We tried to go on the Sam Adams brewery tour but failed.

Somehow we got lost walking to the brewery even with our phones. And then when circled back to the brewery, we learned tours aren’t offered on Sundays.

The taproom, however, just opened so we had a drink.

It turns out that mostly tourists arrive at 10 a.m. to drink at the taproom on Sundays. Jake tried a flight of the more unusual beer flavors. I tried to order the lightest, fruitiest beer. They’re always too strong.

Still, I had fun sipping a beer and flipping through books about Boston. The taproom offers many books about Boston’s history and Samuel Adams + board games.

Our day was full of eight hours of walking between visiting the brewery and Museum of Fine Arts. We welcomed an early dinner by the time we got back to our Airbnb.

Hotels in Boston are pricey. Even with the added cleaning fees, Airbnb’s seem to be more affordable. Ours was located in the heart of the North End – however, I can not recommend it because the bed was so lousy. 

Trattoria di Monica
A friend of a friend recommended Trattoria di Monica. We arrived slightly before opening. Although we offered to come back later, the employees invited us to sit.

It was the night after the Boston Bruins won a playoffs game and the city was catching their breath from the celebrations the night prior. Also, it was Cinco de Mayo. From the bar I amusedly watched the bartender accommodate a customer’s request for a margarita.

“She asked if we could rim the glass with salt.”

“We don’t do that.”

The glass of wine I chose was fantastic.

The meal started with some very fresh focaccia with olive oil mixed with salt, pepper, and grated cheese for dipping.

We shared the Involtini di Formaggio – gooey provolone wrapped in crisp prosciutto. The little side salad and cherry tomatoes offset the richness well.

Jake ordered one his favorite dishes ever, spaghetti carbonara. When I see it on a menu, I usually know he’s going to order it. I don’t see it on the online menu so I’m not sure if it’s typically offered. The pasta was cooked a true al dente and the sauce tasted very rich.

I ordered the Fettuccini Nero con Caposante. This is one of the best pasta dishes I have ever eaten.

Four plump and perfectly seared scallops are tossed in al dente squid ink pasta along with julienned carrots and leeks in a creamy white wine sauce. Having only seen squid ink pasta on TV, I wondered if it would taste fishy. Instead, it had a very savory flavor.

When we lived in North Dakota, I remember trying to cook al dente pasta for lunch service. A supervisor kept making me cook it more and more, afraid that the students wouldn’t like the chewier texture. I got the approval to drain the pasta when it reached the softness that even the dullest dentures could smush.

We happily twirled pasta on our forks, wondering if we’d ever actually *had* al dente pasta before. If we ever returned, I would order this same dish.

And with this post, I conclude my posts about our first trip to Boston! If you can catch one of those great Jet Blue deals, nerd-out historically and eat so much seafood.

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