Harvard Square Tasting Tour

Posted on: Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Last weekend, we ventured on a twin tasting tour of bustling Harvard Square. The three restaurant stops along the two-hour turn were all part of an almost 20 year mini restaurant empire in the Square, the Grafton Group. We sampled a fun, thoughtful drink and dish pairing at each of the cozy, contemporary settings. In between sampling the spirited interpretations of American fall-themed classics, we popped into some of Harvard Square’s best artisan shops along the way. Below is the itinerary, we hope you’re inspired to do the same!
Grafton Street Pub & Grill
The oldest of the three restaurants, the pub has a laidback, local feel with a New England-centric menu.
An aromatic, fall-themed cocktail of pear vodka sage, cumin, clove, allspice, Vermouth, maple bitters and Prosecco.
Sesame crusted seared tuna slices served over a rice pancake with a pureed carrot swirl and dab of salsa verde.
Salt & Olive
A compact tasting room filled with a wide range of olive oils and balsamic vinegar on tap, as well as a vast collection of artisan products, spices, salts and teas. Mary Taylor guided us through a tasting of a peppery olive oil and sweet, grape balsamic vinegar.
What a sweet spot! We had never been to this underground shop and were instantly obsessed with the whimsical interior and friendly ambiance. 
We sampled a few kinds of honey while learning about the fascinating world of bees.
Russell House Tavern
The most centrally located spot of the three eateries, the chefs focus on bridging the gap between the bar and the kitchen in the chic yet comfy two-floored bustling tavern. 
A spicy green chili vodka, jalapeño and green bell pepper martini.
A bright bite of a fried Cape Cod oyster with ginger aioli, julienned radish and miso broth.
Cardullo’s Gourmet Shoppe
One of Harvard Square’s most iconic markets and oldest delicatessens, we enjoyed perusing the aisles of imported, gourmet fare and extensive wine selection.
PARK Restaurant & Bar
The newest lively yet cozy spot of the three restaurants in a rustic, subterranean space, with vibrant drinks and bites. 
A “Tender’s Whim,” cocktail of bourbon, cinnamon syrup, lemon juice, and an orange peel
A tasting of toasts: a sliced baguette topped with goat cheese, sliced blackberries, and honey; a warm mini biscuit with apple butter and aged cheddar; and a sliced baguette topped with smoked salmon, cream cheese and crispy capers
Thank you Trademark Tours for the wonderful itinerary! It was a lovely way to spend a brisk fall afternoon and explore the walkable, historic square bustling with students and tourists.

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