When Kevin Brennan bought his first vinyl at the age of 7, he dreamed of a future that would somehow revolve around rock 'n' roll. Brennan's entrepreneurial spirit led him on a quest for the next "big thing" as an adult, and he dabbled in various ventures before having an epiphany while traveling in 1989. He was in San Diego, and he visited his first coffeehouse.
Kevin fell in love with the simple coffeehouse concept and had a feeling that gourmet coffee shops would soon become a craze across the nation. He instantly knew that he had found his calling, but it wasn't until he sipped coffee while watching an Asia concert that he knew what would set his establishment apart from the rest: rock 'n' roll.
Today, his trio of shops showcases the marriage of a laid-back coffee-shop vibe with rock music and memorabilia, creating a caffeinated love child in a Led Zeppelin onesie. Each location also features rock-inspired drinks, such as the Van Halen and the Dark Side of the Moo, joined by sandwiches and salads prepared fresh daily.
NY Bagel Cafe & Deli's kitchen bakes its bagels fresh every day, fueling a savory expansion to locations across seven states. At the Newark site, a glass case displays doughy circles infused with ingredients such as sun-dried tomatoes and blueberries. Patrons can opt to decorate their bagels or the eatery's pumpkin-colored walls with cream-cheese spreads flavored with scallions, bacon, and strawberries. In addition, deli sandwiches enfold Boar's Head–brand meats and cheeses in italian bread, wraps, or rolls.
At Rockn' Joe Coffeehouse and Bistro, a mellifluous concert of classic tunes, friendly chatter, and good eats transform breakfast and lunch into symphonic gatherings. Diners can cull the frothy energy of various coffees, lattes, and espressos including the macchiato ($2.25–$2.95) or the Van Halen ($3.65–$6.35), which adorns lips and mustaches in vanilla and hazelnut syrup. Dive fork-first into the grilled portobello, roasted pepper, and goat cheese of a portobello omelet ($7.95), or treat tongue harbors to a sweet and savory fusion by snagging a croissant french toast and bacon ($7.95). To pillage lunch longings, sandwich stackers craft meaty packages including a grilled chicken club ($9.95), smoked salmon ($9.95), and the classic italian ($8.95)—a booming concord of ham, salami, and pepperoni best chewed to the tune of Jimi Hendrix's rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner."