It is with some reservation that I write this post. I always knew that the time would eventually come for me to write it, but it didn’t know it would come so quickly and feel so frightening. Yes, it’s true. I am about to write about my most favorite restaurant in Boston. Since this blog reaches millions and millions of people every day (or maybe it’s just me, checking it millions and millions of times a day… whichever) this favorite place of mine will become flooded with people that I am certain to dislike and I will not be able to ever return. So don’t tell any more people than you absolutely must, ok?
If you must tell people about this glory of a restaurant, please make sure you’re not telling total a-holes... For example, someone who believes HIV was engineered by the government… [oh yes, first and last date with the stupidest man to ever walk this earth] or anyone who has ever done a keg stand. Those people are totally not allowed. I discriminate and am proud of it.
So, with all the disclaimers and subtle threats in place, I shall now proceed to actually write about the restaurant – Audubon Circle, just outside of Kenmore Sq, and perilously close to Fenway Park. It’s my go-to spot. Whenever I don’t know what I feel like eating, whenever there is a concert later on that night, whenever I am meeting friends for drinks, Audubon is always my choice. It’s low key and lacking in pretense, with dark wood paneling on the walls and black slate-topped tables and bar. I know the entire menu by heart (ok, it’s a totally short and never-changing menu, but still…) and have tried close to everything on it. I have yet to feel let down.
Tuscan white bean paste sounds so unappealing, doesn’t it? It’s the word paste. It makes me think of Home Depot and Colgate, in that order. Regardless, the white bean… spread… is so much better than it sounds. Cannelini beans are ground super smooth with olive oil, rosemary, garlic, and whatever other Audubon magic fits in the food processor, sprinkled with Kalamata olives and plopped alongside giant pieces of grilled bread. It’s perfect hangover food… and importantly, the perfect food to consume while earning your hangover.
Their Reuben is more panini than traditional steamed Reuben. It is rich but not overwhelming, crunchy on the outside and melted on the inside, with a perfect ratio of meat to sauerkraut to dressing (not too much of any one thing and not too much filling as a whole… very low risk of spilling down one’s chin or pants), served with a perfectly fresh salad tossed with a mustardy vinaigrette. There is also a green apple and brie pressed sandwich, cubano, black bean and regular burgers, and a grilled turkey breast sandwich that gives turkey rare sex appeal.
I could continue down the entire menu and comment on each entry but no one has that kind of time. I will say that everything is supremely fresh, every sauce and accompaniment (ketchup included) is made in the restaurant with their own twist. The consistency of the food is remarkable. It’s always good and always the same. I know exactly what I am getting every time. The totally aloof and cooler-than-me servers have never once gotten my order wrong even though they never write anything down. Except for game days when Audubon is flooded with the Red Sox fans, it’s never terribly packed, never too loud, perfect for lunch, dinner, or a drink… or a drinking lunch that extends into dinner. It’s been known to happen.
Now my secret restaurant crush is out in the open. I feel exposed. Please share Audubon wisely, should you have to do so.
Audubon Circle Restaurant and Bar
838 Beacon St
Boston, MA 02215