Order up: The Black Restaurant Challenge is underway

The fifth annual program encourages Bostonians to support local Black-owned eateries.

Counter at Ripple Cafe in Dorchester

We’re adding Dorchester’s Ripple Cafe to our coffee bucket list.

Photo by @mikemontiel

Since we’re about halfway through February, we thought it’d be a good time to check in on your progress on Boston’s Black Restaurant Challenge.

ICYMI — the month-long program was first created by Massachusetts State Representative Chynah Tyler and The Boston Black Hospitality Coalition in 2018.

The challenge encourages locals to dine at or order takeout from at least one Black-owned eatery per week in February. If you haven’t started yet, the good news is that it’s always a good time to support local Black-owned businesses.

You can find the full list of restaurants, organized by neighborhood, on the Black Restaurant Challenge website. Here are just a few spots to check out:

Sign for Wally'z Jazz Club

Look for this iconic sign + the bright red door at Wally’s Cafe.

🎶 Wally’s Cafe and Jazz Club, South End
This historic jazz club and cafe is a must-visit for music lovers. New England’s first Black-owned jazz establishment reopened in 2022 after a two-year closure, and now hosts three bands a night.

Ripple Cafe, Dorchester
Fuel up with a fresh fruit smoothie or an iced coffee from this cafe located just off the Red Line. There are also plenty of food options, from MEM pastries to sandwiches and toasts.

🌯 Rhythm N’ Wraps, Allston
The casual Commonwealth Avenue space offers up a variety of tasty vegan eats. Think: wraps, smoothies, and impossible burgers.

🎹 Slade’s Bar and Grille, Roxbury
Once owned by Celtics icon Bill Russell, this local landmark in Roxbury Crossing serves up soul food, including dinner entrees like catfish and barbecue ribs. Be sure to snap a picture of the iconic purple piano sign when you visit.

🍽️ Savvor Restaurant and Lounge, Downtown
Southern comfort cuisine meets Caribbean influences at this Lincoln Street dinner spot. Try the hot fried chicken and waffles or steak frites, plus a craft cocktail like “Savvor the Flavor” with apple and cinnamon.

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