At the intersection of Harvard, MIT, and Boston you'll find Kendall Square. This area is one of my favorite neighborhoods to frequent in Boston.

Located in the city of Cambridge, MA, Kendall Square is an undeniably exciting place to be. In the company of large pharmaceutical firms and research institutes, tech giants like Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Twitter have all made homes for themselves in Kendall. The streets buzz with an air of innovation, and the forward-thinking nature of Kendall's institutions is reflected in the food here. 

The cafés, fast casual joints, and restaurants all source local and sustainably produced ingredients. Kendall Square is a very vibrant area culturally, and you definitely see that through the restaurants and food trucks in the area. There are so many unique and affordable places to eat.

As an intern in the area, lunchtime is more like playtime for me. To all the experience-hungry and budget-crunched interns out there, here's a list of some of my most loved places in Kendall Square that will leave you and your wallet full of the good stuff. 

Tatte Bakery and Cafe

Tatte has French and Middle Eastern flares, serving up incredible coffee, genius pastries, breads, sandwiches, salads, and more. I struggle to contain my excitement every time I walk into Tatte. The voluminous, buttery, flakey croissants take my breath away—so do the delicate pastries and cakes. The portions here are generous. Tatte's signature shakshuka, which comes out still sizzling in a ginormous cast-iron pan with challah bread balancing on its handle, makes for a hearty and mouthwatering lunch at the office the next day. Even on the weekends, I can't escape the pull of Tatte. Their weekend brunch all day menu is simply to decadent to deny.

Clover Food Lab

I love Clover so much that, every day, I have to tell myself not to go there for lunch. The all-vegetarian restaurant began as a food truck and has since expanded to several restaurant locations. Clover is a literal food laboratory. Concocted in Erlenmeyer flasks, homemade sodas blended with ingredients like banana and carrot are on full display by the register. Moreover, Clover is always experimenting with new menu items, highlighting the fresh produce they get through CSAs. 

My favorite thing to order right now is the Blue Oyster Mushroom Sandwich which is a fluffy pita stuffed with fried buttermilk-battered mushrooms, kale lightly dressed with lemon juice, sliced tomatoes, and miso tarragon mayonnaise. Popular staple items on the menu include the Chickpea Fritter Sandwich and the Egg and Eggplant Sandwich. All of Clover's sandwiches can be made into platters that include an additional side salad. Salads aside, be sure to get yourself an order of Rosemary French Fries.

Bon Me

Bon Me take-out boxes are ubiquitous in the office. Like Clover, the chain began as a food truck. After winning the 2010 City of Boston's Food Truck Contest, Bon Me opened a brick-and-mortar restaurant in Kendall. The most popular item on the menu is the Bon Me Sandwich—a take on the classic Vietnamese bánh mì. In addition to the sandwich, the restaurant offers the of-the-moment bowl with a base of rice, noodles, or lettuce. Choose a protein (check out the protein of the day), add a dressing, and you've got yourself a bowl of fresh and zesty goodness.


Every time I walk by Za (think: piz-ZA), my limbs melt at the smell of warm, sweet dough firing in the pizza over. Za just serves pizza and salads, but really, what more could you ask for? The pizzas here are actual pies. Slices of the Beef Bomb, Grilled Chicken and Broccoli, and Mac 'n' Cheese pizzas are so densely topped, you need two hands to pick up one of these beauties. True to the nature of Kendall's restaurants, the menu changes seasonally to feature local ingredients. On Zagat, Za is rated #1 for cheap eats in Boston. So grab some of your intern friends, head on over to Za, and dig into some delicious pizza.

Area Four

There is no shortage of noteworthy pizza in Kendall Square. Area Four holds a special place in my heart for different reasons than Za. The pizza dough here is fermented for 30 hours. Take one bite, and you'll be able to taste the difference right away. Perfectly charred and crispy outside, fluffy and tender on the inside, Area Four's dough is what keeps me coming back. It's also the perfect vehicle for the fried egg you can add on top of your pie. While the pizzas here are less outside-the-box than Za's, they are nonetheless delicious. That said, the anchovy pizza is low-key my favorite. If you're looking to get your pizza and café fix all-in-one, look no further than Area Four—the café inside the restaurant serves up rich coffee and homemade pastries. 

Mother Juice

Need a cleanse after all that pizza? Mother Juice (aka MoJu) has you covered. 100% organic, Mother Juice's cold-pressed juices, smoothies, breakfast bowls, toasts, and salads will get you fueled to seize the day at the office. MoJu has nailed the art and science of making nutrient-dense juices with intricate flavor profiles. I don't think you can go wrong with anything on the menu, so if you can't decide what to order, let the names of the menu items guide you. Unicorn Blood, The Cure, Life on Mars, The Health Bomb Diggity all sound pretty darn good to me.

The list doesn't end here. I still haven't tried all of the restaurant's I've wanted to in Kendall Square. But this is the reason why I love the area. In Kendall, I'm constantly experimenting—not just with food but also with rooftop gardens, plazas for people-watching, and kayak trips on the Charles. So if you're interning around Boston, take some time to venture out of the capital city and experience all of the fun, quirky neighborhoods the Greater Boston area has to offer.