honey cafe in glen ellyn

It is always a pleasure to spend time with Jacqui of Happy Jack Eats—that girl makes two hours at a Barnes & Noble book signing seem fun—so this last Saturday, after two months of sickness and holidays and traveling and (for her) wedding planning!, we met up at Honey Cafe, a suburban brunch spot I’d read about online that was said to rival the best of the city, and can I just say? It does.

downtown glen ellyn

First of all, it’s in downtown Glen Ellyn, where they have historic houses surrounding a few streets of shopping and dining, all smack-dab next to a Metra station, and there’s a historic theatre and a mom-and-pop grocery (where I bought a loaf of bread! support local business!) and random alleys that make for nice pictures with the blue sky poking through above.

glen ellyn theatre
glen ellyn grocery
glen ellyn alley

Honey’s also pretty inside.

honey bars

The front bakery display borders exposed brick walls and two bar seating areas facing huge windows to the street.

honey bakery
front bakery

An open hallway leads past bathrooms and the kitchen to a larger seating area, where daisies top simple tables and and menus are covered with colorful patterns.

hallway to back

But what’s most important obviously is the food. Oh, the food.

veggie burger and sweet potato fries

I got the veggie burger, which was so, so much better than an actual hamburger, let me tell you, made of fresh, shredded vegetables like zucchini, squash, carrots and sweet potatoes that are all made into a patty and sauteed with herbs, then topped with tiny little wisps of onion rings and harissa mayo. I paid $1 extra for sweet potato fries on the side, which was a good decision, and I only wish I knew how they make their fries so perfectly crisp on the outside, soft on the inside, without being the slightest bit burnt, like mine tend to be.

smoked salmon benedict

Jacqui ordered the smoked salmon benedict, which was so her (have you seen the way she talks about these things?), featuring wild house-smoked salmon, poached eggs, spinach and tomatoes on a toasted English muffin, with homemade hollandaise all over the top.

Oh, and also: I got a peppermint tea during the meal, and when it was time to go, they made me another cup to take with me to go.

jacqui's place

I mean, really. This place is a find, people.

And while it’s true Jacqui and I would probably have fun wherever we were (one more picture! of jacqui with one of her three cameras she had with her! seriously, how awesome is it I get to hang out with someone like that?)


I am so glad that last Saturday it was at Honey Cafe.

Honey Cafe
499 North Main Street
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

Haiti Ebook! Lauren of Celiac Teen got a bunch of bloggers together (including yours truly) to contribute recipes to a Hope for Haiti Ebook, available for $10 online. ALL proceeds are going to the Red Cross, with Lauren’s parents matching up to $1000 and the Canadian government matching everything until February 12. This girl is a teenager, people. Amazing. Go check it out, here.

Shanna Mallon

Shanna Mallon started Food Loves Writing back in 2008, as a way to remember her grandma and write about her life through food. Since then it's become a place leading her to a lifestyle of eating whole foods, a new home in Nashville and the love of her life, Tim. Follow Shanna on Twitter @foodloves, keep up with Food Loves Writing on Facebook and stay inspired with the monthly newsletter.

This Post Has 14 Comments

  1. Lauren @ Eater not a runner

    Looks like a beautiful brunch!

  2. Jacqui

    yay! your honey photos are gorgeous! totally captured the warmth and simplicity and happiness of it all. thanks again for such a great day — good food, good photos, and good conversation is always welcome. can’t wait to do it again in madison with the engineer baker! :)

  3. montague

    what a cute neighborhood, and a great cafe’!

  4. maris

    This place sounds like a must-try for me! I’ve never been to Glen Ellyn but it will be added to my list! There really are *so* many awesome restaurants in Chicago!

  5. Tim

    mmmm. mhmm.

  6. Kim

    That place looks wonderful! One of these days, I am going to have to come visit you in Chicago!

  7. Jessica

    Wow everything looks amazing, food and locale. Photos are gorgeous as always!

  8. Hannah

    what a gorgeous place!

  9. Shannalee

    Lauren, thanks and it was!

    Jacqui, So glad to know you and to sit down with you and chat. Def can’t wait to do it again on our road trip! Look out, Wisconsin!

    Montague, Right? So cute.

    Maris, There are. And this is so easily accessible via Metra – def try it in the spring or summer!

    Tim, Indeed.

    Kim, Come! Come!

    Jessica, Thank you so much!

  10. Shannalee

    And Hannah, we were commenting at the same time, ha! It was gorgeous!

  11. Niki

    I’m love it! I work near there and a friend does as well, so there have been days when I’ve taken a half day and met her for brunch. The panseared oatmeal is delicious! Oh and the Caprese Benedict! The Filet Mignon benedict is so next for me! :)
    I haven’t had lunch food yet… Maybe after I tackle the filet, I’ll move onto lunch the next time around, the chopped salad looks yummy :)

  12. Shannalee

    Niki! How crazy that you’re a fan of Honey too! Making mental notes about all your recommendations from the menu (because I am definitely going back) – thanks so much!

  13. bodelou

    ahhh! GE. Thats where i grew up. its a cute little place, not known for successful culinary spots, Honey seems to be an exception.(instead, they are known for such great things as the sight where the old Charlie Sheen and Winona Ryder movie Lucas, the home of Billy Corgan and Jack from Will and Grace, oh and indeed, the cutest mom and pop grocery store, ever!) Ive made it to Honey for afternoon snacks, but not yet for brunch. since i’m not too far away i may have to stop by… thanks as always for your wonderful photos and words

  14. Shannalee

    Bodelou, Loved your comment and the pieces of Glen Ellyn history, ha! Glad to know another fan of Honey, too!

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