Where to Indulge in Holiday Lunch in Boston

Here’s the 2023 rundown on special weekday lunch menus available around the city this holiday season, featuring luxurious steaks, seafood, and lots more.

People dine in a glamorous restaurant with servers in white dinner jackets. Subtle Christmas decorations are hanging up.

Holiday lunch at Yvonne’s in Downtown Crossing. / Photo by Lisa Richov

One particularly fun aspect of the holiday season in Boston is special holiday lunches: Some of the city’s typically dinner-only spots add a midday meal to their schedule temporarily, and some others that do regularly serve lunch make it extra fancy for the season. It’s a nice way to jazz up your winter break—or sneak out of work for a leisurely afternoon eating lobster thermidor or wagyu steak with a side of champagne.

Here are the details for 19 holiday lunches to try around Boston in December 2023.

Last updated November 2023.

A plate of lobster ravioli in a rich sauce sits on a white marble tabletop.

1928 Beacon Hill’s lobster ravioli. / Photo by Joe St. Pierre

1928 Beacon Hill

WHEN: Wednesday to Friday throughout December, starting on December 6 | Reserve

Feeling famished after picking up gifts (perhaps some books?) along bustling Charles Street? Take a relaxing lunch break at this cozy nook off the main drag, replete with lush leather banquettes, dark walls, and marble tables. The holiday decorations will add an air of wonder this Christmastime when a special holiday lunch is available on select dates. Echoing last year’s tempting offerings, the stately options include Waldorf salad, lobster ravioli, steak frites, and a seafood tower, plus drinks like a maple Old Fashioned and a spiced cranberry Paloma.

97 Mt. Vernon St., Beacon Hill, Boston, 857-233-5662, 1928beaconhill.com


WHEN: Weekdays, November 27–December 15 | Reserve

Watch for lots of bubbles—by the glass and by the bottle—plus holiday caviar service, special cocktails, and a seasonal à la carte menu at Alcove’s upgraded December lunch service. While the 2023 menu hasn’t been finalized yet, 2022 saw cozy, winter-y dishes such as lobster bread pudding and smoked ham steak with spiced apple glaze. Planning a second lunch outing? Alcove’s seafood-focused Seaport sibling Hook + Line opened for dinner in November, and the team plans to introduce lunch service shortly after Thanksgiving. Lobster rolls, anyone? 

50 Lovejoy Wharf, West End, Boston, 617-248-0050, alcoveboston.com.

The Banks Fish House

WHEN: Daily throughout December | Reserve

This fish-focused sibling to Grill 23 & Bar serves weekday lunch and weekend brunch year-round. Come December, the usual menu (we’re particularly fond of the chowder) will be supplemented by a festive three-course prix fixe menu for $45. Stay tuned for this year’s selection of dishes.

406 Stuart St., Back Bay, Boston, 617-399-0015, thebanksboston.com.

Bistro du Midi

WHEN: Weekdays throughout December | Reserve

This Public Garden-adjacent French restaurant, around since 2009, features a fireplace on its second floor—a great place to cozy up on a chilly day. An à la carte lunch menu is available throughout the year, but in December, Bistro du Midi is offering its special holiday “Bouchon” lunch, a three-course prix fixe for $45 per person. The 2023 menu includes a choice of French onion soup or kale Caesar salad for the first course; chicken paillard, tomato ricotta tortellini, or moules au pastis for the second; and crème brûlée for the third. The team is recommending a variety of champagnes by the glass to enhance the meal.

 272 Boylston St., Back Bay, Boston, 617-279-8000, bistrodumidi.com.

Clink at the Liberty Hotel

WHEN: Weekdays throughout December | Reserve

Want an excuse to check out the Liberty’s stunning annual display of upside-down Christmas trees dangling high in the 90-foot atrium? Book a prix fixe lunch at Clink (cheekily named as a nod to the building’s history as the Charles Street Jail). Meant to be an elevated take on a classic soup-and-a-sandwich meal, the petite holiday-season tasting menu will showcase items such as a mini Maine lobster roll accompanied by a local-butternut-squash-and-parsnip soup and a baby arugula salad with apples, local goat cheese, and candied walnuts.

215 Charles St., Beacon Hill, Boston, 617-224-4004, clinkboston.com.

An elegant steakhouse bar area is decorated with a lit-up Christmas tree.

Grill 23 & Bar always decks the halls. / Courtesy photo

Grill 23 & Bar

WHEN: December 12–15 and 19–22 | Reserve

This award-winning steakhouse always gets fully decked out for the holiday season, filling its grand two-story space with wreaths, Christmas trees, and twinkling lights. All of which means it’s the perfect time of year to swing by for a power lunch that will impress with a variety of festive specials, including some throwback dishes in celebration of the restaurant’s 40th anniversary. Last year’s holiday lunch menu was jam-packed with steak, naturally, as well as plenty of lobster dishes; we can assume this year’s selection—still to be determined—will be equally luxurious.

161 Berkeley St., Back Bay, Boston, 617-542-2255, grill23.com.


WHEN: December 8, 15, 22 | Reserve (find the holiday lunch bookings near the bottom of the page)

The intimate Downtown Crossing wine bar is offering a four-course holiday lunch by chef Kathryn Britten that includes a house-made pasta with crab, prosciutto, and Meyer lemon creme fraiche; duck confit with kale, apricot, and kumquat; and more. (A vegetarian menu is available, too.) Wine pairings are optional—but recommended, as this is a killer wine bar! (And if you find yourself in the Fenway neighborhood this month, sibling spot Nathálie will also be serving a holiday lunch menu on the same dates—see details below.)

45 Province St., Downtown Crossing, Boston, 617-208-6000, haleyhenry.com. 


WHEN: Daily throughout December | Reserve

Head down the hidden pathway to find this Harvard Square mainstay, where chef Nick Deutmeyer is showcasing modern New England cuisine with a three-course prix fixe menu—stay tuned for the details. It’ll be available daily ($45) alongside the regularly available menu.

44 Brattle St., Harvard Square, Cambridge, 617-868-2255, harvestcambridge.com.

Overhead view of four oysters on ice, decorated with colorful condiments, displayed on a yellow velvet background.

You’re sure to find a gorgeously presented oyster platter among the holiday lunch offerings at Ivory Pearl. / Photo by Joe St. Pierre, styling by Madison Trapkin

Ivory Pearl

WHEN: December 18–22 | Reserve

We love this seafood-focused Brookline hideaway—sibling to cocktail stunners Blossom Bar, Baldwin Bar, and Birds of Paradise—for its creative, globetrotting entrées like Korean-inspired tuna steak frites and a seafood chili with green Hatch sauce. This year, the holiday lunch menu will amplify the restaurant’s seafood emphasis with a Feast of the Seven Fishes theme, showcasing a variety of exciting preparations—think decorated local oyster platters with garnishes like Fresno–koji espuma and shaved bottarga; Nantucket Bay scallop crudo; and a king-crab katsu sando with white barbecue sauce. And “don’t worry—there will be plenty of caviar on everything, because it’s Ivory Pearl,” promises chef Jamie Kembrey. 

1704 Beacon St., Brookline, 617-487-5297, ivorypearlbar.com.

A small bar with a royal blue wall is decorated with Christmas-y greenery and candles.

The Koji Club’s winter vibe. / Photo by Ally Schmaling

The Koji Club

WHEN: Fridays in December | Reserve (find the holiday lunch bookings near the bottom of the page)

Located at the Speedway, this cozy sake bar is offering a three-course prix fixe holiday lunch menu ($99) highlighting caviar and A5 wagyu beef. (A pescatarian menu is available as well.) Sake’s not included in the price, but you’ll definitely want to explore owner and sake expert Alyssa DiPasquale’s recommendations.

525 Western Ave., Brighton, Boston, thekojiclub.com.
Oysters, blini, and champagne are arranged on a reflective platter in front of a green velvet backdrop.

Sibling spots Little Whale Oyster Bar and Select Oyster Bar are both offering a special caviar service at lunch this holiday season. / Photo by Joe St. Pierre, styling by Madison Trapkin, set of caviar glassware courtesy of Houses & Parties

Little Whale Oyster Bar and Select Oyster Bar

WHEN: December 1–23 | Reserve Little Whale, Select

Though these seafood favorites serve all-day menus year-round, restaurateur Michael Serpa is upping the ante this December with some ultra-luxe holiday lunch specials at both locations. Through most of the month, you’ll find Island Creek Oyster caviar service, including blinis and other traditional accompaniments, for $95, which comes with a stocking stuffer: a $25 gift card to South End sibling spot Atlántico. Pair it with Bollinger Special Cuvée Champagne, available at $30 per glass, if you’re feeling extra fancy. 

Little Whale Oyster Bar, 314 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston, 857-277-0800, littlewhaleboston.com; Select Oyster Bar, 50 Gloucester St., Back Bay, Boston, 857-239-8064, selectboston.com.

Loco Taqueria & Oyster Bar

WHEN: Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, November 29–December 29 | Reserve

Loco’s new Fenway location is celebrating the holidays with a special lunch menu by executive chef Mike Sanchez. The three-course feast ($55) includes options like chorizo and lobster chowder, steak frites with mezcal guajillo béarnaise, and tres leches cake, and there’ll be holiday cocktails available too. Plus, the expansive space will be decorated starting in mid-November with tons of ornaments and a giant tequila-bottle tree.

61 Brookline Ave., Fenway, Boston, 857-277-0769, locosouthboston.com.

An elegant round dessert topped with candied kumquats is displayed on a glass plate with a wine glass on the side.

Nathálie’s hazelnut torte. / Photo by Joe St. Pierre, styling by Madison Trapkin


WHEN: December 8, 15, 22 | Reserve (find the holiday lunch bookings near the bottom of the page)

One of Boston’s finest wine bars, Nathálie continues to impress five years in with its focus on intriguing small-production, natural wines. But don’t forget that there’s food, too! Though the usual dinner menu is a compact but delightful selection of snacks and a few larger plates, for just a few beautiful days in December, executive chef Isaac Reyes and his crew are pushing the petite kitchen to its limits with a four-course holiday lunch menu featuring caviar-topped sunchoke beignets; roasted duck with black garlic, winter squash, and cherry jus; and hazelnut torte to finish, embellished with goat cheese custard, kumquats, and espresso. (There’s a vegetarian menu available upon request.) Owner Haley Fortier is also toying with which festive wines to break out for the occasion—a special sherry, perhaps, or something bubbly and fun? (See sibling spot Haley.Henry’s holiday lunch plans above.) 

186 Brookline Ave., Fenway, Boston, 857-317-3884, nathaliebar.com.

Nautilus Pier 4

WHEN: Fridays and Saturdays, November 24–December 30 | Reserve 

This Nantucket export made a splash when it expanded to Boston’s Seaport in 2021, serving a flavor-packed Asian-fusion menu that dances from Sichuan dandan noodles to barbecue Korean-style short ribs. For the holiday season, the team is adding an extra day to the usual one-lunch-a-week schedule, showcasing the restaurant’s signature Peking-inspired whole roasted duck, served with warm steamed buns and ginger-scallion rice. (A half order will be available, too.) Also planned: a crispy Vietnamese crepe with duck confit; warm lobster steamed buns with béarnaise and caviar; a weekly rotating burger special; and scallion pancakes with soy ginger dipping sauce.

300 Pier Four Blvd., Seaport District, Boston, 857-957-0998, thenautilus.com/boston.

No. 9 Park

WHEN: Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, November 30–December 23 | Reserve

Holiday lunch is an annual favorite at this Barbara Lynch Gruppo mainstay on Beacon Hill. This year is a celebration of the restaurant’s 25th anniversary, and lunch will feature goose for two, guest bartenders, and some No. 9 classics. Stay tuned for more details.

9 Park St., Beacon Hill, Boston, 617-742-9991, no9park.com.


WHEN: Fridays in December | Reserve

This upscale North End favorite—which is usually only open for dinner—will open early for Friday lunches this holiday season, featuring a Feast of the Seven Fishes-inspired à la carte menu alongside the regular menu. Chef-owner Anthony Caturano’s dishes include fluke crudo with blood orange and fennel; fried smelts with lemon caper aioli; spaghetti with bay scallops; and more. (There’s even a salt cod dish that nods to Caturano’s memories of his grandmother’s Christmas cooking.) These specials will be available throughout dinner service, too.

24 Fleet St., North End, Boston, 617-227-1577, prezza.com.


WHEN: Daily, November 24–December 31 | Reserve

The Back Bay French restaurant is marketing this one as brunch, but it happens daily and is available from morning into the afternoon, so we’ll allow it under the lunch umbrella! Alongside the usual brunch menu, look for holiday specials like eggnog French toast, gingerbread pancakes, peppermint chocolate mousse, and boozy hot cocoa.

900 Boylston St., Back Bay, Boston,  617-247-0400, rochambeauboston.com.

Overhead view of an elaborate stuffed lobster dish on a white platter, surrounded by colorful glassware and holiday ornaments.

Yvonne’s lobster Savannah. / Photo by Joe St. Pierre, styling by Madison Trapkin


WHEN: December 1, 8, 15, 16, 22 | Reserve

Swanky downtown hot spot Yvonne’s carries on the very long legacy of its predecessor at 2 Winter Pl., Locke-Ober, with an annual holiday lunch full of glamour, nostalgia, and modern interpretations of the historical restaurant’s classics. You’ll want to dress up for this white-tablecloth feast, as servers in timeless white dinner jackets will be making martinis and torching baked Alaska tableside, not to mention bringing out elegant dishes like a 32-ounce prime rib chop with smoked-mushroom gravy; black-truffle roast chicken with duck-fat potatoes; and the eye-catching lobster Savannah, a stunning 3-pound specimen. Just be sure to make reservations ASAP (required!) if you want to partake in this highly popular annual tradition.

 2 Winter Place, Downtown Crossing, Boston, 617-267-0047, yvonnesboston.com.

A version of this guide appears in the print edition of the December 2023/January 2024 issue with the headline “It’s the Most Wonderful Lunch of the Year.”