Bites Nearby: The Breakfast Table
This Palmer Township eatery is all about "family, friends and food."
Two words instantly spring to mind when walking into The Breakfast Table in Palmer Township: charming and contemporary. The small restaurant, which can accommodate 45 patrons, is cozy, well-lit, and, perhaps most importantly, very clean.
The Breakfast Table, which is located in a Tatamy Road strip-mall next to Husky Food Mart, only serves breakfast and lunch, but their menu is anything but typical.
Breakfast, which is served all day, features all the usual suspects like French toast, pancakes, eggs and meats. There’s also breakfast burritos, and a variety of omelets; one stand-out is filled with tomato, basil and mozzarella, while another unique choice is stuffed with broccoli, mushrooms and swiss cheese.
Perhaps most notable on their breakfast menu is the variety of quiche, which stands almost twice as tall as an ordinary quiche. Owner Brian Duffy explained that his quiche is made in ten-inch Springform pans, which allows for uncommon volume (check out the photo gallery for an example of their cake-like quiche).
The lunch menu, which kicks in around 11 a.m., is chock-full of good things like paninis, wraps, quesadillas, salads and burgers.
According to Duffy, weekends are the busiest time for the restaurant, which is hard to believe since even at 1 p.m. on a Wednesday nearly every table was full. Every weekend the restaurant cooks up three to five specials. Some examples of weekend specials are Bananas Foster French toast, pumpkin-pecan pancakes, or, as will be the case this weekend, hickory-smoked bacon and gouda cheese omelet.
Duffy explained the restaurant’s namesake, saying, “We’re really known for our breakfast… almost 70 percent of our business is breakfast.”
Curiously, the restaurant has no freezer. Everything comes in fresh twice a week. Duffy also points out that nothing used in the kitchen is pasteurized; it’s whole eggs only, nothing out of a carton. Berries are always fresh, never frozen. Produce comes from local sources when available and according to season.
“I’m the crazy guy at the supermarket, thumping the melons… I always pick the sweet ones,” joked Duffy.
The Breakfast Table’s slogan is “Family, friends and food.” It’s on their sign outside and on every menu, front and back.
“I come from an Italian family,” Duffy explained. “Every Sunday, it was about family, friends and food…. People told me, ‘Brian, you’re in the restaurant business, food should be the most important.’ But in my mind, family and friends come first.”
He illustrates his motto by his family-owned and operated business; his sister, Susan, works the front end while Duffy himself keeps his eye on presentation and preparation. On the weekends, his nieces and nephews work in the restaurant.
Specials orders are no problem, and allergies are always taken into consideration. Duffy talks about one little girl with an allergy to nutmeg that comes in on weekends for French toast; he has no problem whipping up a special batch for her.
The clientele includes plenty of locals, but the restaurant has reach; people come from Bethlehem, parts of Allentown, Nazareth and Pen Argyl, particularly on the weekends for breakfast.
Duffy is a graduate of culinary school and a trained chef, and has worked in food service for 28 years. He worked as a chef for ten years before moving on to manage country clubs. He spent three years managing in Manhattan.
He combined his years of culinary experience with what he learned from family to create his menu. Some of the recipes used in his restaurant are the same ones that his aunts and grandmother used when he was a child.
“The food I serve here is what I grew up with, what I know breakfast should be,” said Duffy.
Although The Breakfast Table is only open for breakfast and lunch, they also host private functions after-hours, in addition to doing off-site catering.
The Breakfast Table is located 1315 Tatamy Road in Palmer Township. They serve breakfast and lunch Tuesday through Saturday, 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. On Sundays they serve breakfast only from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. The restaurant is closed Mondays, and only accepts cash and check.
Visit their website at www.thebreakfasttablepa.com. The Breakfast Table celebrated their five-year anniversary last week; stop by with some family and friends for some food and help them ring in five years of business.