Ahhh, Sullivan's. This old-fashioned takeout restaurant located along a particularly beautiful stretch of Boston Harbor has been a fixture of Castle Island in South Boston for a long, long time, dishing out food to diners for many decades now. In fact, it could be said that in a way, Sullivan's is to Southie what the landmark Kelly's Roast Beef is to Revere Beach. But oddly enough, while nearly everyone in Boston has been to the original Kelly's (or at least knows about it), Sullivan's is still relatively unknown to many people who live west and north of the city. That's a shame, because this little food stand is truly a special place, especially considering the jaw-dropping views that are literally just outside its doors.
Perched on a spit of land just two miles from downtown Boston, Sullivan's is that special type of dining spot that builds instant memories for those who go there. There is nothing like ordering a sandwich and fries on a hot summer day from "Sully's," then grabbing a bench along the scenic pedestrian causeway or near the old fort that dominates Castle Island. At night, the lights of Boston provide a spectacular backdrop for those who come here, and the cool breezes provide relief from the stifling summer heat.
We can't forget the food, of course--Sullivan's serves your basic cheap eats, such as grilled chicken and fried chicken sandwiches, fries (for which they supply malt vinegar, popular among people from Ireland who live in the area), onion rings, and soft serve ice cream. The hamburgers, lobster rolls, and, especially, the hot dogs (including the decadent chili cheese dogs and hot dogs with relish, which may be the best way to go) are the standouts here, though; the burgers are cheap, greasy, and delicious (and you can make it a double burger), while the hot dogs are juicy and grilled perfectly. And if you come to Sullivan's early in the spring (typically in March) or later in the fall (November), the hot dogs are sold at a deep discount, so you can buy one or two using little more than pocket change.
Sullivan's is well worth the ride out to South Boston. It won't break the bank, you can dress however you want, and its prime Boston Harbor location is unforgettable. One note, though: The restaurant is not open in the winter, so if you want to discover this great place for yourself, wait for the snow to melt. Once you go, you'll wish that Sullivan's of Castle Island was open all year around.
Copyright © 2004-2019, Boston's Hidden Restaurants (www.hiddenboston.com).