photo credit: Natalie Schaefer

Sofra review image



1 Belmont St, Cambridge
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We don’t really know what the afterlife has in store for us. Maybe we’ll be carried off into the next world on the golden wings of angels who smell like cinnamon and sound like Morgan Freeman. Or maybe we’ll realize that the real heaven was that time at the deli when the guy behind the counter accidentally gave us two bags of salt and vinegar chips. We have no control over what’s going to happen to us, but at the very least, we can hope to be buried at the massive Mount Auburn Cemetery in West Cambridge. That way, at least we’ll be next to Sofra.

From the same people behind Sarma and Oleana, Sofra is a tiny Middle Eastern counter-service spot that’s almost always cramped, because when people come to Sofra, they come back. And even if you’re not going to spend the afterlife across the street, you’ll find yourself spending a lot of time here. It’s where you’ll go to take out tahini hummus and flatbreads for a picnic. It’s where you’ll enjoy a long breakfast of soft boiled eggs and feta when you take a mental health day from work. And it’s where you’ll stop on your way home to pick up meat pies and sausage pitas that are way better than your usual pizza delivery.

Sofra review image

photo credit: Natalie Schaefer

The Sofra experience is all about trying one really creative dish after another that you’ll be thinking about for a long time after you’ve had it. Seemingly simple things that taste great, smell great, and look like little works of art, made with phyllo dough instead of papier-mache.

You’re going to linger at Sofra, not because it’s a regular cafe where people bang away at manuscripts while nursing the same cup of coffee for three hours, but because it’s the rare cafe where you can sit down for three meals a day. You’ll grab a chai tea and a pastry (hopefully outside on the patio), and then you’ll make your way back up to the counter to order whatever else has caught your eye. It’s not a bad place to spend eternity, really, or, at the very least, a long breakfast that stretches into lunch.

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Food Rundown

Sofra review image

photo credit: Natalie Schaefer

Cheese Borek

A piece of hot, creamy cheese trapped inside a crispy, flakey crust. Free the cheese and you’ll be rewarded.

Sofra review image

photo credit: Natalie Schaefer

Sausage Pita

It isn’t a pita pocket, but rather a piece of flatbread topped with sausage and spices and then folded over. If, for whatever reason, you don’t want this because you’re really dedicated to the pocket construction method, then you’ll be missing out.

Grape Leaves

It’s always fun to bite off the end of a grape leaf while pretending you’re an obese 1920’s gangster chomping off the end of a cigar, and it’s even more fun when the grape leaf is stuffed with dill and pinenuts to go with the rice.

Sofra review image

photo credit: Natalie Schaefer

Beet Tzatziki

If you’ve ever been tempted to recreate the food fight scene from Hook you can do so with the beet tzatziki, a fluffy pink dip that looks like a cartoon food come to life. Or you could, you know, eat it, because it’s really good.

Sofra review image

photo credit: Natalie Schaefer

Turkish Breakfast

Soft boiled eggs are way better than hard boiled eggs - they’re runny, creamy, warm, and never rubbery. Here, they’re baked inside of shredded phyllo and served alongside yogurt and fried cheese balls. Eat this.

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