We don’t know what it is, but an Insta-worthy interior makes a cafe experience all the more special — and we have just the local North Jersey spot. Sugar Tree Cafe, located at 358 Passaic Avenue in Nutley, is a short drive from Montclair and was opened in 2021 by the husband and wife team of Jack and Sophia Bermeo. True to its name, the lively shop includes lots of natural decor like vines and florals all over the ceiling — and it’s even been known to go all out with holiday decorations in December. The vibrantly-decorated space, along with a social media-worthy menu, attracts locals and influencers alike. The Montclair Girl was able to get all the details on this chic spot. Read on below to learn more about this whimsical coffee and brunch destination in Essex County, which is serving us some seriously positive + picture-perfect vibes.
(Photo credit: @sugartreecafe)
The Owners and The Concept
If there’s something that this duo knows best, it is creating an over-the-top experience that connects with an audience. Jack is a well-known wedding producer based in Clifton, with over 24 years of experience in the wedding and nightlife spaces. His company is called LJDJs Event Design and Entertainment. Sophia has created a successful cake pop and dessert table company called Pop Culture Cake Pops. Together with their expertise in the events industry, the two took the next step to create Sugar Tree Cafe.
The Bermeos told The Montclair Girl that the café, which opened in May of 2021, was conceived as an “Instagrammable” spot and brunch locale to bring the community together and reinvent the coffee and counter service experience.
(Photo credit: @sugartreecafe)
“I chose Nutley, New Jersey because it has a lot of growing families and beautiful parks. We figured we could create a café that complemented that and could elevate the everyday morning coffee.” Jack went on to say, “ The name was chosen because there’s one thing that stood out to us whenever we drove through a local town and that is the beautiful trees. Embracing Mother Nature just felt right. We do have a little catchphrase here: meet us at the tree.”
The Menu + The Future
The menu includes an array of coffees, teas, and pastries, but do yourself a favor and indulge in the brunch menu. The options include sticky wings, lobster tostada, deep-fried cinnamon toast, and more. Enjoy out-of-the-box milkshakes that are topped with full ice cream cones or s’mores and even some vegan options.
The adage ‘we eat with our eyes first’ was clearly top of mind as the menu was designed as each dish is as charmingly plated as it is delicious.
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The owners have a clear goal and that is to bring about fun vibes. “We want people to feel at home. We wanted families and couples to socialize with each other as if they were in a park setting,” Jack said. “After a challenging year that has kept us all further apart, it puts into perspective just how important creating experiences that bring us together really are.”
See More: The Best Brunch Spots in Montclair
In the future, the partners would like to “plant” new Sugar Tree Cafes in other cities, including Las Vegas.
To keep up with Sugar Tree Cafe, follow its page on Instagram.