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Eataly Brings an Vibrant Italian Marketplace to Boston, Massachusetts

Article and photos by Eric Hurwitz. Page updated on 9/20/17.

  Eataly Boston, an Italian Marketplace
Eataly Boston.

Stonewall Kitchen, LLC
When at the Prudential Center in Boston, Mass., do as the "Prudentialites" do: feast on Italian foods, sweets and drinks at Eataly Boston.

Please pardon the "When in Rome" variation above, but it was meant to stress the relevancy of Eataly Boston as a must-visit Boston dining out destination.

Eataly Boston is, simply, an Italian food lovers dream-come-true bringing together cafes, counters including a seafood market, groceries, and even a cooking school. The aromas, Italian spirit and culture, and the chance to eat authentic, mouthwatering foods seems almost too good to be true as everything is under one roof. Why didn't anyone think of this before in the northeast United States?

Actually, someone did, and he is famous chef Mario Batali who brought the first Eataly to New York City, N.Y., with great success, to this very day. The Boston version follows suit with crowds frequenting this instant Prudential Center landmark. A closer look at the entrance...

Eataly Boston is an Italian Marketplace located at the Prudential Center in Boston, Massachusetts.
It's hard to know where to start first at Eataly Boston.

Let's cut right to the chase and throw out a few mouthwatering, appetizing buzzwords that make Eataly so special: pasta, pizza, calzones, paninis, cannolis, tiramisu, gelato, extra virgin olive oil, Italian espresso-based drinks, vinos and the best-looking tomatoes you will ever see. It's a visual delight virtually every step of the way.

Cakes from Eataly Boston.
Cakes at Eataly Boston.

Eataly Boston features many individually-owned businesses, but I will not name them here as my recommendation is to treat the visit as one collective food festival operating on a daily basis. One place is not necessarily better than another; rather, they complement each other and together provide a grand Italian food experience for the visitor.

Pizza from Eataly Boston.
Pizzas at Eataly Boston.

Many customers prefer take-out food to bring back to work, or enjoy at home. Others prefer to dine at Eataly as individual restaurants and common seating areas provide a nice setting to soak in the Boston-meets-Italy atmosphere. I preferred to be seated at the common seating area at Eataly to enjoy this delicious ham with herb roasted ham, ricotta, olive and fennel on a house made ciabatta-- and accompanied by homemade potato chips.

Herb roasted ham panini from Eataly Boston
Delicious ham on ciabatta roll at Eataly.

Additionally the produce area is phenomenal, almost coming across as an indoor farmers market...

Produce at Eataly in Boston, Massachusetts.
Produce at Eataly.

Is Eataly Boston worth visiting? This writer's perspective

By now, you can tell the answer is a resounding "Yes!" I do, however, have a few perspectives that bear mention. First, the scene can get quite hectic during peak hours and frequent lack of customer courtesy can mar the overall great experience. Consideration of others would be nice as certain individuals clog the isles by stopping to text, making phone calls, watch YouTube videos, and take seemingly 10 minutes to decide whether to walk forward. That lack of courtesy is, however, the fault of a self-absorbed society and not the fine folks at Eataly who generally go great lengths to accommodate the customer.

A perspective: While Eataly Boston stands as one of the most interesting, delicious food destinations  I have been to in Boston, don't treat it as the sole place to go for Italian food. I know there will be some nights I prefer to go the traditional route to walk the North End of Boston to eat an authentic Italian restaurant, and after the meal walk down the street for a cannoli, homemade bread or gelato at other welcoming mom and pop businesses. Never underestimate the beauty and timeless relevance of process -- that is, sometimes it is best not to have everything so convenient and planned, and opt to walk around an established neighborhood for culinary treasures and gems.

The choice for options in Boston is what makes the city so great for food discoveries. Go to Eataly, enjoy the North End and never, ever limit yourself to just one place. With that said, I do recommend that locals, business people, and travelers put Eataly Boston high on their Boston food destinations list. It's clearly a worthy, new addition to the Boston food scene and a business that should be here for the long run.

Eataly Boston is located at 800 Boylston St. in Boston, MA. Tel. 617-807-7300

Homemade Italian breads from Eataly in Boston, Massachusetts.
Homemade breads at Eataly in Boston.

Eataly Boston: 4 restaurants, over 10,000 Italian products, many to-go counters and wine.
Four restaurants, over 10,000 Italian products, many go-to counters including a cannoli counter and fine wines highlight Eataly Boston.

Related article: Visit the Cannoli Counter at Eataly Boston

Still hungry? Go to our Dining Page to read about great places to eat in New England!

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