As the weather warms and spring gives way to summer, it is easy to imagine that most river towns and hamlets across the country experience a burst in the number of outdoor enthusiasts that begin to appear. Eager to shake off the cold and darkness of winter, we once again emerge from our cocoons, ready and eager to enjoy the warmth and all that comes with it. Runner’s begin to train again outdoors for 5 and 10 K’s, marathoners for New York and Boston, as hikers begin to again populate trails and plan adventures along the Appalachian Trail. Kayaks, canoes, tubes and water craft of all types begin to populate the Delaware and Lehigh rivers while cyclists hit the trails.
Along the banks of the Delaware River and throughout the region exists the D&L Trail. The D&L Trail follows the 165-mile route that anthracite coal took from mine to market and winds through northern mountains and along the banks of the Lehigh and Delaware Rivers through northeast Pennsylvania, the Lehigh Valley and through Bucks County. The D&L Trail passes through towns, industrial powerhouses and along remnants of the Lehigh and Delaware canals. This earthen path exposes walkers, hikers, runners and cyclists to some of Pennsylvania’s finest wild lands, waterfalls, wildflowers and wildlife. It also offers cyclists and outdoor enthusiasts the opportunity to stop along its path for a brief respite and a bite to eat on one of the most scenic trails in the region.
Traveling south along the D&L Trail from Easton as it winds past Wy Hit Tuk Park and Raubsville on the way to Riegelsville is a little oasis on the right side of the trail. The bridge leading to Mueller’s Kitchen is marked by a row of tented tables for those wishing to have a cup of coffee and a little bit of shade or a bite for lunch while watching tubes and kayaks move down river. On the day that my companion, Adam, and I made our way there, I found myself a bit in need of a hearty breakfast after fellow cyclists yelled the warning of “bear” causing a slight mishap that resulted in a crash. For the record… there was no bear, it had already moved on. It seems our fellow travelers felt it their duty to warn others of the bear that was no longer there.
As I dusted myself off, surveyed the damage to my knee and got back on my bike, thoughts of coffee and bit of what had already been touted as some pretty darn good breakfast food were on my mind. I think Adam was having other thoughts related to our fellow traveler’s poor timing but I can’t say for sure. From crash site to Mueller’s proved to be a short but beautiful ride.
Upon entering we knew we had arrived at the area hot spot. Buzzing with activity, banter between regulars and the wait staff, we were hard pressed to find a seat but were fortunate enough to grab a 2 top right by the door. “Coffee please” was the first request while browsing the menu. Adam had eaten here before and being familiar with the menu offered a few suggestions. Knowing that Mueller’s current owners are Jonathan Davis and Greg Schuyler, owners of Pearly Baker’s Ale House in Easton, did heighten my expectations a bit. For me the first test is always the coffee and this cup, smooth and rich without any hint of bitterness or acidity did not disappoint. I quickly consumed cup number one and on cue, cup number two was being poured as I perused some options. Mueller’s offers a variety of items from Steel Cut Oatmeal, Seasonal Fruit and Yogurt Parfaits, Buttermilk Pancakes and Thick Cut French Toast to Steak and Eggs consisting of Grilled Sirloin Steak and Three eggs any style. Their Signature Omelets were exactly what one would expect from seasoned restaurant owners. In addition to your standard Garden, Meat and Cheese and Western Omelets you can find the Kitchen Sink, an omelet comprised of Bacon, Sausage, Ham, Cheddar, American, potatoes, onions, and peppers, all topped with hollandaise sauce. There is plenty there to satisfy any omnivore. The Cheesesteak, onion, chopped steak, American and marinara sauce also looked intriguing, but one must consider how one’s breakfast will treat them on a ride back. Breakfast Sandwiches, Meat and Potatoes, Quiche, Breakfast Burrito’s and a Chicken Fajita Omelet, all looked delicious but in the end my selection was something that proved to be quite simple and a little bit unexpected.
At Adam’s suggestion the Loaded Potato Pancakes were ordered, while he chose Eggs Benedict. Not quite knowing what to expect from a dish described as bacon, cheddar, sour cream, and chives served with two eggs any style and toast the question of “What are these potato pancakes you speak of?” crossed my mind. What was presented in front of me much quicker than expected was a plate of perfectly cooked hash brown style potatoes with modest amounts of the previously described toppings. I was struck by the appearance of perfectly crisp potatoes, golden in color without a hint of … greasiness. There is nothing worse and sure to crush a breakfast than greasy potatoes of any kind. Eggs broken open, my first fork full of Loaded Potato Pancakes at the ready and then consumed. There was only one conclusion; that this was worth the ride and even the crash due to the bear that wasn’t really there. Crisp potatoes, perfect amounts of bacon and cheddar, enough to flavor but not overwhelm, coupled with a perfectly cooked over easy egg and some pretty amazing whole wheat toast, the kind that tastes as though it was pulled out of the oven earlier in the morning, it makes deciding to ride to breakfast in the morning pretty easy to do.
I looked across the table fully intending to try Adam’s Eggs Benedict, or at least sneak a quick bite. Riding to breakfast also makes one a little hungry and by the time I was finished truly savoring the first few bites from my plate, his was empty. He assured me though that the hollandaise was spot on and his breakfast was just as satisfying as mine. Breakfast is served daily beginning at 7am, but it’s not the only thing on the menu. Mueller’s Kitchen also offers lunch on Monday and Tuesday until 3pm and is open Wednesday through Sunday until 9pm for dinner, libations available. The General Store is beginning to take shape and offers a wide variety of snack items, food ready to go and drinks to quench ones thirst.
The next few months will offer up countless opportunities for elongated or quick bike and dine excursions. Next time you are feeling like a bike ride might be in order, hop on the D&L Trail, head south towards Riegelsville and stop by Mueller’s Kitchen for a little breakfast, a bit of lunch, or a hearty dinner and a beer before heading home. Oh and be sure to be on the look out for bears…
As always, enjoy
Mueller’s Kitchen and General Store
3200 S. Delaware Dr.
Easton, PA 18042
About the Contributors
Alice Kwiatkowski is an Assistant Program Director for KidsPeace National Centers as well as the owner of Connexions Gallery in Easton. In addition to serving as a…
Anthony J. Marraccini
Anthony J. Marraccini is the publisher of the Elucidator and Curator/Manager of Connexions Gallery. He has been socially and politically active in the community of Easton…