18 Black-Owned Restaurants in Boston Open for Takeout or Delivery
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The pandemic has impacted every business in Boston, but the challenges can be unique for Boston’s Black restaurateurs, who are already underrepresented in the local dining scene. For one thing, Black communities have been disproportionately hard-hit by the coronavirus, which is shining a light on race-related health disparities across the country. In addition, Black business owners are historically less well-capitalized than their white counterparts, according to the Black Hospitality Coalition, which recently formed to support them. Right now, of course, the nation is reacting to the killing of George Floyd and other Black folks at the hands of police through rallies and demonstrations—but one way to support the Black Lives Matter ethos at all times is to support and spend money at Black-owned businesses. So whether you’re craving something spicy from a Caribbean cookbook, hand-made pastas and gelato, or classic soul food like fried chicken and collards, here are 18 favorite Black-owned restaurants to order from right now.
Note: Due to the uncertain nature of the present moment, as well as what it takes for full-service restaurants to pivot to takeout operations, these options are subject to change. This post will be updated. Please call a restaurant directly if you have questions about ordering. Additionally, the City of Boston and the Massachusetts Restaurant Association are both tracking self-reported takeout options with their own online portals. Looking for other takeout and delivery options? Check out all of Boston magazine’s dining guides for the pandemic. Last update: June 2, 2020.
Chef Anthony Caldwell’s long-envisioned restaurant debuted in January, many years in the making. The Dorchester native’s menu is inspired by the area’s diversity, featuring Southern American fare with Asian-inspired twists—think: smoked brisket banh mi; kimchi and collard greens; and crispy-fried banana egg rolls on the new takeout-Sunday brunch menu. 50Kitchen is currently open Thursday-Saturday from noon until 7 p.m., and Sundays from 11:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Order online for pickup, or get delivery via Grubhub.
1450 Dorchester Ave., Fields Corner, Dorchester, 617-474-2433, 50kitchen.com.
It’s business as usual at this beloved Trinidadian counter-service spot in Mattapan, which has for 30 years offered up gargantuan portions of spicy, succulent meats, slaw, and starch nestled in soft roti bread. The oxtail and goat are especially excellent. Call ahead or order in person from a masked- six-foot distance.
1188 Blue Ave., Mattapan, 617-298-9850.
Go ahead, add on an extra order of spongy injera with your takeout order from this JP spot. The tangy flatbread is the perfect match for the vibrantly spiced main dishes, like lega tibs, beef braised with onions, fresh tomatoes, chili peppers, and the classic Ethiopian spice blend berbere; and the vegetarian-friendly featuring yekik alicha (simmered yellow split peas) and more. Bonus: Owner Yosef Haile suggests wine pairings available by the bottle for each takeout option, and also sells the house tej (honey wine) to-go. Order online for pickup.
389 Centre St., Jamaica Plain, 617-522-6453, bluenileincjp.com.
This Dot favorite serves up grass-fed burgers with fresh and creative toppings, like the Olympus: a godly stack of beef, feta cheese, roasted red peppers, kalamata olive tapenade, and Greek-style tzatziki. Also on the takeout menu are salads, fries, and chicken sandwiches, plus non-beef burgers, like a vegetarian version made with sweet potato, and a jerk salmon patty inspired by owner Tambo Barrow’s Trinidadian and Bajan roots. Bred is open Monday-Saturday from noon-8 p.m. for takeout and app delivery.
2255 Dorchester Ave., Lower Mills, Dorchester, 617-698-0103, bredgourmet.com.
Cape Verdean cuisine is a unique blend of West African and Portuguese flavors, from seafood to heirloom grains to tropical fruits. You’ll find all of the above at Cesaria, which is also a live music venue, but for now it’s open for takeout every day. This Dot spot specializes in katchupa, a spicy stew of hominy, beans, pork, cabbage, and linguiça or fish that’s the national dish of the nation of islands. The takeout menu also features wines and beers. Call or order online for pickup, or find Cesaria on Grubhub or Doordash for delivery.
266 Bowdoin St., Dorchester, 617-282-1998, restaurantcesaria.com.
The Coast Café
This Cambridge mainstay is best-known for jumbo, crunchy, fried chicken wings and thighs, but the smoked, glazed, and braised barbecue pork ribs are also soul-satisfying. Luckily, the soul food café has a combo-chicken and ribs plate on the takeout menu. Also, don’t skip house-made desserts, like slices of cake or coconut wonder bars. The Coast is currently open Wednesday through Friday from 3-8 p.m., and Saturdays from 1-5 p.m. Call to order or get delivery via Grubhub.
233 River Street, Cambridge, 617-354-7644, coastsoulcafe.com.
Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen
A cornerstone of the South End community, this soul food restaurant and music venue continues to be there with takeout every Friday-Sunday from noon-9 p.m., plus cross-promotional live music streams with Roxbury bar District 7 Tavern. Follow District 7 and Darryl’s on Instagram for music news, and order online to pair it with the likes of fried catfish club sandwiches; chicken and waffles; rum raisin bread pudding; and more signature dishes.
604 Columbus Ave., Roxbury, 617-536-1100, darrylscornerbarboston.com.
Flames Jamaican Restaurants
All four locations of this Caribbean group remain open for takeout, so head to Flames for Jamaican flavors like ackee and saltfish; callaloo; and spicy jerk chicken wings. Call your preferred location to order.
663 Morton St., Mattapan, 617-296-4972; 746 Huntington Ave., Boston, 617-734-1911; 469 Blue Hill Ave., Dorchester, 617-989-0000; 806 Main St., Brockton, 508-510-5608, flamesjamaicanrestaurants.com.
Jamaica Mi Hungry
Any day besides Sunday, you can get chef-owner Ernie Campbell’s jerk chicken, curries, rice and beans, sweet plantains, and more Jamaica Plain, at his still-new storefront—and beginning on Juneteenth (Friday, June 19), also in Allston. Jamaica Mi Hungry is the third pop-up to take over 182 Western Ave., following Cafe Beatrice and Rabottini’s Pizza, serving take-out lunch from its yellow-and-green food truck in the parking lot for the summer. The brand will transition into the restaurant space in the fall. The Jackson Square restaurant is open for takeout Monday-Saturday from 11 a.m.-6 p.m., and the Allston food truck lot will open June 19 and operate Monday through Friday from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
225 Centre St., Jamaica Plain, 617-708-0465, jamaicamihungry.com.
Lucy Ethiopian Cafe
This friendly little Symphony-side gem remains open daily for takeout fare like the Addis combo, our go-to platter of spicy red lentils, garlicky-ginger split peas, and spiced spinach and potatoes, served with injera. While breakfast is on hold for now, ask about traditional coffee and drinks like the sweet and nutty besso, a shake made with barley and chocolate. Lucy is open for takeout daily from noon-8 p.m. (7 p.m. on Sundays).
334 Massachusetts Ave., Boston, 617-563-0415.
The third-generation owner of one of Boston’s original food trucks, Geo Lambert recently opened a counter-service spot inside Dorchester Brewing Company. Now, you can swing by for curbside beer pickup and Lambert’s takeout ’cue, like signature ribs, chicken, and pulled pork; plus mac and cheese, sandwiches, and sides like grilled corn on the cob with house aioli and paprika. For now, M&M BBQ is open daily from 11:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Call or order online for pickup, or find M&M on UberEats for delivery.
1250 Massachusetts Ave., Dorchester, 617-307-7674, mandmbbq.com.
Linguine, paccheri, bucatini—chef-owner Douglass Williams has mastered the fine art of pasta-making. (In fact, he was just honored by Food & Wine as one of the country’s best new chefs.) He’s also skilled in the ways of arancini; North Shore-style fritto misti; and roasted chicken and orzo. His South End restaurant is currently available daily for takeout, but even in the takeout era, Mondays are where it’s at: Get five entree-sized pastas, salad, and bread for $70 each “mangia Monday.” Mida also offers wines for takeout, and bulk items like house-brined olives and fresh gelato flavors by the pint.
782 Tremont St., Boston, 617-936-3490, midaboston.com.
Oasis Vegan Veggie Parlor
Healthy, affordable vegan fare—plus a big dose of good vibes—awaits at this friendly counter-service Dorchester spot. Build plates of seasoned grains, like African couscous; lentil and other stews; and veggie sides like curry cabbage. There are also salads and sandwiches, some vegan desserts, and juices and shakes, including the Ginger Bomb, augmented with cayenne pepper, lime, and apple juice. Oasis is currently open Thursday-Sunday from noon-7 p.m for takeout.
340 Washington St., Dorchester, 617-237-9033.
Pikliz International Kitchen
Though it takes its name from a condiment common to Haitian cuisine, this small Somerville spot serves up a variety of Caribbean flavors, including Creole-spiced flash-fried pork, Jamaican-style jerk, and stewed red snapper. Black rice (tinted with djon djon mushrooms) and Haitian beef patties should be on every order, though. Pikliz is open for takeout and UberEats delivery daily from 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
288 Broadway, Somerville, 617-625-6255, piklizint.com.
Pit Stop Barbecue
A Mattapan landmark since 1985, this tiny orange smoke shack is always takeout-only, and it continues its usual weekly schedule of being open only Thursday-Saturday from 3-11 p.m. (open at 2 p.m. Saturdays)—just with more social distance. Swing by for giant, tender spareribs; mashed yams loaded with butter and brown sugar; and—if it hasn’t yet sold out—can’t-miss banana pudding. Pit Stop is also available on UberEats.
888A Morton St., Mattapan, 617-436-0485, pitstopbarbecue.com.
Soleil shines. Housed inside the historic Bolling building in Roxbury’s Nubian Square, the restaurant radiates warmth and familiarity, thanks to the menu of finely crafted home-cookery offered by owner Cheryl Straughter, who previously helmed Keith’s Place, a now-closed neighborhood favorite in Dorchester. At Soleil, named for her granddaughter, the sunny chef proffers day-to-night dishes—from salmon cakes, burrito wraps and other “breakfast tidbits,” to a fried catfish dinner accompanied by rib-sticking sides like “buttery cinnamon” sweet potato mash. Takeout and delivery are available through the website, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
2306 Washington St., Boston, 617-541-9000, soleilboston.com.
This Roxbury restaurant enjoys a high profile—and no, that’s not a reference to the giraffe in its logo. Rather, we’re talking about its longstanding rep (going back to its previous digs in Roslindale) as a topnotch destination for delicious West African cuisine. In particular, you’ll want to try the namesake suya kabobs, sliced beef or chicken spiced with Nigerian herbs. And don’t miss the spot’s famous fufu, dumplings made from pounded grain that are perfect for dipping in soups and sauces, including a veggie-friendly, creamy peanut stew. Takeout and delivery, fulfilled by DoorDash, available through the website.
185 Dudley St., Boston, 617-708-0245, ordersuyajoint.com.
Tawakal Halal Cafe
Serving up Somali and other East African and Middle Eastern fare in a humble house in Eastie’s Jeffries Point neighborhood got this family-owned spot the attention of Bon Appetit magazine for its fresh breads and hand pies filled with aromatic meats, chickpeas, and greens, as well as the namesake Tawakal plate of turmeric and paprika-tinted chicken and tomato stew. For now, it’s open Tuesday-Sunday from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. for takeout, sharing menu updates on Facebook.
389 Maverick St., East Boston, 617-418-5890.