The 25 Best Restaurants in Boston Right Now

In the Where to Eat: 25 Best series, we’re highlighting our favorite restaurants in cities across the United States. These lists will be updated as restaurants close and open, and as we find new gems to recommend. As always, we pay for all of our meals and don’t accept free items.


Porter Square | Bagels

Credit…Mary Ting Hyatt

Bostonians don’t need more guff from New Yorkers, and they certainly don’t want to hear any food bragging, which seems likely to devolve into vulgarities. When it comes to bagels, Boston can’t claim ownership of a style, though Bagelsaurus wouldn’t be a bad example for others in the city to emulate. Using a sourdough starter that’s four decades old, Bagelsaurus’s bagels aren’t as dense as New York or Montreal versions. Fresh from the oven, they bear a chewy and crackly crust with an airy, open interior, like a warm circular baguette. It turns out that this lighter texture makes adding cold-smoked salmon, dill and cream cheese a much more pleasurable sandwich experience. What’s more, a Bagelsaurus bagel sitting out for a few hours doesn’t harden into an object capable of blunt-force trauma. KEVIN PANG

1796 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge; 857-285-6103;

Bánh Mì Ba Lẹ

Dorchester | Vietnamese, Sandwiches

Credit…Linda Campos for The New York Times

“Fast food” isn’t necessarily pejorative. At Bánh Mì Ba Lẹ, the sheer quantity of Vietnamese groceries, pastries, dessert drinks, noodle salads and hot prepared foods is an overwhelming sight. (With many, just pop the plastic lid and start consuming — it’s that fast.) But there’s a reason the bánh mì is its namesake sandwich. The speed with which they are made belies their refinement. What makes Ba Lẹ’s version especially memorable are the house-baked rolls, with a shatteringly crisp crust and a soft, open interior. When you bite into a freshly made bánh mì here, be prepared for a shrapnel of crumbs exploding in every direction, giving way to tender pork cold cuts, smooth livery pâté and crunchy matchsticks of pickled daikon and carrots. Even better than the flagship đặc biệt sandwich is the barbecue beef bánh mì, its grilled meat bearing the sweetest char you’ll encounter. KEVIN PANG

1052 Dorchester Avenue, Dorchester; 617-265-7171;

Bar Vlaha

Brookline | Greek

Credit…Adam Detour
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