Sick of hearing the yammering of burrito snobs putting down the local variety? Take them to Anna's and shove one of these foil-wrapped fat boys in their mouths. Chances are, they'll change their minds. Anna's got the whole thing down: the rice, the frijoles, refritos, the guacamole, and the salsa are just like your mother used to make — that is, if your mother happened to be born south of the border. 1412 Beacon St., Brookline, MA .
This bistro doesn't dub its sandwich selection "The Great Ones" for nothing. Some of the city's best chefs have contributed recipes for lavishly layered concoctions sure to make your mouth water. Steer clear of the calzone, and instead sink your teeth into the Capital Grille's Smoked Salmon on brioche, the Pudding Portobello with onion marmalade, or Norma's Zuni Roll with cranberry chipotle. The latter ensures you'll never look at a turkey sandwich the same way again. 361 Boylston St., Boston, MA .
Cannoli should never be filled until you enter the bakery and say, "Four cannoli, please." At which point the white-smocked helper at Modern will slip into the back of the shop, return with four freshly filled pastries, give them a light dusting of powdered sugar, and warp them in one of those classic boxes tied with red-and-white string. 257 Hanover St., Boston, MA .
The prized entree at this southern Indian restaurant is called dosa—a huge crunchy crepe stuffed with rice, lentils, and your choice of meat. But that doesn't mean you should neglect the dahi bhala (lentil balls and yogurt) or the tomato-coconut shorba (soup). The chef works with a cunning palette of tart and sweet flavors guaranteed to tickled your buds. 129 Brighton Avenue, Allston, MA .
With 26 styling stations, Makeovers is one of the largest salon/spas in the state—which means you just may be able to snag a last-minute Saturday appointment (amazing!). Co-owner Edward Blum uses his magic scissorhands to cut your hair based on the architecture of your face, and his team of talented stylists all follow suit. There's also a fully stocked snack bar and a separate wing devoted to inviting spa treatments. 574 Washington St., South Easton, MA makeoverssalon.com.
Gamesville's tag line is "Wasting your time since 1996," a counter on the front page tallies the total number of minutes wasted on the site. The lure? You can play bingo, poker, and trivia, or guess the results of events like the Academy Awards. Cash prizes turn casual visitors into gamesville addicts. For protection against snoopy bosses, there's also a "panic button" that will instantly cover your gaming screen with a serious-looking business news page.
There are a lot more reasons to visit Winston than birthdays, Mother's Day, and anniversaries. Beyond the profusion of cut flowers and potted greenery are all the accessories necessary to turn any thumb a deep emerald, including seeds, garden furniture, and three greenhouses filled with ready-to-go annuals and perennials. Two acres of plants and flowers will conjure images of your own private Eden, and the vast knowledge of the staff design consultants will ensure your vision lasts well beyond the parking lot. 11 Florence St., Newton, MA winstonflowers.com.
Mirror, mirror, on the wall, whose bathroom looks like a dorm-room stall? Not yours—not after a spree at the Design Center. With 12 bath showrooms—open to the public via a designer-on-call program—the South Boston facility has options aplenty for making your loo fit for royalty, from handcarved basins to gleaming chrome fixtures by Billie Brenner to glass mosaics by Ann Sacks to Geologica's marbles and granites. One Design Center Place, Suite 337, Boston, MA 2210, bostondesign.com.
Forget any preconceived notions of what a hot dog is: Top Dog outdoes them all with all-meat dogs in natural casings that lend a juicy chewiness, whether you order yours grilled or steamed. This little shack on the point of Bearskin Neck is immaculate—though once the friendly folks who work here pile your plate high with baked beans, grilled peppers, sauerkraut, or Vidadlia onion relish, you may not be. They also serve great lobster rolls and fries. 2 Doyles Cove Rd., Rockport, MA topdogrockport.com/.
We're not talking about strip joints—get your mind out of the gutter. Table dancing of the G-rated sort is a rare and special event within city limits, taking place at only a handful of late-night dining spots after city clubs close. Your shot at catching some spontaneous hip shaking is at the South Street Diner, where die-hard dancers are known to jump onto tables and countertops, continuing where they left off when the lights came up at Joy and M-80. 178 Kneeland St., Boston, MA .
Once you and your sweetheart have strolled the beach and sailed at sunset, your next romantic rendezvous should be dinner at the Sweet Life Café. This upscale eatery serves fresh fare such as chévre ravioli in curry sauce and roasted halibut with eggplant purée. Don't miss dessert—the blueberry— brown butter tart is divine—in the candlelit garden. 63 Circuit Ave., Oak Bluffs, MA sweetlifemv.com/.
Although it has expanded its dining area, we love Bakers' Best most for its sophisticated takeout options. Everything comes with detailed reheating directions that will fool your guests into thinking you cooked it yourself. But don't worry: The employees here won't give away your secret. They'll even come over to cater for you. 27 Lincoln St., Newton Highlands, MA .
Receiving a wedding invitation in the mail is always exciting. But when your guests open the envelope and discover, say, a custom illustration of your venue or a folding card with the weekend’s agenda, it’ll be even more so. Along with personalized invitation suites, these Southie-based stationery savants can dream up vellum menus, playful cocktail cards, and foilstamped napkins. And if you don’t have the time (or the calligraphy skills) to address the envelopes yourself, they’ll make sure each one is signed, sealed, and delivered. shopfete.com.
You get a CSA box from your local farm and you’re on a first-name basis with your butcher, but what about the plates and bowls you set the table with every day? A worthy addition to any Boston cabinet, potter Jeremy Ogusky’s durable, unpretentious pieces can be purchased on Etsy; biannual open-studio days at his J.P. workspace, meanwhile, welcome all to come learn the art of pottery. claycrocks.com.
It’s not easy finding a pair of frames that harmonize with your face just so. But if anyone can do it, it’s father-and-son opticians Bobin and Tariq Nicholson, both of whom studied music in college and now bring their artistic vision to this one-stop shop for glasses, contacts, and eye exams. Whether you prefer your specs colorful and funky or sleek and understated, you’ll find them in the cases here—along with warm, personable service that turns a chore into an outing to look forward to. 2271 Dorchester Ave., Dorchester, MA 02124, eyeandeyeoptics.com.