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Five Thai dishes sit on a wooden table in front of a brick wall. There’s a curry, a pomelo salad with shrimp, a large pile of pork ribs, and more.
A spread from Mahaniyom in Brookline
Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Where to Find Great Small Plates in Boston

From tapas to meze to izakaya fare, Greater Boston is packed with restaurants offering excellent shareable menus

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A spread from Mahaniyom in Brookline
| Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

From meze to dim sum to tapas and more, small, shareable plates are prevalent in the cuisines of many cultures. Boston’s dining scene is full of great small plates, which offer the fun of sharing alongside the opportunity to try multiple dishes. Swing through Porter Square for Japanese izakaya fare, the South End for Spanish tapas, Brookline for Thai small plates, and so much more.

Here are 18 restaurants in Greater Boston offering great small plates.

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.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Sarma

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249 Pearl St
Somerville, MA 02145
(617) 764-4464
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Small plates are the perfect vehicle for the inventive menu at this beloved meze-focused Somerville restaurant. Where else can you find miso mushroom avgolemono or smoked trout taramasalata in one place? The menu changes often, so be sure to check the restaurant’s website for updates.

Sarma is open for indoor dining (make reservations, which are required, here) and takeout.

Overhead view of a wooden table full of breakfast takeout items: two pastries sit on a blue-and-white octopus plate, a paper cup holds a thick hot chocolate, and more Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

2. Ittoku

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1815 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02140
(617) 608-3630
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Ittoku is an izakaya, a casual type of Japanese bar offering snacks and alcoholic drinks. The menu has well over 100 dishes to try, and includes helpful pictures of a majority of them. To start, take a look at the appetizer and robata (short for robatayaki, which is a method of cooking over hot charcoal) sections. The various chicken yakitori skewers — thigh, heart, skin, etc. — are excellent. In the hot plate section, try the omusoba, which includes yakisoba noodles wrapped in an egg omelette, topped with Kewpie mayo and okonomiyaki sauce, which is sweet and savory. Ittoku’s bar menu offers cocktails like a mango-yuzu-peach gimlet, as well as a variety of beer, wine, and sake.

Ittoku is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

Omusoba and takoyaki from Ittoku Karen Wilber/Eater

3. Baraka Cuisine

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1728 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 868-3951
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Baraka Cuisine’s menu is influenced by French and North African cuisines. Their mezes offer a variety of hot and cold small plates with bold flavors. Don’t miss the Tunisian lamb merguez — it’s pleasantly spicy, and is served with a side of za’atar bread.

Baraka Cuisine is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

Assorted dishes from Baraka Cuisine Karen Wilber/Eater

4. Casa B Tapas and Cocktail & Rum Bar

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253 Washington St
Somerville, MA 02143
(617) 764-2180
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Casa B’s menu is influenced by the cuisines of a variety of countries, including Colombia, Puerto Rico, and Spain. (The restaurant describes its food as “Spanish inspired Caribbean Tapas.”) You absolutely can’t go wrong with its take on carne mechada, a Puerto Rican pot roast served with yucca gnocchi in a brown butter and sage sauce.

Casa B is open for takeout and delivery.

5. Moona

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243 Hampshire St
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 945-7448
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This Eater Boston reader favorite offers a great selection of meze, and diners will be amazed by what the restaurant’s cooks can do with feta — especially the feta fritters with orange blossom honey, and the lamb burgers, which are topped with whipped feta.

Moona is open for indoor dining and outdoor dining (heated, tented — reserve here), takeout, and delivery.

6. Buttermilk & Bourbon

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160 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 266-1122
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Chef Jason Santos’ Buttermilk & Bourbon is doing a take on Southern small plates. Think honey-glazed biscuits served with sweet, smoked cinnamon butter and a savory pimento cheese spread, or brisket boudin croquettes. 

Buttermilk & Bourbon is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

7. Hei La Moon Restaurant

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88 Beach St
Boston, MA 02111
(617) 338-8813
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Dim sum is a small plate lover’s weekend dream. Try one of everything you can get your hands on, but especially: pan-fried turnip cakes, shrimp cheung foon, and pork shiu mai.

Hei La Moon is open for indoor dining and takeout.

Hei La Moon food

8. The Glenville Stops

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87 Glenville Ave
Boston, MA 02134
(617) 903-3638
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This Allston spot takes bar bites to the next level. The sweet potato parmesan fritters are super crispy, but also melt in your mouth, and are topped with a bright saffron aioli. The wild mushroom pasta is a must as well.

The Glenville Stops is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

Sweet potato parmesan fritters from Glenville Stops Karen Wilber/Eater

9. Peka Restaurant

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304 Washington St
Brighton, MA 02135
(617) 789-4100
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Peka opened in the former Green Briar space in Brighton in September 2020. This Latin American tapas and arepas restaurant features a menu inspired by the cuisines of Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina, Cuba, and others. Try the “Cooti’s Camorones al Ajillo” — shrimp sautéed with garlic, wine, cilantro, and olive oil. It’s a garlic lover’s dream. 

Peka is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

Shrimp sauteed with garlic, puff pastry wrapped queso blanco, and more from Peka Karen Wilber/Eater

10. Bootleg Special

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400 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 451-1800
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While Bootleg Special is best known for its seafood boils, don’t skip its small plates. The “Ribs on Coke” are perfectly tender with a sticky, sweet sauce made with cherry flavored Coca-Cola, and the garlic noodles are a generous portion and perfect for sharing alongside a seafood boil.

Bootleg Special is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

11. Taberna de Haro

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999 Beacon St
Brookline, MA 02446
(617) 277-8272
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This Brookline restaurant has been open for more than two decades, and is a staple in the Greater Boston tapas scene. The wine list is extensive and excellent, and the patio is perfect (when weather permits).

Taberna de Haro is open for takeout and delivery.

12. Barcelona Wine Bar

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525 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 266-2600
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Sure, it’s a chain, but it’s also good. As the name might suggest, Barcelona Wine Bar focusses on classic Spanish tapas, such as patatas bravas, jamón serrano, and boquerones. The brunch menu contains a number of can’t-miss gems as well, such as gambas (shrimp) and grits, olive oil pancakes, and serrano benedict. Bread is served on the side to soak up all the various juices, oils, and sauces.

Barcelona is open for indoor dining and takeout.

13. Gantetsu-Ya

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318 Harvard St
Brookline, MA 02446
(617) 505-6415
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Takoyaki (fried octopus balls) is the star at this Ganko Ittetsu Ramen sibling (and neighbor). Gantetsu-Ya’s menu is brief and brilliant: takoyaki, gyoza, and kara-age (Japanese fried chicken).

Gantetsu-Ya is open for takeout.

14. MIDA

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782 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 936-3490
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While MIDA is not chiefly a small plates restaurant, its “Mangia Monday” menu is the perfect way to sample many of Chef Douglass Williams’ pasta masterpieces. Its sharing option for two allows diners to order up to five types of pasta, alongside salad and bread. Be sure to order the gnocchi cacio e pepe, which is a must eat in Boston’s Italian cuisine scene.

MIDA is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

15. Orinoco: A Latin Kitchen

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477 Shawmut Ave
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 369-7075
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It’s lucky that Orinoco offers small plates, because you will want to try everything on the menu. The empanadas verde at this Venezuelan restaurant are a dream for vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike, filled with gooey Manchego cheese, earthy forest mushrooms, and sweet piquillo peppers. While Orinoco has temporarily closed two of their locations, its South End location remains open. 

The South End location is open for takeout and delivery.

An arepa and empanadas from Orinoco Karen Wilber/Eater

16. Mahaniyom

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236 Washington St
Brookline, MA 02445
(617) 487-5986
Visit Website

This Thai tapas bar offers variety beyond pad thai and tom yum (although pad thai and tom yum are each excellent, of course). Try the yum ngoh, a dish that combines crispy fried shallots, garlic, and shrimp with juicy rambutan, which is a South East Asian fruit similar to lychee. 

Mahaniyom is open for indoor dining, and takeout and delivery via its website.

Five Thai dishes sit on a wooden table in front of a brick wall. There’s a curry, a pomelo salad with shrimp, a large pile of pork ribs, and more. Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

17. Tres Gatos

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470 Centre St
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
(617) 477-4851
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Tres Gatos expands the spirit of small plates and sharing beyond its food: Currently, diners can order take out or delivery with a side of books or records to add to the experience.

Tres Gatos is open for indoor dining (reserve here), takeout, and local delivery.

18. Brassica Kitchen + Cafe

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3710 Washington St
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
(617) 477-4519
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Diners can choose their own small plates adventure at Brassica, or they can opt into the “Ride for 2” menu, which is a sort of chef’s tasting menu of five to six dishes plus dessert. (Add a wine pairing for an additional $40.) The B.K. Brussels are compulsory — there is heavenly caramelization at play, along with a melody of maple, lemon, and miso.

Brassica is open for indoor dining (reserve here), takeout, and delivery.

Assortment of shared dishes from Brassica Kitchen + Cafe Karen Wilber/Eater

1. Sarma

249 Pearl St, Somerville, MA 02145
Overhead view of a wooden table full of breakfast takeout items: two pastries sit on a blue-and-white octopus plate, a paper cup holds a thick hot chocolate, and more Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

Small plates are the perfect vehicle for the inventive menu at this beloved meze-focused Somerville restaurant. Where else can you find miso mushroom avgolemono or smoked trout taramasalata in one place? The menu changes often, so be sure to check the restaurant’s website for updates.

Sarma is open for indoor dining (make reservations, which are required, here) and takeout.

249 Pearl St
Somerville, MA 02145

2. Ittoku

1815 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02140
Omusoba and takoyaki from Ittoku Karen Wilber/Eater

Ittoku is an izakaya, a casual type of Japanese bar offering snacks and alcoholic drinks. The menu has well over 100 dishes to try, and includes helpful pictures of a majority of them. To start, take a look at the appetizer and robata (short for robatayaki, which is a method of cooking over hot charcoal) sections. The various chicken yakitori skewers — thigh, heart, skin, etc. — are excellent. In the hot plate section, try the omusoba, which includes yakisoba noodles wrapped in an egg omelette, topped with Kewpie mayo and okonomiyaki sauce, which is sweet and savory. Ittoku’s bar menu offers cocktails like a mango-yuzu-peach gimlet, as well as a variety of beer, wine, and sake.

Ittoku is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

1815 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02140

3. Baraka Cuisine

1728 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138
Assorted dishes from Baraka Cuisine Karen Wilber/Eater

Baraka Cuisine’s menu is influenced by French and North African cuisines. Their mezes offer a variety of hot and cold small plates with bold flavors. Don’t miss the Tunisian lamb merguez — it’s pleasantly spicy, and is served with a side of za’atar bread.

Baraka Cuisine is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

1728 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138

4. Casa B Tapas and Cocktail & Rum Bar

253 Washington St, Somerville, MA 02143

Casa B’s menu is influenced by the cuisines of a variety of countries, including Colombia, Puerto Rico, and Spain. (The restaurant describes its food as “Spanish inspired Caribbean Tapas.”) You absolutely can’t go wrong with its take on carne mechada, a Puerto Rican pot roast served with yucca gnocchi in a brown butter and sage sauce.

Casa B is open for takeout and delivery.

253 Washington St
Somerville, MA 02143

5. Moona

243 Hampshire St, Cambridge, MA 02139

This Eater Boston reader favorite offers a great selection of meze, and diners will be amazed by what the restaurant’s cooks can do with feta — especially the feta fritters with orange blossom honey, and the lamb burgers, which are topped with whipped feta.

Moona is open for indoor dining and outdoor dining (heated, tented — reserve here), takeout, and delivery.

243 Hampshire St
Cambridge, MA 02139

6. Buttermilk & Bourbon

160 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02116

Chef Jason Santos’ Buttermilk & Bourbon is doing a take on Southern small plates. Think honey-glazed biscuits served with sweet, smoked cinnamon butter and a savory pimento cheese spread, or brisket boudin croquettes. 

Buttermilk & Bourbon is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

160 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02116

7. Hei La Moon Restaurant

88 Beach St, Boston, MA 02111
Hei La Moon food

Dim sum is a small plate lover’s weekend dream. Try one of everything you can get your hands on, but especially: pan-fried turnip cakes, shrimp cheung foon, and pork shiu mai.

Hei La Moon is open for indoor dining and takeout.

88 Beach St
Boston, MA 02111

8. The Glenville Stops

87 Glenville Ave, Boston, MA 02134
Sweet potato parmesan fritters from Glenville Stops Karen Wilber/Eater

This Allston spot takes bar bites to the next level. The sweet potato parmesan fritters are super crispy, but also melt in your mouth, and are topped with a bright saffron aioli. The wild mushroom pasta is a must as well.

The Glenville Stops is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

87 Glenville Ave
Boston, MA 02134

9. Peka Restaurant

304 Washington St, Brighton, MA 02135
Shrimp sauteed with garlic, puff pastry wrapped queso blanco, and more from Peka Karen Wilber/Eater

Peka opened in the former Green Briar space in Brighton in September 2020. This Latin American tapas and arepas restaurant features a menu inspired by the cuisines of Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina, Cuba, and others. Try the “Cooti’s Camorones al Ajillo” — shrimp sautéed with garlic, wine, cilantro, and olive oil. It’s a garlic lover’s dream. 

Peka is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

304 Washington St
Brighton, MA 02135

10. Bootleg Special

400 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02116

While Bootleg Special is best known for its seafood boils, don’t skip its small plates. The “Ribs on Coke” are perfectly tender with a sticky, sweet sauce made with cherry flavored Coca-Cola, and the garlic noodles are a generous portion and perfect for sharing alongside a seafood boil.

Bootleg Special is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

400 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02116

11. Taberna de Haro

999 Beacon St, Brookline, MA 02446

This Brookline restaurant has been open for more than two decades, and is a staple in the Greater Boston tapas scene. The wine list is extensive and excellent, and the patio is perfect (when weather permits).

Taberna de Haro is open for takeout and delivery.

999 Beacon St
Brookline, MA 02446

12. Barcelona Wine Bar

525 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02116

Sure, it’s a chain, but it’s also good. As the name might suggest, Barcelona Wine Bar focusses on classic Spanish tapas, such as patatas bravas, jamón serrano, and boquerones. The brunch menu contains a number of can’t-miss gems as well, such as gambas (shrimp) and grits, olive oil pancakes, and serrano benedict. Bread is served on the side to soak up all the various juices, oils, and sauces.

Barcelona is open for indoor dining and takeout.

525 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02116

13. Gantetsu-Ya

318 Harvard St, Brookline, MA 02446

Takoyaki (fried octopus balls) is the star at this Ganko Ittetsu Ramen sibling (and neighbor). Gantetsu-Ya’s menu is brief and brilliant: takoyaki, gyoza, and kara-age (Japanese fried chicken).

Gantetsu-Ya is open for takeout.

318 Harvard St
Brookline, MA 02446

14. MIDA

782 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02118

While MIDA is not chiefly a small plates restaurant, its “Mangia Monday” menu is the perfect way to sample many of Chef Douglass Williams’ pasta masterpieces. Its sharing option for two allows diners to order up to five types of pasta, alongside salad and bread. Be sure to order the gnocchi cacio e pepe, which is a must eat in Boston’s Italian cuisine scene.

MIDA is open for indoor dining, takeout, and delivery.

782 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02118

15. Orinoco: A Latin Kitchen

477 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118
An arepa and empanadas from Orinoco Karen Wilber/Eater

It’s lucky that Orinoco offers small plates, because you will want to try everything on the menu. The empanadas verde at this Venezuelan restaurant are a dream for vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike, filled with gooey Manchego cheese, earthy forest mushrooms, and sweet piquillo peppers. While Orinoco has temporarily closed two of their locations, its South End location remains open. 

The South End location is open for takeout and delivery.

477 Shawmut Ave
Boston, MA 02118

Related Maps

16. Mahaniyom

236 Washington St, Brookline, MA 02445
Five Thai dishes sit on a wooden table in front of a brick wall. There’s a curry, a pomelo salad with shrimp, a large pile of pork ribs, and more. Rachel Leah Blumenthal/Eater

This Thai tapas bar offers variety beyond pad thai and tom yum (although pad thai and tom yum are each excellent, of course). Try the yum ngoh, a dish that combines crispy fried shallots, garlic, and shrimp with juicy rambutan, which is a South East Asian fruit similar to lychee. 

Mahaniyom is open for indoor dining, and takeout and delivery via its website.

236 Washington St
Brookline, MA 02445

17. Tres Gatos

470 Centre St, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

Tres Gatos expands the spirit of small plates and sharing beyond its food: Currently, diners can order take out or delivery with a side of books or records to add to the experience.

Tres Gatos is open for indoor dining (reserve here), takeout, and local delivery.

470 Centre St
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

18. Brassica Kitchen + Cafe

3710 Washington St, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
Assortment of shared dishes from Brassica Kitchen + Cafe Karen Wilber/Eater

Diners can choose their own small plates adventure at Brassica, or they can opt into the “Ride for 2” menu, which is a sort of chef’s tasting menu of five to six dishes plus dessert. (Add a wine pairing for an additional $40.) The B.K. Brussels are compulsory — there is heavenly caramelization at play, along with a melody of maple, lemon, and miso.

Brassica is open for indoor dining (reserve here), takeout, and delivery.

3710 Washington St
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

Related Maps