Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >
Apr 26, 2007 07:23 PM

Cozy Allston Cafes?

Are there any cute or cozy cafes or bakeries in the Allston area that are good for spending the afternoon reading? It seems every time I want to do this, I have to travel far out of Allston.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The Infusions tea place on Brighton near Harvard is comfortable for reading.

    2 Replies
    1. re: lergnom

      Allstonian and I spent about 90 minutes at Infusions this afternoon, with both of us working on different projects. The place wasn't that busy, the noise level was just right, the music choice was XM Channel 70 Real Jazz (I recognized the ID theme at one point), and the tea -- we both had the black milk tea with boba -- was outstanding, the best bubble tea I've had in Boston. (For one thing, it actually tasted like tea, unlike what you get at Lollicup.) We weren't disturbed by the staff, and it never got so crowded that we felt we were imposing by taking up a table.

      The one problem I had (aside from the the chairs being slightly too low for me, but I'm 6'6", so I have that problem pretty much everywhere) was that the rather teensy tables, with tops slightly larger than a small pie from Regina, are a bit cramped if you're two people doing anything more than reading a couple of paperbacks.

      1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

        There is one big rectangular table, but it was already occupied by two people who were clearly camped out for the day with their laptops.

        We'll definitely be back - sadly the last comfortable neighborhood hangout we had was the Starbucks in the Shaw's supermarket, and it wasn't great.

        There's a new Korean "snackery" that's opened up on the opposite side of Brighton Avenue, in the below-ground space that used to be an Asian video shop. Anybody know anything about it? Is that another potential spot?

    2. The crepe place Cafe Nation in Brighton Center is pretty nice. Herrell's right in Allston kind of works but it isn't the most comfy place and can get really loud. Espresso Royale by BU Central is okay.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Joanie

        If you go as far as Espresso Royale, which has a real college atmosphere - being across the street from BU's main library - you can also cross the street and go to the BU food court. Has a Starbucks, Aesop's Bagels (best in this part of town), and a bunch of other places. Lots of seating.

      2. How about Athan's in Brighton and Brookline? Both locations are within a mile or two of Allston.

        I'm not sure what their policy is regarding lingering for an afternoon, but the digs are as beautiful as the tasty baked goods.

        1 Reply
        1. re: finlero

          athans is generally people friendly though i'm more familiar with the brookline than the brighton location. cafe mirror is pretty relaxed and Herrells isn't bad though not the most comfy of furniture - if you are more into beer than expresso, deep ellums a good choice.

        2. The cafe on Harvard Ave (Harvard Ave Cafe?) serves Terroir coffee, and is a pretty decent place to hang out for abit.