A Traveler’s Guide to Top New England Cities for Great Meals

Food. It’s something we can’t live without. Food has also become a key focus for many when making travel plans. Conde Nast Traveler and other magazines and newspaper polls often list their favorite food cities in the United States, here are some of our picks for the top New England cities for great meals.


Boston, Massachusetts


When it comes to seafood, Boston’s proximity to the ocean makes it stand out. The city is home to many restaurants, but when it comes to traditional New England foods, the lobster roll, New England clam chowder, and fried seafood platters stand out. There are other classics like Boston baked bean and brown bread found within the city. Head to the waterfront on State Street for brunch and try their Boston baked beans served with eggs, pork belly, and a brown sugar crumble. You’ll love this hearty dish! Atlantic Fish Company’s clam chowder wins awards, but you’ll also find a very filling and tasty captain’s platter here.


If you want to go beyond these standards, Boston is sure to please. There are restaurants offering vegetarian meals and cuisines ranging from Basque to Vietnamese. Piperi Mediterranean Grill dishes up meals that get rave reviews. Build your own meal by choosing your starch, meat or veggie filling, toppings and sauces, sides, and beverages. With prices starting at under $10, you’ll love the flavorful meals. You can even order takeout if you’d rather eat back in your hotel room.


Burlington, Vermont


Vermont is packed with farm-to-table restaurants, and many are found right in Burlington. Maple syrup and cheddar cheese are two of Vermont’s staples. You’ll find both on many menus, along with Vermont beef, chicken, lamb, and so much more.


Hen of the Wood is a little more expensive but amazing. Make reservations to eat here! Recommended dishes include their homemade ham (cured at the restaurant) and the Hen of the Woods Mushroom Toast with a poached egg and bacon made at Hen of the Wood. If you’re a bit hungrier, I recommend the Pork Loin that’s served with parsnips, pickled apples, and rye spaetzle. It’s a dish I love ordering time after time. Farmhouse Tap & Grill is a great place to try Vermont’s many popular beers, but it’s also a cozy spot to have a burger and fries or satisfying brunch. If you’re looking for vegan or vegetarian meals, I cannot offer enough praise for Revolution Kitchen and the seitan piccata.


Portland, Maine


Portland is a gem on the Atlantic coast, about an hour north of Boston. The seafood you’ll find in Portland is amazing, but there are many other delightful restaurants within the city. Maine’s wild blueberries often have an important place on local menus, so don’t overlook breakfasts that make the most of them. If you can, find a restaurant offering wild blueberry chutney with pork of some kind. I’m not a big fan of blueberries, but wild blueberry chutney and pork go hand in hand.


Start your trip in Maine having something as simple as pizza. The difference is that Otto’s pizzas are nothing short of amazing. They have gluten-free crusts and a variety of flavors that will blow you away. If you’re a fan of crisp, chewy crusts, you’ll find the best crust here. For breakfast, hit up Becky’s Diner. The huge Hobson’s Wharf Special at $8.95 is a feast with breakfast meats, pancakes, eggs, home fries, and toast. You’ll be fueled up and ready to roam the streets all day. For seafood dishes, Street and Co is amazing.


There are many New England cities where food is amazing, but these three are a good place to start. Reservation Counter can help you find cheap hotels in Boston, Burlington, and Portland. By comparing prices on a number of pricing engines, the online hotel booking agency finds deals that many others miss.