Quickly Around Town

Boston Breakfast Decisions, Pret a Manger Edition

Between your office and relevant T stops (either before boarding or after arriving at destination), you face many coffee and pastry choices. Probability suggests that there is a Starbucks or Dunkins in your building, in the building next door or no more than three or four doors away.

If you’re feeling creative, the next step down in the scarcity chart is the Au Bon Pain, Panera, Cosi tier. You could get a sandwich. You could get a Squagel. Is it worth the extra effort to get breakfast at places that are just as known for their salads and lunches?

Finally, the other circle includes the few Bruegger’s or Finagles left in town. Fresh bagels from bagel stores are good options, very good options for that record. But you likely have to go out of the way to make either happen (or walk the long way out of the State St. entrance just to end up by the old Borders).

Which leaves an important question: when London’s steel-cut oatmeal & salad peddling Pret a Manger shows up in November in Back Bay (obviously, of course it was going to be on Boylston in Back Bay), where does it fall on the food chain? Is it a go-out-of-your-way-bagel-conveyor-belt? Or is it a once in a blue moon extra stop just to get a hot chocolate croissant?

I warn from experience: Prets breed and spread quickly. They won’t cross into the South End, but if you don’t think they’ll take a place along storefronts from Boylston to Beacon Hill and across the river to Harvard Square, you likely have a surprise coming.

So, what’s for breakfast?