Tuesday, April 23, 2024

The Gypsy Place omelet is made in a waffle iron and dressed with a togarashi sauce. (Photo: Tom Meek)

With a quaint storefront nestled along Hampshire Street between Inman and Kendall squares, Gypsy Place has that old-school bohemian vibe that used to be the currency of many Cambridge eateries – anyone remember Daddy-O’s just up the street where Oleana now hums along? Opened in 2018, Gypsy Place is a welcome addition to a neighborhood short on cafes and is one of the few juice bars in all of Cambridge. The cafe offers primarily vegetarian fare fueled by breakfast and brunch offerings, açaí bowls, baked goods and, of course, a complete lineup of coffee drinks. The one thing I’ve not explored at Gypsy Place, and can’t wait to, are the smoothie and juice cocktails, which all look to be winners.

The theme of the cafe celebrates the free spirit of the Romani people (the term has become semi-controversial, but the founders have old-country roots) and is reflected in the vibrant decor and unique culinary spins. Like macaroons? The toasted coconut macaroons here are plump, airy and perfect. Want something new? The Rose Flower Bomb is a vegan truffle with walnuts and cranberries, covered in rose petals.

On the big eats side of things, the menu is tight. The açaí bowl, aesthetically arranged and topped with seeds and a dusting of coconut, is an indulgent must. The avocado toast comes piled high with a lustrous mound of green goodness. But the thing I’ve been having on recent visits is the omelet. I have pretty high standards – I’ve been trying to perfect my own omelet skills, though I am having issues re-creating the perfect French omelet Julia Child style – and find the Gypsy omelet fluffy and rich. It’s made in a waffle iron, something of an all-egg Eggo with cheese, spinach and mushrooms. It’s dressed with a mayo ketchup togarashi sauce (a Japanese spice blend of chili flakes, seaweed and sesame seeds) not far from the spin on American sauce that Grendel’s uses on its Impossible burger (vegannaise mayo, Sriracha and ketchup). Next time I’m asking for the sauce in the side, because the plate is already accented with a glorious mound of mashed avocado and a salsa-lite side of diced onions and tomatoes. Put it all on the accompanying warm, toasted sourdough and you’re in for a very cozy comfort nosh.

Gypsy Place Coffee & Juice Bar (90 Hampshire St., The Port)

Cambridge writer Tom Meek’s reviews, essays, short stories and articles have appeared in WBUR’s The ARTery, The Boston Phoenix, The Boston Globe, The Rumpus, The Charleston City Paper and SLAB literary journal. Tom is a member of the Boston Society of Film Critics and rides his bike everywhere.