Where to Go for the Best Restaurants in (and Around) the Boston Theater District

By Emily Millian
Interior of Yvonne's

No need to make the haul to New York City when we have our very own Theater District right here in Boston. Catch Broadway hits, dance performances, comedy acts, and other shows at the Boston Opera House, Wang Theatre, and other venues—and make a night of it in this lively, downtown neighborhood. From modern bistros to dive bars, we’ve rounded up the best dining spots for visitors to Boston’s Theater District.


YVONNE'S | Best Restaurants in the Boston Theater District
Credit: Brian Samuels Photography

Details like the speakeasy-style entrance, crystal chandeliers, sculpted ceilings, and a cheeky portrait of Christopher Walken in Napoleonic garb make Yvonne’s one of the most dramatic settings for dinner in the city. The menu matches the extravagance, from small plates like Bavette Steak “Mirabeau” with anchovy butter, to feeds-two-plus “feasts” such as the Grilled “Viper” Chop pork short rib with crispy kimchi fried rice. As good as the food is, this Downtown Crossing spot is worth visiting for the creative cocktails alone. Pregame with one of the best Espresso Martinis around, or bring a crew for large-format drinks like Queen’s Park Hotel, full of Jamaican estate rum, sweet vermouth, pomegranate, and lime.

The Wig Shop

The Wig Shop in Boston
Credit: Brian Samuels Photography

The Wig Shop is a cocktail lounge with a lavish Champagne list and theatrical libations like the silky smooth Cinemax After Dark, made with mango-infused sherry. Dolled Up Oysters; Lobster Pancakes with harissa butter and tobiko; and marinated ribeye Beef Skewers with charred rosemary gremolata are among the snacks at this new spot in Downtown Crossing. If you’re looking for something more substantial pre-show—or can’t get one of The Wig Shop’s limited reservations—check out its sibling steakhouse next door, the reservation-only Bogie’s Place. A more casual dining option on the block is sister-spot JM Curley, which also serves up a late-night menu seven days a week featuring after-hours bites like Dog Sticks (li’l baby corn dogs), Popcorn Chicken with smoked jalapeño aioli, and house-made crab Rangoons. 

No. 9 Park | Best Restaurants in Beacon Hill Boston
Credit: Chris McIntosh

At the northern corner of Boston Common, close to the Park Street T station, No. 9 Park is the flagship restaurant of acclaimed chef Barbara Lynch. There are a variety of ways to enjoy this French-Italian inspired fine-dining destination, from a la carte offerings to a six-course chef’s tasting menu. When we’re not feeling a full-on splurge—or don’t have time before a show—we love to drop in on the bustling cocktail bar for a few dishes like signature Prune Stuffed Gnocchi with foie gras, or prime Steak Tartare. Multiple dining rooms are also ideal spots for that romantic date night, special-occasion dinner, or private business meeting before heading over to the Theater District for a show.

Shojo | Best Restaurants in the Boston Theater District

Shojo is a spot that checks all the boxes for vibe, cuisine and location. Date night, special occasion, or just a regular night out—yep, we’d make a reservation here. Killer cocktails and innovative dishes—check. Bumpin’ music and bar scene when we walk in later at night—check. If you’re getting dinner here before a show, it’s hard to order wrong at this Chinatown hot spot. Try any of the varieties of bao, and the mapo tofu-smothered Shadowless Duck Fat Fries are a must. And as a nod to the neighborhood after hours, give the Cold Tea for Two a go, a shareable cocktail of tea-infused vodka. 

The Tam

The Tam
Credit: Brian Samuels Photography

With cheap drinks, mood-setting beer signs, and sun-faded St. Paddy’s Day banners, The Tam is the definition of a dive bar. The local Theater District watering hole is consistently lively with the grad student population and the TVs always tuned in to Boston spots. With its immediate proximity to all the action on Tremont Street, The Tam is great for a pre-show bevvy or even better, a post-show nightcap. 



Ostra seafood
Credit: Chris McIntosh

The Theater District is, perhaps unsurprisingly, where to find some of Boston’s most high-end hotels, including the Ritz Carlton, the Four Seasons, and the Park Plaza. Ostra is a seafood restaurant that fits in with the surrounding company. The ultimate splurge spot, Ostra’s menu focuses on contemporary Mediterranean seafood dishes that shine with a light touch. Think assorted crudos and tartares, chilled Alaskan King Crab, grilled Spanish octopus, broiled Maine twin lobsters, and an extravagant caviar selection. Being on Stuart Street, steps away from all the theaters, Ostra makes for quite the special night out.

Peach Farm

Salt and pepper shrimp from Peach Farm
Credit: Brian Samuels Photography

Peach Farm is a longtime favorite industry spot in Chinatown because it’s open late. That also means that after the theaters let out, the seafood-focused spot on Tyler Street is serving Chinese food nightly until midnight. The head-on Salt and Pepper Shrimp are a perfect snack with or without a Tsingtao or two. For full-on dinner-and-a-show, we also love the Roast Pork Lo Mein, House Fried Rice, and Singapore Style Noodles, or—to add to an already-exciting night out—try the seasonal Lobster with Ginger and Scallions. 

Troquet on South

Troquet on South | The Best Tasting Menus in Boston
Troquet on South / Credit: Chris McIntosh

Beyond the traditional boundaries of the Theater District, Troquet on South and its sister-speakeasy Offsuit are worthy diversions located near South Station, in Boston’s Leather District. The former is a French bistro known with an award-winning wine cellar, helmed by sommelier and owner Chris Campbell. Go a la carte with dishes like Steak Tartare or make time for a tasting menu pre-show. Afterwards is when we’d slip into Offsuit, for gussied-up cocktails paired with records playing on the turntable. Accessible via an alley behind the restaurant, Offsuit has a few reservations available nightly and otherwise a typically lengthy wait—in other words, it’s a prime spot for last call.

Taiwan Cafe

Taiwan Cafe | The Best Restaurants in Chinatown, Boston
Credit: Chris McIntosh

Just a few blocks away from some of the city’s most prominent theaters, Taiwan Cafe is a great spot for a swift bite before hitting the town. While the small Chinatown restaurant can get quite busy, service is always quick and efficient. (And if it’s really packed, you can always go around the corner on Washington Street to try sister-spot Dumpling Cafe.) We’re crazy about the Taiwan Style Pan Fried Dumplings here, plus the Mini Juicy Buns (aka soup dumplings) and Pan Fried Pork Buns. In addition to the buns and dumplings, the deep-fried House Special Fried Pork Chop on Rice and spicy Home Style Braised Eggplant with Basil seal the deal. 

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