The best cafés to work from in Boston

August 27, 2015
 

One of my favorite parts about working at Metis is work-from-home Fridays. It’s nothing against my esteemed colleagues – in fact, being surrounded by smart, dynamic people Monday through Thursday is another reason why I love working here. But getting out of the office once a week does wonders for productivity.

While some spend Fridays working from the comfort of their couches, I tend to prefer the coffee shop atmosphere. But not just any coffee shop. When you’re working from a café, there are several essential criteria:

  • Free, secure and reliable Wi-Fi

  • Quality coffee and a menu that goes well beyond breakfast pastries, or at the very least, puts bacon in a pastry

  • Ample seating and plenty of outlets

  • Work-conducive atmosphere

Believe it or not, finding these places in Boston is no walk in the park. I’ve spent years researching the best spots across neighborhoods, and today I’m pleased to share my findings with you.

Allston:

When I first stepped foot inside In-House Café, a Yelp favorite, I realized immediately that I had misjudged this place by its semi-shabby exterior. Since then, I’ve spent many a day camping out in this neighborhood Allston café that feels like a mix between your foreign grandmother’s living room and a hipster coffee joint. Order a big, delicious breakfast (try the Sweet Royale) at the counter, get yourself an armchair or a table, sip your coffee and get to work.

Seaport:

Located inside District Hall, a civic meeting and event space, Brew is the perfect space for a day-long work session (except on weekends, when it’s closed). The atmosphere feels a bit like a university student center, but one where everyone’s majoring in entrepreneurship and plotting product launches. The Wi-Fi’s good, outlets and seating are plentiful, and it’s quiet enough that you can certainly take a quick call without having to mute yourself. When hunger strikes, I recommend the bacon, egg and cheese croissant and/or waiting until lunchtime when you can order off the menu from Gather, also located in District Hall.

Downtown Crossing:

Caffé Nero, where have you been all my life? Tucked in the theater district, this surprisingly big café boasts high ceilings, elegant chandeliers, walls lined with books and gorgeous communal tables as well as arm chairs and personal booths. It’s the type of place where you want to Instagram your latte and read the print edition of the New York Times. While I wish the menu offered a bit more variety, the pre-made, toasted sandwiches that I’ve tried have been delish and the coffee is top-notch.

South End:

Perhaps you’ve heard of Mohr & McPherson the furniture store. But did you know this place also has a full-fledged café on the basement level? With quality coffee, dependable Wi-Fi and awesome sandwiches (try the Turkey Avocado – thank me later), Mohr & McPherson is a great option when you find yourself in the South End. Plus, you can sit in a chair that’s probably more expensive and nicer than anything you own.

Southie:

Truth be told, the dearth of work-from-home style cafes was one of my biggest reservations when I moved to Southie in 2014. But since then, I’ve discovered Cranberry. It’s not a destination by any means, but if you live or find yourself in the neighborhood, this isn’t a bad choice, especially if you like to enjoy an actual meal while you cross things off your to-do list. While the café is small, you can almost always find a seat, and the table in the back is ideal for getting in the zone.

What are your favorite spots to work at when you need to get outside the office? Send a tweet to let us know.


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