Practice the words to La Marseillaise because you might need to know them to join in on the fun this July 14. Here’s where to raise a glass to France in Boston.
Boston’s most well known (and well attended) Bastille Day celebration occurs on the streets of Back Bay one day early on Friday the 13th from 6pm to 11pm. The French Cultural Center Alliance Française of Boston‘s annual bash hosts live musicians to provide the soundtrack to dancing in the streets and tasting delicious French food and drinks. Seven of Boston’s best eateries will be serving French and French-inspired food at booths. There are even activities for children offered between 6pm-8pm so parents can enjoy a glass of beer or wine. Around 2,000 people attend, so it’s recommended to buy tickets in advance, though they are available at the door for a slightly higher cost. Children under 10 are free. (Buy tickets here.)
Back Bay – At Marlborough Street (between Berkeley and Clarendon)
To warm up your stomach for all the French food you’ll be eating on the weekend, start your Bastille Day celebrations on July 11th at Precinct Kitchen and Bar‘s Provence on the Patio event. Amidst France-themed decor, guests will dine on four-course meal of seasonal French foods made with local ingredients. Each course will have a wine pairing, and authentic French pastries will be served for dessert. Dinner will be served at 6pm and 8pm, and music will accompany both meals. Reserve your place here.
Precinct Kitchen and Bar (located in Loews Boston Hotel) – 154 Berkeley St, Boston, MA 02116
Not specifically a Bastille day event, we’re still putting Harvest‘s summer rosé bar on our list because rosé is quintessentially Provençal. On Friday, July 13, from 4pm to 6pm, it’ll be rosé galore at Harvest’s outdoor oasis bar. Four different bottles of rosé, three by the glass rosés, and two rosé-inspired drinks (a sangria and cider) will be served, plus complimentary bar bites that change daily. Beverages from the full bar are also available. Reservations not necessary.
Harvest – 44 Brattle St. (on the walkway), Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA 02138
To celebrate their culinary heritage, on Saturday July 14, Daniel Boulud’s famous French restaurant Bar Boulud will offer a special four-course wine dinner, featuring traditional Provençal cuisine and rosé from Château d’Esclans. From 7:30pm to 10:30pm, Sommelier David Bérubé and special guest Alex Diard, Wine Ambassador for Château d’Esclans, will pour the wine and provide guests with brief lessons on what exactly they’re drinking and how to appreciate it. Tickets should be purchased in advance here.
Bar Boulud – 776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02199
Hosted annually by the Duplessy Foundation, this July 13th whiskey and wine tasting will impress your palette and pay homage to France’s culinary successes at once. France’s finest whiskeys will be available from 4pm to 5pm, and the wine tasting goes from 5pm to 6pm. So why is it a blind wine tasting? You’ll be guessing the region the wine comes from. If you get enough right, there are wines and other prizes for you to take home! Several featured sommeliers will also be testing their expertise along with you so you can see how the experts do it. A selection of French cheeses, meats, and other apéro offerings will also be served. Tickets can be purchased in advance here.
Nixon Peabody – 100 Summer Street, Boston, MA 02110
One day after La Fête Nationale, Bondir will keep the blue-white-red coming. On Sunday, June 15, the French restaurant in Cambridge will offer a special five-course menu from 5pm to 10pm (reservations required). You can get an idea of this year’s menu by looking at last year’s menu here.
Bondir – 279A Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139