Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Secrets of Boston | What the casual traveler needs to know!

Secret 1: The Sam Adams Brewery actually looks like that.

Actually, it's miniscule. The front half is a museum and altar to beer, and one corner of the back is specially reserved for tours. All bottling is apparently done in two separate facilities across the country, while the flagship building is entirely devoted to small-batch brewing. It's effectively the beer hall R&D division. There's the three brass kettles you see the bearded guy, Billy, pouring hops into in all the commercials (he is one of two brewmasters there five days a week), then a couple lines of about 8 tanks for fermenting and such. Then there's the tasting bar. The tour is well worth it and you'll even get a little 7oz tasting glass. Your ticket is a different Sam Adams flavor label, and they will shuttle you to a bar called Doyle's, where you can get regional flavors and even keep your Boston Lager glass if you fork over the ticket.

[Bonus: The "shuttle" is a trolly filled with disco balls, bubble machines and blasts "Don't Stop Believing." The driver has a single-minded love of Doyle's that honestly borders on the developmentally delayed.]

Secret 2: There are no pretty people in Boston.

Disappointing, but accurate. That cute guy at the bar? He's from Connecticut. Sexy lady from the club? New Jersey. Jersey. Come on. The joggers are jogging because they really need to. Unsurprisingly, the one exception seems to be Perry Street, which is all hipster eateries, small-businesses, and what looks like college housing. If you hate hipsters, flee immediately. If you love Brooklyn and wish it was cleaner and brownstones were less expensive, move to Perry. Say what you will, hipsters are rarely overweight.

Secret 3: Bars close at 1.

Hit the brewery early and grab that uggo from the bar, because there's nothing left to do but pay $20 at the door of an 18-and-over dinky after-hours place where you can watch teenagers roll on e in a pile on the couch. On the up-side, you might actually wake up early enough for your hotel's continental breakfast.
The hotel T.V. remotes even look like sex toys.

Secret 4: The accents are real.

"Wicked" looks to have gone out of fashion, but it joins the letter R in local vernacular heaven. Try not to snicker, but live it up. "Yaw muthah," however, is evidently alive and well at Fenway, at least, though that may have been a statistical anomaly due in part to experimental base conditions.

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