In the summer of 2014, chef Matt Jennings and his wife, pastry chef, and business partner Kate Jennings, decided to close their popular and well-regarded restaurant Farmstead in Providence, RI and return to their hometown of Boston. This year they opened Townsman, which is a brasserie-inspired restaurant offering what they call “modern farmhouse cuisine.”
By Chef Matt Jennings
Moving Back to Boston
I'm excited about being back in Boston because it's my home, first and foremost. I grew up here and am excited to be back. I love this town, it's history, culture and the people who live and work here. And I'm excited to cook for them.
If you want to fit in like a local in Boston, don't: call it 'Beantown'.
But definitely: wear a Red Sox hat, regardless of what their league standings are
My Restaurant: Townsman
Townsman is an expression of the food we love to eat and cook, modern New England cuisine, rooted in tradition, but updated by way of native sourcing and immigrant influence. Our food is made from scratch, from a roster of ingredients that we are proud to showcase with traditional technique and yet with influences that range from traditional New England, to European and Asian, in a lively brasserie environment.
When you come to Townsman, make sure you try the deviled eggs, our plateaus, seasonal dishes from our crudo bar, and vegetables and pasture raised meats from local farms.
120 Kingston Street Boston MA 02111 | T: 617.993.0750 | townsmanboston.com
Matt's Boston Guide
Coffee | Render
This small coffee shop in Boston's South End is hip and for a good reason. The brew is always fresh; the baristas are helpful and prompt. But more important than anything, the quality of the coffee here is really, really good.
563 Columbus Avenue, Boston, MA 02118
T: 617.262.4142 | www.rendercoffeebar.com
Breakfast | Coppa & Better Bagel
I've been having fun attending Coppa's bagel pop-ups with Better Bagel. Inventive spreads and cream cheeses on high quality bagels. Not what you would expect from a little Italian restaurant run by Jamie Bissonnette and Ken Orringer. It's a pleasant surprise. And I'm also just an all around bagel freak.
253 Shawmut Avenue, Boston MA
T: 617.391.0902 | www.coppaboston.com
Brunch | Myers + Chang
This is one of the best. Asian braised greens, and Tiger's Tears which is grilled skirt steak with Thai basil. So good!
1145 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02118
T: 617.542.5200 | www.myersandchang.com
Markets | Boston Public Market
This is our new permanent, year-round, self-sustaining market featuring fresh locally-sourced food brought directly to and from the diverse people that make up Massachusetts and New England.
Haymarket, 100 Hanover Street, Boston, MA 02108
The cornmeal crusted monkfish sandwich is one of my favorites. Crispy, golden and served with a ton of tartar sauce. Winning.
The Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
T: 617.661.5005 | www.henriettastable.com
House-cured meats, big fat sandwiches, and now they have an adjacent wine bar called Moody's Back Room. It expands
their capabilities into the realm of enoteca. It's a great spot for a relaxing wood-fired pizza or hearty salad as well.
468 Moody Street, Waltham, MA 02453
T: 781.216.8732 | moodyswaltham.com
For me, snacks can take many forms...
Seafood | Neptune Oyster Bar
For a succulent lobster roll in the North End.
63 Salem Street, Boston, MA 02113
T: 617.742.3474 | www.neptuneoyster.com
Chinese | Dumpling Cafe
For dumplings in Chinatown.
695 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02111
T: 617.338.8859 | www.dumplingcafe.com
Sweets | Flour Bakery
I love heading to my friend Joanne Chang's Flour Bakery in Fort Point, for some of her huge pillowy meringue to crunch, munch and walk with.
12 Farnsworth Street, Boston MA 02210
T: 617.338.4333 | flourbakery.com
Hope you're thirsty.
The cocktails are well crafted, thoughtful libations.
348 Congress Street, Boston, MA 02210
T: 617.695.1806 | drinkfortpoint.com
The Butcher Shop
A glass of Pomerol and some charcuterie to kick off the evening at this Barbara Lynch project.
552 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02118
T: 617.423.4800 | thebutchershopboston.com
Who could forget the fun cocktails at Shojo.
9 Tyler Street, Boston, MA 02111
T: 617.423.7888 | www.shojoboston.com
This is another favorite of mine.
21 Temple Place, Boston, MA 02111
T: 617.338.5333 | jmcurleyboston.com
For the impeccable beer list.
383 Congress Street, Boston, MA 02210
T: 617.553.5900 | row34.com
Alden & Harlow
When the mood strikes on a night off, this one of my favorite restaurants in Cambridge. Michael Scelfo's food is smoky and bright, balanced and fun.
40 Brattle Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
T: 617.864.2100 | aldenharlow.com
Kirkland Tap & Trotter
My family and I find ourselves at Tony Maws' Kirkland Tap & Trotter frequently enough as well. It's a great family restaurant in a corner of Cambridge that focuses on modern pub fare, with Tony's meticulous eye for detail.
425 Washington Street, Somerville, MA 02143
T: 857.259.6585 | kirklandtapandtrotter.com
My boys and I like a night out at AreaFour Pizza. Bubbly, crusty pies, overloaded with pristine ingredients, sourced by chef Michael Leviton.
500 Technology Square, Cambridge, MA 02139 | T: 617.758.4444
TROY SOUTH END
264 East Berkeley Street, Boston, MA 02118 |T: 857.317.4805
292 Mass Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139 | 617.714.3960
Beer from Trillium Brewing
This is Boston's only downtown brewery. It is delicious and it's made by great people.
369 Congress Street, Boston, MA 02210
T: 617.453.8745 | www.trilliumbrewing.com
Chef Matt Jennings
Matt Jennings is the executive chef and owner of Townsman in Boston. Originally from Jamaica Plain and Wellesley, MA, he recently moved back to the area after living in Providence, RI for many years where he owned Farmstead and La Laiterie. Jennings is also known for his skilled work as a cheesemaker. He has received multiple nominations from The James Beard Foundation for the Best Chef: Northeast award.
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