Little Donkey

4.6
1260 reviews
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$30 and under
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Tapas / Small Plates
Little Donkey is the latest restaurant from James Beard Award-winning chefs Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette of Boston’s beloved Toro and Coppa. Located in the heart of Cambridge’s Central Square, less than a mile from Harvard, MIT, Inman's Square, Kendall Square, Harvard Square, Porter Square, and Lesley University. Little Donkey is Oringer and Bissonnette’s first Boston-area restaurant in over six years, offering a welcoming, day-to-night dining experience that features market-driven, global small plates, inspired by the chefs’ world travels such as the Pickle Brine Fried Chicken Sandwich, General Tso Chicken Wings, Caviar Sandwich, as well as many Vegetarian and Vegan options which are always on menu and available.

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What 1260 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.4
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MA
New England
1 review
Dined a day ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

It’s always too dark

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CG
New England
9 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Lunch with a friend. Pretty noisy from the beginning and seated at the table next to a very loud person, but they could change our seat. They messed up our order but comped for the wrong item and gave us free appetiser for the long wait. Food was really good. Will return to try other lunch items.

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RC
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We had a delicious late lunch and enjoyed the inventive menu and each of the various dishes we tried. Our favorite was the fried squid and the ceviche but we devoured every dish we ordered (including the fried chicken sandwich) and the creative drink we had was tasty too. We arrived for lunch after 2pm on a Tuesday so it was very quiet but I imagine it can be loud when the restaurant is full; who cares when you are eating such delicious food though. Run, don't walk, to Little Donkey.

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DP
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Impeccable food and service. It is however so dark I could barely see the food, and given how nicely plated it would behoove the restaurant to put a candle or dim light at each table. The tap water also tasted like chlorine.

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n
Hawaii
11 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Little Dinkey is a nice place to have great Tapas. I was traveling alone and wanted something “Boston.” I was pleased with the service - everyone seemed the know their roles and helping each other with ordering, serving and bussing.
The Oysters, Yuzu Uni and Foie Gras were fabulous.
I left satisfied that I experienced Little Donkey - a great representation of great food, people and “Boston”

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KM
Chicago
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

One of the best brunches I have ever had. In particular, the pastry basket, torta, french toast and smoked salmon latkes were amazing. The white russian cocoa puffs were a perfect way to end the meal as well.

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AG
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

I liked the online description of this restaurant. I found it too loud to talk to my dinner date. Also, there were several people who serviced our table and none of them were particularly friendly. One tried to take our plate away twice (we weren't eating slowly) we just wanted to savour the little bits left in the dish. My brine chicken fried sandwich was over cooked with the coating too tough to enjoy an way too much boring uninventive hot sauce. The other dishes we tried were good.

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OT
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Even though our reservation was for two another couple joined us and LD was accommodating.

It was both couple first time at the restaurant and although there was a lot of hype it exceeded our expectations. The diversity of the menu tantalized our taste buds and the service was great as everyone was there to lend a hand. Normally we do not order dessert but the offerings were too tempting and we were not disappointed. We cannot wait to get back.

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CB
New England
2 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fun restaurant for a Friday night. Great food and happening ambiance.

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A
New England
38 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great atmosphere and very knowledgeable and friendly service. The food is great, just bare in mind these are very small portions (small plates), even the entrees, so I found it to be quite expensive for the amount of food served.

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R
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

the soft shell crab was fried crisply to perfection. The waitress was terrific. Since we arrived at 10:45 PM, the noise was modrate, instead of deafening.

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FS
New England
1 review
Dined on May 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food!! I Really enjoy every meal!. It was a really good experience

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CN
New England
2 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Interesting, delicious food. Generous servings to share. Excellent service. Noise level made it difficult to converse.

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J
New England
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was delicious!

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, fantastic service!

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OK
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Innovative playground of chefs where they create their own versions of some classics from all around the world. Beautiful experience for open minded people.

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

It was tasty! Friendly staff, fabulous food, a little too loud, but a great experience overall.

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C
New England
1 review
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My favorite restaurant in the Boston area. Always a great experience!

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JN
Montreal
1 review
Dined on May 9, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

The menu was interesting and inventive. The food was very good. However, the servers including the bartender acted like they were doing us a favor by waiting on us. I was a server in Boston when I was in grad school and I have been in the service industry for over 10 years, so I am very familiar with customer service. While the customer may not always be right, they are there spending their money and essentially paying the servers their income. The snarkey attitudes that I see in so many restaurants especially in Cambridge are so off putting. Why wait tables if you cannot deal with customers. Specifically I ordered a drink and after 15 minutes of it not arriving, I asked my server how it was coming. I got a snarky answer back that was totally unwarranted. Selling more drinks is the biggest money maker for restaurants and directly affects the tips of the server by increasing the bill. I get that your busy, but be nice to your clients. The hostesses were amazing btw. I would go back here because the food and atmospere were so good but maybe some client services training we be advantageous.

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G
New England
15 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Simply wonderful food. Imaginative and delicious! Atmosphere is fun and very “Cambridge!”

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AB
Chicago
1 review
Dined on May 7, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

We had a great time at Little Donkey. We had an awesome server, who really went above and beyond. I was torn at what wine I wanted and she gave me a sample of 3 that she thought would fit the flavor profile I was seeking. I definitely recommend checking this place out.

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w
London
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious, interesting food across a variety of cuisines and great service in a buzzy atmosphere

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l
New England
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Little Donkey was really hopping when we arrived. Service was prompt and food came out quickly. Having reservation was great (especially with kids), but I don't think the wait would have been too long. The room is quite loud, so definitely not for quiet conversations. Food was delicious. My torta was crisp on the outside with the nice bite of arugula, over easy egg and bacon on the inside. We didn't have any drinks, but will return when we can spend more time. The portions were not American huge, but just right for us. Definitely coming back for drinks and to try more dishes!

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SW
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Great location. Great food. Hadn't been in Central Square in over 30 years; very surprised.

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D
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Have dined here many times. It's always fantastic! The chicken sandwich is not to be missed.

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MM
New England
5 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food and drinks, but very loud atmosphere. Portions are bigger than traditional Tapas which is good for sharing plates.

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SR
New England
7 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service! Will definitely go back with friends!

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AV
New England
2 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food, awesome drinks, awesome service, 10/10 would go back again

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OT
New England
3 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

Little Donkey has adopted a menu that features some of the favorites from your local fast-food Chinese restaurant, though at 3 x the price. We dined on Sunday night. Most of the diners were older, gone are the hipsters. This place has its best days behind it. We won’t be back.

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SP
New England
2 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Trendy spot with a lot of different options for food. A bit loud but super helpful servers. Wasn’t my favorite place due to the noise and having few options for someone with shellfish and beef allergies.

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k
New England
7 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for brunch. Food and waitstaff were terrific

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T
New England
1 review
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is the place I always recommend if you're in the area. The food and drinks are fantastic. Interesting menu that changes regularly. It's a nice place that doesn't feel stuffy or overly formal. I've gone there a bunch and never had a bad experience.

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J
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great variety of dishes

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F
New England
5 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Second time back and this place does not disappoint. Dishes are tasty and complex without being overdone. Just shy of excellent as one dish came out a bit late. So good though !

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TW
1 review
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 4

Was so looking forward to eating here. However, we were disappointed by the food - several overly salty dishes. The value was not there, despite the wonderful staff. 6 dollars for two dinner rolls. Nope.

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DC
1 review
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Innovative, flavor-packed, impeccable quality ingredients! Love, love, love this place.

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j
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Had a great time! I loved the menu and we tried many things... Everything was delicious. I can't wait to go back.

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B
New England
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 1ambience 3

We had a party of 3. Meals came at different times. My quiche was cold. Very disappointing.

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C
New England
17 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

This is my fourth time dinning at Little Donkey and it never disappoints. The food is interesting and creative and I have never had a bad dish. We tried 10 plates for four people and loved each and every one. When our least favorite (would definitely order again) was the lettuce wrap with bacon, tomato, pickled onion and pimento cheese, the bar is set at a high level . Favorites included the Vietnamese Bologna, Tuna Conserva Nori Wraps and Phat Lao. Short rib also deserves an honorable mention as it was incredibly tender and flavorful.
Save room for dessert.

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i
Indiana
51 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Good for breakfast/brunch. I’m sure tasty for lunch and dinner.

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