Best of Boston

2003 Best Late-Night Dining

Franklin Cafe

In a town that goes to bed early, it’s nice to know there’s still a place where insomniacs can get a decent bite to eat. The Franklin Café, with its candlelit tables and always-packed bar, is that place, serving up a gourmet menu until 1:30 a.m. every day—even in the late hours of a deserted Sunday night. And this is not your ordinary bar food: Chef Steve Ryan serves up sophisticated fare such as garlic grilled calamari with pesto and an unbeatable spicy black pepper—seared tuna. Steak lovers can get their fix here, too—one taste of the bone-in beef tenderloin with garlicky spinach and even the most die-hard night owl will sleep well.

278 Shawmut Ave., Boston, 617-350-0010,