Monday, November 05, 2012

Panera Cares Cafe Is Opening at Center Plaza in Boston

A chain of bakery-cafes is planning to open a new location in the heart of downtown Boston, though this one will be a nonprofit "community cafe" whose goal is to help fight hunger.

Universal Hub is reporting that Panera Bread is eyeing Center Plaza (across from City Hall Plaza) as the site of their latest Panera Cares outlet. Unlike other Panera branches, the new cafe would not have prices for their items, but would instead give suggested donation prices for food, with the option of having folks volunteer at the cafe if they can't afford to pay. Panera Cares is run by the nonprofit Panera Bread Foundation, which looks to the cafes as being a way to address hunger "in a restaurant setting that maintains one's dignity and fills one's belly."

The Boston Licensing Board will look into the proposed Panera Cares cafe this Wednesday at City Hall, with the meeting including the cafe's request for a license, according to UH.

[December 26 update: Plans to open Panera Cares are now moving along, with The Boston Globe mentioning that it could be opening up sometime in January.]

[January 10, 2013 update: The new Panera Cares community cafe is opening in Boston on Wednesday, January 23.]

The address for this new cafe is: Panera Cares, 3 Center Plaza, Boston, MA, 02108. The website for Panera Cares can be found at

Thanks to Adam's Hospitality & Tourism Industry Blog for bringing this to our attention.