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Rolls/bread/spreads...the best

Hello all. I would love to hear from folks which restaurants you think have the best bread baskets/rolls and spreads. For instance, some favs of mine are the cornbread at Union Bar & Restaurant. I do think Bertucci's makes very delicious rolls and I do like Back Bay Restaurant Group's (Charley's, Abe & Louie's, etc) warm, crusty loaves. Franklin Cafe makes a great bean spread to go w/ the bread they serve before dinner. So what's your opinion??

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  1. Sel de la Terre is the best I've had locally. Most of the expensive steakhouses also provide worthy bread offerings, often in big baskets: Abe & Louie's, Capital Grille, Smith & Wollensky, and Grill 23 were good, if memory serves.

    1. the split bone marrow on toast at Craigie
      Trattoria Amelia in Kendall square (are they still open?) used to serve some great bean spreads with their foccacia

      2 Replies
      1. re: barleywino

        Oh, yeah. Cragie's bone marrow makes my teeth sweat from ecstasy.

        1. re: barleywino

          Amelia's is still open! They also just renovated the entire room. It looks really nice.
          The food and the spread are the same! Great spot!

        2. Brookline Family Restaurant's white bean salad with Turkish bread. So good, I can't believe they give it away.

          1. The last time I went to Flemmings they had two delicious wine based cheese spreads for their crostini. I was enthralled with them

            1. Sportello with the scali bread and ricotta, evoo, salt and jammie thing...addictive

              1. I've occasionally toyed with the idea of starting a blog dedicated exclusively to restaurant bread baskets. If anyone feels like starting one, you have my blessing, just remember me when you're rich and famous.

                Local to Boston:

                * Salts - in terms of conventional choices, this is my favorite in town, piping hot "pod rolls" with French butter and salt tasting.
                * Sel de la Terre - I definitely agree with bachslunch, great quality and variety. I like that you can take them home from the bakery as well.
                * Namskar - a little more unconventional, but I love the fresh-made Indian breads here, notably the naan and poori, with standard trio of Indian accompaniments. (NB unlike the others on the list, these aren't complimentary.)
                * The Helmand - traditional Afghan bread and accompaniments (similar to Indian accompaniments) are always a welcome addition to the meal.

                Now, everyone get your rotten farm share tomatoes ready to hurl at me, my favorite breads from chain restaurants you can find around these parts:

                * Texas Roadhouse - extra-soft, fresh-baked rolls served with whipped cinnamon butter.
                * Legal Seafoods - the French rolls are nothing fancy, but they're pretty close to perfect.
                * Cosi - they cut the ends from their excellent sandwich flatbread and make them available while you wait in line.
                * On the Border (not Border Cafe) - the only chips and salsa I like in town, both made fresh on premises. The salsa actually has a legitimate little bite to it, and the chips are always fresh, light, and crispy.

                1 Reply
                1. re: finlero

                  the Scampo burrata w/ anchovies on tomato bread

                2. L'Andana (tomato "jam" yum)
                  love the cinnamon butter at Texas Roadhouse

                  1. The wonderful baguettes and soft butter at Brasserie Jo.

                    I used to really like the rolls and salted butter at B&G, but my recollection is that they changed recently.

                    1. The always warm, fresh baked Afghan flatbread ( noni ) at The Helmand, spread with some of the (salty) yogurt & cucumber dip is wonderful.

                      1. Khushboo in Lexington makes tender naans, the best I have had, especially the onion naan.

                        1. Scampo in the Liberty Hotel has fabulous breads, including naan and garlic bread, foccaica etc. Unfortunately they are not free, but they are well worth the price.

                          1. The Paramount on Charles Street in Beacon Hill has delicious bread - little square cubes of homemade foccacia which they serve with a warm, lemon-y hummus spread.

                            And - for my unpretentious chain restaurant addition - the Outback Steakhouse serves a good sized loaf of dark brown bread with warm melt-in-your-mouth whipped butter. Delish.

                            1. The bread basket at Scarlet Oak Tavern in Hingham is the best one i've had south of Boston. It's an assortment, typically a few pieces of warm crusty sour dough, a couple of corn bread and a few fruit bread (cranberry Walnut, ect). It's one of the"little things" that makes it one of the better choices along Rt. 3 south.

                              1. I love the bread basket at Mamma Maria with their spread, which I call anti-pesto. It's a pesto spread made with fantastic olive oil, but does not have pine nuts (great for me since I'm allergic).

                                I agree that Bertucci's rolls are great; I just wish they served something great to go with them. I used to get a salad just as an excuse to eat their rolls, but now even those have gone downhill.

                                1. Oleana has some delicious breads / spreads. Loved everything we ordered!

                                  1. My personal favourites, and I'm more of a bread and butter guy, are, in no particular order:

                                    Troquet's good bread and awesome butter;
                                    Henrietta's Table (I'd sometimes go for this primarily);
                                    Cafe Polonia's bread and lard, I can't believe . . . I'm the first to mention this;
                                    The "special complimentary snack" often served at lunch the Tamarind House, I think they're shrimp puffs or something, like the crunchy things you see in those "subgum" Chinese dishes in the south.

                                    For fun, I'll throw in a worst list (ok, not worst, but places I think ought to do better):

                                    DBar, that uberdoughy bread is over;
                                    Kashmir, last two times the dosa's been chewy.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: sailormouth

                                      Isn't Troquet's butter imported from Normandy? You get a cookie for mentioning it.

                                      When they make their own focaccia at Pescatore, it is wonderful, with big chunks of salt on top, but they usually bring in (from Iggy's, I believe).

                                      1. re: enhF94

                                        yes troquet serves normandy butter and it's killer.

                                        the pig butter at bina. swoony good.

                                    2. Petit Robert's warm french bread and the complimentary sweet/savory buttery rolls at Kingfish in Faneuil Hall. Plus the above mentioned ones like Union's cornbread, Sel de la Terre / L'Espalier (fig bread!), Oleana's spreads with the bread with zataar, anything at Scampo off the breads menu, Troquet's butter, Cafe Polonia's lard, Diva's garlic naan.... and if you get a chance, When Pigs Fly bakery