At this brightly decorated eatery, the pernil arepas ooze mojo-marinated pork and Guayanés cheese, and the tequeños melt at first bite. And unlike its sister locations, this Orinoco also offers a full bar—order a tart caipirinha and raise a toast to Venezuelan cuisine done right. 22 Harvard St., Brookline Village , MA 02445, orinocokitchen.com.
Thick and fluffy with just the right amount of crunch, Umberto’s Sicilian crust is the perfect vessel for a complete smothering of herbed tomato sauce and bubbly, browned cheese. Just be sure to get there early (before noon is a good rule of thumb), as the place shuts down once the pizza has disappeared. 289 Hanover St., Boston, MA 2113, .
Mark Gallagher has fed the cast of Love Story, the Kearns-Goodwin wedding party, the Harvard Lampoon's centennial guests, Henry Kissinger's pals, and a bunch of People's Republic scientists with particularly fussy palates. He has done Iranian banquets, dinners based on Thomas Jefferson's personal recipes . . . but never turkey and mashed potatoes. Burlington, MA
Surely, you must have done something right recently to deserve dessert at the Four Seasons. Whether you choose a dense and delicious chocolate mousse cake, the scones served warm from the oven, or platters of exquisite miniature pastries. Ponticelli's artistry is worth blowing your diet for. Skimp on calories somewhere else. Four Seasons Hotel, 200 Boylston St., Boston, MA .
Attentive and charming, Lomberg plies his trade in the tourist-infested depths of Faneuil Hall Marketplace, where he's developed an admirable tolerance for onerous drink orders. But it's his particular facility for novelty frozen martinis—try the Orange Julius—that makes him worthy of toasting. 101 S. Market Bldg., Boston, MA 2109, plazathreeboston.com.
Best now, with its mix of jazz and international music in its back room. And better this fall, when the owners expand into the enormous basement space below the restaurant (once a candlepin bowling alley) to create a 130-person-capacity rock club. 472 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA .
For the past two years, this high-end boutique in Hingham Center has given South Shore women the opportunity to shop small—and stylishly. Once a buyer for Prada, owner Katia Orth brings her impeccable taste and eye to the community, offering a curated selection of special pieces such as Grlfrnd jean jackets, James Smith leather slides, and Shoshanna swimwear. Forget farm-to-table—this is designer-to-closet at its best. 28 South St., Hingham, MA 02043, klothhingham.com.
This new counter-service spot on Newbury serves up everything you love about classic Greek street food, only with less grease than you might find at a cart. With well-done classics like avgolemono and fluffy pita wraps with a few thick-cut fries tucked in, owner Demetri Tsolakis has created an Olympus-worthy lunch spot. 225 Newbury St., Boston, MA 02116, grecoboston.com.
We like our wine bars like we like our Burgundies: aged 15 years, preferably with piles of rich salumi lurking somewhere convenient. Barbara Lynch’s meat-meets-Margaux South End stalwart, which opened in 2003, still has its bar-setting roster of high-toned Old Worlders by Cat Silirie, and its all-day hours (even sessionable Sundays!). But the seasonal menu and staff wisdom are showing better than ever. 552 Tremont St., Boston, MA 02118, thebutchershopboston.com.
Boston's fitness studios offer just about every workout under the sun. But to take SurfSet—a boot-camp-style class held on mock surfboards that simulates the feeling of being on water—you have to visit this three-year-old spot in Quincy. Once you finish blasting your core on the boards, head back to solid land for Shred's Spinning, reformer Pilates, and mat Pilates classes. 453 Washington St., Quincy, MA 2169, shredbody.com.
Fans of West Bridge mourned when the Kendall Square favorite closed, but chef Matthew Gaudet has returned triumphant some 30 miles north with Superfine Food, a super-casual joint in Manchester-by-the-Sea. Incorporating ingredients from local purveyors, the high-low menu features pizza and ribs—done to Gaudet perfection, naturally—as well as healthier options, including charred kale salad and a fish burger with crispy shallots. Beer and wine appropriately run the gamut from Bud Light to the Loire Valley. 25 Union St., Manchester-by-the-Sea, MA 1944, superfinefood.com.
Independent promotions company CLLCTV Boston is combatting the Hub's puritanical closing hours by starting the party earlier. Once a month on Sunday afternoon—a time typically reserved for wallowing in Saturday's mistakes and digesting hollandaise—the Wave invites a rotation of homegrown and visiting DJs to the Middlesex to close out the weekend right. Just over a year old, the daytime dance party provides good beats, promotes good vibes, and attracts a multicultural crowd in an oft-segregated club scene. 315 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02139, thewaveboston.splashthat.com.
Windex-starved mirrors line the walls of this snug Vietnamese joint. Maybe it looked less silly around Y2K. Now? We forgive—nay, embrace—the campy environs once our lips hit the steaming bowls of bò kho (slow-cooked beef stew). Like its tableside bottles of sriracha, Pho 2000 is a kitschy vessel full of awesomely kicky flavor. 198 Adams St., Dorchester, MA 02122, pho2000boston.com.
To fry up the greatest golden bird in Boston, chef Asia Mei eschews thighs and breasts in favor of the lowly wing. Butchered in-house, dry-brined in a secret spice rub, and marinated for two days in a pool of buttermilk and herbs, the meat melts off the bone. Add in the delicate crust and side of poblano-laced ranch dressing, and you have the epitome of southern-fried goodness. 152 Dorchester Ave., South Boston, MA 02127, moonshine152.com.
What's your scent? Woodsy? Spicy? Floral? Citrusy? Let the fragrance specialists at this 70-year-old institution help you discover your olfactory predilections as you sample their collection of 1,000-plus perfumes and colognes. Once a Harvard Square mainstay, the Newton boutique stocks classic and limited-edition European fragrances (starting at $35 per bottle), as well as old-school grooming aids such as shaving creams, badger-hair brushes, and, of course, mustache wax. 350 Watertown St., Newton, MA 02458, .