My Favorite Boston and NYC Restaurants + Honorable Mention

We are back after an incredible weekend in the city and other than a sore liver I am happy to report that the weekend was just as amazing as I anticipated! The fact that Summer decided to show its face a few months early was just the icing on the cake, and even though the service at our hotel was less than desirable, the rooms and amenities were pretty fabulous. This view from our balcony certainly made waking up just a little bit easier after a late night. A few A list celebrities were also staying at the hotel and one of the highlights of the trip was watching the paparazzi get in a tizzy every time we walked out the door. Nope, sorry... not her! Man, that is one crazy circus, I can't imagine what that must be like day in and day out!

Without question my favorite thing to do while in NYC is eat, and certainly there are unlimited options. While plotting another trip this Summer trip I began listing off all the restaurants I want to visit and it came as a surprise to no one that they were the same ones that I always want to patron. Turns out that I am one of those people who when I find something that works is very hesitant to change it up! Given that we don't go out very much, I think I just want each time to be as good as it possibly can be. I'm not eager to risk a night when I know there could have been a better option! 

When in New York my tried and true favorite places to eat are the following. Most of these recommendations came courtesy of my sister-in-law (the all knowing New Yorker) so I really can't take credit for them, but I can say I live for dining at them. 

For brunch I absolutely LOVE Maison KayserNarcissaCafe Cluny, and Locanda Verde. For dinner I am all about Malatesta in the West Village, and L'Artusi. I have to mention Smith and Mills and the Crosby Hotel which have become our go-to spots for afternoon snacks and cocktails. 

As far as Boston goes I do the same thing I do while visiting NYC. I go to the same place over and over again, and each time for a specific outing. Blue Dragon with my best friend. Coppa for a girl's night, and Craigie for a night out with my husband. I feel like once you know what works, there's no reason to mix it up! I get asked quite a bit about what my favorite Boston eateries are so for those of you looking to visit the area, here are my favorites and a little tip about each.

Coppa Boston
As I mentioned, this is my go-to spot for a night out with the girls. It's fun, loud, pretty hip, and even this non-meat eater can find a number of things from the carnivore friendly menu that is offered tapas style.
Hint: Try the arancini and if it's on the menu the oyster pizza.

Ostra Boston
My best friend turned me on to this gorgeous restaurant and ever since I can't stop going back. Whenever we have friends or family in town I suggest that we dine here because I know everyone is going to have an incredible meal. The ambiance is very sophisticated and I feel comfortable getting a little more dressed up than in most places in the city.
Hint: The cold octopus appetizer is out of this world!

Blue Dragon
This is the only place I go with my best friend. We love it more than I can say. Set in the Fort Point neighborhood this lively bar/restaurant is so much fun and the Asian inspired food is the best around. There is always a good crowd and plenty of seating.
Hint: The chow fun noodles and the brussel sprouts are the best things on the menu and you have to save room for their only desert offering, the warm skillet chocolate chip cookie with vanilla ice cream. Made to share I could eat two if I'd let myself. 

Oleana is one of the most popular restaurants year round given its stream of James Beard nominated chefs, but what a lot of people don't know is that in the summer it houses one of Boston's most beautiful outdoor spaces. When they say "secret garden" this is what they are taking about!
Hint: Walk in early to get a place on the patio

Craigie is without a doubt my favorite restaurant in all the land. My husband and I only go out every few months and when we do it's always to here. This is another place that's known for its butcher and meat selection, but it's the pescetarian tasting menu that brings me back every time. While it's definitely not cheap, it is the best meal I've ever had, every time, and when celebrating a special event I can't think of anywhere else I'd want to be. 
Hint: They sell a handful of their famed hamburgers at 5:30 pm. Be prepared, there is usually a line. 

For brunch, including brunch with the kiddos, I can't say enough about Stephanie's on Newbury and Meyers and Chang in the South End. Both have great kids and adult menus the scene is loud enough that even chatterboxes like Gray can't disturb anyone. 

I can't end a restaurant post without giving an honorable mention to my favorite restaurant of all time, which a bartender turned us on to when we were in San Francisco last year; Statebird Provisions. This was the only place I'd ever lined up for at 4:30pm and after that meal not only would I do it again, I would fly across the country JUST to do that again. Yes, it's that good.

I'd love to know, are you a creature of habit or do you like to try new things when you go out? Are there any Boston or NYC restaurants that you absolutely love? Even though I stick to my favorites I always love new suggestions!