Cherry Street Kitchen has been in business for just a little more than two years, but regulars already have tagged it with their own shortened name.
“They just call us The Kitchen,” said Beth Bias, who owns the bakery-café with chef Jen Lindsay. “That’s what we put on our new T-shirts now, The Kitchen. I like it a lot.”
By either name, we like the place a lot, too.
Cherry Street Kitchen has a daily breakfast-brunch menu and a weekend brunch menu. We visited recently for brunch on a steamy Sunday afternoon.
Among our selections were the Humboldt Co. Farmhouse breakfast ($11), avocado toast ($9) and a blackboard special, the frittata of the day ($10).
The breakfast included two eggs (the menu said over-easy, but I went over-medium), blistered tomatoes, smoked pork shoulder bacon, toast, herb goat cheese and fig jam.
The grape tomatoes were bursting with flavor, literally. Be careful when you stab them with a fork because they will squirt out significant tomato juice. The bacon was thick and flavorful, and the goat cheese and fig jam on toasted rustic bread was terrific. Even the eggs seemed larger and tastier than at most places.
“We don’t make our own bread, but we make sure we have very good bread,” Bias said.
The same bread showed up on the avocado toast. I know, I know, everyone has an avocado toast these days, but each is a little different. On this one, the bread was drizzled with olive oil, grilled and topped with what must have been a whole sliced avocado, chunks of red and yellow cherry tomatoes, salt and pepper. We added two over-medium eggs ($2.50), and the combination was scrumptious.
The frittata featured a smooth, thick egg custard layered with tomato, gouda cheese and bacon. We saved it for later, and it heated up perfectly.
Among dishes on the regular menu we can recommend from the past are The Tab ($10.50), a sandwich with honey mesquite turkey, avocado, applewood smoked bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato and mayo on wheat berry bread, and The Cheech ($11), a third-pound burger with bleu cheese crumbles, sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomato and proprietary boo-yah sauce on a brioche bun.
We added a side salad and bowl of fruit ($1.25 each). The salad was simple and fresh, and the fruit included strawberries, blueberries, grapes, pineapple, blackberries and cantaloupe.
A new item we encountered at the photo shoot was a pimento cheese BLT.
“We make the pimento here,” Lindsay said. “It’s an old item making a comeback.”
Cherry Street Kitchen also has a variety of takeout items daily, including cookies, pies, bars, quiches, cakes and pastries. A couple of popular items are the fat sausage rolls made with Burn Co. BBQ sausages and the Wilbur, featuring smoked pork shoulder and Swiss cheese covered with a croissant wrap and sprinkled with Everything Bagel seasoning.
Coffee comes from Tulsa’s Fair Fellow Coffee Roasters. Beverages also include flavored teas.
Diners pick up their utensils, napkins, straws and water refills at a self-serve station.
The dining room is a cozy space with eight tables in front of red wall banquettes and five seats at a window counter. The floors are original terrazzo. Walls hold paintings of fruits, veggies and coffee cups.
The owners met when Lindsay, former operator of Café Boston at 15th Street and Boston Avenue and later Utica Square, was working as a personal chef for Bias’ family. When Bias lost her corporate job, the two decided to go into business together.
Cherry Street Kitchen got off to a good start this spring when it catered the Designer Showcase at Harwelden mansion.
“We had a lot of parties in May, too, and the Saturday farmers market helps with recognition, since we sit just off Cherry Street,” Lindsay said. “We’ve had such good luck and love it here.”