Best of NH 2020 Delis, Butcher Shops, Catering, Cafés, Lunch and Breakfast

Enjoy a lazy Sunday morning over brunch, bite into an over-the-top sandwich or dig into a stack of pancakes drizzled in locally made maple syrup.
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Laney & Lu. Courtesy photo.

Editor’s Picks

Feeding Bodies and Souls

Jennbakos100x100by Jenn Bakos
Exeter’s Laney & Lu provides the surrounding community with fresh, healthy and wholesome food that is also very tasty. In my opinion, they have the best smoothies in the area, incredible and colorful bowls (my favorite is the Thai peanut noodle bowl), and some of the best customer service you’ll find. The biggest takeaway isn’t just the food though — it’s the strong community they cultivate. This is exemplified by the way they pivoted during the shutdown and era of social distancing, creating a program where customers could donate smoothies and bowls to nurses and doctors at Exeter Hospital and local firefighters. As of early May, they had provided over 1,500 meals. Not only was this a way to help keep their doors open, it provided joy and nourishing food to those who are working hard to keep the community safe. I also have to mention Laney & Lu sister company Palett, which offers boxes of fresh edibles you can send to friends (or order for yourself, of course). laneyandlu.com, palettegrazeboards.com


Hash Heaven

Bill Burke100x100by Bill Burke
I diner. It’s what I do. So wandering into Benson’s Café, a tiny eatery alongside Route 107 in Fremont, felt like coming home. It’s owned and run by a chef who has worked in top New Hampshire restaurants — something that becomes apparent very quickly. The cinnamon buns, English muffins and bread are homemade, and the Benedicts are unbeatable. The litmus test for any respectable diner is its hash, which can range from canned meat to handmade and heavenly. Benson’s has earned a spot on the awesome hash Mount Rushmore. Intimate, informal and welcoming, expect a table side visit from the chef who takes personal pride in what’s going on in his dining room. bensonscafenh.com


Ode to Diners

Fred Marple100x100by Fred Marple
If you are from some foreign country — like New Jersey — you may not understand why we Granite Staters love our diners, where we go for fried eggs, fried burgers, French fries, and several items involving hash. This is comfort food: carbohydrate-enhanced, calorie-laden and shot through with enough sodium to preserve your average Reuben for the next 100 years — basically, all the things that make food taste good. You won’t find a “reduction” of anything here, and nothing that has to be garnished, puréed or macerated before you can eat it. So, where’s the best diner in New Hampshire? I’m partial to the Peterborough Diner, which is in my backyard and is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. But according to my highly scientific survey — in which I asked friends what they thought — the Miss Wakefield Diner on Route 16 takes first place. Honorary mentions to the Tilt’n Diner and Lindy’s in Keene, both of which have ardent fans from whom I may have to hide for awhile. peterboroughdiner.com


Readers’ Poll Winners

Polly’s Pancake Parlor is our reader’s overall pick for best breakfast place in New Hampshire.

Breakfast Place Overall
Polly’s Pancake Parlor
Sugar Hill
pollyspancakeparlor.com

Breakfast Place Overall Multilocation Local
Tucker’s
Multiple Locations
tuckersnh.com

Breakfast Place Concord Area
The Newell Post
Concord
postrestaurantnh.com

Breakfast Place Concord Area Multilocation Local
Tucker’s
Multiple Locations
tuckersnh.com

Breakfast Place Dartmouth/Lake Sunapee Region
The Foothills of Warner
Warner
Facebook

Breakfast Place Dartmouth/Lake Sunapee Region
Multilocation Local
Tucker’s
Multiple Locations
tuckersnh.com

Breakfast Place Great North Woods Region
Polish Princess Bakery
Lancaster
polishprincessbakery.com

Breakfast Place Lakes Region
The Farmers’ Kitchen
Farmington
farmerskitchen-nh.com

Breakfast Place Manchester Area
Purple Finch Café
Bedford
purplefinchcafe.com

Breakfast Place Manchester Area Multilocation Local
Tucker’s
Multiple Locations
tuckersnh.com

Breakfast Place Monadnock Region
Parker’s Maple Barn
Mason
parkersmaplebarn.com

Breakfast Place Monadnock Region Multilocation Local
The Red Arrow 24 Hr Diner
Multiple Locations
redarrowdiner.com

Breakfast Place Nashua Area
The City Room Café
Nashua
Facebook

Breakfast Place Salem Area
Janie’s Uncommon Café
Londonderry
janiescafe.com

Breakfast Place Salem Area Multilocation Local
MaryAnn’s Diner
Derry, Salem and Windham
maryannsdiner.com

Breakfast Place Seacoast Region
Big Bean Café
Durham and Newmarket
thebigbeancafe.com

Breakfast Place Seacoast Region Multilocation Local
The Friendly Toast
Multiple Locations
thefriendlytoast.com

Breakfast Place White Mountains Region
Benton’s Sugar Shack
Thornton
bentonssugarshack.com

Brunch
The Old Salt Restaurant & Lamie’s Inn
Hampton
oldsaltnh.com

Chili
Soul Kitchen at The Red Wagon Bakery
Canaan
Facebook

Chili Multilocation Regional
The Red Arrow 24 Hr Diner
Multiple Locations
redarrowdiner.com

Deli
Biederman’s Deli and Pub
Plymouth
biedermansdeli.com

Diner Overall
Tilt’n Diner
Tilton
thecman.com

Diner Overall Multilocation Local
The Red Arrow 24 Hr Diner
Multiple Locations
redarrowdiner.com

Diner Concord Area
Northwood Diner
Northwood
(603) 942-5018

Diner Concord Area Multilocation Local
The Red Arrow 24 Hr Diner
Multiple Locations
redarrowdiner.com

Diner Dartmouth/Lake Sunapee Region
4 Aces Diner
West Lebanon
4acesdiner.com

Diner Lakes Region
104 Diner
New Hampton
thecman.com

Diner Manchester Area
The Airport Diner
Manchester
thecman.com

Diner Manchester Area Multilocation Local
The Red Arrow 24 Hr Diner
Multiple Locations
redarrowdiner.com

Diner Monadnock Region
Lindy’s Diner
Keene
lindysdiner.com

Diner Nashua Area
Joey’s Diner
Amherst
joeysdiner.com

Diner Salem Area
Poor Boy’s Diner
Londonderry
poorboysdiner.com

Diner Salem Area Multilocation Local
MaryAnn’s Diner
Derry, Salem and Windham
maryannsdiner.com

Diner Seacoast Region
Roundabout Diner & Lounge
Portsmouth
roundaboutdiner.com

Diner White Mountains Region
Littleton Diner
Littleton
littletondiner.com

Butcher Shop
Tuckaway Tavern and Butchery
Raymond
thetuckaway.com

Caterer
Celebrations Catering
Manchester
celebrationsmenu.coms

Gourmet To-Go
All Real Meal
Manchester
allrealmeal.com

Sandwich
Nashua Garden
Nashua
Facebook

Soup — Tie
Collins Brothers Chowder
Nashua
collinsbrotherschowder.com

Soup — Tie
Seacoast Soups
North Hampton
seacoastsoups.com

 

Categories: Best of NH Winners

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