Today was our first time at Paperback Cafe. We almost went for lunch a while back, over the summer, after attempting to go to Liv’s for lunch and finding that it was a dinner only establishment – but we were there too late and Paperback was about to close. I am so glad we ended up back here today.
We came for lunch a little after 1pm and the little restaurant was packed! Every table was full so we had to wait, but only for a few minutes. Afraid my hungry boyfriend might want to go somewhere else instead, I quickly said, “it must be busy for a reason. Let’s just wait a few minutes.” Right away I noticed a comfortable, cozy atmosphere, almost kind of like you’re eating in your own dining room at home. I appreciated the books and pictures lining the built-in bookshelves and the large map of the Long Island Sound on a large wall. While we were waiting I admired other peoples plates and noticed that the salads looked big, fresh, and delicious. Everyone seemed to be enjoying their food – a good sign!
Shortly after we arrived we were seated. When I opened the menu my jaw dropped. An entire page of Paleo menu items?!? Holy smokes, I had never seen that before anywhere!!! If you follow my reviews, I obviously do not adhere to a full-on Paleo diet, but I have been trying to incorporate more of it into my life mostly with my own cooking (there’s a whole backstory to this but I will spare you). As it turns out, the owner of the place is a Crossfitter (I’ve been obsessed with doing Crossfit for about a year now and the Paleo diet and Crossfit go hand in hand). There are both breakfast and lunch dishes that are Paleo and many, if not all of them, looked great.
The rest of the menu was tempting too. I ordered the Four Play Salad, because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t like a little Four Play? Seriously, though, I was attracted to the variety as it came with their signature chicken salad that had cranberries, apple and walnuts, tuna salad, egg salad, and seafood salad, all on top of the house salad. This was enormous. The chicken salad and seafood salad were terrific, while the egg and the tuna salads were good, but all of it got a little heavy in my stomach from all the mayonnaise. My boyfriend ordered the sausage and vegetables stir-fry off the Paleo menu and he liked it but the portion was on the smaller side. It was about a third the size of my salad, no joke, so he inhaled his dish then helped me with my big salad.
If you’re into sweets they’ve got those here too! Right when you walk into the place you are faced with the sweets case that today had pumpkin pie, lemon meringue pie, a chocolate cake and cheesecake creation, brownies, several types of cookies and seven layer bars (these looked amazing!). I could not help but notice the Paleo Banana Zucchini Raisin bread and had to buy one when we were leaving. The owner had made it himself. At $8 for a small loaf, it’s definitely pricey but worth it. So Incredibly moist and flavorful, I might go as far as to say that it is better than any banana bread I’ve ever had.
I cannot wait to come back here to try many more things off the their menu. Hopefully next time I come the Paleo banana bread will be available again. This place is awesome!
210 Main St
Old Saybrook, CT 06475