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     The Bier Meister of Beantown     logo           

Story and Photography by David McBride


     Boston has changed quite a bit since I last prowled its streets in search of great taverns. It had been over a decade, and many of the downtown places I recalled from my tourist jaunts along the Freedom Trail had either altered or vanished.  Though I will admit my own changed, and inevitably aged, views may have had their effect as well, a few hours into my travels I feared my search for somewhere truly Bostonian might end in vain.

     So I set about interrogating as many locals as I could find, looking for a place maybe just a few blocks off the tourist path, that I wasn’t already familiar with.  As you can probably imagine, I got many glowing recommendations from many a proud Bostonian.  But the one that showed up on nearly every list was Jacob Wirth’s, especially if I happened to mention the word beer in my description of what I was searching for. 


Dining Room at Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review



Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review
Jacob Wirth in Boston, Massachusettes



Bar at Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review




Peter Falk autograph at Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review

Display at Jacon Wirth in Boston MA as seen in American Public House Review

Red Sox banner in Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review




     While Wirth’s is certainly not “tucked away” or “hidden”, if you only come to Boston to visit the city’s amazing historic colonial sites you would easily miss it.  And believe me that would be a shame.  For Jacob Wirth’s is not only a slice of genuine Boston history, it may just be one of the best beer joints you will ever discover.

     Jacob Wirth was a Prussian immigrant who came to Boston in the mid 19th century.  He opened a saloon in 1868 and it has stood in the same spot since he moved it across the street in 1878.  The restaurant became known for terrific German-influenced food and as a home for great draught beer.  With a gorgeous mahogany bar and sawdust on the floor, Jacob Wirth’s became the place to be for not only the rich and famous, but for Bostonians just looking for a fine beer.

     Jacob Wirth’s is now a monument to the man who built it.  His name is nothing short of legendary within Boston’s drinking lexicon, and the tavern he left behind is a sanctuary to that legend.  It is not the quaint, dimly lit publick house many expect to find in New England.  It bares more of a resemblance to western saloons than traditional seaside taverns of the North Atlantic coast.  Wirth’s is bright and ebullient.  The open kitchen adds the clatter of pots and pans to the ongoing symphony of laughter and conversation.  You will find great comfort food, a seemingly endless selection of beer, and an always welcoming hospitality.

     The saw dust may be gone, but like any great drinking establishment, you can always find some old-time regulars waxing poetic about their favorite pub. You will quickly learn that unlike many of Boston’s taverns, Jacob Wirth’s has changed very little of the years, which I suppose is why they keep coming back decade after decade. And why they keep suggesting it to the weary traveler in search of Boston’s best beer bars.



Jacob Wirth

31 Stuart Street

Boston, Massachusettes 02116

617-338-8586

www.jacobwirth.com


Directions






T^aps at Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review
A fine and varied selection of beers


Tables at Jacob Wirth in Boston, MA as seen in American Public House Review

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