Fun and games and beers at Cornwall's
If you like beer, board games, and some breathing room in a sea of over-crowded bars—you'll love Cornwall's Pub & Bar. Adjacent to the BU Bookstore and across the street from Uno's, this pub sits comfortably on the edge of Kenmore Square at 654 Beacon Street. So close to Fenway, Cornwall's can seem miles away from the ball park (in a good way).
When the Red Sox are playing, it's a calming alternative to the bars on Lansdowne Street and Brookline Ave. The place fills up before and after games, but you can still get a quick drink and it doesn't take hours to corral a table if you're with other people. This is all thanks to a good amount of space (two rooms) and thousands of people not wanting to cross Beacon Street. Cornwall's also doubles as a quintessential stop for the working crowd—either during lunch or after work.
British ales and imports dominate the establishment's lengthy beer list. You easily have over 100 bottled and draft beers to choose from, with a bar and wait staff that's generous with their suggestions.
The joy of having such a great beer selection in the Kenmore Square area distracts from Cornwall's food, which is also good. The bar offers heartier entree options or standard appetizers like nachos and sides of fries. But it's mostly a place you go back to for beer. It's also been said that the mixed drinks are cheap and poured with a heavy hand in pint glasses.
The other great thing about Cornwall's—they don't skimp on the home-spun entertainment. You have your usual suspects, a room full of pool tables and dart boards. But the real show-stopper, a board game wall, is found in the back of the bar area. Yes, that's right. A board game wall. Piled high are childhood favorites like Battleship, Taboo, and Monopoly. You name it and Cornwall's probably has it. Thus making it a great place to bring a bigger party in need of a good game night.
Cornwall's garners mixed reviews from the city crowd, but on the whole, those who discover the bar like it. Regulars are fanatical about the place, and anyone who enters their doors generally has a compliment to pay upon leaving. Bottom line—it's not a typical bar you find in Kenmore Square.
Boston may be teeming with good Irish Catholics, but thanks to some character and a great location, a brief love affair with a British pub is possible.
[Ed. note: Sam is one of those good Irish Catholics.]