Haute Secrets Boston: Nick Varano of The Varano Group

If you love Italian cuisine, you have more than likely visited one of Nick Varano’s restaurants in Boston’s North End. If not, what are you waiting for? The man behind Little Italy’s most popular dining establishments got his start when Strega Ristorante made its initial debut in 2003 on Hanover Street.

Since then, Varano has expanded his successful empire to include Nico Ristorante, Wine Bar and Lounge, Strega Waterfront, Caffe Strega, Strega Prime and Rina’s Pizzeria & Café. His latest venture, STRIP by Strega, has quickly become one of the city’s best and most stylish steakhouses.
STRIP by StregaPhoto Credit: Joel Benjamin

We recently caught up with Varano to find out what he loves most about Boston.

Strega RistorantePhoto Credit: Eric Levin

Favorite Restaurant: L’Andana

Best place for a romantic date: Mare’s outdoor patio

Best place for a power business meeting: Bristol Lounge at The Four Seasons

Best Steakhouse: Del Frisco’s

Best Pizza:  Umberto’s

Best Massage: Mandarin Oriental Spa

Best Driving Service: Dave El

Where were you born? Boston

How long in Boston? Entire life

Where do you live now? Boston

Best dessert: Anything with Nutella

Best Sushi: Oishii

Best Italian: Bricco

Best Brunch: Bastille Kitchen

If you have out of town guests, which hotel would you recommend? Boston Park Plaza

Favorite shopping venue/boutique: The Tannery

Best place to buy Jewelry/Watches: Elite Time

Best Spa: Mandarin Oriental, Boston

Favorite Charity Event: David Ortiz Children’s Fund

Favorite Cultural Event: The feast of St. Anthony in the North End

Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: Italy, as there is so much history and many great sites to explore

Describe Boston in three words: World class city

All-around favorite locale in Boston, whether a neighborhood, restaurant, venue, or other: The North End, it has a special place in my heart and always will

Best aspect of Boston: The people