on the cheap


To go

To stay or to go? That is the question. If you aim to caffeinate yourself, munch on freshly baked goodies, and people watch, the answer is To Go.

This little South End bakery (once known as East Meets West) with the chic, sharply contrasted decor has but three tables from which to observe the endless and entertaining stream of neighborhood glitterati. The hissing espresso machine in the background produces all the de rigeur espresso drinks, ranging in price from $1.25 to $2.25 for singles and $1.50 to $2.50 for doubles. The aforementioned baked goods include muffins and scones ($1 to $1.25), cookies ($1.25), bagels (75 cents), pies, tarts, and cakes in myriad flavors. The muffins are huge and moist, with lots of cinnamon in the batter.

Greater sustenance is also available, heated to eat in, or to go. Homemade soup costs $1.85 for a small, $2.25 for a medium, and $2.50 for a large; slabs of pizza with thick, bready crusts are $2.95 per; and salads such as duck lo mein and lemon basil bulghur cost $2.25 for a small serving and $4 for a large.

To Go, at 314 Shawmut Avenue, in Boston, is open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Sunday from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Call 482-1015.

-- Adam Ried