When restaurants include a customer survey with the bill, it’s often destined for the recycling bin. Not so at The Village Cup in Jericho. Since he purchased the bakery and café in 2008, owner Steve Burke has polled his customers three times to make sure his business is growing according to their needs. And he’s acted on some of their suggestions.
Two weekends ago, that meant debuting bistro dinners. To put the plan in action, Burke hired Joseph Ianelli, former executive chef at Toscano Café Bistro in Richmond. Both his sous-chef, Colby Smith, and pastry chef, Michelle Muller, graduated from the New England Culinary Institute.
Once just a place for coffee, pastries and light breakfast and lunch, The Village Cup introduced a popular brunch earlier this year. Cars now fill the parking lot each Saturday and Sunday as diners munch on a rotating menu that includes a variety of takes on eggs Benedict, as well as raspberry pancakes, bananas Foster French toast and “eggs in a frame.”
The new dinner, served seven nights a week, features a similar mix of classics and fresh, local ingredients, says Burke. A pair of LaPlatte River Angus sliders are served on homemade herbed buns and slathered with tangy aioli. Vegetarians can get in on the action with sliders made from zucchini fritters. A more elegant alternative is an order of asparagus and Saga cheese bundles accompanied by a salad of spring greens with balsamic dressing.
Renovations on the other half of The Village Cup building are still in the works. Burke says he expects to open his formal Brick House Restaurant in that space this summer.