The Café Above the Avenue: Good Food, Good Drink, and Good People Watching!
When Cloud 9 restaurant closed, taking with it its legendary Friday night women’s happy hour, lots of other places jumped in to fill the void. For the gals, the Rehoboth Ale House, The (formerly Frogg) Pond, and MIXX have stepped up admirably.
But what became of bartender Brenda and inventive chef Teal? They’ve been spotted holding forth upstairs at First Street Station overlooking the avenue at a small, unobtrusive spot, called The Café. It’s adjacent to, and affiliated with, the Maggio-Shields Real Estate office up there on the roof deck.
It’s at The Café you’ll find a comfy full bar and restaurant waiting for you—as well as a creative menu by Chef Teal and mixology by happy hour veteran Brenda herself. They’re back! And happy hour can happen all the time.
Last Friday night, despite pouring rain, we hunkered down at The Café with a bunch of gal pals and sampled the drinks and the goodies. Naturally, Brenda poured exemplary cocktails, remembering my penchant for a Cosmo on the rocks, and soon happy hour got exceedingly, well, happy.
Our table ordered all kinds of eats—from the great Caesar salad (small plate $6, large, $9) to the thick and flavorful crab bisque ($9), and my very favorite, Chef Teal’s stacked eggplant, also $9. It’s panko encrusted eggplant with herb cheese, fresh spinach and putanesca sauce. Delicious!
Other small plates include choices like tempura battered lobster tails, bacon scallops, and crispy fried ravioli. Sandwiches and wraps include a roasted pulled pork wrap ($12), the café bison burger (remarkably good, $14), and Café Maggio crab cakes ($12 for the small plate version).
Perfect for light summer dining, the menu offers both the Caesar or mixed green salads with topper choices like a single crab cake, scallop, seared chicken, chicken salad, or a single soft shell crab. Feel like a specialty snack with your cocktail? My choice would be the hummus and olive tapenade platter ($8) but I am also intrigued by the soft hot dipping pretzels with cheese and mustard sauce…next Friday!
Sunday brunchers will enjoy menu selections like bananas foster French toast or eggs benedict ($12 each), herb scrambled eggs with bourbon smoked bacon ($8), or more lunch than breakfast items like the bison and kobe beef burgers ($14), salads, yogurt and fruit parfaits, and Brenda’s $3 bloody Marys and mimosas.
And now that monsoon season has abated (we hope!) the most exciting part of The Café’s charm is its great big outdoor space, with plenty of comfortable seating, right over Rehoboth Avenue. The Café can provide a garden party setting every night of the week, with people watching, summer concert sounds and all the surprising sights downtown Rehoboth has to offer. Frankly, there’s nothing else like this space in town.
While you can stroll up the steps at First Street Station to get to the Café at the mezzanine level, did you know there is also an elevator to take you to The Café? Try it! The address is officially 70 Rehoboth Avenue, but just head for First Street Station and look up!
So boys and girls together, come one, come all, gay, straight, young, and a little less young. The drinks flow, the food is more upscale than pubby but less than wallet busting, and the outdoor space is quite extraordinary.
As the agents at Maggio-Shields Real Estate claim, you can have your cake and condo too!
Welcome back, Brenda and the gang. You may not be up there on Cloud 9 anymore, but this second story café is going to be quite the al fresco spot above the crowd.
For more on The Café at First Street Station, call 302-226-3770.