Algiers Coffee House Shutters in Harvard Square

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Algiers Coffee House. / Photo by sushiesque via Flickr/Creative Commons

Algiers Coffee House. / Photo by sushiesque via Flickr/Creative Commons

After a 45-year run, another business has left Harvard Square: Algiers Coffee House has served its last pot of mint tea, Boston Restaurant Talk reported.

The iconic café announced the news in a Facebook post, without citing a reason for the closure.

Its departure is another change in what’s proven to be a tumultuous year for businesses in the square, with Harvard University construction and rising neighborhood costs shuttering businesses like Au Bon Pain and Uno, and displacing Clover and (possibly) Out of Town News.

Café Algiers filled a unique niche in the area with cozy, quiet digs, light Mediterranean fare, like green falafel and baba ganoush, and libations like espresso, tea, and orange mint hot chocolate.

Since its closure, lamentations and frustrations have flooded the web, with fans praising the shop for its welcoming atmosphere and enduring history. Two Best of Boston nods also attest to Algiers’s longevity—the café won best espresso in 1981, and best cafe in 1992. Algiers was shouted out by Bondir’s Jason Bond in our chef’s guide to Cambridge.

“Their menu probably hasn’t changed in 20 years, but that hardly matters because I always get the same thing: a Merguean sandwich with an Arabic coffee,” Bond previously told Boston. “During non-peak hours it’s one of the few really quiet places in Harvard Square, so it’s a great place to catch up on emails or read a book.”

Despite this sad news, Harvard Square isn’t a café desert. The newest Tatte Bakery & Café moved into a former Panera Bread space earlier this month, and a new Flour Bakery is on its way. California’s Blue Bottle Coffee also announced the Cambridge ‘hood will kick off its 2017 Boston expansion.

Cafe Algiers, 40 Brattle St., Cambridge, harvardsquare.com.

Source URL: https://www.bostonmagazine.com/restaurants/2016/10/24/algiers-coffee-house-closed-harvard-square/