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There are a few uncontested cornerstones of Boston's fine dining scene. The places you go when you've got something to celebrate.
1. Menton. The most upscale of the Barbara Lynch Gruppo, Menton, nabbed Top Chef winner Kristen Kish as its head chef. Plus, it's the only Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star restaurant in the city. Enough said. Menton is prix fixe only, offering a four-course option, as well as the more extensive chef's tasting menu.
2. L'Espalier. This is another Boston institution, and the Four-Star French restaurant is helmed by chef Frank McClelland. While L'Espalier is prix fixe only during dinner hours, those who want to sample the cuisine without committing to a multi-course meal can opt for the à la carte menu served during lunch, or sit in the salon for a selection of small plates and cheeses.
3. O Ya. O Ya is one of the gems of the Boston fine-dining scene. The Tim Cushman-run restaurant, which has been recognized by James Beard and more, is the hands-down winner for the best Japanese cuisine in Boston (if not in the country).
Some of the best chefs call Boston home, and thanks to the city's increasingly gastronomic flare over the past few years, Boston is also home to some of the best fine dining restaurants in the U.S.
For the ultimate fine dining experience, head to the Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star restaurant Menton, in the Fort Point Channel. The newest Barbara Lynch restaurant is one of the most culinarily creative, too. Situated above her DRINK bar and next to the casual Sportello, Menton offers diners a true gastronomic experience. Plan to be here a few hours to truly enjoy the environment.
Meritage and Rialto hold a spot on the Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star list. Meritage at the Boston Harbor Hotel has a unique wine and food pairing menu; Rialto at The Charles Hotel in Cambridge is where local favorite Jody Adams cooks up her seasonal menu. Four-Star L'Espalier, adjacent to the Mandarin Oriental, is the place for French-influenced New England favorites like butter-poached Maine lobster, while Four-Star Clio in the Eliot Hotel is home to Ken Oringer's fantastic tasting menus.
One of the more special dining experiences takes place at the Four-Star No. 9 Park. A Boston institution perched at the hill of Boston Common, No. 9 Park offers stunning views of the city and a seasonal menu that features everything from fresh fish to rare cuts of meat. The restaurant is famous for its cheese course, so leave room at the end of your meal to indulge!