Gourmet Café a hidden gem near Grove Alley
Nestled on the quiet block of Hanover Place, just around the corner of the once deserted Grove Alley, is an unassuming neighborhood staple; the storefront simply reads Gourmet Café and looks no different than any other classic New York deli. But this hidden gem regularly draws lunch crowds that spill out onto the sidewalk and devoted customers who know the owner by name.
“I’ve come to Cesar’s at least three times,” said Maria, who recently moved to the neighborhood. “I saw how crowded it was when I first walked by and figured it must be pretty good. It’s definitely worth the wait.”
Cesar himself is usually behind the counter with his employees, fixing wraps or putting together dishes from the salad bar. The café is a small, one-room shop with a few stools at a counter by the widow, but most people seem to be getting take-out and going back to their offices or one of the many outdoor plazas in Downtown Brooklyn to eat. What it lacks in atmosphere, it makes up for in quality and value.
“It’s healthy. It’s inexpensive. It’s fresh. I eat here at least once a week,” said William, who works at a nearby shop. “It’s just one of those local places where you feel comfortable and keep coming back.”
Cesar’s menu features burgers, tuna, and chicken salad, as well as a breakfast menu that’s available from 7:30am-11:30am daily. But everything they do, they do well. From the hot pastrami to the grilled shrimp Cesar salad, a meal from the Gourmet Deli is going to be a good one. It’s the type of place that makes a neighborhood special, and one that is unique to a cultural hub like Downtown Brooklyn.
Cesar’s Gourmet Café is open Monday through Saturday from 7:30am-5:00pm, but if your Friday night plans include a visit to Grove Alley Game Nite, be sure to swing by – Cesar will be open tomorrow night for the occasion.