In the neighborhood of Lowell, Massachusetts, once known as Little Canada, Saturday is the biggest bean-selling day of the week. Though you may encounter Red Sox hats and Patriots sweats, at Cote's you'll also find that the beans bear scant resemblance to the treacly product made famous by the Beantown to the south. Cote's stock in trade is unsweetened: The principal requirements are small, firm white beans, a hefty amount of salt pork, a large pot, and lots of patience.
My article "The Beans of Lowell, Mass." appears in Issue 91 of The Art of Eating. The article itself is not available online; New Yorkers who don't subscribe can find the magazine at Kitchen Arts and Letters.
175 Salem St. (near Morey Pl.), Lowell, Massachusetts
Closed Wednesday and Sunday
(From visits in August 2012, and previously)