348 Congress St., Seaport District
If a traditional trattoria got together with a modern diner, the result would look a lot like Sportello. Prolific Boston restaurateur Barbara Lynch somehow always gets it just right and delivers something unexpected. Case in point: Italian trattoria-style food—in a sleek, all-white, decidedly modern, light-soaked space. Pasta, polenta, slow-braised meats, and hearty soups are the backbone of the Sportello menu. The capellacci dei briganti—braised lamb, green garlic, and salty ricotta salata stuffed into nettle pasta shaped like the tall hats (capellacci) worn by nineteenth-century brigands (briganti)–is the kind of rustic, rooted-in-history dish that Bostonians come here for. The wine list is just as curated as the food, with smaller artisanal Italian producers dominating.
One Seaport Ln., Seaport District
An excellent harbor hotel, the Seaport checks a lot of the amenity boxes (including great views), and it also has a cool sustainability mission. Guest rooms are light-filled and contemporary with bright comforters and armchairs from which you can take in the views from the nearly floor-to-ceiling windows. The in-room coffee makers and sumptuously comfortable bathrobes make breakfast in bed tempting. It's a pleasure to take advantage of the complimentary bikes and pedal around the city. An added bonus is the Seaport's pet-friendly stance, should you be traveling with your fur babies in tow.