Best of 2024

We’re all winners!

From the spots voted best pizza place to those of us who can go eat that pizza, everybody involved in Hippo’s Best of readers’ poll 2024 is getting a win from this issue.

In this year’s poll we asked you to weigh in with your favorite doughnut, hiking trail, lunch spot and brewery. We also asked for your thoughts on ketchup, music while you work and picnics. We even asked you who, in New Hampshire, you’d like to extend a thank you to (and thank you to the reader who said “Hippo for a great paper”).

And after all that voting in February, now we present you with, generally, the top five winners in each category — though sometimes we have supersized it and let a few more reader faves join the winners court. And we’ve sprinkled some specific reader responses throughout, because they’re fun. Looking for a place where they make your coffee perfect every time or a great hair stylist? Here are Hippo readers’ favorites.

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The Fine Print

This survey is for entertainment purposes only and all results are final.

The results of Hippo’s readers’ poll are based on readers’ answers to a poll conducted online in February. Readers typed in the names of people and locations they voted for. In situations where the vote is tied or otherwise unclear, Hippo editorial staff makes an effort to determine the will of the greatest number of voters. Hippo reserves the right to disqualify individual votes, ballots and/or entries when they are incomplete or unclear, do not meet the letter or the spirit of the question asked or otherwise do not meet the requirements to make them a usable vote.

Hippo’s editorial staff makes the ultimate determination of the winners in the categories. Hippo’s advertisers play no role in the determination of the winners. All results are final.

The Best of 2024 is a celebration of all things local and is meant to serve as a snapshot of the people and places in southern New Hampshire. Large national and international chains are, for the most part, not included in the count. Information presented here is gathered from sources including the location’s website and social media pages. Double check with the spots before heading out to make sure times, locations and menu items haven’t changed.

Questions, comments, concerns? Did we get an address or phone number wrong? Do you have an idea for a new category? Let us know. Contact editor Amy Diaz at adiaz@hippopress. com. Corrections will appear on the first page of the news section in future issues. Is your favorite category missing? Categories change regularly, with some categories taking a sabbatical and new categories introduced, so please send your suggestions for a category for next year. And, again, all results are seriously final. Hey, there’s always next year.


Arts

Best Performing Arts Venue

  • Best of the best: The Palace Theatres 80 Hanover St. in Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org
  • Tupelo Music Hall 10 A St. in Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com
  • Capitol Center for the Arts 44 S. Main St. in Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com

Nashua Center for the Arts 201 Main St. in Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com
Bringing nationally touring musicians, live comedy, theatre, children’s performances, and more to Downtown Nashua! Come experience a great show!

  • BankNH Pavilion 72 Meadowbrook Lane in Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com

Best Theatrical Production

  • Best of the best: A Christmas Carol at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St. in Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) ran Nov. 24 to Dec. 23, 2023.
  • Ballet Misha’s The Nutcracker at the Dana Center (100 Saint Anselm Dr. in Manchester, 641-7700, tickets.anselm.edu) ran Dec. 16 and Dec. 17, 2023.
  • Kinky Boots at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St. in Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) ran Oct. 13 through Nov. 5, 2023.
  • Dancing Queens at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St. in Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) ran Jan. 19 through Feb. 11, 2024.
  • The Wizard of Oz at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St. in Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) ran Sept. 8 through Sept. 24, 2023.

Best Local Place to Buy Art

  • Best of the best: League of New Hampshire Craftsmen’s Annual Craftsmen’s Fair, which will take place this year Saturday, Aug. 3, through Sunday, Aug. 11, at Mount Sunapee Resort in Newbury. See nhcrafts.org/annual-craftsmens-fair.
  • Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St. in Manchester, 669-6144, currier.org, Wednesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed Monday and Tuesday.
  • Mosaic Art Collective 66 Hanover St., Unit 201, in Manchester; 512-6209, mosaicartcollective.com, Wednesday Through Friday from 2 to 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Closed Monday and Tuesday.
  • Concord Arts Market, a market with dates May through December. The first 2024 market is scheduled for the first Friday in May — Friday, May 3, at Bicentennial Square in downtown Concord. A market is also slated once a month in Rollins Park in Concord from June through September, as well as during Market Days in downtown Concord (June 20-22), according to concordartsmarket.net.
  • Manchester Craft Market, Mall of New Hampshire, 1500 S. Willow St. in Manchester, 606-1351, manchestercraftmarket.com, Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sundays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Best Publicly Viewable Mural

  • Best of the best: Cat Alley off Elm Street between Manchester and Merrimack streets in Manchester, featuring kitties of various shapes and sizes.
  • Hanover Street in Manchester titled “Greetings from Manchester” by Hooksett resident and artist James Chase and commissioned by Red Oak Apartments, according to manchesterinformation.com.
  • Derry Downtown 1½ East Broadway in Derry on the side of Cask and Vine, showcasing a timeline of Derry, according to nhrtc.org.
  • Derry Rail Trail in Derry. Robert Frost homage with trees and lines of verse painted on the asphalt-paved road, according to nhrtc.org.
  • Mural by artist Keith Trahan on the building by Lamont-Hanley Park at the corner of Bridge and Elm streets in Manchester.

Entertainment

Best Bookstore

  • Best of the best: Gibson’s Bookstore 40 S. Main St. in Concord, gibsonsbookstore.com, 224-0562
  • Bookery 844 Elm St. in Manchester, bookerymht.com, 836-6600
  • Balin Books 375 Amherst St. in Nashua, balinbooks.com, 417-7981
  • Toadstool Bookshop 12 Depot Sq. in Peterborough, toadbooks.com, 924-3543
  • Water Street Bookstore 125 Water St. in Exeter, waterstreetbooks.com, 778-9731

Best Bowling Alley

  • Best of the best: Lakeside Lanes 2171 Candia Road in Manchester, lakesidelanes.com, 627-7722
  • Merrimack 10 Pin 698 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, merrimacktenpin.com, 429-0989
  • King Lanes 751 Mast Road in Goffstown, kinglanes.com, 623-9515
  • Leda Lanes 340 Amherst St. in Nashua, ledalanes.com, 889-4884
  • Yankee Lanes 216 Maple St. in Manchester, manchester.yankeelanesentertainment.com, 625-9656

Best Comic Book Shop

Best of the best: Double Midnight Comics 252 Willow St. in Manchester, dmcomics.com, 669-9636
Double Midnight Comics 341 Loudon Road in Concord, dmcomics.com, 715-2683
 Southern NH’s premiere source for the latest and greatest comics and games!

  • Merrymac Games & Comics 550 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, merrymacgc.com, 420-8161
  • Pop Culture Card Comics and Collectibles 66 Route 27 in Raymond, popculturenh.com, 244-1850
  • Jetpack Comics 37 N. Main St. in Rochester, jetpackcomics.com, 330-XMEN (9636)

Best Mini Golf

  • Best of the best: Mel’s Funway 454 Charles Bancroft Hwy. in Litchfield, melsfunwaypark.com, 424-229. Opens in April.
  • Chuckster’s Ice Cream & Miniature Golf 53 Hackett Hill Road in Hooksett, chucksters-hooksett.com, 210-1415. Opens Saturday, April 13.
  • Chuckster’s Family Fun Park 9 Bailey Road in Chichester, chuckstersnh.com, 798-3555. Opens Saturday, April 6.
  • Captain’s Cove Adventure Golf 814 Lafayette Road in Hampton, smallgolf.com, 926-5011. Opens Saturday, April 20.
  • Mini Links at LaBelle Winery 14 Route 111 in Derry, labellewinery.com, 672-9898. Slated to open April 1.

Best Place to Learn How to Make Something Cool

  • Best of the best: Studio 550 Arts Center (550 Elm St. in Manchester, 550arts.com, 232-5597) Learn to sculpt clay, stain some glass, or make 2D artforms like watercolor, acrylics or pastels.

Manchester Craft Market (Mall of New Hampshire, 1500 S. Willow St. in Manchester, manchestercraftmarket.com, 606-1351) Learn how to use alcohol ink, wire-wrap gemstones or mold polymer clay. If you can craft it there is probably a workshop for it here.

  • You’re Fired (25 S. River Road in Bedford, yourefirednh.com, 641-3473) A walk-in-friendly establishment where you can create and paint your own pottery.
  • Cooking School at Tuscan Market (9 Via Toscana in Salem, tuscanbrands.com, 912-5467) Create the perfect spaghetti sauce and learn which wines to pair with it. A myriad of Italian-style cooking courses are available.
  • The Canvas Roadshow (25 S. River Road in Bedford, thecanvasroadshow.com, 913-9217) Offers classes and events for painting, glass art, wood staining and more.

Best Place to Totally Geek Out

  • Best of the best: Aviation Museum of New Hampshire (27 Navigator Road in Londonderry, aviationmuseumofnh.org, 669-4820)
  • Boards and Brews (941 Elm St. in Manchester, boardsandbrewsnh.com, 232-5184) Play almost any board game that has ever been created while drinking beer and sharing food with friends.
  • Granite State Comicon (700 Elm St. in Manchester, granitecon.com, 669-9636) Slated for Saturday, Sept. 21, and Sunday, Sept. 22. Head to this Con to meet comic book artists and authors, game creators, actors and more, while enjoying costume contests and parties. Tickets are already on sale, including for weekend passes and VIP packages that include early entry and a goodie bag.
  • Pop Culture (66 Route 27 in Raymond, popculturenh.com, 244-1850) Your one-stop shop for all things 40k, Magic The Gathering, RPGs, comic books and much more.
  • Awesome Cards, Collectibles & Games (123 Nashua Road in Londonderry, awesomeccg.com, 404-6996) Anything from Pokemon card games to Dungeons & Dragons, if you can play it on a tabletop, you can find it here.
  • Diversity Gaming (1328 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, diversitygaming.store, 606-1176) Set up your favorite board game with friends in one of four private rooms or use free tables where everyone is invited to roll the dice.
  • Midgard (55 Crystal Ave. in Derry, midgardhobbiesandgames.com, 260-6180) Come for the tournaments and any type of game your Midgardian heart could desire.

Best Place to Make New Friends

  • Best of the best: The Collective Studios 4 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, thecollective-studios.com, 216-2345
  • The Nest Family Cafe 25 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, thenestfamilycafe.com, 404-3512
  • Feathered Friend Brewing Co. 231 S. Main St. in Concord, featheredfriendbrewing.com, 715-2347

Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
Join us for Live music 6 nights a week (every night in the summer). Check our website to see who’s playing tonight

  • The Hop Knot 1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731

Independent Shop Where You’d Have a Win-the-Lotto Shopping Spree

  • Best of the best: Gondwana & Divine Clothing Co. 13 N. Main St. in Concord, gondwanaclothing.com, 228-1101
  • Junction 71 707 Milford Road in Merrimack, junction71.wixsite.com/mysite, 213-5201
  • League of NH Craftsmen’s gallery 36 N. Main St. in Concord, concord.nhcrafts.org, 228-8171
  • Manchester Craft Market Mall of New Hampshire, 1500 S. Willow St. in Manchester; 606-1351, manchestercraftmarket.com
  • The Terracotta Room 1361 Elm St., Suite 102, in Manchester, theterracottaroom.com, 935-8738

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Nightlife

Best Restaurant, Brewery or Bar for Live Music

  • Best of the best: The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • The Derryfield Restaurant 625 Mammoth Road in Manchester, thederryfield.com, 623-2880
  • The Shaskeen Pub and Restaurant 909 Elm St. in Manchester, shaskeenirishpub.com, 625-0246
  • Backyard Brewery and Kitchen 1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545
  • Strange Brew Tavern 88 Market St. in Manchester, strangebrewtavern.net, 666-4292

Best Live Music Venue

  • Best of the best: Tupelo Music Hall 10 A St. in Derry, tupelomusichall.com, 437-5100
  • BankNH Pavilion 72 Meadowbrook Lane in Gilford, banknhpavilion.com, 293-4700
  • The Rex Theatre 23 Amherst St. in Manchester, palacetheatre.org/venues/rex-theatre, 668-5588
  • The BNH Stage 16 S. Main St. in Concord, ccanh.com/bank-nh-stage, 225-1111
  • Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom 169 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, casinoballroom.com, 929-4100

Best Bar with an Outdoor Deck

  • Best of the best: The Derryfield Restaurant 625 Mammoth Road in Manchester, thederryfield.com, 623-2880
  • The Backyard Brewery 1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545
  • The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill: 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • Bernie’s Beach Bar: 73 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, berniesnh.com, 926-5050
  • KC’s Rib Shack: 837 Second St. in Manchester, ribshack.net, 627-7427

Best Bar or Pub

  • Best of the best: The Shaskeen Pub and Restaurant 909 Elm St. in Manchester, shaskeenirishpub.com, 625-0246
  • The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill: 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • Backyard Brewery and Kitchen: 1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545
  • Industry East: 28 Hanover St. in Manchester, industryeastbar.com, 232-6940
  • The Hop Knot: 1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731

Best Weekly Bar Event

  • Best of the best: Trivia with Heather at The Farm Bar and Grille (1181 Elm St. in Manchester, farmbargrille.com, 641-3276) takes place Wednesdays at 8 p.m.
  • Tuesday open mic at KC’s Rib Shack (837 Second St. in Manchester, ribshack.net, 627-7427) is hosted by Paul & Nate with a featured artist from 7 to 8 p.m. and open mic from 8 to 10 p.m.
  • Trivia at The Hop Knot (1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731) runs Thursdays at 7 p.m. with Broderick Lang.
  • Trivia at Chunky’s Cinema Pub (707 Huse Road in Manchester, chunkys.com, 206-3888) runs Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. and is 21+. Each week usually has a theme based on a movie or genre of movies or a TV show or music. About once a month on Sunday, there is an all-ages family-friendly trivia night at 6 p.m.
  • Music Bingo at Backyard Brewery and Kitchen (1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545) runs Thursdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Best Spot for Some Friendly Competition

  • Best of the best: The Rugged Axe 377 S. Willow St. in Manchester, theruggedaxe.com, 232-7846
  • Block Party Social 51 Zapora Dr. in Hooksett, blockpartysocial.com, 263-5408
  • RelAxe Throwing NH 157 Gay St. in Manchester, relaxethrowing.com, 782-3061
  • Axel’s Throw House 4 Bud Way, Unit 2, in Nashua, axelsthrowhouse.com, 212-1778
  • Granite State Escape 795 Elm St. in Manchester, escapenh.com, 935-7455

Best Spot for a Cheap Date

  • Best of the best: The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • The Farm Bar and Grille 1181 Elm St. in Manchester, farmbargrille.com, 641-3276
  • The Hop Knot 1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731
  • Chunky’s Cinema Pub 707 Huse Road in Manchester, chunkys.com, 206-3888
  • The Gyro Spot 1073 Elm St. in Manchester, thegyrospot.com, 218-3869
  • Diz’s Cafe 860 Elm St. in Manchester, dizscafe.com, 606-2532
  • Penuche’s Ale House 16 Bicentennial Sq. in Concord, facebook.com/penuches.concord, 228-9833

Best Spot for a Group Outing

  • Best of the best: Tupelo Music Hall 10 A St. in Derry, tupelomusichall.com, 437-5100
  • The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • Boards & Brews 941 Elm St. in Manchester, boardsandbrewsnh.com, 232-5184
  • Axel’s Throw House 4 Bud Way, Unit 2, in Nashua, axelsthrowhouse.com, 212-1778
  • Canobie Lake Park 85 N. Policy St. in Salem, canobie.com, 893-3506
  • Game Changer Sports Bar and Grill 4 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, gamechangersportsbar.com, 216-1396
  • The Rugged Axe 377 S. Willow St. in Manchester, theruggedaxe.com, 232-7846
  • Fisher Cats at Delta Dental Stadium 1 Line Dr. in Manchester, milb.com/new-hampshire/tickets, 641-2005. The season begins April 4.

Best Place to Meet a Blind Date

  • Best of the best: The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • The Farm Bar and Grille 1181 Elm St. in Manchester, farmbargrille.com, 641-3276
  • The Hop Knot 1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731
  • Penuche’s Ale House 16 Bicentennial Sq. in Concord, facebook.com/penuches.concord, 228-9833
  • Stella Blu 70 E. Pearl St. in Nashua, stellablu-nh.com, 578-5557

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Restaurant

Best Restaurant

  • Best of the best: Puritan Backroom 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, puritanbackroom.com, 669-6890 for the restaurant.
  • Copper Door 15 Leavy Dr. in Bedford, copperdoor.com, 488-2677
  • The Tuckaway Tavern and Butchery 58 Route 27 in Raymond, tuckaway.com, 224-2431
  • Revival Kitchen & Bar 11 Depot St. in Concord, revivalkitchennh.com, 715-5723
  • Cotton 75 Arms St. in Manchester, cottonfood.com, 622-5488

Best New Eatery

  • Best of the best: Stash Box 866 Elm St. in Manchester, stashboxnh.com, 606-8109. Opened October 2023.
  • STREET: 76 N. Main St. in Concord, streetfood360.com, 333-2125. Opened October 2023
  • Fotia Greek Taverna 401 S. Willow St. in Manchester, fotiagreektaverna.com, 461-3007. Opened September 2023.
  • Buba Kitchen 148 N. Main St. in Concord, bubanoodle.com, 219-0064. Opened December 2023.
  • Friendly Red’s 111 W. Broadway in Derry, friendlyredstavern.net, 404-6606. Opened July 2023.

Best Fine Dining Restaurant

  • Best of the best: Hanover Street Chop House 149 Hanover St. in Manchester, hanoverstreetchophouse.com, 644-2467
  • Buckley’s Great Steaks 438 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, buckleysgreatsteaks.com, 424-0995
  • Bedford Village Inn 2 Olde Bedford Way in Bedford, bedfordvillageinn.com, 472-2001
  • Revival Kitchen and Bar 11 Depot St. in Concord, revivalkitchennh.com, 715-5723
  • Cotton 75 Arms St. in Manchester, cottonfood.com, 622-5488

Best Restaurant from which to get Takeout

  • Best of the best: Puritan Backroom 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, puritanbackroom.com, 669-6890 for the restaurant.
  • Troy’s Fresh Kitchen 4 Orchard View Dr., No. 6, in Londonderry, troysfreshkitchen.com, 965-3411
  • Charlie’s of Goffstown 1B Pinard St. in Manchester, charliesgoffstown.com, 606-1835
  • Goldenrod Restaurant 1681 Candia Road in Manchester, goldenrodrestaurant.com, 623-9469
  • Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com


Best Date Night Restaurant

  • Best of the best: Cotton 75 Arms St. in Manchester, cottonfood.com, 622-5488
  • Revival Kitchen and Bar 11 Depot St. in Concord, revivalkitchennh.com, 715-5723
  • Copper Door 15 Leavy Dr. in Bedford, copperdoor.com, 488-2677
  • The Foundry 50 Commercial St. in Manchester, foundrynh.com, 836-1925
  • Villaggio Ristorante Italiano 677 Hooksett Road in Manchester, villaggionh.com, 627-2424

Restaurant that Brings the Heat

  • Best of the best: Destination India Restaurant and Bar 14A E. Broadway in Derry, destinationindianh.com, 552-3469
  • Daw Kun Thai 93 S. Maple St., No. 4, in Manchester, dawkunthai.com, 232-0699
  • Curry Leaf 6 Pleasant St. in Concord, curryleafus.com, 715-5746
  • A Lot of Thai 360 Daniel Webster Hwy., Unit 121, in Merrimack, alotofthainh.com, 429-8888
  • Kashmir Indian Cuisine 396 S. Broadway in Salem, kashmirindianfood.com, 898-3455
  • Kathmandu Spice 379 S. Willow St. in Manchester, ktmspice.com, 782-3911

Best Food Truck

  • Best of the best: Up in Your Grill Find them in the front parking lot, 526 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, upinyourgrill.com, 493-3191
  • The Sleazy Vegan Usually at the Tideline Public House, 15 Newmarket Road in Durham, thesleazyvegan.com, 233-5078
  • Teenie Weenies Often at Able Ebenezer Brewing Co., 31 Columbia Circle in Merrimack (find them on Facebook, 403-2336)
  • B’s Tacos May through October they’re at the BP Gas Station, 2 Mohawk Dr. in Londonderry, nhtacotruck.com, 622-8200
  • Messy Mike’s Barbecue and Catering 161 Rockingham Road in Derry, messymikesbbq.com, 781-710-7832

Restaurant with the Best Outdoor Seating

  • Best of the best: The Crown Tavern 99 Hanover St. in Manchester, thecrownonhanover.com, 218-3132
  • Backyard Brewery and Kitchen 1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545
  • The Derryfield Restaurant 625 Mammoth Road in Manchester, thederryfield.com, 623-2880
  • Tuscan Kitchen Salem 19 Via Toscana in Salem, tuscanbrands.com/tuscan-kitchen, 952-4875
  • Cheers Grille & Bar 17 Depot St., No. 1, in Concord, cheersnh.com, 228-0180

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Delicious Dishes

Best Barbecue

  • Best of the best: KC’s Rib Shack 837 Second St. in Manchester, 627-7427, ribshack.net
  • Smoke Haus 278 Route 101 in Amherst, 249-5734, smokehausbbq.com
  • Smoke Show Barbecue 231 S. Main St. in Concord, 227-6399, smokeshowbbq.com
  • Goody Coles Smokehouse 374 Route 125 in Brentwood, 679-8898, goodycoles.com

Smoke Shack Cafe 226 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 404-2178, smokeshackcafe.com
Hickory Wood Smoked Ribs, Brisket, Chicken, Pulled Pork, Wings, plus Loaded Mac and Cheese and more!

Best Breakfast

Best of the best: Tucker’s 95 S. River Road in Bedford, 413-6503; 80 South St. in Concord, 413-5884; 238 Indian Brook Road in Dover, 413-5470; 1328 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, 206-5757; 360 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 413-6477; 207 Main St. in New London, 413-5528; tuckersnh.com
Serving breakfast and lunch every day with a menu that includes organic, local and gluten free options for all to enjoy.

  • Maryann’s Diner 29 East Broadway in Derry, 434-5785; 4 Cobbetts Pond Road in Windham, 965-3066; 3 Veterans Memorial Parkway in Salem, 893-9877; 1 Craftsman Lane in Amherst, 577-8955; maryannsdiner.com
  • Janie’s Uncommon Cafe 123 Nashua Road in Londonderry, 432-3100, janiescafe.com
  • Riverhouse Cafe 167 Union Sq. in Milford, 249-5556, damngoodgrub.com

Chez Vachon 136 Kelley St. in Manchester, 625-9660, chezvachon.com
Get what you deserve! Comfort food and French Canadian Favorites. Breakfast served all day.

  • Troy’s Fresh Kitchen 4 Orchard View Dr., No. 6, in Londonderry, 965-3411, troysfreshkitchen.com

Best Brunch

  • Best of the best: The Foundry 50 Commercial St. in Manchester, 836-1925, foundrynh.com
  • Tucker’s 95 S. River Road in Bedford, 413-6503; 80 South St. in Concord, 413-5884; 238 Indian Brook Road in Dover, 413-5470; 1328 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, 206-5757; 360 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 413-6477; 207 Main St. in New London, 413-5528; tuckersnh.com
  • The Friendly Toast 4 Main St. in Bedford, 836-8907 (also has a location in Portsmouth); thefriendlytoast.com
  • Firefly 22 Concord St. in Manchester, fireflynh.com, 935-9740
  • Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com
  • Prime at Sky Meadow 6 Mountain Laurels Dr. in Nashua, 888-9000, skymeadow.com

Best Burgers

  • Best of the best: Papa Joe’s Humble Kitchen 237 South St. in Milford, papajoeshumblekitchen.com, 672-9130
  • The Barley House 132 N. Main St. in Concord, 228-6363, thebarleyhouse.com
  • The Tuckaway Tavern & Butchery 58 Route 27 in Raymond, 244-2431, thetuckaway.com
  • River Road Tavern 193 S. River Road in Bedford, 206-5837, riverroadtavernbedford.com
  • T-Bones Great American Eatery 25 S. River Road in Bedford, 641-6100; 404 S. Main St. in Concord, 715-1999; 39 Crystal Ave. in Derry, 434-3200; 77 Lowell Road in Hudson, 882-6677; 311 South Broadway in Salem, 893-3444; 1182 Union Ave. in Laconia, 528-7800; t-bones.com
  • Vibes Gourmet Burgers 25 S. Main St. in Concord, 856-8671, vibes-burgers.com

Best Burrito

  • Best of the best: California Burritos Mexican Grill: 655 S. Willow St., Suite 103, in Manchester, 722-2084; 2 Cellu Drive in Nashua, 417-6151; 101 Factory St. in Nashua, 718-8745; 35 Lowell Road in Hudson, 402-2130; californiaburritosnh.com
  • La Carreta Mexican Restaurant 139 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Nashua, 891-0055; 1875 S. Willow St. in Manchester, 623-7705; 545 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 628-6899; 44 Nashua Road in Londonderry, 965-3477; 35 Manchester Road, Suite 5A in Derry, 421-0091; 172 Hanover St. in Portsmouth, 427-8319; lacarretamex.com
  • Dos Amigos 26 N. Main St. in Concord, 410-4161, dosamigosburritos.com
  • Los Reyes Street Tacos & More 127 Rockingham Road, Unit 15, in Derry, 845-8327, losreyesstreettacos.com
  • Puerto Vallarta Mexican Grill (865 Second St. in Manchester, 935-9182)and Nuevo Vallarta Mexican Restaurant (791 Second St. in Manchester, 782-8762), vallartamexicannh.com

Best Chicken Tenders

  • Best of the best: Puritan Backroom Restaurant 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 669-6890, puritanbackroom.com
  • Goldenrod Restaurant 1681 Candia Road in Manchester, 623-9469, goldenrodrestaurant.com
  • Charlie’s of Goffstown 1B Pinard St. in Manchester, 606-1835, charliesgoffstown.com
  • T-Bones Great American Eatery 25 S. River Road in Bedford, 641-6100; 404 S. Main St. in Concord, 715-1999; 39 Crystal Ave. in Derry, 434-3200; 77 Lowell Road in Hudson, 882-6677; 311 South Broadway in Salem, 893-3444; 1182 Union Ave. in Laconia, 528-7800; t-bones.com
  • Smoke Shack Cafe 226 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 404-2178, smokeshackcafe.com

Best Fish & Chips

  • Best of the best: Lobster Boat 453 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 424-5221; 273 Derry Road in Litchfield, 882-4988; lobsterboatrestaurant.com
  • The Peddler’s Daughter 48 Main St. in Nashua, 821-7535, thepeddlersdaughter.com
  • Goldenrod Restaurant 1681 Candia Road in Manchester, 623-9469, goldenrodrestaurant.com
  • The Beach Plum 3 Brickyard Square in Epping, 679-3200; 8 S. Village Drive in Salem, 458-7266; 2800 Lafayette Road in Portsmouth, 433-3339; 16 Ocean Blvd., North Hampton, 964-7451; thebeachplum.net
  • Petey’s Summertime Seafood 1323 Ocean Blvd. in Rye, 433-1937, peteys.com

Best Grilled Cheese

  • Best of the best: Patz Deli & Catering 900 Elm St., Suite 102, in Manchester, 644-7289
  • Cheese Louise 76 Congress St. in Portsmouth, 427-8615, eatcheeselouise.com
  • Copper Door 15 Leavy Dr. in Bedford, 488-2677, copperdoor.com
  • Prime Time 119 Hanover St. in Manchester, find them on Facebook or Instagram
  • Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com

Where the French Fries Are So Good They Could Be a Whole Meal

  • Best of the best: Goldenrod Restaurant 1681 Candia Road in Manchester, 623-9469, goldenrodrestaurant.com
  • The Farm Bar & Grille 1181 Elm St. in Manchester, 641-3276, farmbargrille.com
  • Puritan Backroom Restaurant 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 669-6890, puritanbackroom.com
  • River Road Tavern 193 S. River Road in Bedford, 206-5837, riverroadtavernbedford.com
  • Smoke Shack Cafe 226 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 404-2178, smokeshackcafe.com

Best Mac & Cheese

  • Best of the best: Mr. Mac’s 497 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 606-1760, mr-macs.com
  • The Tuckaway Tavern & Butchery 58 Route 27 in Raymond, 244-2431, thetuckaway.com
  • Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive through only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com
  • Smoke Shack Cafe 226 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 404-2178, smokeshackcafe.com
  • Diz’s Cafe 860 Elm St. in Manchester, 606-2532, dizscafe.com

Best Menu of Pasta Dishes

  • Best of the best: Villaggio Ristorante Italiano 677 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 627-2424, villaggionh.com
  • Fratello’s Italian Grill 155 Dow St. in Manchester, 624-2022, fratellos.com
  • Angelina’s Ristorante Italiano 11 Depot St. in Concord, 228-3313, angelinasrestaurant.com
  • Luccianos 4 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, 432-2442, luccianoscafe.com
  • Giorgio’s Ristorante & Bar 524 Nashua St. in Milford, 673-3939; 270 Granite St. in Manchester, 232-3323; 707 Milford Road in Merrimack, 883-7333; giorgios.com

Best Pizza

Best of the best: 900 Degrees 50 Dow St. in Manchester, 641-0900, 900degrees.com
Voted Best Pizza for 17 years! Inspired by the mouthwatering, wood fired pizza native to Naples, Italy. Join us for gourmet pizza, pasta, and salads.

  • Alley Cat Pizzeria 486 Chestnut St. in Manchester, 669-4533, alleycatpizzerianh.com
  • Vintage Pizza 241 Candia Road in Manchester, 518-7800, vintagepizzanh.com
  • Sour Joe’s Pizzeria 5 Pleasant St. Ext. in Concord, 856-7427, sourjoespizzeria.com
  • Elm House of Pizza 102 Elm St. in Manchester, 232-5522, elmhop.com

Best Specialty Pizza

  • Best of the best: “The House Pie” at Elm House of Pizza 102 Elm St. in Manchester, 232-5522, elmhop.com — “house made tomato sauce, cup and char pepperoni, Italian sausage, dollops of ricotta, three cheese blend, hot honey drizzle.”
  • Bella Cosa” at 900 Degrees 50 Dow St. in Manchester, 641-0900, 900degrees.com — “Roasted garlic cream sauce, Grana Padano, mozzarella, baby spinach, caramelized red onions, rosemary ham, prosciutto, and EVOO.”
  • Saltimbocca” at 900 Degrees 50 Dow St. in Manchester, 641-0900, 900degrees.com — “Roasted garlic cream sauce topped with fresh mozzarella, fontina, roasted chicken, tomatoes, caramelized red onion, prosciutto, torn sage and EVOO.”
  • Meat Lovers” at The Pizza Man Bar & Grill 850 E. Industrial Park Dr., Suite 3, in Manchester, 623-5550; 254 W. River Road in Hooksett, 626-7499; thepizzamandelivers.com — “pepperoni, Italian sausage, ground beef, meatball, ham & extra cheese.”
  • Eagle Square” at Sour Joe’s Pizzaria 5 Pleasant St. Ext. in Concord, 856-7427, sourjoespizzeria.com — “Crushed tomato, mozzarella, pepperoni, ricotta dollops, hot honey.”

Best Sandwich

  • Best of the best: “Patz melt” at Patz Deli & Catering 900 Elm St., Suite 102, in Manchester, 644-7289 — “Black Angus burger, grilled rye bread, American cheese, brown sugar carmelized onions and garlic pepper aioli”
  • Roast Beef Sub at Bentley’s Roast Beef 134 Route 101A, in Amherst, bentleysroastbeef.com, 883-2020 — “4 oz. freshly thin-sliced USDA Choice Midwestern beef on a toasted sesame roll.”
  • Caprese Panini” at The Green Beautiful 168 Wilson St. in Manchester, 606-1026, greenbeautifulcafe.com — “seasonal pesto, tomato, cashew mozzarella and balsamic reduction served on sourdough.”
  • Sabich” at Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com — “grilled lightly breaded eggplant, hummus, hard boiled egg, crunchy cukes, Roma tomatoes, amba sauce, tahini drizzle & schug (cilantro hot sauce) pressed on ciabatta or fresh pita.”
  • Chipotle Steak Grilled Cheese” at Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com — “cheddar, Swiss & American cheese with braised beef short rib, chipotle mayo, applewood smoked bacon & Roma tomatoes pressed on ciabatta bread.”
  • The Wellington” at Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com — “braised beef short rib, roasted mushroom, caramelized onion, demi jus, Gorgonzola cheese crumbles, Swiss, & Boursin spread pressed on ciabatta.”

Best Subs

  • Best of the best: Nadeau’s Subs 776 Mast Road, Manchester, 623-9315; 110 Cahill Ave., Manchester, 669-7827; 673 Hooksett Road, Manchester, 644-8888; nadeaussubs.com (there is also a location in Exeter)
  • USA Subs 66 Crystal Ave., Derry, 437-1550, usasubs.com
  • Patz Deli & Catering 900 Elm St., Suite 102, 644-7289
  • Bill Cahill’s Super Subs 8 Kimball Hill Road, Hudson, 882-7710, find them on Facebook @billcahills
  • Great American Subs 44 Nashua Road, Unit 3, Londonderry, 434-9900, greatamericansubsnh.com

Best Tacos

  • Best of the best: Los Reyes Street Tacos & More 127 Rockingham Road, Unit 15, in Derry, 845-8327, losreyesstreettacos.com
  • La Carreta 139 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Nashua; 891-0055, 1875 S. Willow St. in Manchester, 623-7705; 545 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 628-6899; 44 Nashua Road in Londonderry, 965-3477; 35 Manchester Road, Suite 5A, in Derry, 421-0091; 172 Hanover St. in Portsmouth, 427-8319; lacarretamex.com
  • Taco Time Cocina & Cantina Mexicana 11 Wilton Road in Milford, 554-1424, tacotimenh.com
  • Puerto Vallarta Mexican Grill (865 Second St. in Manchester, 935-9182)and Nuevo Vallarta Mexican Restaurant (791 Second St. in Manchester, 782-8762) vallartamexicannh.com
  • Hermanos Cocina Mexicana 11 Hills Ave. in Concord, 224-5669, hermanosmexican.com

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Sweets & Treats

Best Bakery

  • Best of the best: Bearded Baking Co. 819 Union St. in Manchester, beardedbaking.com, 647-7150
  • Buckley’s Bakery & Cafe 436 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 262-5929; 9 Market Place in Hollis, 465-5522; buckleysbakerycafe.com
  • Crosby Bakery 51 E. Pearl St. in Nashua, crosbybakerynh.com, 882-1851
  • Frederick’s Pastries 109 Route 101A in Amherst, 882-7725; 25 S. River Road in Bedford, 647-2253; pastry.net
  • Klemm’s Bakery: 29 Indian Rock Road in Windham, klemmsbakery.com, 437-8810

Best Blueberry Muffins

  • Best of the best: Troy’s Fresh Kitchen & Juice Bar 4 Orchard View Dr., No. 6, in Londonderry, troysfreshkitchen.com, 965-3411
  • Buckley’s Bakery & Cafe 436 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 262-5929; 9 Market Place in Hollis, 465-5522; buckleysbakerycafe.com
  • The Crust and Crumb Baking Co. 126 N. Main St. in Concord, thecrustandcrumb.com, 219-0763
  • Patz Deli 900 Elm St., Suite 102, in Manchester, 644-7289, find them on Facebook
  • The Bridge Cafe on Elm 1117 Elm St. in Manchester, thebridgecafe.net, 647-9991
  • Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com

Best Candy or Chocolate Shop

Best of the best: Granite State Candy Shoppe 13 Warren St. in Concord, 225-2591; 832 Elm St. in Manchester, 218-3885; granitestatecandyshoppe.com
Locally sourced Ingredients. Premium chocolates From New Hampshire.

  • Van Otis Chocolates 341 Elm St. in Manchester, vanotis.com, 627-1611
  • Nelson’s Candy and Music 65 Main St. in Wilton, nelsonscandymusic.com, 654-5030
  • Loon Chocolate Center Entrance, 195 McGregor St., No. 121, in Manchester, loonchocolate.com, 932-8887
  • Dancing Lion Chocolate 917 Elm St. in Manchester, dancinglion.us, 625-4043

Best Cookies

  • Best of the best: Bearded Baking Co. 819 Union St. in Manchester, beardedbaking.com, 647-7150
  • Black Forest Cafe & Bakery 212 Route 101 in Amherst, blackforestcafeandbakery.com, 672-0500
  • The Crust and Crumb Baking Co. 126 N. Main St. in Concord, thecrustandcrumb.com, 219-0763
  • Buckley’s Bakery & Cafe 436 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 262-5929; 9 Market Place in Hollis, 465-5522; buckleysbakerycafe.com
  • Charlie’s of Goffstown 1B Pinard St. in Manchester, charliesgoffstown.com, 606-1835
  • Lighthouse Local 21 Kilton Road in Bedford, lighthouse-local.com, 716-6983

Prettiest Cupcakes

  • Best of the Best: Queen City Cupcakes & Gift Shop 816 Elm St. in Manchester, qccupcakes.com, 624-4999
  • Carina’s Cakes 14B East Broadway in Derry, facebook.com/Carinas.Cakes, 425-9620
  • Frederick’s Pastries 109 Route 101A in Amherst, 882-7725; 25 S. River Road in Bedford, 647-2253; pastry.net
  • Cupcakes 101 132 Bedford Center Road in Bedford, cupcakes101.net, 488-5962
  • Bearded Baking Co. 819 Union St. in Manchester, beardedbaking.com, 647-7150

Best Doughnuts

  • Best of the best: New Hampshire Doughnut Co. 410 S. River Road in Bedford, 782-8968; 2 Capital Plaza in Concord, 715-5097; nhdoughnutco.com
  • Klemm’s Bakery 29 Indian Rock Road in Windham, klemmsbakery.com, 437-8810
  • Crosby Bakery Inc. 51 E. Pearl St. in Nashua, crosbybakerynh.com, 882-1851
  • Brothers Donuts & Deli Shop 426 Central St. in Franklin, facebook.com/brothersdonuts, 934-6678
  • The Bakeshop On Kelley Street 171 Kelley St. in Manchester, thebakeshoponkelleystreet.com, 624-3500

Best Ice Cream

  • Best of the best: Puritan Backroom Restaurant 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, puritanbackroom.com, 669-6890
  • Moo’s Place Homemade Ice Cream 27 Crystal Avenue in Derry; 15 Ermer Road in Salem, 898-0199, moosplace.com, 425-0100
  • Hayward’s Ice Cream 7 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Nashua, 888-4663; 364 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 424-5915; haywardsicecream.com
  • Goldenrod Restaurant: 1681 Candia Road in Manchester, goldenrodrestaurant.com, 623-9469
  • The Inside Scoop: 260 Wallace Road in Bedford, theinsidescoopnh.com, 471-7009

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Drinks

Best Breakfast or Brunch Cocktails

  • Best of the best: The Friendly Toast 4 Main St. in Bedford, 836-8907; 113 Congress St. in Portsmouth, 246-5285; thefriendlytoast.com

Firefly 22 Concord St. in Manchester, fireflynh.com, 935-974

  • Tucker’s 95 S. River Road in Bedford, 413-6503; 80 South St. in Concord, 413-5884; 238 Indian Brook Road in Dover, 413-5470; 1328 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, 206-5757; 360 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 413-6477; 207 Main St. in New London, 413-5528; tuckersnh.com
  • Copper Door 15 Leavy Dr. in Bedford, copperdoor.com, 488-2677
  • The Foundry 50 Commercial St. in Manchester, foundrynh.com, 836-1925

Best Beer Selection at a Retail Shop

  • Best of the best: Bert’s Better Beers 545 Hooksett Road in Manchester, bertsnh.com, 413-5992
  • The Packie 88 W. River Road in Hooksett, 518-8069; 581 Second St. in Manchester, 232-1236; thepackienh.com
  • The Beer Store 433 Amherst St. in Nashua, 889-2242; 291 South Broadway in Salem, 458-1440; thebeerstorenh.com
  • East Derry General Store 50 E. Derry Road in Derry, eastderrygeneralstore.com, 432-5302
  • Lazy Dog Beer Shoppe 27 Buttrick Road in Londonderry, lazydogbeer.com, 434-2500

Best New Hampshire Brewery

  • Best of the best: 603 Brewery & Beer Hall 42 Main St. in Londonderry, 603brewery.com, 404-6123
  • Backyard Brewery and Kitchen 1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545
  • Pipe Dream Brewing 49 Harvey Road, Unit 4, in Londonderry, pipedreambrewingnh.com, 404-0751
  • Spy Glass Brewing Co. 306 Innovative Way in Nashua, spyglassbrewing.com, 546-2965
  • Concord Craft Brewing Co. 117 Storrs St. in Concord, concordcraftbrewing.com, 856-7625

Best New Hampshire Winery

  • Best of the best: LaBelle Winery 345 Route 101 in Amherst, 672-9898; 14 Route 111 in Derry, 672-9898; labellewinery.com
  • Zorvino Vineyards 226 Main St. in Sandown, zorvino.com, 887-8463
  • Fulchino Vineyard 187 Pine Hill Road in Hollis, fulchinovineyard.com, 438-5984
  • Flag Hill Distillery & Winery 297 N. River Road in Lee, flaghill.com, 659-2949
  • Sweet Baby Vineyard: 260 Stage Road in Hampstead, sweetbabyvineyard.com, 347-1738

Best Cocktail

  • Best of the best: Mudslide at Puritan Backroom Restaurant (245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, puritanbackroom.com, 669-6890) This drink is made with Baileys Irish Cream, Kahlua coffee liqueur and vodka and is offered in flavor variations.
  • C.R.E.A.M. at Industry East (28 Hanover St. in Manchester, industryeastbar.com, 232-6940) This drink is made with Mi Campo tequila, ancho verde, cucumber, lemon and jalapeño.
  • Espresso Martini at Giorgio’s Ristorante & Bar (524 Nashua St. in Milford, 673-3939; 270 Granite St. in Manchester, 232-3323; 707 Milford Road in Merrimack, 883-7333; giorgios.com) This drink is made with fresh-brewed espresso and it carries a froth on top.
  • Blood Orange Cosmo at Copper Door (15 Leavy Dr. in Bedford, copperdoor.com, 488-2677) This drink is made with Tito’s Handmade Vodka, blood orange liqueur, cranberry juice and fresh squeezed lime.
  • Margarita at Hermanos Cocina Mexicana (11 Hills Ave. in Concord, hermanosmexican.com, 224-5669) The standard margarita is made with Lunazul tequila, triple sec and a house fresh-squeezed sour mix.

Best Margaritas

  • Best of the best: La Carreta Mexican Restaurant (139 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Nashua, 891-0055; 1875 S. Willow St. in Manchester, 623-7705; 545 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 628-6899; 44 Nashua Road in Londonderry, 965-3477; 35 Manchester Road, Suite 5A, in Derry, 421-0091; 172 Hanover St. in Portsmouth, 427-8319; lacarretamex.com) The margarita menu at La Carreta features multiple “signature margaritas” such as the Sangria-Rita, Berry Rita and Pineapple En Fuego.
  • Hermanos Cocina Mexicana (11 Hills Ave. in Concord, hermanosmexican.com, 224-5669) The standard margarita is made with Lunazul tequila, triple sec and a house fresh-squeezed sour mix.The menu also features multiple varieties and a build-your-own offering with their extensive tequila menu.
  • Puerto Vallarta Mexican Grill (865 Second St. in Manchester, 935-9182)and Nuevo Vallarta Mexican Restaurant (791 Second St. in Manchester, 782-8762; vallartamexicannh.com) offer the same Margaritas Especials menu featuring Wildbery Margarita, Vallarta Margarita, Hot Rita and a cucumber margarita.
  • Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St. in Derry, tupelomusichall.com, 437-5100) The Tupelo offers a classic margarita with tequila, triple sec and sour mix.
  • Taco Time Cocina & Cantina Mexicana (1 Wilton Road in Milford, tacotimenh.com, 554-1424) The house margarita is available in strawberry, watermelon, pomegranate, mango, peach, and orange flavors.
  • Amigos Mexican Cantina (20 South St. in Milford, amigosmilford.com, 673-1500) Their margarita is made with Lunazul Reposado tequila, triple sec and Jamaican Lime Juice.

Restaurant with the Most Inventive Cocktails

  • Best of the best: Industry East (28 Hanover St., in Manchester, industryeastbar.com, 232-6940) Offerings include the Caribbean Kilt (Scotch, amaretto, orange, lime, orgeat and bitters, with a rum float) and Granny Panties (dark rum, Zucca, creme de violette, pineapple, lemon and grapefruit, with celery bitters).
  • Stash Box (866 Elm St. in Manchester, stashboxnh.com, 606-8109) Drinks include Religion and Politics (Barr Hill Gin or Peloton Mezcal, ancho, lemon, honey, orange, carrot, and pepper tincture) and Stay Classy (a smoked cocktail with Plantation Stiggin’s Fancy Pineapple Rum and bitters).
  • Prime at Sky Meadow (6 Mountain Laurels Dr. in Nashua, skymeadow.com, 888-9000) The menu includes Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Cocktail (Plantation Rum, velvet falernum, freshly squeezed lime juice and Cointreau) and a Gin Basil Smash(gin, fresh-squeezed lemon juice, basil syrup and fresh basil).
  • The Hop Knot (1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731) Offerings include the Nova (blueberry vodka, house-made blueberry syrup and lemon) and a Zero-Proof Margarita (agave, lime and alcohol-free tequila).
  • Greenleaf (54 Nashua St. in Milford, greenleafmilford.com, 213-5447) The selection includes There’s Something About Rosemary(Uncle Nearest 1884, rosemary red wine reduction and orange bitters) and Fizzy Lifting Drink (prosecco, creme de violette and lemon).

Bar Where They Make You Feel Relaxed as Soon as You Sit Down

  • Best of the best: The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • The Hop Knot 1000 Elm St. in Manchester, hopknotnh.com, 232-3731
  • Industry East 28 Hanover St., in Manchester, industryeastbar.com, 232-6940
  • The Shaskeen Pub and Restaurant 909 Elm St. in Manchester, shaskeenirishpub.com, 625-0246
  • Stash Box 866 Elm St. in Manchester, stashboxnh.com, 606-8109

Where They Make Your Coffee Perfect Every Time

  • Best of the best: Flight Coffee Co. 209 Route 101 in Bedford, flightcoffeeco.com, 836-6228
  • Brother’s Cortado 3 Bicentennial Square, Odd Fellows Avenue in Concord, brotherscortado.com, 856-7924
  • Revelstoke Coffee 100 N. Main St. in Concord, revelstokecoffee.com, 715-5821
  • Hometown Coffee Roasters 80 Old Granite St. in Manchester, hometownroasters.com, 703-2321
  • Aroma Joe’s locations include 2 S. Beech St. in Manchester, 518-5409; 527 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 782-7173; 13 Manchester Road in Derry, 552-3581; 71 Calef Hwy. in Lee, 749-7700; 478 W. Main St. in Tilton, 729-0030; 3 Chambers Dr. in Hooksett, 932-2890; 135 Loudon Road in Concord, 715-8109; 214 Fisherville Road in Concord, 565-5497; 171 N. Broadway in Salem, 458-6335; 401 Main St., Suite 112, in Salem, 458-2770; 140 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 459-8702; 2 Paul’s Way in Amherst, 402-1195; 1912 Dover Road in Epsom, 736-0505, and others; aromajoes.com.

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Work Life

Best Spot for a Quick but Tasty Lunch

  • Best of the best: Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com
  • Patz Deli & Catering 900 Elm St., Suite 102, in Manchester, 644-7289
  • Troy’s Fresh Kitchen 4 Orchard View Dr., No. 6, in Londonderry, troysfreshkitchen.com, 965-3411
  • The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • The Bridge Cafe on Elm 1117 Elm St. in Manchester, thebridgecafe.net, 647-9991

Best Place to Order Lunch for the Office when the Boss is Buying

  • Best of the best: Pressed Cafe 216 S. River Road in Bedford, 606-2746; 108 Spit Brook Road in Nashua, 718-1250; 3 Cotton Road in Nashua (drive-thru only); 1 Artisan Dr. in Salem, 458-5922; pressedcafe.com
  • Troy’s Fresh Kitchen 4 Orchard View Drive, No. 6, in Londonderry, troysfreshkitchen.com, 965-3411
  • Puritan Backroom 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, puritanbackroom.com, 669-6890 for the restaurant.
  • The Bridge Cafe on Elm 1117 Elm St. in Manchester, thebridgecafe.net, 647-9991
  • The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210

Best Happy Hour

  • Best of the best: The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, stumbleinnnh.com, 432-3210
  • The Farm Bar and Grille 1181 Elm St. in Manchester, farmbargrille.com, 641-3276
  • Feathered Friend Brewing 231 S. Main St. in Concord, featheredfriendbrewing.com, 715-2347
  • Tandy’s Pub & Grille 1 Eagle Sq. in Concord, tandyspub.com, 856-7614
  • Backyard Brewery and Kitchen 1211 S. Mammoth Road in Manchester, backyardbrewerynh.com, 623-3545
  • Hare of the Dawg 3 East Broadway in Derry, hareofthedawgnh.com, 552-3883

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Happenings

Best Food Festival

  • Best of the best: Glendi at Saint George’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral (650 Hanover St. in Manchester, stgeorgenh.org, 622-9113) is slated for Friday, Sept. 13, through Sunday, Sept. 15.
  • Taco Tour in Downtown Manchester (tacotourmanchester.com, 792-4107) is Thursday, May 2, from 4 to 8 p.m.
  • Hampton Beach Seafood Festival (on Route 1A in Hampton, seafoodfestivalnh.com, 926-8718) will take place Friday, Sept. 6, through Sunday, Sept. 8, from noon to 9 p.m.
  • Bacon & Beer Festival at Anheuser-Busch Brewery (Outdoor Fields, 221 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, nhbaconbeer.com) will take place Saturday, June 1, from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m.
  • NH Poutine Fest from the Franco-American Centre and held at Anheuser-Busch Biergarten (221 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, nhpoutinefest.com) will take place Saturday, Oct. 12. Sign up for the newsletter to get information about ticket sales.

Best Farmers Market

  • Best of the best: Concord Farmers Market takes place Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to noon, on Capitol Street next to the Statehouse Lawn, starting May 4 and running through Oct. 26, according to concordfarmersmarket.com.
  • Derry Homegrown Farm & Artisan Market takes place at 1 West Broadway in Derry on Wednesdays, 3 to 7 p.m., beginning June 5, according to derryhomegrown.org.
  • Salem NH Farmers Market is open year-round, with the winter market open Sundays, November through April, from 10 a.m through 1 p.m. at the LaBelle Winery, 14 Route 111 in Derry, and the summer market open Sundays, May through October, 10 a.m. through 2 p.m. at the Mall at Rockingham Park, according to salemnhfarmersmarket.org.
  • Candia Farmers Market runs every third Saturday, June 15 through Oct. 19, from 9 a.m. to noon at 55 High St. in Candia, according to candiafarmersmarket.org.
  • Church St. Farmers Market is at 9 Church St. in Deerfield and is open two Saturdays a month June through October (only once in September), 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., starting June 8, according to churchstmarket.com.

Event That Puts the “Fun” in Fundraiser

  • Best of the best: Glendi at Saint George’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral (650 Hanover St. in Manchester, stgeorgenh.org, 622-9113) is slated for Friday, Sept. 13, through Sunday, Sept. 15.
  • Castle in the Clouds Gala (455 Old Mountain Road in Moultonborough, castleintheclouds.org, 476-5900) on Friday, July 12.
  • Special Olympics Penguin Plunge (Hampton Beach State Park in Hampton, fundraising.sonh.org/event/penguin-plunge, 624-1250) Next year’s high school plunge will be on Saturday, Feb. 8, and the Penguin Plunge will be on Sunday, Feb. 9.
  • Aviation Museum Car Show ( 27 Navigator Road in Londonderry, aviationmuseumofnh.org, 669-4820) is Saturday, July 13.
  • Wags to Whiskers Festival to benefit the Humane Society For Greater Nashua (hsfn.org, 889-2275). Saturday, September 21, at the Anheuser-Busch brewery at 221 Daniel Webster Hwy in Merrimack. See the Humane Society’s website for details.
  • NH Renaissance Faire Martin Road in Fremont, nhrenfaire.com, Saturday, May 11, Sunday, May 12, Saturday, May 18, and Sunday, May 19.

Best Community Event

  • Best of the best: Market Days Festival on Main Street in Concord will run Thursday, June 20, through Saturday, June 22, according to marketdaysfestival.com.
  • Glendi at Saint George’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral (650 Hanover St. in Manchester, stgeorgenh.org, 622-9113) is slated for Friday, Sept. 13, through Sunday, Sept. 15.
  • Winter Holiday Stroll in downtown Nashua takes place the Saturday after Thanksgiving; see downtownnashua.org.
  • Milford Pumpkin Festival takes place on and at locations near the Oval in downtown Milford and will be held Friday, Oct. 11, through Sunday, Oct. 13, according to milfordpumpkinfestival.org.
  • Goffstown’s Giant Pumpkin Weigh Off and Regatta will take place on Main Street in Goffstown on Saturday, Oct. 19, and Sunday, Oct. 20, according to goffstownmainstreet.org.

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Family Fun

Best Place to Take Your Kids

  • Best of the best: Aviation Museum of New Hampshire 27 Navigator Road in Londonderry, aviationmuseumofnh.org, 669-4820
  • The Nest Family Cafe 25 Orchard View Dr., Unit 1, in Londonderry, thenestfamilycafe.com, 404-2139
  • Fun Spot 579 Endicott St. North, in Laconia, funspotnh.com, 366-4377
  • Fun City 553 Mast Road in Goffstown, funcitygoffstown.com, 606-8807
  • Canobie Lake Park 85 N. Policy St. in Salem, canobie.com, 893-3506
  • Nova Trampoline Park 300 Main St., Suite 402, in Nashua, novanashua.com, 825-4131

Best Outdoor Spot to Let Kids Get Out Their Energy

  • Best of the best: Benson Park 19 Kimball Hill Road in Hudson, hudsonnh.gov/bensonpark, 886-6018
  • Livingston Park 156 Hooksett Road in Manchester, manchesternh.gov/Departments/Parks-and-Recreation/Parks-Trails-and-Facilities/Parks/Livingston-Park, 624-6444
  • Hampton Beach in Hampton, hamptonbeach.org
  • Mel’s Funway Park 454 Charles Bancroft Hwy. in Litchfield, melsfunwaypark.com, 424-2292
  • White Park 1 White St. in Concord, concordnh.gov/facilities/facility/details/White-Park-21, 225-8690

Best Spot for All-Ages Family Fun

  • Best of the best: Canobie Lake Park 85 N. Policy St. in Salem, canobie.com, 893-3506
  • Aviation Museum of New Hampshire 27 Navigator Road in Londonderry, aviationmuseumofnh.org, 669-4820
  • The Nest Family Cafe 25 Orchard View Dr., Unit 1, in Londonderry, thenestfamilycafe.com, 404-2139
  • Fun Spot 579 Endicott St. North in Laconia, funspotnh.com, 366-4377
  • Mel’s Funway Park 454 Charles Bancroft Hwy. in Litchfield, melsfunwaypark.com, 424-2292
  • Hampton Beach in Hampton, hamptonbeach.org

Best Restaurant for the Whole Family

  • Best of the best: Puritan Backroom 245 Hooksett Road in Manchester, puritanbackroom.com, 669-6890 for the restaurant.
  • T-Bones Great American Eatery 39 Crystal Avenue in Derry, t-bones.com, 434-3200
  • The Nest Family Cafe 25 Orchard View Dr., Unit 1, in Londonderry, thenestfamilycafe.com, 404-2139
  • T-Bones Great American Eatery 25 S. River Road in Bedford, t-bones.com, 641-6100
  • The Common Man Merrimack 304 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, thecman.com, 429-3463

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Pets

Best Doggie Day Care

  • Best of the best: All Dogs Gym & Inn 505 Sheffield Road, Manchester, 669-4644, alldogsgym.com

American K9 Country 336 Route 101, Amherst, 672-8448, americank9country.com

  • Chewie’s Playland 472 Amherst St., No. 24, Nashua, 921-1875; 217 W. Hollis St., Nashua, 921-0745; chewiesplayland.com
  • Superdogs Daycare 637 Daniel Webster Hwy., Merrimack, 424-1515, superdogsdaycare.com
  • Pawquet’s Play & Stay 302 Rockingham Road, Londonderry, 216-1147, pawquetsplaystay.com

Best Dog Groomers

  • Best of the best: Sarah’s Paw Spa 16 Manning St., Derry, 512-4539, find them on Facebook @sarahspawspa
  • D’Tails Dog Grooming 178 Route 101 in Bedford, 703-6288, find them on Facebook
  • Wag Grooming Salon & Spa 15 Ermer Road in Salem, 898-0924, wagplace.com
  • Grooming at Tiffany’s 127 Rockingham Road, Derry, 432-8000, groomingattiffanys.com
  • Woofmeow 19 Manchester Road, Suite A, Derry, 965-3218, woofmeownh.com

Best Pet Retail Store

  • Best of the best: Woofmeow 19 Manchester Road, Suite A, Derry, 965-3218, woofmeownh.com
  • Pets Choice 454 Daniel Webster Hwy., Merrimack, 424-7297, petschoicenh.com
  • The Wholistic Pet 341 Route 101, Bedford, 472-2273, thewholisticpet.com
  • Sandy’s Pet Food Center 141 Old Turnpike Road, Concord, 225-1177, sandyspetfood.com
  • State Line Pet Supply 137 Plaistow Road, Plaistow, 382-6873, statelinepetsupply.com

Best Place to Let Your Dog Off Leash

  • Best of the best: Hudson Dog Park inside Benson Park, 19 Kimball Hill Road, Hudson, 886-6000, hudsonnh.gov
  • Derry Dog Park Fordway and Transfer Lane, Derry, 432-6136, derrynh.org
  • Hooksett Dog Park 101 Merrimack St., Hooksett, 485-8471, hooksett.org. This park is open daily from 6 a.m. to dusk.
  • Nashua Dog Park One Groton Road (Route 111A) in Nashua, nashuadog.org (where you can find information about membership)
  • Bear Brook Canine Camp a fenced area designed for private, pre-booked play in Allenstown; book a time at sniffspot.com
  • Raymond Dog Bark Park in Riverside Park (98 Sundeen Parkway in Raymond), raymondnh.gov/riversidepark

Best On-Leash Dog Outing

  • Best of the best: Benson Park 19 Kimball Hill Road, Hudson, hudsonnh.gov/bensonpark
  • Mine Falls Park Whipple Street, Nashua, 589-3370, nashuanh.gov
  • Lake Massabesic Trail a 3.7-mile loop with parking in the Massabesic Center parking lot (though dogs are not allowed on any Audubon trails), according to alltrails.com
  • Benedictine Park on Wallace Road in Bedford, featuring 27.4 acres of active and passive recreational land and walking trails that are just under a mile, according to bedfordnh.myrec.com
  • New Boston Rail Trail a 4-mile rail trail with a trail head at Lang Station (Gregg Mill Road in New Boston); see nbrailtrail.com
  • Windham Rail Trail windhamrailtrail.org, 4.1 miles of trail

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Beauty & Wellness

Best Barber

  • Best of the best: Homegrown Barber Co. 18 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, homegrownbarber.com, 818-8989
  • Lucky’s Barbershop 50 S. State St. in Concord, luckysbarbershop.biz, 715-5470
  • Polished Man Barbershop & Lounge 707 Milford Road, No. 3A, in Merrimack, thepolishedman.com, 718-8427
  • Polished Man Barbershop & Lounge 178 Route 101 in Bedford, thepolishedman.com, 233-7991
  • Dude’s Barbershop 1328 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, dudesbarbershop.com, 626-0533


Best Salon

  • Best of the best: Blank Canvas Salon 1F Commons Dr. in Londonderry, find them on Facebook, 818-4294
  • Pellé Medical Spa 159 Frontage Road in Manchester, pellemedicalspa.com, 627-7000
  • Salon Bogar 25 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, salonbogar.com, 434-2424
  • Color Trends Hair Salon 25 Merritt Parkway in Nashua, colortrendshairsalon.com, 880-7504
  • Topknot Salon and Spa 1 Nashua St. in Milford, topknotnh.com, 212-6863

Best Spa

Best of the best: Renew MediSpa 23B Crystal Avenue in Derry, renewmedispa.com, 931-4345
Redefine The Way You Age To Look and Feel Your Best. Advanced Anti-Aging Technology Combined with Experienced Care

  • Chill Spa 1224 Hanover St. in Manchester, chillspa.com, 622-3722
  • Pellé Medical Spa 159 Frontage Road in Manchester, pellemedicalspa.com, 627-7000
  • Innovations Salon and Spa 228 Naticook Road in Merrimack, innovationsnh.com, 880-7499
  • Serendipity Day Spa and Float Studio 23 Sheep Davis Road in Pembroke, serendipitydayspa.shop, 229-0400

Where They Do a Good Brow

  • Best of the best: Renew MediSpa 23B Crystal Avenue in Derry, renewmedispa.com, 931-4345
  • Pellé Medical Spa 159 Frontage Road in Manchester, pellmedicalspa.com, 627-7000
  • Art of Eyebrows 449 Amherst St. in Nashua, 888-2186; 1500 S. Willow St., Mall of New Hampshire, in Manchester, 624-1414; Pheasant Lane Mall, 310 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Nashua, 864-8679; 1 Mall Road in Salem, 898-2444; Art of Beauty, 291 S. Broadway, Suite 3A, in Salem, 898-1212; artofeyebrows.com
  • Beauty Works 123 Nashua Road in Londonderry, beautyworksnh.com, 275-8672
  • Kriss Cosmetics 145 S. Main St. in Manchester, krisscosmetics.com, 624-2333

Where They Make Your Nails Look Fabulous

  • Best of the best: Glossy Nails 1 S. River Road in Bedford, 935-8383; 655 S. Willow St. in Manchester; glossynails.net
  • Exotic 9 Nails 30 Crystal Avenue, Suite 6, in Derry, exotic9nails.com, 425-7731
  • Chill Spa 1224 Hanover St. in Manchester, chillspa.com, 622-3722
  • 9 Nails and Spa Salon 7 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 9nailsandspasalon.com, 216-1668
  • Beautiful Nails 1525 S Willow St., Suite 2, in Manchester, 232-4700, find them on Facebook

Best Tattoo Shop

  • Best of the best: New Inkland Tattoo Co. 1358 Elm St. in Manchester, 518-7493, find them on Facebook
  • Tattoo Angus 179 Elm St., Unit C, in Manchester, tattooangus.com, 935-9398
  • Underworld Tattoo Co. 282 Main St. in Salem, 458-7739, find them on Instagram or Facebook
  • Capital City Tattoo 8 N. Main St. in Concord, capcitytat.com, 224-2600
  • Wayne’s Tattoo World 6 West Broadway in Derry, waynestattooworld.com, 432-4828

Best Workout Space

  • Best of the best: Collective Studios 4 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, thecollective-studios.com, 216-2345
  • Executive Health and Sports Center 1 Highlander Way in Manchester, ehsc.com, 668-4753)
  • Dynamic Strength & Conditioning 115 Northeastern Blvd. in Nashua, dynamicsc.com, 882-2348
  • The Workout Club 18 Orchard View Dr., Unit 2, in Londonderry, theworkoutclub.com/londonderry, 434-6565 (there are also locations at 16 Pelham Road in Salem and 35 Hamel Dr. in Manchester)

Hampshire Hills Athletic Club 50 Emerson Road in Milford, hampshirehills.com, 673-8123

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Shopping

Best Place to Buy Jewelry

  • Best of the best: Bellman’s 1650 Elm St. in Manchester, bellmans.com, 625-4653
  • Princess Jewelers 55 Crystal Ave., Unit 5, in Derry, princessnh.com, 247-3773
  • Day’s Jewelers 66 March Ave. in Manchester, 641-0034; 567 Amherst St. in Nashua, 595-2780; daysjewelers.com
  • Jonathan’s Jewelers 460 Route 101 in Bedford, jonathansjewelers.com, 471-2828
  • Richters Jewelry & Design Studio 4 Orchard View Dr., No. 16, in Londonderry, richtersjewelry.com, 437-2655

Best Independent Shop to Buy Clothes or Shoes

  • Best of the best: Alec’s Shoes 1617 Southwood Dr. in Nashua, alecs-shoes.com, 882-6811

Gondwana and Divine Clothing 13 N. Main St. in Concord, gondwanaclothing.com, 228-1101

  • Alapage 25 S. River Road in Bedford, alapageboutique.com, 625-5601
  • Joe King’s Shoes 45 N. Main St. in Concord, joekings.com, 225-6012
  • George’s Apparel 675 Elm St. in Manchester, georgesapparel.com, 622-5441

Best Secondhand Store

  • Best of the best: Corey’s Closet 1329 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, coreyscloset.org, 722-2712
  • M&C Clothing and Gifts 135 Route 101A in Amherst, mcclothingandgifts.com, 886-6727
  • Kelly’s Kloset in Hooksett, kellysklosetllc.com
  • Lilise Designer Resale 7 N. Main St. in Concord, liliseresale.com, 715-2009
  • Outfitters Thrift Store 394 Second St. in Manchester, fitnh.org/outfitters, 641-6691

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Outdoors

Best Farm for Pick Your Own

  • Best of the best: Sunnycrest 59 High Range Road in Londonderry, sunnycrestfarmnh.com, 432-9652
  • Mack’s Apples 230 Mammoth Road in Londonderry, 432-3456, macksapples.com
  • Lull Farm 65 Broad St. in Hollis, 465-7079, livefreeandfarm.com

Brookdale Fruit Farm 41 Broad St. in Hollis, 465-2240, brookdalefruitfarm.com
Celebrating 177 years! Seasonal PYO: Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, 19 varieties of apples and pumpkins. Check our website for the latest picking options.

  • J&F Farms 108 Chester Road in Derry, 437-0535, jandffarms.net

Best City Park

  • Best of the best: White Park 1 White St. in Concord, 225-8690, concordnh.gov
  • Livingston Park 244 Hooksett Road in Manchester, 624-6444, manchesternh.gov/parks
  • Benson’s Park 19 Kimball Hall Road in Hudson, 886-6000, hudsonnh.gov/bensonpark
  • Greeley Park Concord Street in Nashua, 589-3370, nashuanh.gov
  • Mine Falls Park Whipple Street in Nashua, 589-3370, nashuanh.gov

Best State Park

  • Best of the best: Pawtuckaway State Park 128 Mountain Road in Nottingham, 895-3031, nhstateparks.org
  • Bear Brook State Park 61 Deerfield Road in Allenstown, 485-9869, nhstateparks.org
  • Odiorne Point 570 Ocean Blvd. in Rye, 436-7406, nhstateparks.org
  • Wellington State Park 614 W. Shore Road in Bristol, 744-2197, nhstateparks.org
  • Hampton Beach 160 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, 227-8722, nhstateparks.org

Best Bike Trail

  • Best of the best: Derry Rail Trail traillink.org, 3.6 miles of paved trail
  • Londonderry Rail Trail, londonderrytrails.org, 4.5 miles of trail
  • Windham Rail Trail windhamrailtrail.org, 4.1 miles of trail
  • Goffstown Rail Trail Goffstown, goffstownrailtrail.org, 5.5 miles of trail
  • Nashua Rail Trail Nashua, 12.5 miles of paved trail

Best Hike in Southern New Hampshire

  • Best of the best: Mount Monadnock 169 Poole Road in Jaffrey, 532-8862, nhstateparks.org
  • Mt. Major in Alton, nhstateparks.org
  • Pawtuckaway State Park 128 Mountain Road in Nottingham, 895-3031, nhstateparks.org
  • Pack Monadnock in Miller State Park, 13 Miller Park Road in Peterborough, 924-3672, nhstateparks.org
  • Mine Falls Park Whipple Street in Nashua, nashuanh.gov, 589-3370

Best Spot for a Long Run

  • Best of the best: Mine Falls Park Whipple Street in Nashua, nashuanh.gov, 589-3370
  • Goffstown Rail Trail in Goffstown, goffstownrailtrail.org, 5.5 miles of trail
  • Londonderry Rail Trail londonderrytrails.org, 4.5 miles of trail
  • Windham Rail Trail windhamrailtrail.org, 4.1 miles of trail
  • Massabesic Lake area Rockingham Recreational Rail Trail, 27.3 miles of trail from Auburn to Manchester, nhstateparks.org

Best Lake to Canoe or Kayak in

  • Best of the best: Lake Massabesic Off Londonderry Turnpike in Manchester, manchesternh.gov, 642-6482
  • Pawtuckaway Lake Pawtuckaway State Park, 7 Pawtuckaway Road in Nottingham, 895-3031, nhstateparks.org
  • Newfound Lake Wellington State Park, 614 W. Shore Road in Bristol, 744–2197, nhstateparks.org
  • Lake Winnipesaukee in Belknap and Carroll counties intheLakes Region, lakewinnipesaukee.net, which says it is the largest lake in New Hampshire
  • Squam Lake located in Grafton, Carroll and Belknap counties, lakesregion.org/squam-lake

Best Ski Hill

  • Best of the best: Pats Peak Ski Area 686 Flanders Road in Henniker, 428-3245, patspeak.com,
  • Loon Mountain 60 Loon Mountain Road in Lincoln, 745-8111, loonmtn.com
  • Gunstock 719 Cherry Valley Road in Gilford, 293-4341, gunstock.com
  • McIntyre Ski Area 50 Chalet Way in Manchester, mcintyreskiarea.com
  • Cannon Mountain Ski Resort 260 Tramway Drive in Franconia, 823-8800, cannonmt.com

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Personalities

Most Inventive Chef

  • Best of the best: Chris Viaud at Greenleaf 54 Nashua St. in Milford, 213-5447, greenleafmilford.com
  • Bobby Marcotte at The Tuckaway Tavern and Butchery 58 Route 27 in Raymond, 244-2431, thetuckaway.com
  • Corey Fletcher at Revival Kitchen & Bar 11 Depot St. in Concord, 715-5723, revivalkitchennh.com
  • Scott Ouelette at Canoe Restaurant and Tavern 232 Whittier Hwy. in Center Harbor, canoecenterharbor.com
  • Shawn Harris at Prime at Sky Meadow Country Club, 6 Mountain Laurels Dr. in Nashua, 888-9000, skymeadow.com

Restaurant with the Friendliest Staff

  • Best of the best: The Stumble Inn Bar & Grill 20 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 432-3210, stumbleinnnh.com
  • Prime at Sky Meadow Country Club, 6 Mountain Laurels Dr. in Nashua, 888-9000, skymeadow.com
  • The Nest Family Cafe 25 Orchard View Dr., Unit 1, in Londonderry, 404-2139, thenestfamilycafe.com
  • Troy’s Fresh Kitchen 4 Orchard View Dr., No. 6, in Londonderry, 965-3411, troysfreshkitchen.com
  • Smoke Shack Cafe 226 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 404-2178, smokeshackcafe.com

Butt-kicking-est Fitness Instructor (in the Good Way)

  • Best of the best: Biliana Mihaylova is currently an independent instructor in Concord. You can message her via instagram.com/pop.kween.
  • Claudia Michel of The Collective Studios Apple Tree Shopping Center, 4 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, 216-2345; 125 S. River Road in Bedford, 782-3321; thecollective-studios.com
  • Leah Heath of The Collective Studios Apple Tree Shopping Center, 4 Orchard View Dr. in Londonderry, 216-2345; 125 S. River Road in Bedford, 782-3321; thecollective-studios.com
  • Tricia Hoyt at Journey Fitness 333 27 Buttrick Road, No. 6, in Londonderry, 247-9334, journeyfitness333.com/Londonderry
  • Ashley Oberg at Barre Life 944 Elm St., No. 23, in Manchester, barrelifenh.com

Best Barber

  • Best of the best: Traci Evans at Tooky Village Barbershop 12 Maple St., Unit 1, in Contoocook; 746-2170, tookyvillagebarbershop.net
  • Benny D’Ambrosio at The Polished Man Barbershop & Lounge 707 Milford Road, Unit 3A, in Merrimack, 718-8427, thepolishedman.com
  • Juliet Lord at Clean Cut Jewels Barbershop 604 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Merrimack, 657-6376, cleancutjewels.com
  • Erica Juneau at Juneau The Barber 1802 Elm St. in Manchester; find Juneau the Barber on Facebook, 490-2421) Josh Craggy at Lucky’s Barbershop and Shave Parlor 50 S. State St. in Concord, 715-5470, luckysbarbershop.biz

Best Hair Stylist

  • Best of the best: Jessica Moll at Lightened & Lifted 22 Greeley St., Suite 10, in Merrimack, lightenednlifted.glossgenius.com
  • Mariana Bortolossi at Mari Lossi Hair Studio 40 S. River Road, Unit 63, in Bedford, 782-3908, marilossihairstudio.com
  • Aaron Losier at Hairpocalypse 904 Hanover St. in Manchester, 627-4301, hairpocalypse.com
  • Tashia Landry at Studio 22 1191 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, 703-7418, vagaro.com/hairbytashia
  • Amanda Noonan at Topknot Salon 1 Nashua St. in Milford, 213-6863, topknotnh.com

Friendliest Dentist

  • Best of the best: Danielle London of London Family Orthodontics 502 Riverway Place in Bedford, 622-2100, londonfamilyorthodontics.com

Dr. Elizabeth Spindel and Dr. Victoria Spindel Rubin at Spindel General and Cosmetic Dentistry 862 Union St. in Manchester, 669-9049, elizabethspindel.com
Thank you for voting us the friendliest dental office in NH for 16 years in a row!

  • Leonard M. Attisano, D.M.D. 700 Lake Ave. in Manchester, 668-0227, leonardattisanodmd.com
  • Dr. Nicholas C. Rizos at the Office of Dr. Nicholas C. Rizos, D.M.D. 103 Riverway Place in Bedford, 669-4384, drnickdmd.com
  • Charles Pipilas, D.D.S. 280 Main St., Suite 311, in Nashua, 881-8280

Friendliest Mechanic

  • Best of the best: Chris McNeil in Concord St. Motors 15 Concord St. in Nashua, 882-8642, find them on Facebook
  • Bill Morin at Morin’s Service Station 1091 Valley St., Manchester, 624-4427, morinsservicestation.com
  • Sean Roaf at In Tune Automotive 4 Lafayette Road in Hampton Falls, 926-6910, intuneauto.net
  • Jason Ux at Proficient Automotive 546 Mast Road in Goffstown, 361-4514
  • Pete Koster at Second Car Center 181 Rockingham Road in Derry, 432-4200, secondcarcenter.com

Best Local Musical Act

  • Best of the best: Jennifer Mitchell The next events on her calendar are JMitch Karaoke on Friday, March 29, at 7 p.m. at Penacook American Legion Post 31; Good Vibes Music Bingo on Monday, April 1, at 6 p.m. at Salona in Manchester and Tuesday, April 2, at 6 p.m. at Backyard Grill Burgers & Wings in Manchester, and then Jennifer Mitchell Solo Acoustic on Friday, April 5, at 7 p.m. at Hill Top Pizza in Epsom, according to jennifermitchellmusic.com.
  • Justin Jordan According to his Facebook page, you can next find Justin on Thursday, March 28, at the Copper Door in Salem from 7 to 10 p.m. and on Friday, March 29, at Luna Bistro in Salem from 7 to 10 p.m.
  • Nicole Knox Murphy See her Saturday, March 30, at the Bristol House of Pizza in Bristol from 6 to 8 p.m., according to nkmsings4u.com.
  • Small Town Stranded Catch the band Saturday, March 30, from 8 to 11 p.m. at the Derryfield in Manchester, where they will return on Friday, May 10, from 8 to 11 p.m., according to their Facebook page.
  • Ramez Gurung A regular at area restaurants; see his Facebook page, facebook.com/ramezmataz, for updates on his shows.

Best Local Comedian

  • Best of the best: Bob Marley Bob Marley lives in Maine and regularly performs in New Hampshire — he’ll next be here Thursday, April 11, through Sunday, April 14, during a run of five shows at the Palace Theatres in Manchester. See bmarley.com.
  • Juston McKinney McKinney lives in New Hampshire, according to justonmckinney.com, where you can find his schedule packed with New Hampshire and New England shows. Up next is a performance at the Park Theatre in Jaffrey on Friday, March 29, at 7:30 p.m. He’ll return to New Hampshire for a show at the Colonial Theatre in Laconia on Saturday, May 25, at 8 p.m.
  • Paul Landwehr Check out Landwehr’s Instagram for new comedy clips. He’s scheduled to be at the Rex Theatre in Manchester on Friday, April 5, at the 7:30 p.m. comedy show and the Saturday, July 20, Tupelo Night of Comedy at the Tupelo Music Hall in Derry at 8 p.m.
  • Matt Barry See Barry Saturday, March 30, at Main Street Grill & Bar in Hillsborough; Thursday, April 4, at the Stone Church in Newmarket and Saturday, May 4, at Chunky’s in Manchester, according to mattbarrycomedy.com.
  • Queen City Improv This Manchester-based comedy troupe performs regularly, with upcoming shows at Stark Brewing in Manchester on Monday, April 1 (the first of several first-Monday-of-the-month shows slated at Stark Brewing) and Chunky’s in Manchester on Friday, April 19, according to queencityimprov.com, where you can also find information about their upcoming six-week improv intensive starting April 3.
  • Jimmy Dunn Dunn is now Frasier’s Jimmy Dunn, landing a role on the Paramount+ reboot of the sitcom. He is a fixture of the Hampton Beach Comedy Festival, slated for Aug. 14 through Aug. 18, according to jimmydunn.com.

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Living Here

Coolest Historic Site or Monument You Can Visit for Free

  • Best of the best: New Hampshire Statehouse (107 N. Main St. in Concord, gencourt.state.nh.us) Self-guided tours are generally available between 8:15 a.m. and 3:15 p.m., when you may also be able to get a docent-led tour if one is available. For groups of 10 or more, see the website for information on booking a tour.
  • Robert Frost Farm Historic Site (122 Rockingham Road in Derry 432-3091, robertfrostfarm.org) opens the New Hampshire home of Robert Frost to visitors from May to October. Admission costs $4 for adult New Hampshire residents and is free for residents who are 65+ or under 17. The grounds and trails around the house and barn are open from dusk to dawn all year, according to nhstateparks.org.
  • Saint-Gaudens National Historical Park (139 St. Gaudens Road in Cornish, 675-2175, nps.gov/saga) is a 190-acre park featuring the preserved home, gardens, studios and works of American sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens (who stayed there during the summers from 1885 to 1897). The park grounds, outdoor monuments and sculptures, gardens and wooded trails are free to visit and open to the public year round, from dusk to dawn. The visitors center and museum buildings are open, with guided tours available, from Memorial Day weekend to Oct. 31. Admission is free for children age 15 and under and for all visitors on Entrance Fee-Free Days (which for 2024 are June 19, Aug. 4 and Sept. 28). Regular admission for adults costs $10.
  • Stark Park (550 River Road in Manchester, starkpark.com) is a 30-acre tract that was once the site of the Stark family farm in Manchester’s North End. The park is open daily from sunrise to sunset. Look for a concert series in July and August and see the website for information on sculptures in the park and the Walk in the Woods map.
  • Madison Boulder (in Madison Boulder Natural Area, 473 Boulder Road in Madison, nhstateparks.org) “is a huge granite rock measuring 83 feet in length, 23 feet in height above the ground, 37 feet in width, and weighs upwards of 5,000 tons” that was deposited on the site by a glacier, according to the state parks site.
  • The Old Man of the Mountain (Franconia Notch State Park, Exit 34B off Interstate-93, Franconia, oldmannh.org) Get a sense of what was at Old Man of the Mountain Profile Plaza, which recreates the Old Man profile.
  • Memorial Arch of Tilton, which is actually on Elm Street in Northfield, was erected in 1882 by Charles Tilton, is made mostly of granite and was modeled on the Arch of Titus in Rome, according to an archives document available at nationalregisterofhistoricplaces.com.

Attraction Worth Visiting Again and Again

  • Best of the best: Aviation Museum of New Hampshire 27 Navigator Road in Londonderry, aviationmuseumofnh.org, 669-4820
  • Canobie Lake Park 85 N. Policy St. in Salem, 893-3506, canobie.com
  • Flume Gorge (852 Daniel Webster Hwy. in Lincoln, nhstateparks.org/visit/state-parks flume-gorge) is a natural gorge extending 800 feet at the base of Mount Liberty.
  • Mount Washington (1598 Mt Washington Auto Road in Sargent’s Purchase, nhstateparks.org/find-parks-trails/mt-washington-state-park) is the highest peak in the northeastern U.S.
  • Currier Museum of Art 150 Ash St. in Manchester, 669-6144, currier.org
  • Castle in the Clouds 455 Old Mountain Road in Moultonborough, 476-5900, castleintheclouds.org
  • Strawbery Banke Museum 4 Hancock St. in Portsmouth, 433-1100, strawberybanke.org

NH Organization You’d Give $1 million to if You Won the Lottery

  • Best of the best: Aviation Museum of New Hampshire 27 Navigator Road in Londonderry, 669-4820, aviationmuseumofnh.org
  • The New Hampshire Food Bank a program of Catholic Charities NH, 700 E. Industrial Park Dr. in Manchester, 669-9725, nhfoodbank.org
  • Manchester Animal Shelter 490 Dunbarton Road in Manchester, 628-3544, manchesteranimalshelter.org
  • CASA of New Hampshire 138 Coolidge Ave. in Manchester, 626-4600, casanh.org
  • Animal Rescue League of NH 545 Route 101 in Bedford, 472-3647, rescueleague.org

NH Person, Place or Thing You Want to Say Thank You To

  • Most thanked: Gov. Chris Sununu, who will finish his fourth term as governor in January 2025
  • Readers’ moms and/or dads
  • Justin Spencer of the band Recycled Percussion and the TV show Chaos & Kindness
  • Jeff Rapsis, executive director of the Aviation Museum of New Hampshire, who also performs live music to accompany screenings of silent films (see silentfilmlivemusic.blogspot.com) (and is a Hippo associate publisher)
  • All first responders
  • Journey 333 — “Tricia and Janice at Journey Fitness 333 in Londonderry, N.H., for helping me gain my confidence back and being the sweetest people!” said one reader
  • The Old Man of the Mountain — “Thank you for looking over us for so long. Rest in Peace!!!” said one reader
  • Tupelo Music Hall — “for keeping music alive,” said one reader
  • Fritz Wetherbee, who appears on WMUR’s New Hampshire Chronicle

Your Favorite New Hampshire Fun Fact

Most favorite: That our motto is “Live Free or Die”

  • New Hampshire has the shortest coastline of any coastal U.S. state
  • We (still, mostly) have the first-in-the-nation presidential primary
  • The one-time existence of the Old Man in the Mountain (RIP)
  • We have no sales or income tax
  • Chicken tenders were invented here
  • First man in space Alan Shepard was from New Hampshire (born in Derry)
  • Elm Street in Manchester is the longest dead-end street in the U.S.
  • New Hampshire had the first free tax-supported public library in the nation (as explained by peterboroughtownlibrary.org).
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was created in New Hampshire (in Dover, where there are public markers about the Turtles’ creation including a manhole cover, dover.nh.gov).

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Things We Forgot to Ask About

Best NH Food Product

Laurel Hill Jams and Jellies (laurelhilljams.com) offers a wide variety of flavors: fruit (such as strawberry rhubarb, Marvelous Multiberry, Raspberry Lavender), Summit Wines (Rosé, Pinotage, Moscato), tea (Earl Grey, chamomile) and spirits (Captain Banana’s Jam, Screwdriver Jelly). In 2023, Rachel Mack and Sara Steffensmeier took over from founder Sue Stretch. See the website for all the offerings.

Best Children’s Birthday Party Business That Comes to You

Party Palace features more than 45 costumed characters and offers live character entertainment at a variety of occasions including business events and children’s parties, where the mission is to empower children “through fun and engaging activities,” according to the business’s website, apartypalace.com

Best Dance Studio

Dimensions in Dance (84 Myrtle St. in Manchester; dimensionsindance.com, 668-4196) offers camps and classes for the youngest dancers (“Twos in Tutus”) through adult. Dimensions is also the home of Ballet Misha, a dance company that presents productions such as the run of The Nutcracker that was performed at the Dana Center in December.

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