A quiet residential neighborhood on the Cambridge-Watertown line seems like an unlikely spot for a hotspot, but Sofra draws crowds whenever it’s open. Overseen by local celeb chef Ana Sortun and serving produce grown on her husband’s nearby farm, Sofra serves amazing pastries and light meals, influenced by traditional Turkish food but often with an innovative twist.
Because I’m lucky enough to live nearby, I often duck in on weekend mornings to pick up fresh pastries (especially the donut specials, which feature such seasonal fillings as pumpkin or cardamom cream) and amazing hot breakfasts– don’t miss the shakshuka, poached eggs swimming in spicy tomato sauce and served with a fluffy roll you can crumble in to soak up all the deliciousness. For lunch, the mezze is unmissable– they may serve the best baba ghanoush in town. When in doubt go with a seasonal special; it is sure to be fresh and creative. The coffee is also extraordinarily good. If you enjoy cooking, check out the custom spice blends and unusual spices for sale near the counter.
Because it’s a cozy spot with about 20 seats, indoors and out, it can sometimes be tricky to score a table after placing your order at the counter. Not to worry: everything tastes as good when you get it to go and comes in clever, eco-friendly packaging.