European charm in a small village, Ada's Nonna Cafe brings Olde World tastes to the table

Customers who have tasted life in a European café, where breads are baked daily and the soup du jour brims with wholesome ingredients, step through the doors of Nonna Café and feel like they've been teleported to Italy or France.

Owners Ron and Jean Cook lived in Florence, Italy for 18 years while Ron presided over the La Marzocco company, makers of fine espresso machines. Then the economy turned, and the Cooks decided to return to Michigan and create the next chapter of their lives, Ron Cook says. That chapter is Nonna Café, 591 Ada Dr. SE, Ada.

Nonna (Italian for "grandmother") Café "might remind you of going to Grandmother's for a nice meal, if she was a good cook, that is," Cook says. "We looked for about two years to find the space to do a food business and when I saw this come about in Ada I said, well this is it. Many people in Ada have traveled, and they know good food and good coffee."

The café is open during breakfast and lunch hours seven days a week and all menu items are made from scratch. Breakfast offerings include fresh scones; traditional French omelettes made with real butter, fresh eggs, high-quality cheese, and ham cut from the bone; and granola bowls with Greek yogurt and fresh fruit.

For lunch, hungry patrons will have a selection of two or three house-made soups. This week's offerings were Tuscan Bean, Minestrone, and Lentil. Three tasty salads are menu staples: Avocado Salad of greens, toasted pine nuts, and homemade vinaigrette; a Roasted Chicken Salad made with the café's own roasted chicken; and a traditional Greek salad.

Sandwich aficionados will need to go next door to The Schnitz Deli, says Cook. Instead, Nonna's offers specialties like Cottage Pie or Mushroom Ravioli with Butter & Sage.

Hours: Mon. - Fri. 7 to 4; Sat. and Sun. 8 to 3.

Writer: Deborah Johnson Wood, Development News Editor
Photos courtesy of Nonna Café
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