I've lived here in Boston almost six years now but I did a little touristy walk through the South End today close to lunchtime just for fun since the weather was warmer and the sun was out. I had a meeting near Broadway T station and decided to walk back to Copley Square via East Berkeley instead of going underground on the T.
I first stumbled across Formaggio Kitchen South End (I love the one in Cambridge), which I think is on Harrison, sampled some great cheese and bought some spicy dried fava beans to snack on ($2.25 for a tiny bag, yowch). There was a Syrian food place next door which was closed. Crossed the street to go up Lawrence and found the Qinng-dao tearoom which I'd heard about but never seen. Peeked in the windows and was charmed by its very cool and authentic decor, but it was too early to be open. It looked like a really truly cool place to hang out on a quiet rainy day. Just across the street at #9 was this very funkily decorated doorway with all kinds of stone statues and bells and ironwork -- beautiful. Was like a little unexpected treasure in the city. I continued to walk up through the beautiful brownstones, admiring the stained glass windows and ironwork detailing and peeking down alleys for the famous hidden "sunken gardens." Swung through the center of the South End and passed that Dutch Candy Shoppe (is that place EVER open?) and traveled down to Dartmouth, crossing Appleton street, looking for the Appleton Bakery on corner of Appleton and Dartmouth. Popped in there and couldn't resist the perversely flavored but pretty successful peanut butter and chocolate chip muffin ($1.75). (Between them and Souper Salad's chocolate eclaire muffin, Boston sure has some fascinating muffin choices.) Continued along Dartmouth and crossed Columbus, thought about going down to Nashoba Brook Bakery which I know is excellent, but decided I'd already tempted myself enough times. Poked my head into the new B. Good restaurant, which had its grand opening today. Got a big greeting from the owners who were welcoming everyone enthusiastically. Didn't buy anything as i'd packed a lunch but I'll go back another time and report here. Supposed to be healthy fast food in Copley Square.
Then I re-entered the not-so exciting culinary options of the Back Bay and headed to work. But I still have my muffin and fava beans! And it really was a beautiful walk -- I always forget how gorgeous it is in the South End.