New restaurant offers breakfast and lunch options…
There is a new kitchen in town, one that will be dishing up breakfast and lunch for the hungry masses in Chewelah.
The new restaurant — Monica’s Buttermilk Kitchen — is in the building that used to house Mondo’s Italian Restaurant — a local favorite — and has already had a packed opening.
Monica Jo Traaen-Anderson is the new owner of the restaurant, but she is no newcomer.
“I have always loved to cook; I learned a lot from my great grandmother,” Anderson said. “I have been in the restaurant business for over 20 years and have always wanted a place of my own.”
Anderson said she had looked at many options in the past to own her own restaurant, but they had never worked out. Then Mondo’s closed due to the owner having surgery, and just a short time later, Anderson moved in to create a new dining experience.
With breakfast being at a premium in the town, with Zips and the Rusty Putter offering the most important meal of the day – along with weekend breakfast options from Fired Up Pizza – Anderson saw a niche she could fit into.
“I was originally only planning on doing a breakfast place on the weekend, but that and other things changed,” she said.
Monica’s Buttermilk Kitchen is a little bit southern, and she tries to do as many things as she can with buttermilk, hence the name.
“I had a hard time coming up with the name so I decided to name it after the buttermilk syrup that I love to make,” Anderson said. “Cafe was already taken so I settled on kitchen.”
There will definitely be a southern flavor, and there will even be grits at a northern city like Chewelah.
“We serve grits in place of hashbrowns when people want to give them a try,” she added (My Cousin Vinny movie fans are probably thrilled at hearing this.)
Anderson said she wanted to do something a little different for breakfast so people had even more options.
Beyond that, the restaurant will stay open for lunch with a menu of classic sandwiches and salads.
So when can you eat? The restaurant is open Wednesdays through Sundays 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. – providing the all-important two-day break for the owners. There is an early bird special every morning from 6 to 8 a.m. as well.
The opening two weeks ago was a big hit, with things so busy that the small restaurant had people waiting for tables.
“Every day I’m told I need a bigger place,” Anderson said. “I’m happy that the community has been so supportive.
In fact, they’re making so many buttermilk pancakes, they’ll probably need some more space.
“The process of purchasing the equipment is still in the works. We have already found out that we need a bigger flattop for cooking buttermilk pancakes and hash browns,” Anderson said. “We will get there.”