Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >
Jun 13, 2012 05:49 PM

East Arlington needs a Cafe/Sandwich/Coffee shop!

Why are there no cafes in East Arlington? I long for a place to lounge, have a sandwich, enjoy coffee, do some work on my computer, bring my kids after school, hold a book group gathering, meet neighbors... etc....

East Arlington is sadly missing a place where local folks can hang out. Quebrada has great baked goods.... good coffee... LIMITED seating, no lunch menu and NO wireless. The other coffee place has no space.

Someone (NOT PANERA!) please open a cafe! Diesel/Block 11 - like cafe

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
    1. re: gourmaniac

      That's in Arlington Center... I'm thinking of something in near the Capitol Theatre

    2. Mango, You must be able to read minds. Not only have I been saying this for years, but I spent a good five minutes lamenting this to my SO just the other day. Jam 'n Java isn't bad and is extremely accessible via the bike path. But it's really in Arlington Center. And I'm underwhelmed with the coziness factor.

      My personal wish/business idea? To open up this type of cafe (maybe alongside a bread bakery) in the long-vacant Hollywood Video space, or the odd storefront near Za that has at various times been vacant; a political campaign headquarters; and that random secondhand store. I welcome anyone willing to take this idea and run with it. :)

      10 Replies
      1. re: chevrelove

        Oh yes, I was driving by the empty Hollywood Video and thinking the same thing! The other space you mentioned would be great too. A few years ago I wrote the owners of Diesel Cafe and True Grounds asking to please open a spot in East Arlington.... I'm still dreaming.

        1. re: mangotango

          I heard that the Holllywood Video in East Arlington is going to house a steak house or grille.

          1. re: rubyl

            Horrible news. Really. How firm are these plans? Is there a chance this won't happen? With Frank's, Jimmy's, and Tango all so close, another steak house is the last thing the area needs. And imagine the parking cluster...

            1. re: rubyl

              Hollywood Video is going to be Menotomy Grille. I saw it on the agenda of the Arlington Development Board agenda. I live in Arlington and the only real steak house is Tango's; Jimmy's does not have quality steak and Frank's in Cambridge is not very good either.

              1. re: rubyl

                Okay, I'll reserve further judgment until learning more. But I have to wonder about putting a full service restaurant in that space and all the parking headaches it will cause. The lot is already at capacity around dinnertime. That is why I always thought a bakery/cafe/coffeehouse would work in that spot - less need for parking spots at peak times.

                1. re: chevrelove

                  Update on Menotomy Grill and Tavern: The owners are apparently actively requesting the appropriate licenses, including an "All Alcohol License." Potential parking problems notwithstanding, it seems like this could nicely fill another void in Arlington's dining options. Eager to see what the menu offerings and restaurant space look like as this materializes.

                  1. re: chevrelove

                    Assume there is a connection to the wine store of the same name?

                    1. re: Bob Dobalina

                      Not necessarily. The name associated with the restaurant license is not one I recognize from the MB&W team. Plus, Menotomy (being the historical name of the town) is commonly-used in Arlington.

                      1. re: chevrelove

                        "Menotomy (being the historical name of the town) is commonly-used in Arlington." - learn something new every day.

                        1. re: Bob Dobalina

                          wikipedia: Menotomy: an Algonquian word meaning "swift running water".

                          When I lived in East Arlington more than a decade ago, just as the local restaurant development started, it was all too easy to describe Arlington food as "monotony."

        2. Get a chicken parm at Sabatinos and sneak it into the Fox Library..

          1 Reply
          1. re: grant.cook

            There is Barismo, but it's more of a bare bones takeout coffee shop -- definitely not a cozy place!! In the center, up the road a few blocks, Gail Ann coffee shop is a quaint alternative to Starbucks.

          2. Totally agree - amazing coffee at Barismo if you can tolerate the lame and slow attitude (no iced coffee at 2p and not willing to ice it on the spot - typical example - and cash only????) and no place to hang out, and surprisingly good coffee with the top baked goods at Quebrada, but again no place to linger - seems a really great opportunity for somebody....hopefully soon... and preferably not Starbucks...(Java Joes is far from East Arlington as well as far from decent coffee and bakery goods - I miss the original Carberrys.....)

            1 Reply
            1. re: rlh

              Just heard the new, bigger barismo has opened! Anyone check it out yet?