Caffe Mona La Bistro is a breakfast, lunch, and brunch spot in Bloomfield serving up cafe style food like crepes, omelets, sandwiches, and salads. There's nothing too out of the ordinary on the menu here, but if you're looking for a casual BYOB brunch spot, Caffe Mona La Bistro might just be it.
However, if you have food allergies like I do, I wouldn't recommend it as we had a misunderstanding during our visit that made for a less than ideal situation.
Starting the Meal Out Like Most Brunch Spots
We always drive past this restaurant and comment how cute it looks, but never seem to make it in. Well, we finally made it in this New Years Day when we were looking for something to do and somewhere to eat and they just happened to be open.
It seemed like lots of other people had the same idea as it was quite busy. Luckily we grabbed a table relatively quickly and ordered a latte which was fine but not that memorable.
Looking at the brunch menu, it was hard to decide between the delicious sounding sweet crepes like the Elvis (bacon, banana, peanut butter, and maple syrup), the savory crepes like the Mr. Green (spinach, feta, mozzarella, and asiago), omelets, and sandwiches.
I decided to go sweet with the Fig and Brie French toast, while Jeremy went savory with the Street sandwich which was like a Philly cheesesteak.
The Street sandwich started with some toasted Italian bread and was filled with steak, mushrooms, onions, Swiss cheese, and mayo. To us the flavors were just average, but it was definitely very cheesy. The best part of the sandwich was the bread which had a soft, tender interior and a crust with a good bite.
An Allergy Issue with the French Toast
Unfortunately we had a bit of a misunderstanding with my French toast order that put a damper on the whole meal. I mentioned to our server when I ordered that I had a tree nut allergy and asked if the fig and brie French toast had any nuts.
She acted like she understood, didn't really say anything to note that the dish had nuts, and took our order and left.
When the French toast came out, she said that there may be some kind of nut in the house made fig jam and that the chef put it in a dish on the side. When I asked what kind of nuts, she kept saying she didn't know. Unsure if the fig jam actually had nuts in it or not I just ate the French toast without it.
There are several things wrong with this picture, however.
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First, if your chef made the fig jam and he is in the kitchen, he should know what is in it. Second, the fig jam was one of the main components of the fig and brie French toast, and had I known I couldn't eat it I would have definitely ordered something else.
In an ideal world I would have sent the dish back, but given how busy the restaurant was I didn't want to wait another half hour for a different meal to come out (not to mention, it didn't strike us as a great idea at the time).
That said, what I did get to taste of the French toast dish was pretty good. The bread was light and airy but eggy and moist, and it was topped with a ton of melty brie and thin slices of crisp apple.
I asked for some maple syrup to pour on top in lieu of the fig jam, but I bet it would have been even better with the fig jam (and Jeremy being Jeremy he ate it, confirmed it would've made the dish, and then didn't kiss me the rest of the day just in case- lovely).
Overall, given the misunderstanding with our order I don't think we would return. If you have food allergies or dietary restrictions I would think twice before coming here. If not, then you might like Caffe Mona La Bistro for its European cafe vibe and its brunch, breakfast, and lunch options.
Caffe Mona is located at 4200 Penn Avenue in Bloomfield.