Monday, September 26, 2011

The End....or a New beginning!

Well blogosphere, after a wonderful year (11 months and 2 weeks) in Northern Italia, I have actually returned to Boston, and who knows maybe for good! So this Bucket List, well is a tad extreme because I am in fact not leaving. However! I am changing my direction for my blog. My passion for food and wine has grown at an exponential rate in Italia (unfortuantely my budget has not) and its time to turn my writing in that direction... so please follow my new food stories as I try to update them on a more frequent basis!


Monday, August 23, 2010

#9 Newbury Street

Newbury Street,
Boston MA 02125

Travel Time: MBTA Green B Line to Hynes Convention center. OR 20 min walk from NEU

Cost: Whatever you decided to spend

Newbury Street is the Boston mecca of shopping. This is where everyone who is anyone owns a store down here. There is everything from the funky, like LF and Urban Outfitters, to the Athletic at NikeTown, and the high end of Gucci and Chanel. (Forever21 is coming soon! I wish I was there for that). This street has got it all.

One of the other attractions of Newbury Street, is the European like cafe's and restaurants, complete with outdoor patios for some of the best people watching Boston has to offer. These restaurants have some great menus, and are a tad on the pricey side, but if youre there for the afternoon not a bad place to stop in the middle of some heavy duty shopping. I love PAZZO or Piattini (yes, they are both Italian....shocker). Another great place is Charleys or Cafeteria for some good American style food. They also have some great stops to get a cup of coffe or an ice cream cone on those hot days. My favorites have to be JP Licks and The Wired Puppy (viva la gormet coffee shop, move over starbucks!)

Newbury is a place to see and be seen on. Its an experience for those shoppers out there. And a place I love to visit, just for walks on a sunny day.

Don't Forget to Check Out Their Website:

Friday, August 13, 2010

#27 The Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA)

The Institute of Contemporary Art
100 Northern AvenueBoston, MA 02210

Travel Time: MBTA Red L
ine to South Station, and a 10 Min walk, OR Silver Line to WTC

Cost: FREE (on Thursdays from 5-9) or $10 for students

So every Thursday, all year round, Target hosts"Target Free Thursdays" and this is the best option if you want to see the exhibits. I really believe that
this is not worth the $10 admission price, and was extremelyglad to not have paid anything. The Gallery is located on the 4th floor, which is the only place you are allowed without paying admission. Also, you are allowed to walk in and straight up to the 4th floor, without any tickets or waiting in line, unless of course you are waiting for the elevator. This is nice and provides a flowy and relaxed environment.

There were two main exhibits Charles Ledray and Dr. Lakra. You are not permitted to take photos inside the exhibits. These both were interesting in very different ways. Charles' exhibit was miniaturized clothing, and pottery. It was really amazing handiwork. Dr. Lakra, had various paintings, and prints with attractive pin up girls completely covered in tattoo's these were really cool and intriguing. Both exhibits will be around through 2011. My favorite portion of the exhibits was the one wall with about 20 Shep
ard Fairey prints. These are part of the permanent collection of the ICA. There was also a very interesting piece in the lobby by Francesca DiMattio.
The artwork is there for you to experience yourself, despite viewing it with hundreds of others.

The galleries are laid out in a very natural and organic way, and in between there is a viewing space, to watch the boats out in the harbor. This portion I really enjoyed, and it made me appreciate the architecture of the building as well. The 4th floor is also home to the MediaTech Lab, which is a great room, with stadium seating an
d iMacs where you can virtually interact with the exhibits and learn more. This room is protruding from the building at such an angle, where when you look out you see the bottom of the ocean. I am doing a terrible job at describing, but it is amazing, so take the time to experience it while there.

Outside facing the harbor there is a cafe, as well as bleachers and an outdoor bar. This is a local hang out for those that work in the area. There was live music playing, and it was a great location to relax, people watch, and watch the boats sail around.

Overall this is a great place to go, for free!

Don't Forget to Check Out Their Website at:

Thursday, August 12, 2010

#44 Lulu's Sweet Shop

Lulu's Sweet Shoppe
57 Salem Street
Boston MA 02113

Travel Time: 10-15 min T ride (Green or Orange to Haymarket)

Cost: $2.25 for a regular sized cupcake (no minis on selection

So this is located in the North End, right down the block from La Famiglia Gorgio's, and may even be seen as my continuation of the North End blog. But you know me and my cupcakes, I gotta try 'em all.

So we stopped in and got a Red Velvet cupcake to share, and then I brought home a Peanut Butter Cup, Red Velvet and a S'Mores. I absolutely loved the Red Velvet, may have been a tad dry, but it was the end of the day after all. The Peanut Butter Cup was amazing, mainly it had to do with my love for that combination, and even after a day it was still delicious.

Now this is also a sweet shoppe, and they had a great selection of candy, for relatively low prices. So just be prepared for the over all sugar rush that is associated with this store. Overall, if you are in the neighborhood and tired of cannoli's, this is a great alternative, and perfect ending to any meal.

They don't have a website, apparently they closed and just recently re-opened.

#18 The North End

The North End
Between 1-93 and the Harbor, and Causeway St and Atlantic Ave.

Travel: MBTA Orange or Green Line T to Haymarket.

Cost: Whatever you spend!

Famous streets: Salem St and Hanover St. (aka most touristy) Salem St is Pictured.

So the North End is also known as Boston's Little Italy, and is actually one of the oldest neighborhoods. This neighborhood has got it all, history, shopping, and most of all Food! The restaurants in this area are mostly Italian (shocking!) and they all vary in price range and menu as well. One of my favorite places is La Famiglia Gorgio, this is a family owned restuarant thats portion size encourages sharing between family and friends. This is a great date night location, hint hint.

The North End is home to some great local botiques that have a real interesting selection of clothing. There is one jewelry store that my mother absolutely loves right on the corner of Salem St. Depending on where you go, but most stores are reasonably priced, and can provide some real interesting conversation pieces.

This North End also has some great stops for pre or post dinner snacks, with the most famous being Mikes Pastry's. They have some nationwide famous Cannolis, definitely worth the mayhem and wait that always comes from the tourists. This is also home to some of the best gelato in town, instead of course ice cream.

The North End has a lot of Italy in a very condense area, making it quite a delicious experience.

Don't Forget To Check Out Their Website:

Monday, August 9, 2010

#24 The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
280 The Fenway,
Boston MA 02115

Travel Time: 10-20 min walk from NEU Campus, or MBTA E Green line to the MFA stop.

Cost: $5.00 for Students
Free if you're under 18
$10.00 for Adults

This museum is open Tuesday-Sunday from 11am to 5pm.

This is one of the more stricter museums I've been to in terms of packages, bags, cameras and the like. While most museums will allow non-flash photography, no camera's were permitted inside the museum. Additionally, any large purses and backpacks were asked to be checked in the coat check, and not permitted to be carried around the museum. There are security in every room, and every entrance. There are also certain rooms with a limited capacity, where you will have to wait to take a gander around. I think this in part has to do with the famous Museum heist, (which you can read about here:

This museum is three floors, which incircle an indoor courtyard, one of the first built in Boston way back when. This courtyard is gorgeous, amazing and extremely peaceful. Even with the many tourists and visitors walking around, there is a certain quite when looking out into the courtyard. Unfortunately no-one is allowed into it. Also, on each floor there are windows open with balconies where you can gaze down into the courtyard. This is the focal point of this museum and collection, and probably my favorite part of this visit.

One of the really interesting things about this place is the fact that nothing (well almost nothing) has been touched since Isabella's death, as per her will. All the paintings, furniture and the like are arranged as she wanted the public to see them . With this in mind, these collections, each of the three floors, were the most eclectic and interesting exhibits. I want to get to know this woman who put this together, and most of all I left with the question, of why each thing was put in the room. Why certain pieces were together. It had to be one of the most eclectic collections ever.

The fact that nothing has been touched also leaves room for some remorse because there are quite a few empty frames, from that heist, where the thieves stole the paintings out of the frames. My favorite painting was located in the back left corner of the first floor, and it is El Jaleo, 1882 by John S. Sargent. It had such vibrant movement and color.

This museum is a great stop after the overwhelming galleries of the MFA, and over all you only need an 1 hour to an 1 1/2 hours here.

Don't Forget to Check Out Their Website:

Thursday, August 5, 2010

#42 SoWa

SoWa (South End Open Market)
460 Harrison Ave,
Boston MA

Travel Time: 20-30 min walk from NEU/Mass Ave MBTA Orange Line T, OR 15 min walk from Orange Tufts Medical Center Stop.

Cost: whatever you buy!

Note: Open SUNDAYS from 10am-4pm

I had no idea what to except when going to the SoWa Open Market, and I have to say I was plesantly surprised. It was a longer walk than I had anticipated and the crowd was getting restless, but the first section we went too, with the food truck and tents calmed the crowd and created a great first impression.
We were able to sample different things, from ice coffee (amazing), to hummus, to even a crazy hot pinapple hot sauce.

We walked through to the other side, and found all the indie artists, as well as a few farm stands, which got me really excited, I love fresh produced. SoWa is home to many different photographers, artists, jewelery makers, even a soap maker or two. There was a booth with not bean bag chairs. And a couple of other interesting tents here. I really enjoyed walking around and looking. I must confess to not purchasing anything, mainly due to my constricted budget, but did mean there was nothing I wanted.

SoWa is also home to various events as well as the Sunday market. The two following weeks after I went to SoWa, there was the Food Truck Fest, and then an Ice Cream Competition. Both of which I would have loved to take part in, alas the busy schedule of Boston Blogging.

Overall this is a great thing to do on a Sunday in the South End! Would love to go back!

(All photos from the SoWa website, mainly because I brought my camera without the memory card! )

Don't Forget to Check Out Their Website at: