Best company cafeteria
What, no creamed tuna and lime Jell-O? From morning to night, Massachusetts General Hospital's Eat Street Café chips away at the stereotypes about hospital food. With dozens of stations in operation, the selection on any given day is mind-boggling. At the deli, you can opt for ham-and-provolone on French bread with pesto or a moo-shu-pork wrap; hot specials may include herb-roasted pork loin, warm lemon-chicken salad, or pasta with leeks and butternut squash; for dessert, a root-beer float from the full-service ice-cream bar just might hit the spot. Even breakfast looks bright: grab a cinnamon-chip muffin if the Belgian-waffle bar doesn't grab you first.
Likewise, EF Center, the Cambridge language school, explodes notions about school cafeterias. Lingo is a lovely place with patio seating that presents daily specials with gourmet leanings, from muffalettas to roasted-red-pepper-and-feta pizza and grilled chicken with mango salsa to fresh strawberry shortcake. Create-your-own options abound as well, covering both pasta and stir-fry dishes. Lingo even has a full bar, which opens at five; guess martinis speak a language we can all understand.
Eat Street Café at Massachusetts General Hospital, 55 Fruit Street, Boston, (617) 724-8879. Lingo at EF Center, 1 Education Street, Cambridge, (617) 619-1000.