Au Bon Pain, Brattle
56. 11-8 Au Bon Pain, Brattle Street. Summary: Very good.
I've decided that ABP is an outstanding business. It seems that every time I go there, I buy more than I expected; and even with the over-spending, I enjoy the food and go back.
Take today. I walk in, see a line in this small-ish ABP (smaller than both the massive one at the corner of Dunster, and the one at the intersection of Mass Ave and Mt. Auburn St by Crate and Barrel furniture), and think, "What are all these people doing waiting in line when there's a huge ABP three minutes from here?" But I want to try it, so I stay, and while I'm in line waiting to order I snag some fruit and a cookie in the perfectly-placed displays.
And before I know it, I'm ordering. The line looked long, but only took two minues or so. Brilliant.
And in one of the nicer touches, as I'm waiting for my wrap to be made, I get to talk with the sandwich maker - in a smaller ABP, you can make a connection with the people. The bigger ones don't give you this opportunity. Somehow I think it makes a difference both for the employee and the customer.
So I spent too much - about $10 - and got too much food as a result (Mediterranean Wrap, chicken noodle soup, gingerbread man cookie, banana, and orange). But I very much liked the wrap - a good value, lots of interesting ingredients - and the soup was also tasty. And the cookie was satisfying.
And I'll go back.