Wine, Whitey and the Tour You Can’t Refuse: The Mobsters & Lobsters Trolley Tour
When traveling, I try my hardest to take a Anthony Bourdain approach rather than a Guy Fieri. That is, I avoid the tourist traps and, as ironically trite as the idiom’s become, take the road less traveled. I hold myself to a strict no-chain-restaurants rule, and I prefer my feet to any brightly colored behemoth trudging along Beacon St. barking out facts about the Statehouse’s dome.
This fall marks two years I’ve lived in this beautiful city. That’s two years without a single minute spent on a duck boat or trolley.
And then, I was offered tickets for Mobsters & Lobsters.
Mobsters & Lobsters is a “one-of-a-kind trolley tour of Boston’s smoky underworld history,” placing a spotlight on Boston’s “historic heists, mobster hideaways and hangouts, including locales frequented by Whitey [Bulger] and other members of the Winter Hill gang.”
The trolley departs from the Waterfront on Atlantic Ave., in front of the Marriott Long Wharf Hotel. From there, it snakes through the North End and Downtown, visiting Bulger’s old hideout at the Lancaster St. garage and the Parker House.
The tour’s driver is Tom Collins, a South Boston native who grew up in the D Street Projects and E. 6th St. during Whitey Bulger’s heyday. In addition to providing the tour with an encyclopedic knowledge of the subject, Collins has worked on several movies filmed in Boston, including Shutter Island and Night and Day.
From there, the tour heads into Southie and concludes in Dorchester with a tasting at the gorgeous Boston Winery (makers of Shawn Thornton’s Merlot Line Merlot) and a dinner at the Venezia Waterfront Restaurant, featuring a spectacular view of the water and, you guessed it, lobster.
The tour runs from 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., from May to December. Charters are available upon request. Tickets for the tour and dinner are $89 each, $99 including the winery tour. Tickets for the tour only are $50. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Dorchester Youth Collaborative.
I must say, I’m glad I broke my rule.