Grumpy’s carries on family tradition, adds breakfastWritten by Sarah Ottney | Editor in Chief | firstname.lastname@example.org
Grumpy’s, a popular Downtown Toledo lunch spot, is turning frowns upside down for breakfast.
Served Monday through Friday from 7 to 11 a.m., Grumpy’s breakfast menu features a variety of breakfast sandwiches, including a build-your-own option.
“It’s just been a lunch menu for many years — that’s what we’re known for — so a lot of people are surprised we’re serving breakfast, but pleasantly surprised,” said new co-owner Dustin Hostetler, grandson of the original owners. “Two weeks in and we already have regulars.”
The addition of Wi-Fi and ample outlets has made the new breakfast hours popular with the early morning business-meeting crowd because it’s quieter and less crowded than at lunchtime, Hostetler said.
One convert is regular customer Josh Goldberg, who said he already loved Grumpy’s lunches, and its breakfast met all expectations as well.
“Best meal I’ve had in Toledo,” Goldberg said. “The sandwich was perfect — egg thicker than anywhere else in Toledo, cheese just melted on and I didn’t have to wait a minute.”
Hostetler and his aunts, Jennifer Shemak and Sara Bauman, daughters of the original owners, took over the business after the death of their grandmother/mother, Connie Horn, in late September, and added the breakfast menu in November.
“We figured we were here prepping for lunch already, why not open our doors,” said Hostetler, who worked as a busboy, dishwasher and sous chef at Grumpy’s during high school and college. “Grandma got to know all the customers, and we’re attempting to do that as much as possible. I’m already getting to know the regulars. It’s fun — a lot of people really treat this like a second home and treat us like family.”
Shemak has cooked Grumpy’s fare since its beginning 27 years ago. She’s the Jennifer behind the lunchtime “Jenn-wiches” and Jennifer’s Special House Salad. Now she has another namesake.
Jennifer’s Special Breakfast Wrap ($4, ham, egg, Swiss cheese, jalapeño, roasted veggies and pesto in a grilled wrap) has been a favorite, Hostetler said, with one man coming in every morning so far to get one.
Another favorite is the World Class Morning Buns ($3.50), basically a cinnamon-and-sugar-topped cross between a croissant and a brioche, which comes with honey cream cheese dip, Hostetler said.
“People have been coming in just for that or picking them up on their way to work,” Hostetler said.
Other breakfast sandwiches include The Shorty ($4, bacon, egg, cheddar and tomato on ciabatta roll) and David’s Favorite, named after a longtime dishwasher ($4, bacon, egg, American cheese and jelly on toasted white bread).
For those wanting something a little healthier, there’s the Hot Bod ($4, egg whites, roasted veggies and Muenster cheese on a toasted whole wheat bagel).
Or there’s the option to build your own breakfast sandwich.
“I’m hoping this gets people to make really adventurous sandwiches,” Hostetler said. “You can do some really crazy combinations.”
Freshly baked muffins ($3), cinnamon buns ($2.50) and Three Egg & Cheese Sliders ($5) round out the breakfast menu.
Hostetler said nothing has been taken off of the lunch menu — the popular Garbage Salad is untouched — but new additions include pulled-pork sliders and Scott’s Italian Burger Sub, named after a favorite regular.
“We haven’t changed the things people love about the place,” Hostetler said. “We’re playing around with more specials, trying sandwiches for a week, more daily stuff.”
Hostetler is an artist whose work, under the moniker UPSO, occasionally appears in Toledo Free Press Star.
Reach Grumpy’s, 34. S. Huron St., at (419) 241-6728 or follow them at www.facebook.com/grumpysdeli or on Twitter (grumpysdeli) for weekly specials and exclusives.
Full hours are Monday-Friday 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.