May Foodie Holidays: #MimosaDay & MDW

May is agreeably the best month to come throughout the year, don’t you think?

 

Flowers, the sun, warmth… we go on walks with our friends and enjoy one of our favorite things: OUTDOOR SEATING. In May, we also celebrate “National Mimosa Day” (May 16th) and Memorial Day Weekend (May 31st)

 

In this blog post, we will show you the best ways to enjoy May with Mimosas & celebrate MDW in Montclair!
Mimosa Brunch in Montclair, NJ:

 

Le Salbuen: Fresh squeezed orange juice plus your favorite champagne, add in your favorite brunch dish from this “always delicious” spot and that equals a perfect way to celebrate Mimosa Day! We love Le Salbuen, we always recommend people to go here and enjoy themselves 🙂

Faubourg: Of course, this French spot serves mimosas, how could it not?! Every single cocktail drink in their menu is perfect, and we often have hard times deciding which one to order… but not today! We know what we’re ordering this time. Best news is that on Sundays your brunch entree includes one free drink.

Halycon Brasserie: This place has mimosas right at the top of their brunch menu! Right where you can see them because they know what you came here for 😉 Halycon specializes in seafood, and you won’t be disappointed with the delicious flavor combos that are revealed to you between every bite and sip. Yum!

Sweet Kitchen: Another byoc (bring your own champagne) spot where all you have to do is ask for some O.J. and you’re all set! Sweet Kitchen presses their orange juice every morning so if you have a great bottle of champagne, you know this drink is about to be BOMB!

Toast: Pancakes and mimosas… say no more. It’s the perfect combo! Bring your bottle of champagne, order an orange juice, mix and enjoy.

Sayola: An elegant, post-modern Spanish Restaurant is a treat! So get a little dressed up, bring your champagne, order fresh-pressed O.J. from Le Salbuen, Sweet Kitchen, Jackie’s, or Green Point Juicery (Verona), and enjoy yourself!

If you’re wondering where to eat for MDW in Montclair? Here is your list:

1. Red Eye Cafe: Guys, we loveee this place! Pancakes are always perfect, they have great daily specials and, of course, great coffee. We think a morning-breakfast date over Memorial Day Weekend at Red Eye Cafe is a lovely way to start your day.

photo credit: @sellaeatz

2. Samba: Because MDW is often times spent with family, we’re suggesting Samba because they can cater bigger parties, and it is easier than other restaurants to get larger seatings here. And of course, the food is delicious. If you are Gluten-Free, Samba is also a great option for you as they are the only officially certified GF restaurant in NJ. If you are not gluten-free, don’t worry about the food tasting any different. Take the perspective that Gluten-Free means your food is as clean, unprocessed, and not filled with useless/unnecessary ingredients as possible! We really love Samba so much!

3. Stuffed Grassfed Burgers: What’s a Memorial Day Weekend without a burger? Hmm… probably not the best one. This weekend CALLS for some delicious meat! We loved Stuffed because it is customizable to whatever your heart desires. They also have veggie burgers and milkshakes (dairy and dairy-free) so it’s a one-stop shop for everyone. Don’t forget the fries!!

*Pictured: Two custom-order burgers (both enjoyed bacon, clearly)

4. Raymond’s: Located on Church Street, we love the energy and ambiance of this place! Filling meals that are always great when shared with a friend, Raymond’s is always a solid choice!

photo credit: @repoleanna

5. Jackie’s Grillette: The perfect lunch spot! Grab a juice or a drink, order a big sandwich or a mezze platter. Always consistently delicious & family-owned, Montclair Foodie absolutely loves Jackie’s! Our favorite sandwich from here is the Jackie’s Special: Roast Beef, Swiss, bacon, coleslaw, Russian dressing on a long roll (same kind of bread/roll as the photo below). It just hits the spot everytime. We genuiely crave and enjoy this sandwich.

*Pictured: The ‘Big Bang’— BBQ chicken, bacon & melted mozzarella

 6. Mr. Dino’s: Pizza is 100% part of the MDW menu. There are many pizzerias in Montclair, but we have a special place in our pizza heart for this one. Mr. Dino’s has been family-owned & serving the Montclair community for over 40 years.

 

Montclair! If you love eating along with us, share this article on your socials. Feel free to message us on Instagram to talk about your favorite Montclair spot.

Thank you for the continued support!

 

Cucina98 The Cozy Bakery you have been looking for!

The tiny kitchen named Cucina98 on Walnut Street is one of our FAVORITE spots in Montclair. It is a bakery but they also serve lunch sandwiches, pasta, raviolis, soups, and little snacks. 

Cucina98 is family owned and was once connected to the restaurant Corso98. Sadly, this extension of their deliciousness is permanently closed, but maybe we will see a reopening in the future! Atleast we hope 🙂 

We stop into Cucina98 more than we’d like to admit… actually who cares, we’ll tell ya we grab, specifically, their lavender brownies at least once a week. When you walk in you’ll most likely be greeted by Bailey, the sweet daughter and baker of Cucina. Make sure you tell her Montclair Foodie sent you 🙂 

Let’s jump into the deliciousness, shall we? This first picture here has the lavender brownie at the top, moving downard we have a pistachio cookie, then a pistachio-lemon loaf (our next favorite after the brownie), then to the right we have their adorable cupcakes, and lastly a peanut butter chocolate bite (also incredible). 

We’ll move into more detail on these sweet goodies but let’s show you what they have for lunch. 

Here we have the Chicken Milanese sandwich. Before we get into the details, it’s important to note that the bread they use has the perfect bite, crunch and taste! Inside the sandwich is a breaded pan fried chicken with their house made chipotle mayo, mozzarella, long hot peppers and caramelized onions. YUM!

For our vegetarians and vegans, the grilled veggie sandwich is your option! Once again we have the delicious bread with grilled eggplant, carrots, zucchini, onion, arugula on the inside. Then you can choose to add hummus or goat cheese if you’re not vegan!

They also have a spinach and artichoke grilled cheese that we are DYING to try! If you’ve had it before, leave a comment and tell us how much you loved it (because we know it’s delicious even without trying it, like we said- everything that comes out of this kitchen is so good and perfect!)

Ok, back to the sweets! 🙂

How cute are these cupcakes?! The perfect bite size topped with frosting, sprinkles and little pearls. These are great for parties, as a gift, or for treating yourself! 

Now onto the brownies. Our absolute favorite! These brownies ARE vegan which is just a huge perk but you would never guess that they were vegan. They are the perfect consistency and texture, with a bit of a crunch and bite from the outer layer but gooey and DELICIOUS on the inside. These are specifically lavender brownies and we have never had a more perfect combination than this. Chocolate and lavender just makes so much sense and we truly mean it when we say this is one of our favorite brownies to ever touch our taste buds.

There are so many options to choose from at Cucina 98. Stop into the store and pick out a bunch! We’re sure you’ll love everything.

Another favorite item of ours is the peanut butter bite. This little goodie is really clean, meaning the ingredients are great for a post-workout and mid-afternoon snack. 

We love to enjoy this chocolate and peanut butter flavor with some coffee though. It’s the perfect treat!

Here is the pistachio loaf we mentioned at the beginning of this blog post. In the second picture you can see the texture of this cakey-yummy-loaf. It pairs perfectly with coffee in the morning, but we have to warn you: don’t start eating until you tell yourself to have some control. Because if you’re anything like us, you’ll want to eat the entire thing! You’ll just keep going back for another, and then another, and another bite! So delicious, we can’t recommend bringing one of these treats home. 

 

Plum on Park Come for the Plum, Stay for the Specials

 

Plum on Park
Montclair Foodie @ Plum on Park

If you’ve gone through our Instagram feed at any point then its a not so secret fact that we are obsessed with Plum on Park in Montclair, NJ. And what we love (and sometimes hate, keep reading you’ll understand why) most about Plum are the SPECIALS!!!!! Let’s make one thing clear upfront, the actual menu is equally amazing and never disappoints. Now that that’s out of the way! We just can’t get enough of the owner, Natalie Colledge’s infinite source of creativity and her beautifully presented plates that come out of this kitchen (That change weekly by the way). So you go to Plum on Park Come for the Plum, but you stay for the Specials (or in our case keep coming back weekly lol) !

We’ve literally found ourselves racing out of Bar Method class (also amazing! if you haven’t tried a class GO! Natalie and Gina are my favorites shh!) 100 steps away while scrolling the gram on Saturday mornings to see what specials we’ll be delighted with that weekend!

French Toast, Pad Thai, Moroccan Scramble, there are so many to name and we haven’t even tried them all!!! And since starting to offer dinner in 2015, they also have Dinner specials they debut on Wednesday’s. I don’t know how many places in a small town like Montclair, NJ you know change specials so often and keep things interesting like Plum does but needless to say, we’re kind of addicted!

Fun fact about Plum, whether your visiting Montclair for the first time, or a long time resident, you may or may not know (but want to know) that as we’ve said before many restaurants close on Mondays to prep, etc. Well lovely Plum on Park is one of a few that are open on Mondays for Breakfast & Lunch!!! They are closed on Tuesdays but open for breakfast, lunch, & dinner the rest of the week!

Enough reading GO to Plum on Park and if you meet Rebecca or Barbara tell them #MontclairFoodieSentMe!

 

Brunch on Brunch on Brunch at Vital Montclair

I don’t know about you guys but we must admit, we were pretty bummed when HLS Juice Bar and Grill closed their doors back in 2014 (although you can still find them in Maplewood, NJ) and were almost skeptic to try Vital at all. BUT that all changed when we finally tried a bite of this amazing sweet plantain and pulled pork teaser at this years Taste of Montclair 2016 held at The Manor in West Orange NJ and presented by the Montclair Rotary Club.

Now having tried them for both brunch and lunch, we must say… it’s a shame Vital only does Brunch on Sunday’s (finger’s crossed that changes soon). You can immediately tell the ingredients Executive Chef Kwame Williams uses at Vital Dining are the freshest and best in season. I don’t know about you but, with suns out guns out season upon us, eating waffles isn’t typically the “healthiest” option for someone to choose, but these banana waffles were so light! We left 387 Bloomfield Ave in Montclair, NJ NOT feeling guilty about a single thing we had just consumed 🙂 and it was ALL so good (we are foodies after all and although they say you should eat for fuel and not because something tastes good… isn’t it just heavenly when you can have the best of both worlds)!!!

Vital also has amazing juices!! I like to believe we went uber healthy (although pretty much every juice seems amazing for the body from what we can tell) we went with the Detox (pictured below) and the Orange Zinger (hint in case the name isn’t telling enough, this drink was a zinger with a healthy dose of ginger)

Here is yet another great Montclair Chef who adapts his cooking and menu with the season. Can’t wait to see what new dishes the Chef introduces for these beautiful summer months that are finally here!

-MF

Brunch on Brunch on Brunch at Vital Montclair
Banana Waffles, St Mary’s Breakfast… Vital Brunch… great vibe & great food!
Brunch at Vital Montclair
Top 5 Green Juice in Montclair! Don’t you think!?!?!

A Brunch fit for a WOLF!

A Brunch that could satisfy a Wolf, or at least my husband! LOL! So, we have become something of regulars for brunch at Turtle and the Wolf. If you are at all familiar with Montclair Center and the brunch seen in Northern NJ at all, you know that for quality eats, especially as the days thankfully get warmer, there typically are lengthy waits for a really good brunch. Being the foodie aficionada that I am and given that I married a man who hates waiting for food ESPECIALLY when he’s hungry, a concept I unfortunately can’t totally disagree with, I began searching for a new go to brunch location. I should also preface this by saying that my husband also doesn’t like trying new restaurants. He has his favorites and if he’s really hungry he doesn’t want to risk having a good meal. Also fair. So strolling down Valley Road in Montclair, NJ on our way to grab our Starbucks trying to decide where to go for brunch one late Saturday morning I finally convinced him to try Turtle and the Wolf since we were so close. To our delightful surprise (especially his), we were seated as soon as we walked in. What’s funny, having been there for brunch almost every weekend since our discovery, is we often see folks peering in through the glass door to get an idea of what’s going on inside. But the same way you can’t judge a book by its cover, you should ABSOLUTELY not judge T + W brunch by the number of filled tables. In fact, for now anyway, brunch at Turtle and Wolf is a hidden gem! No waits, amazing selection from French toast, Cheddar grits, No Ham Madame Croque, Eggs Florentine, HOMEMADE sausages, we can go on and on because yes we’ve had the entire menu by now (remember we’ve been there countless times)! But we must warn you, the menu changes with the season! Which is a great thing! We can’t wait what Chef Lauren will cook up with summer vegetables!!

Next time you are looking for a Brunch place and its 11am on a Sunday and you are dreading the wait at pretty much every establishment in Montclair Center, take a 5 minute drive, take advantage of the parking right behind them and venture into Upper Montclair for an amazing treat at Turtle and Wolf. Tell Chef Lauren #MONTCLAIRFOODIESENTME!! And then, go back for Dinner!!!

Brunch at Turtle and the Wolf
If you haven’t tried Turtle and the Wolf brunch yet…. well you’re not living!
Brunch Time in Montclair
Brunch time! Where are you brunching this weekend Montclair?
Breakfast Focaccia
Breakfast Focaccia Special at Turtle and the Wolf this beautiful Saturday Morning
Brunch at Turtle and the Wolf
Got a little carried away this morning! Housemade Sausage, FrenchToast, Potatoes, Fruit Croque Madame