"Well, I don't want to chew your ear off," says affable South Boston native Jack Maxwell, "but if I had a friend coming to Boston, I'd say ‘let me meet you there.’" We asked Maxwell, star and host of Travel Channel's "Booze Traveler," to plan a day touring around his hometown. Just off filming the debut season of his new show, Maxwell has cocktail culture on his mind, but it's all about camaradie of barroom socializing rather than inebriation. "There's nothing like going home to the old divey places with friends. It's never been about what I do, it's about who I do it with that's the most important thing to me." Here with, Maxwell's perfect Boston day ...
Noon: South Boston-Bound
Let’s start off in Southie (South Boston). Nothing beats going to the old hometown, walking up and down Broadway. We’ll walk through Flaherty Way where I used to live, and D Street. Saint Peters. Get a nice hot cup of coffee, maybe from the Java House and walk around. Java House, 541 E. Broadway, South Boston
1:30 pm: Japanese-Style Lunch
Get to Haru at the Pru; they have some innovative cocktails. Haru, 55 Huntington Ave., Boston, 617.536.0770
3 pm: Seasonal Sightseeing
We have to go downtown, especially this time of year, to see the Prudential Center or the lights on Boston Common. The Shops at Prudential Center, 800 Boylston St., 800.746.7778; Boston Common, Tremont Street at West Street, Boston
7 pm: Games at the Garden
Go see the Bs or the Cs at the TD Garden. Don’t leave town without getting some Boston sports experience, because for me, that’s the greatest thing. To see the city, walk through the Common, and then catch the Bruins or the Celtics if they’re in season; it’s a great event. TD Garden, 100 Legends Way, Boston, 617.624.1050
9:30 pm: Flavors of the North End
Go to the North End. Hanover Street has been there forever. It’s the most wonderful ambiance. Meals, great meals. You remember a meal certainly, but you remember the experience much more. Walk around and get a cannoli after a wonderful Italian meal with some wine. North End, Boston
11 pm: After-Dinner Drinks
Let's grab some drinks, maybe The Bristol Lounge at the Four Seasons, or over at the speakeasy Carrie Nation just because I love old-school stuff and old-fashioned cocktails. Or, we could go listen to some live music at The Beehive or Wally's Jazz, or if I'm on a date and I want to go a little nicer, I'll go to Scullers.
2:30 am: Cold Tea in Chinatown
After the clubs close, we'll go into Chinatown, maybe Moon Villa, and ask for the cold tea. Anyone coming into Boston, who doesn't know, I would surprise them. If you go into Chinatown after the bars close, after they stop serving alcohol, and order the cold tea, they'll bring you a pot filled with ice-cold beer. That's a local Boston thing that not a lot of us know that I'm telling you right now. You're the first to know. Try it next time; you'll laugh your ass off and say, 'Jack was right.' Moon Villa, 15-19 Edinboro St., Boston, 617.423.2061