Don’t let the ample parking and proximity to Route 95 fool you. The Bancroft could just as well be in Boston, with its after-work scene and impressive selection of wine, beer, and cocktails. The new steak house has turned Burlington into a destination, especially for those seeking a much-needed drink after work. There are no run-of-the-mill menus here. The Bancroft’s approach to cocktails follows their kitchen philosophy—seasonal, inventive, and crafted with care. The grandiose marbled bar takes center stage, with an open-concept design from which to watch the bartenders shake and stir. And perform they do! House-made syrups, curated spirits, and fresh juices are all artfully prepared by a friendly (and fun) staff that can turn any mandatory Monday meeting into a feels-like-Friday experience. With plenty of comfy seating in leather high-back barstools, the bar at The Bancroft accommodates plenty of patrons and is arguably the best seat in the house. It’s the perfect place to meet for drinks in an elegant, yet entirely unfussy setting.
15 Third Ave., Burlington, 781-221-2100, the-bancroft.com
Photo by Anthony Tieuli
Opus is one of my favorite places in downtown Salem. They have interesting food and drink offerings. I think each time I go they have at least one new item on the menu I hadn’t seen before. The sushi is always delicious, and the bartenders are good at suggesting drinks. I like having the option of sitting at the bar, at a table or booth or heading downstairs to Opus Underground, which is a really cool lounge-type area with live music.
87 Washington St., Salem, 978-744-9600, salemopus.com