If ever a neighborhood needed a social gathering house and bakery all in one it was Centennial, at least until Lulu's Bread & Breakfast opened. Now the bakery and breakfast and lunch spot has become a destination in the neighborhood with an ever-changing menu of dishes such as eggs on a soft roll, frittatas and stuffed French toast for breakfast and salads and sandwiches for lunch. Look for the meatloaf with white cheddar and pulled pork with cilantro and pickled veggies on the sandwich board as well as a rotating collection of grilled cheeses.
Every day, the restaurant comes out with a different fresh-baked bread, with a roster of 15 on hand that includes raisin walnut, chocolate cherry, sesame semolina and more. Listen to the customers walk in and ask if their favorite is available that day.
And the pastries, oh the delightful pastries. One day customers might find a blueberry and lemon pound cake filled with lemon cream or One of Those, Lulu's riff on the Cronut. Massive rocky road brownies and a bevy of cookies make the cut.
"We thought of what we would want to eat," says co-owner John Arena, yes, the man who's also behind the wildly popular Metro Pizza. "We're not McDonald's. We're not IHOP."
The concept for Lulu's, named for Arena's mother, who inspired the menu and collected recipes from Vermont to Brooklyn to Vegas for the menu, came from his former food truck. "You can't just do what you were doing on the truck," Arena says. "The expectations are different. The truck audience is different. The truck is 50 percent of the experience. Every aspect of the truck has to be different."
Arena cautions that the food here is different. A croissant might have guava inside. "It's like being a jazz musician. We have a palette of flavors and riff on whatever's happening that day," Arena says. "If there are things that resonate, we do them again the next day."
The restaurant is doing about 450 covers a day and only stays open until 4 p.m.
· All Coverage of Lulu's Bread & Breakfast [~ELV~]