A sophisticated Panera is how manager Pablo Gabes jokingly describes The Hawthorn, which opened late last month.
The Hawthorn started out as a fine-dining restaurant that happened to bake fresh table bread. Its table bread got so much attention that they soon discovered a new passion and quickly downsized to a casual, bistro and bakery food operation.
And, right on schedule, three months after shuttering the fine-dining version, The Hawthorn on North Monroe Street was back in business.
“We’re going for a more accessible, not intimidating vibe, while still serving homemade, high-quality food,” said Gabes.
The artisan bread is freshly baked daily and comes out hot and ready from the wood-fire oven at 4 p.m. That is the best time to come in, get some bread, and take it home for you and your family to enjoy, Gabes said.
Aside from bread being the main focus, The Hawthorn also has other seasonal sweet and savory baked goods along with upscale choices of soups, salads and sandwiches. Everything is freshly baked by head baker, Kristin Siegel, and prepared by chefs Patrick Resha and Matt Swezey, who regularly gather fresh ingredients from their farm located just four blocks away.
“My favorite menu item is the Liberty Turkey, it has a garlic aioli and jalapenos. It’s one of our most popular options,” said employee Emily Sawata.
The navy blue and gold themed restaurant is the third local establishment owned by Jessie Edmunds. Edmunds is now Liberty Bar’s sole owner as well as the owner of El Cocinero in addition to The Hawthorn.
“I’ve only been working here for about three weeks and I love it, it’s a friendly, refreshing, laid-back environment,” said employee Emily Gregg.
The restaurant is open Tuesday to Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. According to Gabes, “This allows the bakers the appropriate amount of time to get everything prepared and ready for the coming week.”
Next week, The Hawthorn will be presenting a happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. There will be specials like buy-one, get-one free wine and one dollar off beers.
“We’ve been pretty busy and steady for the most part,” said Satawa. “Our busiest time would have to be lunch, nights are a little slow, but hopefully the happy hour will bring in more of a night crowd.”
The Hawthorn offers fresh, fancy, affordable, food and hopes to expand in the future.
“Our goal is to make this a chain,” said Gabes. “There is no other bakery in town that makes artisan bread, plus our prices are affordable and comparable to Publix and Whole Foods.”
This upscale, fresh quality bistro and bakery is located at 1307 North Monroe St. between Sixth and Seventh avenues. For more information visit hawthorntlh.com.