1 Belmont Street
Cambridge, MA
Opened Summer, 2008

The word Sofra comes from an Arabic word meaning picnic, or dining table, or kilim, but perhaps more important than the literal translation, Sofra implies generosity and hospitality—traits that also describe Ana Sortun and Maura Kilpatrick’s bountiful food, and that we’ve used as inspiration for the design of the space.

The host building was an extremely worn art deco market comprising yellow and green enameled metal panels. Other than extending the windows along the east side of the building, new signage, and general cleaning and restoration, the exterior remained as is. The interior was overhauled.

The kitchen has two sajjs that were hand-made in Lebanon and are used to make Middle-Eastern flatbread sandwiches. In keeping with the warm, rustic quality of the food, the materials used for the interior include handmade tile, oak floors, and marble countertops. When the acoustical ceiling was taken down we found a beautiful wood ceiling which, other than sanding the wood and adding blown glass pendants with exposed filament bulbs, we left as found. The banquette seating along the edge of the space is made of simple birch plywood draped with antique kilims.

Visit Sofra’s website