Comfort Kitchen uplifts local community and celebrates African diaspora


Comfort Kitchen

The team – Biplaw Rai, Nyacko Pearl Perry, Kwasi Kwaa and Rita Ferreira – behind Comfort Kitchen, located in Upham’s Corner, Dorchester.

“Cafe by day, restaurant by night” is what you can expect from Dorchester’s up-and-coming Comfort Kitchen

This new restaurant, which will open this summer, is the perfect place to go for anything from a cup of coffee to date nights. Comfort Kitchen will serve comfort food, but not your average bowl of mac and cheese. Their focus will be on the African diaspora, stretching from Asia to the Americas and sharing unique flavors and spices. Their menu will feature new dishes a few times per year, keeping of course its signature staples like a momo and your morning espresso. 

Comfort Kitchen’s goal is to lift up their community and make a positive impact by partnering with local businesses and enriching their neighborhood of Upham’s Corner.

Biplaw Rai, Comfort Kitchen’s managing partner, said Upham’s Corner has not had a local cafe in quite a few years, unless you count Dunkin’ Donuts.

“If you look up Upham’s Corner right now, you will see that there aren’t that many cafes, so there’s a big need for it,” said Rai.

Rai has been in the food industry for 17 years and he started out like most of us in college, working summers at a restaurant. In 2015 Rai opened Dudley Cafe in Roxbury as a co-founder, but in 2019 he decided to take on the project of starting his own restaurant. 

Rai said food has always been a big part of his life and after seeing how things worked behind the scenes, he and his team wanted to do it for themselves and start making some changes.

 “We’ve been talking about this project for a very long time, to do something of our own, something that reflects our journeys,” said Rai.

Comfort Kitchen is a Black-owned, immigrant-owned and women-owned business that is seeking to better its neighborhood by creating a friendly community restaurant. It will celebrate their local community as well as their own cultures and experiences.

“We want to celebrate African food and talk about the spice trade because there’s a huge link in spice trade going all the way from India through the Caribbean and North Africa,” said Rai.

There have been some struggles to get the restaurant on its feet. As a minority-owned business, Rai says they struggled to get loans and funding. The pandemic has also brought its own set of challenges, stalling Comfort Kitchen’s opening since 2020. However, the team has worked very hard to get their restaurant up and running and it’s coming close to the finish line.

“Currently, I’m working toward opening Comfort Kitchen so that’s where all my focus and energy is,” said Rai.

Support Comfort Kitchen by following them on Instagram @comfortkitchenbos.

Follow Emily on Twitter @emilycSUCJN363.