Charlie’s Sandwich Shoppe, Boston
429 Columbus Avenue, 617-536-7669
Few 80-year-old restaurants lack for lore, but not very many can brag about having served blacks and whites alike during segregation—making eggs for regulars like Duke Ellington, and letting a young Sammy Davis Jr. inside to dance for pocket change. All the while, Charlie’s was making turkey hash that may have single-handedly won this South End diner its James Beard Foundation America’s Classics award. Local chefs, tourists, and Beantowners white-collar and blue- gather on stools at the Formica counter, not so much for the sandwiches that give the place its name, which are fine, but for the archetypal pancakes, perfectly poached eggs and toast, and charred, juicy links of sausage.