The menu at Big Guy’s Café and Grill is written in chalk on a big blackboard behind the counter, which reflects the eatery's casual, homey atmosphere. Covering all meals of the day and a variety of cuisines such as Turkish, American, and Italian, the menu board features a falafel wrap, lamb burger, and beef kabob as well as the BG Special, a plate overflowing with two stacks of pancakes or french toast, two eggs, and a choice of meat. Amid the coffee-scented space, the kitchen staff also serves specialty pizzas, most of which pay homage to different cities. The Boston pie, for example, unites mozzarella, tomato, and pesto, and the Nashville pie flavors chicken and onions with barbecue sauce. Additionally, the restaurant’s downtown location makes it a popular spot for business lunches or fueling up before an afternoon of skyscraper climbing.
A restored, 14-foot whaling dory hangs from the ceiling at the Barracuda Tavern—a tribute to the tavern's husband-wife owners' honeymoon in Key West, according to The Thrillist Boston. It's one of many nautical accents in the eatery, which also features nautical wheels, an antique ship lamp, a menu packed with seafood specialties, and an overprotective clownfish just looking for his son. An L-shaped bar juts out from exposed-brick and blue walls and it's where guests dine on tapas like buffalo shrimp, spicy scallops, and Key West conch fritters or sip seasonal drafts and glasses of wine. Along with small plates, the menu catalogs seafood specialties such as clam dinners and New England clam chowder, plus crab-cake sandwiches and burgers.
Located at 4 Somerset St. in Beacon Hill, Café Quattro is just around the corner from the State House and up the street from Suffolk Superior Court and Suffolk University. Its menu offers an impressive variety of quality pizzas, paninis, wraps, subs and sandwiches made from only the freshest ingredients, as well as all your favorite coffee drinks. Bite into the Chicken Pesto Panini (grilled chicken marinated in basil pesto, topped with roasted red peppers and mozzarella cheese) and you will exclaim “Mamma Mia!” so loudly that someone will almost certainly shush you (unless you sing the words a la Freddie Mercury in “Bohemian Rhapsody,” because everyone loves that song). If vegetarian is more your moda, try the Caprese Wrap: fresh mozzarella, sliced tomatoes, baby salad greens, roasted red peppers, and red onion, drizzled with a tasty balsamic vinaigrette.
On the countertop at Cakeology—a Top 5 finisher in the 2011 Boston A-List's Best Cupcakes race and a winner of Food Network's Cupcake Wars—trays of the day's fresh cupcakes and French macarons stand at attention. Six best-selling cupcakes, including boston cream pie, carrot cake, and double chocolate, grace the menu year-round. They're joined each week by three rotating flavors, such as key-lime pie, Guinness, and white-chocolate coconut. Sharing these treats with all of Boston and Cambridge is The Brucemobile, a yellow delivery van painted with a picture of Cakeology's panda mascot, Bruce, whose bamboo cupcakes have yet to make the menu.