Café Esme Brings Parisian Taste to Jersey City’s Hamilton Park

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Now open: Café Esme, 485 Marin, Jersey City. Photo courtesy Café Esme.

One of the most prominent new buildings along Marin Boulevard welcomed its first tenant late last month, as a cozy space next to Marin Green has introduced themselves to the community.

Over the summer, we broke the news about an eatery called Café Esme coming to 485 Marin Boulevard. Owner and Jersey City local Daniela Sarbu designed the 710-square-foot space herself and included some unique details like a copper wall to highlight the natural light from the storefront’s large windows.


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Copper wall and charming seating. Photo courtesy Café Esme.

Sarbu hopes that the café, which is named after her daughter, becomes a local landmark and focuses on healthy, sustainable, and local aspects while fleshing out the business. Café Esme exclusively uses cage-free eggs and does all their bread and pastry baking on-site, also using local farms for their produce whenever possible.

One of the biggest local products the café serves is Kobrick Coffee, which includes the company’s Tiger Stripe brand for their espresso drinks. Tiger Stripe is rainforest-alliance certified and for every pound Kobrick sells, they donate 15 cents to the International Fund for Animal Welfare toward protecting the greatly endangered Wild Tiger population.


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Kobrick coffee and in-house pastries. Photo courtesy Café Esme.

Besides a variety of coffee and espresso drinks, Café Esme has a highly customizable fresh juice bar where customers can pick any three fruits or veggies and have them blended on the spot. Teas, hot chocolate, lemonade, and a few specialty lattes round out the drinks, and the café has a few options like parfaits, oatmeal, or a toasted bagel for those on the run.

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Juice bar. Photo courtesy Café Esme.

For those looking to stay for a bit, Café Esme has a few plates, sandwiches, and panini options. Their toast a l’avocat consists of mashed avocado with goat cheese, while an oeufs benedict includes two poached eggs with baked ham and hollandaise sauce on focaccia. Paninis range from mozzarella fraiche to a sautéed veggie version at the café, which also features a small kid’s menu.

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Cozy Parisian scene. Photo courtesy Café Esme.

Café Esme will be adding outdoor seating when the weather warms up and will hold more events in April and May to connect with the neighborhood. They are now open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Those interested in learning more can follow them on Instagram at the handle @cafe.esme.

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