If your soul mate could be a restaurant, The Rolling Pin Café would definitely be mine. Situated on a busy street in a small town in New Jersey, it’s very easy to miss. And yet every seat in the tiny, cozy café is always filled, with a twenty-minute wait to get a table. It tends to be frequented by chattering old women, mother-daughter pairings, and the occasional husband, clearly dragged there for the first time by his wife who asks about the waitress’s kids.
The Rolling Pin has the perfect menu and weekly specials for any season, but its décor just screams summer. Complete with a creaky screen door and homemade raspberry lemonade, it’s the perfect escape from the heat. The walls are lined with old drawings and prints, antique rolling pins, and a shelf topped with cookbooks and a rather magnificent collection of porcelain teapots. It embodies quaint and charming.
And have I forgotten to mention that the food is delicious? The menu consists of a list of sandwiches, soups, salads, and macaroni and cheese. It’s comfort food with a twist. The classics we have come to know and love are given a distinct character— some caramelized onion spread is added to ham and cheese, mustard greens to a tuna melt. All the salads have a unique character, whether it come from a smoked Gouda, a candied pecan, or a toasted walnut vinaigrette. The soups change each week, going from a selection of hearty or creamy soups in the winter to light, chilled soups in the summer. All the sandwiches come with a side of sweet potato salad or a pickle (go for the salad, it’s ridiculous) and the salads and soups a homemade scone, baked fresh that morning.
My most recent excursion into foodie bliss found me having a love affair with the salad of the week. Mixed greens topped with strawberries, sliced almonds, shredded Havarti, and a light white wine vinaigrette, it was a masterpiece. Every bite exploded with vibrant, summery flavor. The strawberry and dressing gave it a wonderful tangy taste with the cheese a smooth balance. The almonds gave it a nice texture that allowed for the satisfying crunch the other ingredients lacked. I was in heaven.
So should you ever be in Westwood, New Jersey and are up for a delicious lunch and a great atmosphere, try The Rolling Pin. I promise it will be worth the wait!
The Rollin Pin Cafe
Westwood, NJ 07675