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Overhead view of food spread out on white paper over a wooden tabletop: bagels, croissants, smoothies, and more.
Bready baked brunch bites from Turenne
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

7 New Boston Area Restaurants and Bakeries for Brunching at Home

One does not have to brunch out to brunch well

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Bready baked brunch bites from Turenne
| Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Brunch is definitionally vague. It isn’t breakfast, it isn’t lunch, and it’s not exactly clear when it should be eaten. 11 a.m. feels too early, and 2 p.m. feels too late. Is it best to eat brunch around noon? No one is ever on time for brunch in the first place, so does timing even matter? Is brunch defined by the food — must there be a Benedict or some other heavily-sauced egg dish on the table for the event to qualify? — or is brunch defined by a table strewn with half-empty champagne flutes and mugs full of spicy, tomato-spiked vodka drinks?

If brunch is definitionally vague, then it is also functionally flexible. Brunch can sort of just be whatever anyone wants it to be, which is a boon during this fraught time when meeting with people outside of our pods (a hallmark of brunch in pre-COVID times) carries very real health risks. (It’s also important to keep in mind that restaurant workers in Massachusetts are not yet eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.)

That said, one does not have to brunch out to brunch well. For the foreseeable future, the Eater Boston Brunch Heatmap will focus on takeout and delivery rather than indoor dining. Featured restaurants may not offer full brunch menus, but rather various items — coffee, doughnuts, pastries, bagels, etc. — that would not be out of place on a typical brunch spread.

Going forward, the Brunch Heatmap will be updated monthly once again, highlighting some of the most interesting new restaurants in town, but other restaurant-adjacent newness is also fair game: pop-ups, delivery-only food businesses, even older restaurants making distinct pandemic “pivots.” Know of something new and exciting that should be on our radar? Email the Eater Boston team.

New to the map in the February 2021 update: Blackbird Doughnuts (Beacon Hill), Cafe Beatrice, La Saison Bakery, Phinista Cafe, Third Cliff Bakery & Cafe, Turenne Bakery and Cafe, and Villa Bakery Cafe.

This map is updated monthly, so consult the archive to see restaurants featured in previous versions — just because they’re no longer new doesn’t mean they’re not worth visiting.

Check back here next month for some more new options. And for other solid brunch destinations to check out regardless of newness, consult Vital Brunch Spots to Know in Boston for some classic spots or our full breakfast and brunch guide. Need caffeine? Check out this map of essential Boston coffee shops.

Please note that a number of Boston-area restaurants have resumed dine-in service, and the level of service offered is indicated on each map point. However, this should not be taken as endorsement for dining in, as there are still safety concerns: For updated information on coronavirus cases in the area, please visit the Massachusetts coronavirus website.

Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.

For all the latest Boston dining intel, subscribe to Eater Boston’s newsletter.

This map was originally published in July 2015; it is typically updated monthly, and the date of the most recent update appears above.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. La Saison Bakery

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407 Concord Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 547-0009
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La Saison Bakery opened near Fresh Pond in November 2020, but its roots stretch back to 2000 in Tehran, Iran, where Soheil Fathi got his start delivering his mother’s baked goods to local coffee shops. After assisting his mother for many years, Fathi opened a chocolate shop in Tehran (also called La Saison), before eventually arriving in Cambridge. After some time spent working at Flour Bakery, he opened the new incarnation of La Saison with co-owner Sarah Moridpour. Their sourdough breads are not to be missed, and their croissants are perfect for dipping into a frothy brunchtime cappuccino.

La Saison is currently open for takeout, with a couple small tables set up in the parking lot out front, weather permitting.

Closeup of a croissant, with a round loaf of bread and several cookies visible in the background. All sit on a piece of plastic on a dark table.
This croissant should be on your brunch table
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

2. Turenne Bakery and Cafe

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253 Washington St
Somerville, MA 02143

Turenne — which operates out of the T&B Pizza space in Somerville’s Union Square — features wood-fired bagels, French-inspired baked goods, salad, and smoothies. Turenne’s pretzel-everything bagel with house-smoked salmon, cream cheese, red onion, cucumber, capers, and dill is a good way to kick off any brunch.

Turenne is currently open for takeout and delivery.

Overhead view of food spread out on white paper over a wooden tabletop: bagels, croissants, smoothies, and more.
Turenne has the bread for your next brunch
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

3. Cafe Beatrice

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100 N First St
Cambridge, MA 02141
(617) 945-1349
Visit Website

This new-ish spot from chef and owner Will Gilson is one of three restaurants he and his team have opened at Cambridge Crossing in the past few months. Cafe Beatrice offers a number of bites suited for a brunch spread, including cinnamon rolls; brioche laced with mushrooms and mozzarella, and topped with an egg; and a rueben danish, which is exactly what it sounds like.

Cafe Beatrice is currently offering takeout, delivery.

4. Blackbird Doughnuts

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175 Cambridge St # 120
Boston, MA 02114

This iconic doughnut mini-chain recently opened another location in Beacon Hill, and there are specialty coffee and tea drinks. Brunch can be as simple as a dozen doughnuts and a matcha latte if you want it to be.

Blackbird Doughnuts is open for takeout and delivery.

5. Villa Bakery Cafe

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355 Washington St
Brighton, MA 02135

This Brazilian bakery and cafe opened in October 2020, and specializes in baked goods like the iconic pao de queijo, a kind of cheese bread, and chocolate cake with coconut cream. There are also smoothies and açaí bowls for a fresher, less heavy take on brunch. (But by all means, don’t be afraid to bisect a chunk of pao de queijo, grill each half in a cast iron pan with some butter, and eat it alongside some breakfast sausage or bacon, or slathered with jam.)

Villa Bakery Cafe is open for takeout.

6. Phinista Cafe

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96 Peterborough St
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 262-7700
Visit Website

Yeanie Bach and Phi Pham’s Vietnamese coffee shop started life as a pop-up, transformed into a delivery service (whereby Phinista sold Vietnamese coffee brewed with a phin filter, which is like a hybrid between a pour-over and a French press), before finally taking over the space formerly occupied by Neighborhoods Coffee and Crepes and becoming a full-service cafe. Bach and Pham put their business on hold when the pandemic struck to delivery coffee to hospitals, including the West Roxbury VA Medical Center and Boston Children’s Hospital, but the cafe is now fully operational. Phinista’s menu includes Vietnamese drip coffee; a Vietnamese lavender latte; mango and passion fruit bubble tea; a selection of sweet crepes; and ube lava cake. Coffee and crepes equal an excellent brunch at home.

Phinista is open for takeout and delivery.

7. Third Cliff Bakery

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3531 Washington St Suite 103
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

This Jamaica Plain cafe opened in October 2020, and offers a variety of coffee drinks, breads, and pastries. The kimchi and cheddar croissant and coconut cold brew make for a good brunch at home or on the go. And be sure to head to Third Cliff on Saturday and Sunday mornings to try its apple five-spice buns.

Third Cliff is open for takeout.

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1. La Saison Bakery

407 Concord Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138
Closeup of a croissant, with a round loaf of bread and several cookies visible in the background. All sit on a piece of plastic on a dark table.
This croissant should be on your brunch table
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

La Saison Bakery opened near Fresh Pond in November 2020, but its roots stretch back to 2000 in Tehran, Iran, where Soheil Fathi got his start delivering his mother’s baked goods to local coffee shops. After assisting his mother for many years, Fathi opened a chocolate shop in Tehran (also called La Saison), before eventually arriving in Cambridge. After some time spent working at Flour Bakery, he opened the new incarnation of La Saison with co-owner Sarah Moridpour. Their sourdough breads are not to be missed, and their croissants are perfect for dipping into a frothy brunchtime cappuccino.

La Saison is currently open for takeout, with a couple small tables set up in the parking lot out front, weather permitting.

407 Concord Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138

2. Turenne Bakery and Cafe

253 Washington St, Somerville, MA 02143
Overhead view of food spread out on white paper over a wooden tabletop: bagels, croissants, smoothies, and more.
Turenne has the bread for your next brunch
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Turenne — which operates out of the T&B Pizza space in Somerville’s Union Square — features wood-fired bagels, French-inspired baked goods, salad, and smoothies. Turenne’s pretzel-everything bagel with house-smoked salmon, cream cheese, red onion, cucumber, capers, and dill is a good way to kick off any brunch.

Turenne is currently open for takeout and delivery.

253 Washington St
Somerville, MA 02143

3. Cafe Beatrice

100 N First St, Cambridge, MA 02141

This new-ish spot from chef and owner Will Gilson is one of three restaurants he and his team have opened at Cambridge Crossing in the past few months. Cafe Beatrice offers a number of bites suited for a brunch spread, including cinnamon rolls; brioche laced with mushrooms and mozzarella, and topped with an egg; and a rueben danish, which is exactly what it sounds like.

Cafe Beatrice is currently offering takeout, delivery.

100 N First St
Cambridge, MA 02141

4. Blackbird Doughnuts

175 Cambridge St # 120, Boston, MA 02114

This iconic doughnut mini-chain recently opened another location in Beacon Hill, and there are specialty coffee and tea drinks. Brunch can be as simple as a dozen doughnuts and a matcha latte if you want it to be.

Blackbird Doughnuts is open for takeout and delivery.

175 Cambridge St # 120
Boston, MA 02114

5. Villa Bakery Cafe

355 Washington St, Brighton, MA 02135

This Brazilian bakery and cafe opened in October 2020, and specializes in baked goods like the iconic pao de queijo, a kind of cheese bread, and chocolate cake with coconut cream. There are also smoothies and açaí bowls for a fresher, less heavy take on brunch. (But by all means, don’t be afraid to bisect a chunk of pao de queijo, grill each half in a cast iron pan with some butter, and eat it alongside some breakfast sausage or bacon, or slathered with jam.)

Villa Bakery Cafe is open for takeout.

355 Washington St
Brighton, MA 02135

6. Phinista Cafe

96 Peterborough St, Boston, MA 02215

Yeanie Bach and Phi Pham’s Vietnamese coffee shop started life as a pop-up, transformed into a delivery service (whereby Phinista sold Vietnamese coffee brewed with a phin filter, which is like a hybrid between a pour-over and a French press), before finally taking over the space formerly occupied by Neighborhoods Coffee and Crepes and becoming a full-service cafe. Bach and Pham put their business on hold when the pandemic struck to delivery coffee to hospitals, including the West Roxbury VA Medical Center and Boston Children’s Hospital, but the cafe is now fully operational. Phinista’s menu includes Vietnamese drip coffee; a Vietnamese lavender latte; mango and passion fruit bubble tea; a selection of sweet crepes; and ube lava cake. Coffee and crepes equal an excellent brunch at home.

Phinista is open for takeout and delivery.

96 Peterborough St
Boston, MA 02215

7. Third Cliff Bakery

3531 Washington St Suite 103, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

This Jamaica Plain cafe opened in October 2020, and offers a variety of coffee drinks, breads, and pastries. The kimchi and cheddar croissant and coconut cold brew make for a good brunch at home or on the go. And be sure to head to Third Cliff on Saturday and Sunday mornings to try its apple five-spice buns.

Third Cliff is open for takeout.

3531 Washington St Suite 103
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

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