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Brian Young Of ‘Top Chef’ Shares His Favorite Restaurants In Boston


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Welcome to EAT THIS CITY, your tour of the best restaurants in one of our favorite cities, as chosen by a world-class chef, celebrity, or local hero.

This week we’re heading to the home of Fenway Park — the city best known for its baked beans, its marathon, and serving as the setting for Cheers. (And, we suppose, its football dominance.) That’s right, it’s Boston, a city filled with revolutionary history, some dope places to score cocktails, Kennedy family lore, contemporary art, stunning architecture, and a great beer scene. It’s a city that has a lot to offer, including its restaurants, which is why we asked Chef Brian Young to lead us on a tour.

You may recognize Brian Young from this season of Top Chef, where he geeked out on butchery and seemed likely to start a ska band. Indeed the chef did work as a touring musician for a spell. He later cooked barbecue at BB King’s Blues Club before attending the New England Culinary Institute in Montpelier, Vermont. For a time, he ended up in Big Sur, CA, where he honed his skills at Sierra Mar at the Post Ranch Inn, before heading back to the east coast to work as a sous chef in Saint Albans, VT.

From there, Young joined Chef Mary Dumont’s team at Harvest as an executive sous chef before serving as the executive chef at Citizen Public House and Oyster Bar, chef de cuisine at Post 390 and co-chef at Townsman alongside Chef Matthew Jennings. This hard work earned him inclusion on Zagat Boston’s “30 under 30” list in 2013. He’s also cooked at The James Beard House and competed on “Beat Bobby Flay.” Before entering Top Chef, Young was Chef De Cuisine at Cultivar, and we defy you to look at some of their food without feeling pangs of desire.

Now that we’ve seen what the man can do, let’s see what Brian Young has to say about dining in Boston.

PIZZA: Santarpio’s Pizza

Santarpio’s Pizza in East Boston is inarguably the best pizza in Boston proper. Tucked literally under a bridge just a quick Blue Line ride under the harbor to Eastie, Santarpio’s is in the ground floor of one of Boston’s “famed” multi-family homes. At first blush, it doesn’t necessarily look the purveyor of an amazing dining experience. Santarpio’s has a reputation for being inhospitable, impatient, and tragically Boston.

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