Esquire Magazine Tries to Drink Boston Under the Table

For years, Esquire has chronicled the best bars in cities across America. Boston’s bars have done increasingly well over the years, with stalwarts like Doyle’s listed side by side with newer ventures like Drink and some legitimate area dives like Drinking Fountain.

Esquire’s taken the best bar concept and turned it into a new television series, “Best Bars in America,’’ on its new-ish network. The series comes to Boston 10 p.m. Wednesday, and hosts Jay Larson (a Bostonian) and Sean Patton run through eight of Boston’s watering holes to get a sense of the state of boozing in the commonwealth.


They sometimes get the city’s history very wrong. Why, for example. would Paul Revere light two lanterns in the Old North Church window to warn himself on the other shore that the British were coming by sea? And why would he warn everyone of the impending arrival of the British when everyone in Massachusetts at the time was British?

But this isn’t a history program, and the two beat a quick retreat from fractured fairy tales to cocktails and ales. Aside from some stilted banter here and there, you do get a sense of the local drinking culture. The show features some legit local accents and digs a little into the drinks poured during the hour. Ward 8s, Periodistas, and other local drinks as featured as the two hosts cut a swath from JP to Somerville.

The boys meet the locals, shoot some dice, and make the obligatory visit to Fenway Park along the way. It’s a lively hour from the first Guinness to the hair of the dog the next morning.

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