clock menu more-arrow no yes
Eastern Standard

Filed under:

Where to Drink in Kenmore Square

Plus, what to eat while drinking there

Eastern Standard
| Meg Jones Wall/Eater

Welcome back to Food Crawls (or in this case, Booze Crawls), a series in which Eater Boston staffers guide you (virtually) on various food and booze crawls in the Boston area.

When we go out, we often find ourselves wanting to try more than one restaurant (or bar) at a time — a drink and a snack here, another drink and perhaps a dessert there — and want to share our favorite multi-stop combinations with you. These crawls are meant to be relatively walkable, and the amount of food and drink is meant to correspond roughly to a couple of average appetites (so bring a friend), although your mileage may vary. Email us if there’s a particular theme, specific dish or drink, or neighborhood you’d like to see covered in a future installment.


Kenmore Square is best enjoyed during the summer, when the students have left the city and the Red Sox are battling for the top spot in the American League East. A short walk north lands you on the banks of the Charles River — bring a flask and have a drink on the docks — while a short walk south deposits you into thickets of reed in the Fens.

Kenmore has long been a destination for dining and drinking. Recent development means it’s a lot prettier than it used to be (R.I.P. the Rathskeller and HooDoo Barbeque forever), but a drinker can still find some grime if he chooses.

Head to these Kenmore bars this summer (three of which are located conveniently inside the same building), but avoid game nights if you don’t like a crowd. Grab some oysters, have a few libations, and luxuriate in the fact that the students won’t be back for another month or so.

  • Total stops: 4
  • Oysters slurped: A couple dozen
  • Streets traveled: Just the one
  • Drunk Red Sox fans dodged: An incalculable number
  • Drunk BU students dealt with: Hopefully none!

A Tulum at Eastern Standard

528 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215

eastern standard
Eastern Standard paying homage to the address’s old tenants
Eastern Standard/Facebook

Easter Standard occupies the address once occupied by the Rathskeller. They’re decidedly different establishments. You won’t be able to watch Patti Smith sing about that Frederick guy at Eastern Standard, but you can still get drunk there. Get the Tulum: Del Maguey Vida mezcal with lemon-blueberry gin and honey.

Oysters and a Saison at Island Creek Oyster Bar

500 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215

island creek oyster bar
Get a dozen, or get more, whatever
Island Creek Oyster Bar/Facebook

The orangey, gingery, coriander-spiked flavors of a saison perfectly compliment the buttery, briny minerality of oysters. Island Creek has Worcester-based Flying Dreams Brew Co.’s Dreaming of Summer on tap. Get it, and get a dozen or so oysters.

The Left Hand at the Hawthorne

500A Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215

the hawthorne
The Hawthorne has some swank
The Hawthorne/Facebook

Don’t worry, you’re not hallucinating (yet): You’re still inside the Hotel Commonwealth. The digs are a little different, but you’re still there. Get the Left Hand at the Hawthorne, which is a mash-up of a Negroni and an Old Fashioned.

A Good Beer and Some Tacos at the Lower Depths

476 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215

Glass windows, a blue sign, and white lettering overhead
RIP hot dogs
The Lower Depths [Official Photo]

Everyone’s still mourning the loss of all those hot dogs. (There’s still one on the menu, but it’s just not the same). No bother. This is the last stop of the night, and the Lower Depths is a fantastic beer bar, so get a tasty brew. And get some tacos because you’re buzzed and hungry.

The Lower Depths

476 Commonwealth Avenue, , MA 02215 (617) 266-6662 Visit Website

Eastern Standard

528 Commonwealth Avenue, , MA 02215 (617) 532-9100 Visit Website

Island Creek Oyster Bar

500 Commonwealth Avenue, , MA 02215 (617) 532-5300 Visit Website

The Hawthorne

500A Commonwealth Avenue, , MA 02215 (617) 532-9150 Visit Website

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Eater Boston newsletter

Sign up for our newsletter.