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Daily Journal
     August 3, 2021      #61-215 KDJ
 

BEST BITES: New Bradley café is 'Berry' good 

By Tinker Parker

When in doubt, order the chicken salad sandwich.

I’ve eaten out quite a bit and, when it comes to lunch, it’s usually a bowl of homemade soup and a small salad or a half-sandwich. As I stare at the menu, I ask myself, “well, what’s it going to be today? Tuna, egg salad, grilled cheese?” If there’s chicken salad on the list, I’ll ask the servers, “what do you think? Is it good?” Of course, the response is, “it’s good.”

How else would they respond? It’s always the same; I’ve never heard, “I wouldn’t eat it.” I concentrate on their face for non-verbal signals, which is usually a grimace; no grimace, it has to be good. Trust your server and order the chicken salad sandwich. Glad I did because the sandwich was fabulous!

Where is this chicken salad sandwich? Find it at Berry & Butter Café in Bradley. The newly renovated café is comfortable and welcoming. I enjoyed the bright atmosphere of the room, surrounded by plenty of windows. The staff is excellent and the food delicious.

My friend, Mary Thomson, of Kankakee, and I stopped in for lunch and we both enjoyed the homemade tomato basil soup — rich, creamy, seasoned perfectly. It had an excellent taste of basil that lingered on the palette. Excellent.

But the shining star that day was their homemade chicken salad…delicious. It was served on nine-grain bread with romaine lettuce and a fantastic mustard sauce. I’m picky about chicken salad and hesitated to order; but I paid close attention to my server, who didn’t flinch or grimace. She was spot-on correct — it was delicious.

They have an excellent selection of paninis — very international ranging from Tex-Mex to Italian and even a little Cuban thrown in the mix. Along with the paninis are wraps, including the Olympic wrap. This would be great to order since the Olympics are going on. It’s a Greek salad in a wrap; seasoned gyros meat, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, kalamata olives, Feta cheese, pepperoncini and Greek dressing (not to forget the tzatziki sauce).

Enjoy the salads during these hot days. They have a vast selection, including apple orchard chicken salad, tostada taco salad, Mediterranean chicken salad and much more.

The breakfast menu is excellent, beginning with the organic eggs that are used. Crepes are famous at Berry & Butter Café. They range from simplistic to adventurous, like the Genovese with cheese, tomatoes, spinach, pesto and aioli.

The skillets came out looking fabulous. Try their steak fajita skillet with marinated steak, peppers, tomatoes, onion, cheddar and Monterey cheese.

And, who doesn’t like waffles? Imagine a fresh waffle topped with your favorite fruit or ice cream and a mound of whipped cream. Of course, Nutella is very popular with many people, but if you’re a purist like me, it would definitely be the stuffed crepes filled with sweet mascarpone cheese and topped with berries and granola.

French toast or pancakes — you can’t go wrong here. Light, fluffy, sweet and topped with warmed maple syrup. Try their Signature French toast with fresh kiwi and strawberries with a delicate vanilla and strawberry glaze. The homemade cinnamon roll French toast is warm with a cinnamon glaze, powdered sugar and lightly dusted with cinnamon on top.

The omelet selection is impressive, especially the Fresca with dried sunrise tomato, fresh basil, prosciutto and provolone cheese, and it’s served with toast or pancakes! There’s enough for two people or to take home leftovers and heat it up for breakfast the next day.

Don’t forget to order their special hot drinks with your meal or to take home. There is espresso, cappuccino, lattes, iced Ghirardelli mocha latte, frappe and Frappuccinos. The pumpkin spice latte (always popular in the fall) is also great in the summer.

Whether it’s breakfast or lunch, I highly recommend Berry & Butter Café. The staff is excellent, the chefs are busy making everything homemade and it’s reasonably priced. Mary and I were extremely comfortable, our server was terrific and our lunch was excellent.

I’m going back soon for lunch and also to order carry-out from them.

Tinker Parker is an adjunct communication professor at Kankakee Community College and Governors State University. She can be contacted through The Daily Journal at editors@daily-journal.com or directly at bestbites@daily-journal.comTinkerP91@yahoo.com; or Best Bites Hotline 815-802-5101.

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