Area Four promotes itself as simply “bakery, Coffee, Bar, Oven.” Located in the Technology Square area of Kendall Square, Cambridge and surrounded by the techie and grad student crowd.
Upon walking into the restaurant there is a little bit of a wow factor with regards to the space. The feel is MIT lab chic with high ceilings, clean lines and floor to ceiling windows that bring in an abudance of light. The center of the main restaurant surrounds an enormous oven where chef’s go about their business with a smile for every customer. There is a café area off to the side that was filled with folks working away on their laptops while drinking coffee and enjoying what the bakery had to offer. Metal and dark wood are the only colors in the restaurant that gives it a bit of a sterile, cold feel, however there is nothing whatsoever cold about the staff. Everyone has a smile and customer service seems to be top of mind.
We started with asking for seating outside but soon realized in the shade and with the wind it was just that little bit too cold for us. We moved back inside and were escorted to one of the high top four seater tables. The clientele for brunch was a mix of families and friends taking their time and enjoying a relaxed Sunday. The vibe is very cool, retro Cambridge, a little different from my usual South End of Back Bay brunching places. I liked it.
The brunch menu is fun with a mix of breakfast and lunch choices and has something for everyone from baked goods, to “The Hot Mess” and pizzas. I was immediately drawn to the description of the Hot Veggie Mess but knew I wanted bacon with it. At the bottom of their menu it does state… “NO SUBSTITUTIONS, PLEASE…but put some bacon on it for $2 (excludes pizza)” So, I knew Area Four would be very happy to oblige my choice and they were!
I loved how it was presented in its own skillet with quite possibly the most perfect looking sunny side up eggs I have seen. Once the yoke was broken you get a glimpse of all the goodies underneath from home fries, mushrooms, spinach and cheese. It all worked so well together and made for a thoroughly enjoyable brunch. I asked for the Banana Pepper Relish on the side and I am glad I did as I really didn’t like the taste. I am not a fan of anything pickled and these were pickled and extremely spicy hot. A little too much for me. Everything else was perfect!
My friends went with the The Hot Mess (meat) and a selection of sides of eggs, bacon and sausage. Everyone was happy with their choices and all plates were picked completely clean.
Enjoyed with strong coffee for me and cappuccinos for my friend, our early afternoon brunch was a lovely experience. The waiter who made the cappuccinos even came over to my friends to thank them for enjoying her drinks when they ordered a second one.
Overall, I loved my first visit to Area Four. I enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere, the fun brunch menu and the very nice service. I definitely need to go back to try out the dinner menu, especially the pizzas which seemed to be getting a lot of positive buzz.
I really do need to get over to Cambridge more often!