From the sidewalk, Julie Anne’s Place looked like any other well-kept twin, except for the sign hanging on the porch and the menu board propped by the door. The homey feeling continued with a gracious welcome by one of the servers as we entered.
We were looking up the staircase along the mauve and cream colored walls when she motioned to the list of daily specials posted by the bottom. She brought menus to the blond wood table with dark wood chairs that we chose. It was already set with paper place mats and utensils wrapped in paper napkins. She took our drink order and quickly returned with a bottle of Coke ($1.75) and an acrylic tumbler of water.
A friendly server soon appeared. He pointed out the day’s specials, and we asked for a few minutes to decide. He had to return a third time after we had placed our order to apologize that they ran out of roast beef for the Classic Sandwich ($5.50). Since we had debated whether or not to try a Grilled Reuben ($6.95), we had a quick second choice ready for him.
We enjoyed the small, bright space while we overheard returning diners talk about items they had ordered on previous visits. A larger lunch group moved two tables together as two women and their young daughters were gathering their coats to leave.
A Raspberry Bleu Salad ($6.75) arrived first in a white ceramic dish. We could smell a hint of raspberry and vinegar in the vinaigrette, which was thoughtfully served in a side container. Crisp, fresh iceberg and leaf lettuce was topped with candied walnuts, crumbled bleu cheese and finely sliced Granny Smith apple. The mixture was nicely balanced by the sweet tart dressing. Grilled chicken was available for an additional $1.20 to make the salad an entrée.
The Grilled Reuben ($6.95), which we ordered with corned beef rather than the optional turkey was still hot, although we noted that the meat and Swiss cheese filling was grilled but the rye bread had only been toasted, not grilled. Our server instinctively brought extra napkins and asked if we liked the sandwich, since most people said it was their favorite. We told him we thought it was very good. We did find that the shaved meat was piled a bit high, and the sauerkraut and dressing tended to slide out as we tried to eat it, but it was still a good rendition.
We enjoyed the lighter Veggie Tuscan ($6.25) sandwich. We expected a traditional focaccia bread, but found it served on more of a seeded roll made from fresh, thick bread. Slices of fresh mozzarella, roasted red pepper, tomato and raw spinach made for a good counterpoint to the Reuben.
We felt satisfied, but couldn’t pass up the homemade desserts on display in the center case where we went to pay our bill. We chose a slice of Carrot Cake ($2.95) over Jewish Apple Cake ($2.95) or Yellow Cake ($2) to be packaged to go. The large slice of double layer cake had big chunks of walnuts, small specks of carrots and mild spice while the frosting was sweet without the cream cheese tang. The cake was less dense than most we’ve tried.
Julie Anne’s Place also serves breakfast items like French Toast ($5), Lox and Bagel Platter ($8.50), Omelettes ($4.25), Pancakes ($3.95) and Cream Chipped Beef ($5.95). Specialty teas, coffees and flavored syrups were lined up on the central counter. Hot Chocolate with Whipped Cream ($1.75) or a Root Beer Float ($2.95) could make any kid want to become a regular customer, no matter their age. The location—across from —could make for a quick family treat.
22 South Warren Avenue, Malvern
Hours: Tues - Sat, 7 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Sun, 7 a.m. – 2 p.m.: closed Mondays
Cost: Breakfast entrees, $2 to $8.50; salads, $5 to $8; sandwiches, $5.50 - $7.
Credit cards: VISA, MasterCard, Discover
Special Features: Family friendly, vegetarian options, free WiFi