Boston’s North End, Il Villaggio manages to stand out, and not just because of its prime location on Hanover Street. The glassy restaurant offers Mediterranean-leaning takes on classic Italian dishes, like a semolina gnocchi served with creamy pesto sauce. With white tablecloths on a small number of tables, Italian wine bottles placed carefully on skewed shelves and chandeliers that look like freshly trimmed branches, the homey restaurant also serves up classic Italian comfort food from its open kitchen in the back. The chefs here use fresh mozzarella and churn out generous portions of lobster ravioli, chicken parmesan andlasagna to the masses that always seem to be queuing up out front.