If you live in Montclair and you’re looking for a quick place to grab lunch, Honey’s Kitchen is not your place. Located in Fairfield about twenty minutes away, it’s not an easy jaunt up Bloomfield Avenue. But if you have a little extra time and you’ve grown tired of the local Montclair brunch mainstays, then definitely give Honey’s Kitchen a try.
The vibe inside is decidedly homey, and you feel instantly welcome in the cozy main room. Named after the owner’s grandmother, Honey’s Kitchen is open for breakfast and lunch from 6 am until 3 pm Monday through Friday, and 6:30 am until 2 pm on Saturday. When I arrived on a Monday afternoon around 1:30, the lunch crowd was still in full swing. But unlike many Montclair brunch spots where you might wait twenty minutes for a table, my friend and I were seated within five minutes- definitely a perk of driving a little off the beaten path.
If you’re in the mood to eat, you can most certainly find what you’re craving at Honey’s. Even if you don’t walk in hungry, the array of impressive and diverse plates coming out of the kitchen will most likely persuade you. The expansive menu covers all the high points of breakfast and lunch, from double egg and cheese sandwiches, to challah bread French toast, to homemade burgers, huge salads, breakfast and lunch wraps, and all the classic diner fare you can imagine. Everything is made to order and comes out as soon as it hits the pickup counter, and the attention and care in each dish really sets Honey’s apart.
My friend and I ordered the Mediterranean omlette, the short stack of whole-wheat pancakes with bananas, and the Asian chicken salad, one of the many daily specials. The omlette was delicious and came with the most incredible hash browns, the pancakes were fluffy and piping hot, served with warm maple syrup, and the salad was overflowing with toppings and served with a side dish of homemade dressing.
You can’t beat the price points at Honey’s either. For $8.50 you get a huge omlette big enough to share, with a generous slice of crispy hash browns and a big stack of toast. My salad was $8.75 and was big enough to take home half for dinner. And the short stack of pancakes rang in for a mere $3.50. You could easily enjoy lunch for two people for thirty dollars or less.
So many restaurants have lost touch with this attentive side of cooking, and simply crank out dishes without much though or care. Honey’s makes sure your food is made exactly how you like it, with fresh ingredients and in-house roasted meats. They even state on their menu, “If you do not see something on the menu, if we have the ingredients we are happy to make it!” A restaurant that encourages you to make substitutions and craft your own dishes? Now that’s a novelty worth driving twenty minutes for.
Honey’s Kitchen is located at 48 Clinton Road, Fairfield, NJ (973-287-6749)
*photo credit Elizabeth Starnes