Ted Kennedy was a lot of things, but first and foremost, he was a Bostonian. Like all of us, he had a lengthy list of favorite restaurants. He was a regular for a power lunch or a private dinner at L’Espalier, spokesperson Loring Barnes tells us. There, he favored dishes with butter-poached Maine lobster. His love for seafood — and Boston history — was so great that he wrote the forward to the Union Oyster House’s cookbook. Employees at No. 9 Park, near the State House, called Kennedy a frequent customer, and the Senator also ate at Locke-Ober, which serves “JFK Lobster Stew.” At No Name, Kennedy’s picture is on the wall. The family so loved the restaurant, says owner Jimmy Kilbaras, that they used to invite his mother to go fishing in Hyannisport.
An earlier generation of the family frequented Doyle’s, where Kennedy in 1988 dedicated a room to his grandfather, former Boston Mayor John “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald. Though the Senator poked his head into Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage looking for his niece Caroline, he never ordered his namesake burger. The Ted Kennedy is “a plump, liberal amount of burger with cheddar cheese, mushrooms & french fries,” says the menu. “John Kerry’s burger has come and gone, but Ted’s will be on forever,” promises owner Bill Bartley.