Photos and Words by Tori Beringer
On a biting Saturday morning in January, the inviting light of Masa, a Southwestern grill tucked in a corner of Tremont Street, beckons our brunch-hungry group into its quaint setting. The promise of the spicy and hearty flavors of Mexico seems the ideal way to warm up and escape the frigid Boston morning.
Masa’s “Brunch Fiesta” may very well be one of the city’s best-kept foodie secrets. Priced at $8.95, the two-course meal offers up an authentic taste rare to the Northeast. The restaurant quickly fills with couples on early morning dates, families starting the day together, and groups of old friends like us.
Every breakfast starts off with an assorted basket of Masa’s homemade sweet corn and blueberry breads, with a triple-spread selection allowing for a variety of ideal pairings. The smokiness of the chipotle cranberry jelly, the creaminess of the honey butter, and the swift kick of the apricot jalapeño jam provide playful interpretations of a classic Southwestern culinary essence.
The more simplistic first course choices of the Brunch Fiesta include granola with milk or yogurt, seasonal fresh fruit, and the traditional caramelized plantain empanada. Fried into a puff of deep golden brown crispiness, packed with a sugary smooth plantain filling, and lying atop a hefty dollop of Masa’s rich Mexican cinnamon cream cheese; the empanada seems to demand the atmosphere of Southwestern home style comfort.
As if the first dish was neither impressive nor filling enough, the second round of offerings only further proves Masa’s intense dedication to Mexican authenticity. The huevos rancheros are perfectly executed; from the soft, thick, flour tortilla, to the diced fresh tomato and avocado, to the mess of runny egg on top. Another prime second course pick is the Jalisco chocolate chip pancakes. Named for the historic Mexican state, the airy pancakes pack flair with their generous helping of freshly made mango butter. The strong citrusy punch reinvents the simple breakfast staple, rendering almost any other pancake inadequate.
Other second course menu items include creamy scrambled eggs with chorizo and Santa Fe Style Eggs Benedict with Southwestern biscuits. Evidently, the well-crafted menu does justice to the particular and spirited heart of a lively region, incorporating Southwestern culture and creativity into an explorative culinary experience.
Masa’s Brunch Fiesta is offered every Saturday morning, from 10 AM – 3 PM, and every Sunday morning, from 9 AM – 11 AM, for parties of 6 or less.
439 Tremont St, Boston