Cheers: Where Everybody Knows You’re Name!

"Cheers is filmed before a live studio audience!"

“Cheers is filmed before a live studio audience!”

Cheers aka Bull & Finch

Cheers aka Bull & Finch

If you’ve ever watched a TV show that you loved, odds are you wanted nothing more than to jump into the TV set and live amongst the fictional denizens of your favorite show.  Or, if you have a more firm grip on reality and less childlike-whimsy, you could just go to Hollywood and visit some soundstage that seems to suck the magic out of your imagination.  There is, however, one place in the city of Boston that does do some justice to this TV fantasy, as well as justice to your taste buds and thirst: Cheers Beacon Hill, formerly known as the Bull and Finch Pub, better known to the world and couch potatoes as “Cheers”.

From 1982 to 1993, Cheers ruled the airwaves as one of the most popular shows in the history of television.  Whether it was the memorable opening theme song, hearing Cliff Clavin’s wise anecdotes, or seeing if Sam and Diane were ever going to do it, Cheers was a place everyone wanted to be a part of.  After all, who didn’t want to be Norm’s drinking buddy?!  While you can’t belly up to the bar with lovable Woody, you can visit the real life bar on Arlington Street, just across the way from beautiful Boston Common.

"Beans, beans, the musical fruits!"

“Beans, beans, the musical fruits!”

Now, so no one out there builds up there hopes, know this: the real life bar in Boston is NOTHING like the one that was on NBC.  The latter was much larger on the show, and looked rather spacious underground.  The former is much smaller; a rather cozy, yet tiny place with not enough bar space to fit half the cast of the show, let alone the entire cast.  But what this place lacks in size, it makes up for in atmosphere and food.  Beer is served in the traditional stein-shaped mugs made of glass.  For appetizers, try a hot mug of baked beans and franks, or a mug of traditional New England Clam Chowder, er, I mean, “Chow-dah!”  While many of the menu items sound kinda, well, touristy (adding character names to the entrees), the food is great, and the beer just keeps on coming!  The best time to come is during sports night.  During Bruins season, when the team scores a goal, the place erupts in cheers.  Ha, get it?!  It was a cold night in January, and the entire pond in Boston Common froze over like the Arctic.  A bitter chill ran through the night sky over Beantown, and I made a bee-line from my hotel near the park.  I cozied up with a mug of beans and beer; within seconds, I went from shivering to smiling!  Even though I was surrounded by Boston sports fans, granted not my favorite kind of crowd, me being a Yankees fan and all, it was a fun-filled evening.

Beer at Cheers!

Beer at Cheers!

I really try my hardest to avoid touristy-like places when I go on vacation.  But there is something about the ambiance of this historic place that just puts a smile on my face.  Maybe its the cool interior and refreshing suds.  Or maybe it’s the fact that I hope Norm will walk through those doors.  Maybe it’s because when I see that Cheers sign hanging from the bar outside, it reminds us of one of our favorite TV shows.  That feeling of nostalgia can be far more powerful than anything else.  I see that iconic sign, and I’m just waiting for someone on the street to say out loud, “Cheers is filmed before a live studio audience!”

About admin

I am a graduate of Stony Brook University, and I have a degree in History. I am an avid traveler, with an extensive knowledge of geography, a passion for photography, and a knowledge of animals too. I enjoy pop music of the 1980's, fine dining, movies, baseball, basketball, and rugby.
This entry was posted in Boston, Massachusetts, North America, United States of America, What to see in Boston, Where to eat in Boston and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Cheers: Where Everybody Knows You’re Name!

  1. Nice post Jared. I’ve lived here for 12 years and I’ve never checked it out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *