Instead of the typical Sunday morning brunch, I mixed it up this weekend and went on Saturday. Being that it was such a beautiful day, I took a nice stroll down Garden (my favorite street in Hoboken) to Legal Beans, located on Garden Street between Newark and 1st Streets.
Not too crowded. My first two weekend brunches had thirty plus minute waits. Lucky for me, Legal Beans had plenty of open tables when I popped in at 11:30 on a Saturday morning. The hostess gave us a choice of at least five tables scattered throughout the restaurant.
While walking to a corner table, I was distracted by a glass case filled with cupcakes and cookies. The cupcakes were gigantic and only $2.50. Unfortunately after a large breakfast I didn’t save room for dessert!
Homey Environment. The first thing I noticed as soon as I walked in was how bright and welcoming Legal Beans was. The large glass windows on the street side let in a lot of sunlight and are perfect for people watching. The booths (where we sat) are worn, but comfortable, making you feel like you are at home. Nixing standard bar feel of the many new restaurants along Washington, Legal Bean offers a laid-back feel that reflects the uniqueness of a hidden local gem.
Drinks. After the mile stroll downtown to Legal Beans, I was in desperate need of a refreshing drink to quench my thirst. I’m not much of an avid soda drinker so I was very excited to see a few varieties of iced tea and freshly squeezed lemonade on the menu. They offer favor-filled shots of strawberry, watermelon and even mint mojito to give your lemonade a little something extra. I tried the 24 ounce strawberry lemonade. Very refreshing!
As expected, Legal Beans has a large variety of coffee and teas. My breakfast buddy had the Tiger Spice Chai Tea. Once it cooled down enough I gave it a try. It was delicious, although he said it was a bit on the sweet side for his taste. Unfortunately, missing from their drink menu are breakfast cocktails.
Tasty food, Quick Service. The menu features numerous egg dishes and breakfast staples: pancakes, waffles and French toast. If you are leaning more towards lunch, they offer a large selection of salads and sandwiches served with home-made macaroni salad (the table next to us order the macaroni salad and it looked great!). Although the meals lack the flamboyance of other breakfast spot offerings, Legal Beans focuses on providing delicious, standard breakfast offerings at a reasonable price.
One meal in particular jumped out at me, The B-fast Wrap. Surprisingly, I’ve never had a wrap for breakfast and was eager to try something different. The B-fast Wrap has scrambled eggs, potatoes, ham, cheese and peppers wrapped in a wheat wrap. Just reading the description made me even hungrier.
Luckily, our meals came within ten minutes. My B-fast Wrap was served with a side of salsa for dipping and a fresh fruit salad. It had a lot of great flavors all packed into one bite. My breakfast buddy also had eggs; an omelet with spinach and feta cheese. He said his omelet was, “solid, but not spectacular” and loved the home fries.
Kid Friendly. One thing that distinguishes Legal Beans from many other places in Hoboken is how kid friendly the restaurant is. There were many family-filled tables with kids snacking on fruit and cheerios brought from home. Because of the quick service, it is a great place to bring kids who may not be able to handle going out for long meals quite yet. The speedy service allows you to enjoy your meal and leave before the first cry or complaint. In fact, one couple with a small child called ahead to place their order, sowhen they arrived their food was ready to be served.
Out of five spoons, I give Legal Beans three and a half. Although the menu items lacked the flair of other Hoboken establishments, the food was tasty and perfectly priced. It was the perfect place for a relaxing, laid-back brunch. There was no pressure from a line of hungry people waiting outside, so we were able to enjoy our meal at our own pace.
Next weekend I will be trying Elysian Café with a girlfriend from work. A year and a half ago I had a failed attempt there after a long night out with the girls. All of my girlfriends loved it so hopefully I will be able to make it there this weekend!