Fast-casual restaurants such as Panera and Smashburger have already graced Nanuet’s Route 59 shopping district with fresh food and fast service at reasonable prices. Now Corner Bakery Café has brought the fast-casual concept to The Shops at Nanuet, offering made-to-order breakfast, lunch, dinner, coffee and baked goods in a comfortable café environment.
Corner Bakery started as an actual corner bakery in downtown Chicago and is now 165 franchise locations strong. They’re committed to giving back to the communities in which they operate through participation in local fundraisers. In anticipation of their March 31st opening, Corner Bakery conducted an invite-only soft-open on Saturday March 29th, which doubled as a fundraiser for Keep Rockland Beautiful and their Great American Clean Up initiative. Nearly 600 people were served and almost $2,500 was raised. Attendees (my family included) were given a limited menu of free meals to choose from; we were pleased that the enticing Anaheim Scrambler we’d seen in ads and on in-store signage was one of the options, and the combination of scrambled eggs, applewood smoked bacon, tomatoes, green onions, cheddar cheese, and avocado did not disappoint (one of us got the regular dish and the other got the panini version, on buttery grilled bread). We drooled over the bakery display case, which featured such goodies as rugelach, snickerdoodle cookies, cinnamon coffee cake, and blueberry hand pies, and vowed to come back once it opened.
A week later I was in the mood for French toast, and as we were seeing a movie at Regal that morning, we figured we’d stop into Corner Bakery again. Their French toast—a “cinnamon-swirled brioche bread baked in a rich vanilla custard”—was amazing. It actually reminded me of monkey bread: so many nooks and lumps, so much cinnamon, so freaking delicious. My husband had been so happy with his Anaheim Scrambler the week before that he just ordered it again (I snuck bites). Our son was pleased to be able to get pancakes this time. We’re dying to go back for lunch—I need to try their chopped salad and their bacon tomato mac and three cheese. They’ve also got lots of sandwiches, paninis, and soups, plus lots of delicious-sounding pasta options. The fact that it’s a chain means that nutritional information is conveniently available online. Coffee by Java City and gourmet teas by Mighty Leaf are going to give the Starbucks across the way some serious competition.
The space’s décor is comfortably modern with rustic touches, and features a lot of stock art that’s been customized to incorporate local Nanuet landmarks. They also plan to offer outdoor seating if this winter ever ends, a nice touch for this open-air mall. I just wish it were on the actual corner—it’s only one storefront down! Patsy’s Pizzeria next door hasn’t opened yet…is it too much to hope they’ll have a last minute change of heart and swap spots?
Corner Bakery Café, The Shops at Nanuet, 75 New York 59, Nanuet; (845) 627-0200; http://www.cornerbakerycafe.com