See how the sausage is made – almost literally – at these kitchen-side seats where you can watch the culinary goings-on while you eat. From intimate little tables for two that put you right in the middle of the action to first-come, first-served counters, you can see cookers, shuckers, ceviche-makers and sushi rollers doing their thing. Scroll on for 40+ spots where you can dine with a view.
Historic Concord’s 80 Thoreau is home to a four-seat counter that overlooks the restaurant’s open kitchen. Dine here on Thursdays, Fridays or Saturdays and enjoy a five-course tasting menu carefully created and curated by chef Carolyn Johnson and her team.
Alden & Harlow
40 Brattle Street Cambridge, MA 02138 617-864-2100
Alden & Harlow’s high-top chef's table provides the perfect opportunity for curious diners (in parties of two or four) to take a peek under the hood to see how the engine of a restaurant runs. Guests can watch cooks work their culinary magic in the rustic-chic kitchen, all while enjoying a four-course meal.
The shuckers take center stage at B&G Oysters, where guests can watch them in action behind the Oyster Bar. The shellfish experts at the South End spot may even share a tip or two for opening the tasty little bivalves with grace and speed, which is pretty much the name of the game.
At Bar Mezzana you can keep your eye on the kitchen while keeping a comfortable distance (y'know...if you can't stand the heat). Reserve one of the two-tops situated right in front of the open kitchen to watch chef-owner Colin Lynch and his team doing their thing.
See what's cooking - literally - at Bostonia Public House with a place at their kitchen-adjacent dining table. Guests get a peek at the pass and the culinary goings-on beyond from the comfort of their chair.
Get all the warmth of this Italian kitchen—from a comfortable distance—with a table close to Capo's spacious back of house. You can see the chefs at work, prepping, plating and pizza-making, at any of the tables that border the wood-fired brick oven.
Pull up a chair along the line—Davio's chef's counter faces right into the kitchen to give you an up close look at the inner workings of the Italian eatery. Gnocchi, spring rolls, arancini: it's all prepped and plated before your eyes when you settle in to a chef-side seat.
Davio’s – Chestnut Hill
55 Boylston Street Chestnut Hill, MA 02467 617-738-4810
At the Chestnut Hill outpost of Davio's, the Italian kitchen is integral to the dining experience. Guests can step right up to the bustling back of house and have a seat overlooking the cookery at the bordering chef's counter.
Davio’s – Lynnfield
1250 Market Street Lynnfield, MA 01940 781-944-4810
Owner Steve DeFillipo recreates Davio's swanky Northern Italian steakhouse vibe in his hometown of Lynnfield. Skip the trip into the city and take in all the action (and spring rolls!) from the elegant chef's counter that runs in front of the kitchen at this suburban outpost.
1271 Boylston Street Boston, MA 02115 617-670-0507
Sit down at the Hojoko sushi counter for a rock n' roll (emphasis on roll) dining experience at the Verb Hotel. A place at the long bar offers a first-look at (and taste of) the evening's fresh sashimi and sushi plates from the Japanese izakaya.
The Hourly Oyster House
15 Dunster Street Cambridge, MA 02138 617-765-2342
If you didn't make it in time to reserve your seat at the Hourly's marble-topped raw bar, nab one of the elevated communal tables adjacent to try and sneak a peek at the shuckers expertly handling island creek, cape cod bay, and wellfleet oysters.
il Casale Lexington
1727 Massachusetts Avenue Lexington, MA 02420 781-538-5846
The kitchen is the heart of the Italian home and it's no different at il Casale Lexington where rasied rustic barnwood tables give guests a look at the back-of-house happenings. Hand-painted tiles from southern Italy provide a border but keep the kitchen open and airy (with a touch of the Amalfi coast).