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Finish Strong: Our Marathon Monday Guide

Island Creek Oyster Bar
By Eric Twardzik · 04/04/2018

Whether your appetite comes from a 26.2-mile run or just a long day spent spectating on the sidelines, know that the final three miles of the Boston Marathon route passes by some of our favorite eating and drinking destinations.

Island Creek Oyster Bar
Like The Hawthorne, ICOB is also set within Hotel Commonwealth, and the high windows of its Commonwealth Avenue-facing wall present excellent race views. The action inside isn’t bad either—watch expert shuckers do their thing while carbo-loading on chef Jeremy Sewall’s a la carte marathon pasta specials. (This year the selection will include Bucatini with Ramp Pesto; Potato Gnocchi with Morel Mushrooms, English Peas, and Green Garlic Butter; and Pork Sausage Ragout.)

Located on the corner of Commonwealth Avenue, a patio seat at this upscale, mostly French bistro from Chris Coombs offers an excellent view of runners racing toward Hereford Street. A special Marathon Monday lunch menu—featuring indulgences like a special Lobster Roll, a decadent Deuxave Burger with confit pork shoulder, and scratch-made Tagliatelle “Bolognaise”—will be offered from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
The hearty, piping-hot bowls of ramen served at Santouka’s tiny Boston location inspire lines on normal days, and the Patriot’s Day crowds could make waits extra-long. But that bowl of Tonkotsu Shio Ramen or Tonkotsu Kara Miso Ramen will be worth it. Bonus: Santouka sits on the home stretch of Hereford Street, so a spot in its line also provides climactic views of runners pushing through the final half mile.

Eastern Standard
Eastern Standard’s heated, covered patio on Commonwealth Avenue is a coveted race-watching venue with rain-or-shine utility. Whether you’re dining alfresco or inside the marble-heavy, grand-scale dining room, count on hearty French bistro classics like Steak Tartare and Moules Provençale. It’s also one of the city’s prime cocktail establishments, so don’t pass on a whiskey smash (or two, or three).

Carbo-loading on Marathon Monday just feels natural. Get your fix at the Brookline location of this local bakery-café chain, which has plentiful outdoor seating on Beacon Street. Grab a frosty cold brew, a hunk of monkey bread, and any of the superb croissant varieties like almond or pistachio. You’ll feel inspired to run it all off soon enough.

The Eliot Hotel’s beloved spot for refined sushi and Asian fusion is not normally open for lunch—so here’s a rare chance to try Tony Messina’s culinary creations during the daytime. From 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on marathon day, he’ll be offering an a la carte menu with some specials worth running towards: Think Foie Gras Bratwurst with Japanese mustard; a Scallion Pancake Pizza; and a Cheeseburger with secret sauce.

Select Oyster Bar
Running a marathon is cause for celebration, and Michael Serpa’s airy seafood spot is just the place to salute a successful finish. Specializing in local oysters, raw seafood, and novel takes on Maine lobster—a Bostonian’s go-to special-occasion splurge—this restaurant on Gloucester Street is just two blocks from the finish line. Make a selection from the Champagne-heavy wine list and toast to the day’s winner; cheers loudly enough, and they might even hear you.

The white tablecloths and impeccable service at this decades-old stronghold of French dining can make any mealtime feel like a special occasion, and its location just steps from the finish line makes it an obvious choice for commemorating the marathon. You can go à la carte for lunch favorites, or opt for a five-course prix fixe menu that delivers a bevy of delicacies. This being L’Espalier, you can bet the experience will involve a cheese cart.

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