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Where is your favorite bread basket?

There's nothing like a great bread basket. It can be one excellent roll, still hot from the oven, or a glorious assortment of savory and sweet breads. I love the basket at Harvest in Cambridge and the warm baugette at Brasserie Jo. Where's your favorite?

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  1. sel de la terre. although troquet has the best butter.

    4 Replies
    1. re: hotoynoodle

      Upstairs on the Square has amazing butter.

      1. re: DowntownChick

        But what is does the bread basket look like?

        1. re: gltsoi

          The bread looks like french bread but tastes more like sourdough. It's soft on the inside and hard and crispy on the outside. It's delicious. I am getting hungry just thinking about it. I think they only serve the butter upstairs and serve olive oil with the bread downstairs.

        2. re: DowntownChick

          The bread basket at brunch is awesome.

          And that butter is top-notch.

      2. Atasca. They serve the Portuguese cornmeal bread with EVOO w/ soft roasted garlic and a small dish of olives. Add some red wine and I could have that as my meal.

        2 Replies
        1. re: SEH

          They do? Guess I need to get back there--I don't remember that!

          I love SDLT's, used to like Henrietta's a lot but haven't been there in ages. Love Union's cornbread.

          But where has all the focaccia gone? Seems like it had its heyday and no one serves it anymore--and I LOOOVE focaccia. Anyone know where to get a good hunk of that these days?

          1. re: tatamagouche

            Last night I had an excellent piece of focaccia at Teatro.

        2. magnolia's in inman square has great homemade muffins. corn, zuchhini, banana nut, etc. served warm and fresh.

          1. I have to mention Cafe Polonia. The bread itself is nothing to write home about, but instead of butter or oil, they serve a crock of softened lard studded with bacon. God, it's delicious. Who really needs arteries anyway?

            I second hotoy's comment on Troquet's butter -- best I've had this side of Paris. I think they import it from Normandy.

            4 Replies
              1. re: B. Savarin

                "softened lard studded with bacon" awesome, I'll have to get there soon. How's the rest of the menu?

                1. re: gltsoi

                  Decent. It's split between traditional Polish food, which is pretty good, and "frenchified" food which is less successful but not bad for a hole in the wall. The borscht is excellent. Good selection of Polish beers, too.

                  1. re: B. Savarin

                    mmm, IMO it's better than decent. The goulash-stuffed potato pancakes and the kielbasa are terrific--heavy as hell, but terrific.

              2. Love the bread at Sel and also at Hammersley's, which I think is sourdough buckwheat.

                1. Most of the fine-dining places in Rozzie offer fresh, chewy, big-hole sourdough or Tuscan bread from the nearby Fornax Bread Baking Co., awesome. Best spread on that block is probably at Nuvo, a chickpea, sundried tomato, and garlic spread (similar to the Franklin's), very nice. Via Matta has a superb bread basket, always an interesting mix of flatbreads, rolls, and yeastbreads. Similar offering at Excelsior, though there's not much else I like about that place.

                  I think the popcorn drizzled with truffle oil at OM is an interesting alternative to a bread basket. I was served something similar as an hor d'ouevre at the Bubbly Bar recently, and thought, "Oh, nice way to rip off OM", until I realized that the black bits in it weren't burned popcorn, but actual shaved black truffles: *much* nicer than OM's version, dizzyingly good.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: MC Slim JB

                    COMPLIMENTARY black truffle popcorn! Holy crap!

                    1. re: tatamagouche

                      Holy crap, indeed!

                      They also couldn't seem to shovel enough lobster salad canapes (in which there was a lot of lobster) on little rice-cracker rounds at us, either, and I thought lobster prices were rising faster than gas prices. Definitely a steal. Little rabbit rillettes with blackberry sauce on baguette rounds were my other favorite. At least two other canapes which I missed out on (something bright green and spready on baguettes for one), plus the usual Bristol warm nuts mix and rice cracker/wasabi peas mix. Well worth the $10-12 a throw for sparkling wines for the great snacks, elegant setting, and very solicitous service.

                    2. re: MC Slim JB

                      did they change it from white truffle? that's good cause just about everything there was drizzled with white truffle something, bu tthat popcorn was SO GOOD

                    3. I'll strongly second the bread at Sel de la Terre, which to my mind has the best breadbasket locally.

                      Some of the steakhouses have good breadbaskets as well, including Abe & Louie's, Capital Grille, Smith & Wollensky, and that non-chain high-end place in the Back Bay whose name the moderators don't want us to mention. And there should also be a shout-out for the popovers at Anthony's Pier 4 (though whether it's worth eating their awful, overpriced food and enduring their snarly service to get one is another question).

                      1. A few to add to the great list here:
                        The soft turkish bread dotted with sesame at Brookline Family Turkish Restaurant.
                        The flatbread at Helmand with a variety of dips.
                        The variety of foccacia and other breads at Campania (haven't been for a while).

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: limster

                          Oh yea, that flatbread at Helmamd is wonderful.

                        2. One of my all time favorite bread baskets was at Lumiere. a couple years back, but it was amazing and perfectly warmed and the varieties they had were all delicious. also, the butter was perfectly salted, but still so sweet.
                          wow, thanks for the reminder!

                          1. For Easter, we had brunch at Flora, and her bread basket had the loveliest scones. Flaky, yummy and o so delicious. So they have my vote!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: makonna

                              Abe and Louie's, definitely. They have your standard white French bread, bread sticks, and crispy cheese sticks, but they also have whole grain bread and this incredible crackle bread. But it's not your ordinary crackle bread - it's made from raisin pumpernickel bread! (The consistency is like a bagel chip - crunchy and DELICIOUS).

                            2. Honorable mention to EVOO for its twist on grissini - theirs are completely addictive.

                              1. While I enjoy a mix of items in a bread basket, what I love most is simply good bread and butter. I think Petit Robert delivers on this better than most - excellent baguette with a slightly sweet butter. If I don't stop myself, I can easily go through a couple of baskets by myself.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: anitab

                                  On that note, I had an excellent piece of bread with wonderful butter, slightly whipped, at Pigalle the other night. The bread had something of the texture of potato bread--one huge slice, the size of say a serving of meatloaf.