Little Donkey

4.6
1990 Reviews
$30 and under
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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Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
  • Staff temperature check required
  • Contact tracing information collected
What 1990 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
4.7
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
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SD
SusanD
Portland
2 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall4food4service5ambience3

Everything was delicious, service outstanding, but it was quite expensive per plate for tapas sized portions. Also, PLEASE add more vegetarian friendly options! If you have a vegetarian in your group this is NOT the place.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall2food1service3ambience2

Over-rated

DH
DebiH
New England
24 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Another great meal with excellent service.

BM
BrianM
Los Angeles
17 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Beautiful innovative food in a Swank setting

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall1food3service4ambience1

Very packed and sooo noisy. Not a pleasant dining experience.

JB
JamieB
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Amazing food and drink. Everything was great. Very dim and very loud but worth it!

X
Xoxo
New England
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience4

The food was okay but it needed more salt and spice. The portion size is small so we left still feeling hungry. However, the music is great and the vibe is trendy. I would recommend Little Donkey for drinks and the vibe , but skip the food

OT
OpenTable Diner
Pittsburgh
3 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2021
Overall2food1service3ambience2

The barman gave us great service and was very kind. However all else was disappointing. As a start, the restaurant does not have good acoustic engineering so people have to shout over each other to have some semblance of a conversation. Little lighting so the place is way too dim. Food was disappointing and expensive for the size and quality.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was a fun spot for light plates and cocktails. The flavors were excellent but the potion size sometimes seemed small for the price. Altogether, would definitely dine again!

MK
MichaelK
1 review
Dined on November 16, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Everything was very good. Inside is very busy, outdoor seating was great for a more spacious experience.

AF
AndreaF
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food at Little Donkey is consistently surprising and delicious. Perfect oysters. Apps and entrees riff on Asian flavors in fun ways. Great drink list. Excellent, friendly service. I’d say my only demerits would be noise levels, and also that seating is kinda crammed. It’s loud and boisterous, almost unpleasantly so. But the food is so good it makes up for it.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome food, cocktails and vibe

CZ
vipChristianZ
New England
6 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience2

Great for social gatherings with friends, but given the noise level and lighting, I would not recommend it for a nice evening out where you want to have some conversations, or be able to see your food.

Food is ok, can't say much about presentation. As often in these "tapas"-places, many dishes seemed very pricy for what they substantially are

PG
PeterG
1 review
Dined on November 8, 2021
Overall2food4service2ambience3

Server was unhelpful. Food was hit or miss. Most dishes were very good but a couple were mediocre at best. Sarma in Somerville is a much better choice for tapas dining.

L
vipLizzy
New England
8 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

Great experience! We sat outside with the heaters and it was pleasant. It got a little cold but that’s to be expected in the Northeast in November. For 2 of us, we ordered four plates and a dessert and that was just enough. The Kowloon cauliflower and fried chicken sandwich were my top favorites. The cookie dough dessert is also a must have. I’m looking forward to returning.

ML
MarcL
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was great. Octopus dish was very flavorful paired with zesty vegetables in a sauce that was perfect for the chargrilled octopus.
Both the crab spring rolls and the pork spring rolls were amazing but that spicy peach sauce to dip the pork spring rolls was the perfect amount of spice and flavor for the pork.
The Korean short ribs were delectable; perfect char grill flavor from that perfect grill. My girlfriend and I found ourselves gnawing at the bone of the ribs to devour all of the meat from them. Farro in XO sauce with sweetbreads and Vietnamese bologna were the king of the meal.
Perfect drink selection.
I Highly recommend little donkey to all.

f
vipfoodlover
Chicago
24 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2021
Overall3food2service3ambience3

They were out of many things we ordered for an 815pm seating and the items we did get were over cooked. Most meat dishes were super dry. Portions were tiny - even for small plates. I wouldn’t come here again

SH
SeanH
New England
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food came out very quickly, staff was very approachable, and food tasted great!

L
vipLocalfoodiex2
New England
56 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall4food4service3ambience3

We loved the innovative cuisine, refreshing interpretations of cuisines from different cultures. This is great if you can’t figure out what you’re in the mood for: get a plate from different cuisines in a single meal. We did not appreciate the half hearted service. Technically if you have many different flavors you should change out the plates constantly so as to not mix flavors. Come on if you’re going to present yourself to foodies then you should do foodie habits. However they gave us new plates at the LAST plate. Really? If I were you ask for new plates early in the meal, not like we were, too compliant.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fantastic innovative food and great service!!

FS
FiftySomething
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As usual, inventive and varied menu, perfectly prepared and presented small plates, and attentive but not overbearing service. I've been to Little Donkey before - this is the first time for a business dinner. The babble of other guests around us did not get in the way of a great conversation (we didn't have to yell at each other), and the electric vibe of the place added to the experience.

Highly recommended - and don't be timid: order something outside your comfort range! You'll be glad you did.

MM
vipMatthewM
Key West
6 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always one of the best meals in all of Cambridge. Dana did an awesome job making recommendations and was on-point the whole way through.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Absolutely delicious! Celery root "noodles" - who knew?!

PR
vipPattR
New England
12 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We sat outside because one of my dinner companions did not feel comfortable dining indoors. The heaters made sitting outside very comfortable. Being on the street was a little noisy at times but that cannot be helped. Food was great. Our server was very nice and helpful. Food was a little on the pricey side, but I understand that is the case everywhere at this time. I will definitely come back and recommend Little Donkey to my friends

DS
DaniS
New England
4 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food is amazing! Small plates are perfect for sharing. And the cocktails… the best in town.

AD
AllisonD
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience3

Great vibe, imaginative & tasty small plates and responsive service. It's just too damn dark inside. Most people were reading the menu by iPhone flashlight.

RS
RebeccaS
New England
9 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Thank you all! The food was excellent and the drinks were good as well.

J
Jahangir
New England
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience3

High level of deliciousness for the dollar. Recommended.

BS
BridgetS
New England
4 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Food is sensational🙌 presentation, taste, drinks list🥰 a little loud inside - but that's the space. Waiter was great with the very diverse menu options and recommendations. Will return.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Columbus
2 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Food was good, but the kitchen goes heavy on the salt. Very loud establishment, the music could’ve been turned down a bit as it was hard to hear those at my table. It is also very dark in the restaurant! Needed to use my phone flashlight to see the menu, and I feel like it is nice to see all the food that is being served at a tapas place.

ER
EricR
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Top spot in Boston. Killer vibes that match the food. Worth the trip every time.

K
Katie
New England
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Our waiter was very helpful and fun, the food was delicious--especially the mediterranean sea bass--and it was a treat to have my favorite drink, Ode to Pablo!

T
Tara
New England
9 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Nice food. Allergy conscious. A bit loud and dark for a business dinner.

W
William
New England
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience3

Excellent food. Everything was delicious. Only complaint was the light level. Very dark inside the restaurant.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2021
Overall3food4service3ambience2

It is too expensive. The food is good but plates are small. Not worth the price

f
foodie213
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2021
Overall3food2service2ambience3

I understand the concept of tapas, but the food portions (including the hamburger) were extremely small; my burger was on a clearly store-bought bun... not even toasted; cold and soft.

The food between my friend and I came out at drastically different times; mine being a good 15 minutes after hers was brought to the table.

Also, mandatory masking for Cambridge indoor places everywhere yet the tables are packed in with people, about 3 feet apart (if that) and not a mask in view other than the service staff...

OT
OpenTable Diner
Toronto
4 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Highlight of my stay in Cambridge

M
Malachi
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

By far the best dining experience I’ve had in Boston. Our server, the food and the environment was amazing. We had all vegetarian dishes that were all flavorful and filling. It’s tapas style, so we order four dishes. The drinks were just as delicious as the food! 10/10 experience!

MP
vipMelissaP
New England
95 reviews
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall3food3service2ambience4

Great atmosphere, expensive for the small portions. interesting flavors and creativity. Drinks fair...not enough alcohol in them for the price

RF
RebeccaF
Detroit
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had an amazing experience! Every single thing we ordered (both food and drinks) was delicious and creative. Highly recommend!

FAQs

You can order delivery directly from Little Donkey using the Order Online button. Little Donkey also offers delivery in partnership with Uber Eats. Little Donkey also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (617) 945-1008.

Little Donkey is rated 4.6 stars by 1990 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

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