In a town where many residents are 20-somethings renting small apartments, often living with roommates, Hoboken restaurant managers say they are packed on Mother's Day.
"I'd say Mother's Day is busier than Easter," Gaslight General Manager Michael Correa says. "It's a day that no matter how busy you are, you want to spend time with your mom. No matter what, you try to make an effort. And in Hoboken, so many people have roommates, and maybe your moms have different styles. Maybe your mom is conservative but my mom wants to have a drink. Throwing joint parties doesn't always work!"
Gaslight, a popular brunch spot every weekend, is not offering a specific Mother's Day menu because, Correa says, "there's no reason to pump up the price of our brunch just because it's a holiday."
Hoboken Bar and Grill tried a special Mother's Day menu last year, but is sticking with the usual brunch menu this weekend. "We have a very large brunch menu," General Manager Rafael Sedano says, "and last year we found that everyone wanted the usual dishes, not the specials. But we are opening an hour early." Brunch will start at 10:00a.m. There are still reservations available.
Other restaurants are taking a different approach. Court Street is offering two Mother's Day brunch seatings, at 11:00a.m. and 1:00p.m., both of which are already fully booked. Lua's $35 pre-fixe brunch is also fully booked, with more than 300 reservations, according to Daniela Calderone, an event planner at the river-front restaurant.
"Our brunch is very family oriented," Calderone says, "and this is definitely the largest brunch we've ever had." There are still reservations available for the dinner seatings, which will include a complimentary cocktail for moms.
Anthony David's server Joseph Amato says their reservation list would likely be full if the restaurant accepted reservations. "We've been getting so many calls," he says. They accept dinner reservations, and those filled up last week. Those who are lucky to get a table at brunch will be able to choose among the regular specials, all at the set price of $22.95 per person. Brunch includes complimentary donuts, fruit, and a special treat for moms.
Amanda's is offereing a pre-fixe brunch for $29.50; dinner for $49.50. Madison Bar and Grill is offering a Mother's Day buffet ($30 adults, $15 children). The only available seating will be outdoor, as the reservations "have been booked for about a week. It's a very popular day," says hostess Amelia Zasadski.
Clinton Social is swapping the regular menu for a three-course plated Mother's Day menu, for $30.00 per person. The meal includes a cocktail. The children's menu will still be available.
The W Hoboken is offering guests a chance to pamper their moms a bit. There are two brunch seatings, at 10:30a.m. and 1:00p.m. For $45.00 per adult and $22.50 per child ages 4-12 (under 4 are free), guests can enjoy a "decadent buffet brunch, indulge in Bliss beauty products, relax to the sounds of Jazz sensation Teodross Avery, and enjoy family fun entertainment with Totally Zany," a hotel press release says. Or you can amp it up a notch. For a starting price of $219, guests can book their mom a room in the hotel, complete with cocktails, an exclusive W makeup bag, and a hot cream manicure with the purchase of a pedicure. The package is available through the end of May.
Even those restaurants that are not advertising special Mother's Day deals are planning a little something. At Zack's Oak Bar and Restaurant, Kerri Kenny says, "our daily specials will be a little more special" for Mother's Day. Leo's will offer their Sunday specials a day early, in case any mom's are in town to celebrate on Saturday.
Popular brunch spots including The Brass Rail, City Bistro, O'Neial's, Liberty Bar and Grill, and Three A's will be open for brunch. Despite not offering any specials, The Brass Rail's reservation list is fully booked.
Lua's Calderone says the popularity of Mother's Day in Hoboken is not surprising.
"A lot of people aren't from Hoboken, and they're not used to having their families over at their apartments, but they want to do something for their moms," she says, "So they take them to brunch. That's Hoboken style."