Lunch Hot Spots: Samba Montclair

by Melody Kettle

Next up on Montclair’s Lunch Hot Spots is Ilson Goncalves’ Samba Montclair.

It's no secret: I love Samba Montclair; the homestyle Brazilian food, the mellow vibe, the colors, the antiques,  and I love lunch at Samba!

Why? Quality and value.  Samba Montclair has one of the most sensitive lunch menu price points in Montclair. The menu offers grilled panini’s served on Balthazar Ciabatta Bread, with a mixed baby green salad from $6.50 -$8.50.

Mr. Hot, Lil' Kettle and I recently had lunch at Samba.  I opted for the Hanger Steak Panini with caramelized onions and Gorgonzola cheese ($8.50).  The bread was classically crisp and the steak was impressively tender.  The gorgonzola and onions added that flourish of flavor I need to be satisfied - and I was!

Mr. Hot, a porkophile himself,  had the “Cubano” ($7.50) with roasted pork, ham, Swiss, pickles, and mustard ($7.50).  Of course, I took a bite (or two), just to see if Brazilians make good Cubans.  Trust me, they do!

Lil' Kettle went with the Samba Panini ($7.00) with chicken, grilled pineapple and that delicious mango mustard on multi grain. As I don't usually opt for chicken (unless it's CTM)  I availed myself of a bite.  Very good!  That sweetness of the pineapple and the sweet savory profile of the mango mustard complimented the multi grain beautifully.

The Samba menu also offers selections like freshly ground burgers with salad and French fries at $6.50, and Philly Cheesesteak with onions and peppers and salad and fries at $6.95. 

Ilson will also be adding a few new lunch menu items such as a grilled panini with Brazilian sausage, grapes, and Gorgonzola ($7.95).  The next time I go to Samba for lunch, I know what I'm having:  a panini with ham and sweet plantains with Swiss, and Chimichurri Cilantro Mayo ($6.95). Sounds good! Is it noon yet?