The Boston Phoenix
December 31, 1998 - January 7, 1999

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Sam's Luncheonette

Hideaway for a hangover

On the Cheap by Suzanne Kammlott

Sam's Luncheonette may be the best hideaway eatery in Cambridge. Established in 1937 by Sam Scimone, this breadbox-size diner hasn't been gussied up a bit since then. It's slightly cramped and wholly cozy, with a buzz of customers huddled at the counter, friendly waitresses, a charming, wisecracking cook, and those fabulous thick-rimmed coffee cups. The menu reads "Power Breakfast Specials," but we're looking at piled-high hangover food here: toast, home fries, eggs. These fortifying eye openers are zipped up with tantalizing sausages: Greek, Italian, linguiça, kielbasa, and chicken sausage.

The sausage has arrived thanks to Rocco DeFabritiis, the current owner, who took Sam's over more than a year ago. A native of Sperlonga, Italy -- and previously owner of Rocco's Place on Pearl Street -- he has a natural affinity for combining spices. "Use only the best," he says, "and fresh, and lots of them."

Power Breakfast Specials start at $4.50; coffee is 75 cents.

Sam's Luncheonette, located at 7 Landsdowne Street, in Cambridge, is open Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Closed Sunday. Call (617) 491-9550.

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