Best Restaurants in the South End Right Now

Posted on January 26th, 2019

When it comes to Boston, there are always going to be great restaurants, from fine dining to comfort food, but these days, you can find a host of outstanding restaurants offering a range of cuisines all in Boston’s South End. If you’re lucky enough to live in one of the Harrison Court apartments in South End, you probably know some of these current hot spots, but if you don’t, or you’re new to the area, make sure and try some of these mouth-watering restaurants.

Boston and the Northeast have plenty of great food traditions, but you can’t deny the South has produced some excellent food, too. If you’re craving cornbread and other southern classics, head to Southern Proper, where southern cuisine holds its own against plenty of modern cuisines. For one, their fried chicken was voted best in Boston last year, so you know you can’t go wrong with that, whether spicy or mild — but be brave and go for the spicy! Other dishes include an excellent catfish Po-Boy, fried green tomatoes, collard greens, mac and cheese, homemade pickles, and good ol’ grits and butter. To accompany it all, they have a fantastic selection of wine, beer, and crafted cocktails to add the perfect finishing touch.

If you’re in the mood for Asian gastropub, then you’re in luck with Chef Scott Jensen’s Banyan Bar + Refuge. The eponymous Banyan Burger is made of Wagyu beef topped with egg, pickled chilis, kohlrabi slaw and kimchi pimento cheese. Other options include a variety of bao buns, such as oyster, pork belly, and avocado, and you can even get a whole fried fish served with pineapple kimchi.

If you’re looking for Sunday brunch with a Parisian vibe, head to Gaslight Brasserie for dishes such as Berkshire Pork Hache with Fried Eggs, Crepes Parisienne featuring Comté cheese, country ham, and Mornay sauce, and Eggs Vigneronne, comprised of eggs poached in red wine sauce with ham and mushrooms. There’s a custom cocktail list to accompany it all, not to mention baskets of house-made pastries that shouldn’t be missed. Of course, Gaslight Brasserie is also open for dinner during the week, with everything from duck confit to chocolate beignets, not to mention an outstanding French wine list and a casual, quirky decor that creates a charmingly French atmosphere.

All too often, Italian restaurants are big on kitsch and boring “classics”, rather than offering up the kind of fare you really get to enjoy in Italy. Bar Mezzanna pairs a light interior with the light fare of the Italian coast. Clean lines and careful dishes that focus on the purity and quality of a few flavors. Their seafood menu changes daily to take advantage of what’s fresh and available and includes dishes such as salmon with green chili salsa verde and Nantucket bay scallops with tangerine and nori. Of course, there’s always pasta, handmade, of course. Try the orecchiette with sausage, fennel, and radicchio or the duck-egg ravioli. They also offer a wonderful range of antipasto dishes great for sampling or smaller appetites or following the Italian tradition of some wine or cocktails and snacks earlier in the evening before a later dinner. Bar Mezzanna offers excellent wines, often by the glass and bottle, as well as some special cocktails. All are chosen to complement various dishes on the menu.

These are just a few of the truly great restaurants in South End Boston right now. Old favorites like South End Buttery and Franklin Cafe remain excellent choices. In other words, if you live in one of the apartments in South End, your only problem is deciding which great restaurant to choose tonight when you have so many great choices!