All clam chowders are the same.
Hold the phone right there. Sure, the basic ingredients of clams, butter, cream and potatoes are standard, but this does not mean all chowders are created equal. Bostonians swear by certain spots that make the greatest soups around with real seafood locally caught, fresh dairy thickeners, and maybe bacon if you’re feeling fancy. A few herbs, scallions and cracked pepper doesn’t hurt either.
You can get a decent bowl in Quincy Market at Ned Devine’s, but it’s better to stick close to the water for chowder perfection. Legal Seafood makes a mean, chowder you can stand your spoon up in, and you can find fancy house made oyster crackers atop your soup in B & G Oysters. Or, forget the crackers all together and carbo-load with a chowder served in a bread bowl – there’s several places to get it along Boylston Street. If you order chowder and it comes to you with a red broth, send it back. That’s a Manhattan chowder and it’s blasphemous.