Last weekend we took a little drive to visit Narberth and visit Royal Café at the corner of Montgomery Avenue and Woodbine Road. Opened in June 2020 the restaurant derives its name from the former Royal Bank building, which was most recently Café Lift. We enjoyed lots of sunny outdoor seating and additional indoor seating to be added. We took a peak inside to witness the whimsical artwork by local muralist Zeve Cohen and the new wood-fired brick oven imported from Italy. You’re sure to find something for everyone on the Royal Café menu from craft cocktails, comfort food, and of course, Neapolitan pizza.
Royal Café was established by partners Jason Gordon, Michael Greene; and Chef Josiah Richmond, formerly executive chef of Café Lift. The team describes the menu as “elevated comfort food.” We certainly can see the comfort in many of the brunch dishes offered.
If you’re in the mood for eggs there’s a classic Eggs Benedict option with applewood smoked ham or a Seasonal Frittata. Our server recommended the Smothered Burrito which certainly was a hearty burrito filled with egg, potato, peppers and onions topped with a green chili queso and pico de gallo. Another wonderful recommendation was the French Toast which was so colorful topped with a variety of fresh fruit. To balance out our gluttony we also sampled the Asian Salad with added grilled shrimp. From the Neapolitan style pizzas, we tried the Murder Hornet Pizza, which combines fresh mozzarella, Calabrian Soppressata, tomato sauce and spicy local honey as well as the Lobstah Pizza which is a white pie topped with cured bacon, peas, and lobster. Since we’re obviously not going to pass on Mac ‘N’ Cheese we tried the bacon version.
“We wanted to include Neapolitan pizza because we noticed a need for it on the Main Line,” said Chef Josiah Richmond. We wanted to do it right, so we imported an Acunto brick oven from Naples, and we’ve been working with it for a few weeks while the space was being finished. We’re excited to introduce our pizzas as well as our roasted vegetables and house-baked pita bread that we’ll be baking in the oven, and we’ll likely introduce some new pizzas and dishes prepared in the oven later this summer.”
Other lunch focused menu items include Smash Style Burgers which are built with two 4 ounce grass-fed beef patties and come with a side of fries. They’re also serving the Impossible Burger for those looking for a meat-free alternative. Sandwiches on the menu include a Maine Lobstah Roll, Chicken Salad BLT, Fried Chicken Sandwich, and Chicken Shish Taouk which is a Mediterranean sandwich served on warm house-made pita with marinated chicken, hummus, lettuce, red onions, tomatoes, and pickled cucumbers with roasted garlic aioli.
“Our hope for re-imagining this space, which used to be a breakfast and brunch destination is to make it a community centerpiece,” said Jason Gordon. “We have one of only a few liquor licenses in Narberth, and we’re looking forward to making the restaurant another stellar food and drink option for the community.” As far as opening in the middle of a pandemic, Gordon has no qualms. “We saw a need in the area, and we’re excited to open and serve the Main Line. People need to eat, and they’re definitely sick of eating at home right now.”
Royal Café Narberth is now open six days a week for happy hour and dinner Tuesday-Sunday from 4-9 pm. Weekend brunch starts at 9 am on Saturday and Sundays. Currently Royal Cafe is offering with outside dining only and takeout is available. Reservations are available via Resy or by calling 484-429-2626.