“Travel can be one of the most rewarding forms of introspection.”
On the flipside of Franklin Park, Jamaica Plain is a crossover indie hit. South Street galleries like The Hallway are magnets for talent fresh from the Museum School, Mass Art and Northeastern. Skip dubious wine at First Friday openings, but don't miss JP's historic craft beer. Pioneering 1871 Haffenreffer Brewery now houses Sam Adams HQ. Legendary Washington Street pub crawls begin with neighborly pints at Doyle's taproom, and graduate to raucous folk-rock and gay karaoke at Midway Café. If walking a block seems like exceptional effort for a change of happy hour scenery, Sam Adams Trolley Tours depart from Doyle's five days a week. As you might guess from local menus, JP is mostly white and Latino, 20 percent African American, 6 percent Asian and 100 percent new-New England. For a taste of JP's pan-Atlantic authenticity, try roast pork Cuban sandwiches at El Oriental de Cuba and genuine Scotch eggs at The Haven. JP's latest crossover gourmet success is Ten Tables bistro, starting with wicked craft cocktails and ending with Thai basil ice cream. Pack picnics from City Feed & Supply's deli for lazy days boating at Jamaica Pond or reading JP poet Sylvia Plath's melancholy "Bell Jar" amid cheerful lilacs in Arnold Arboretum.