Shut Up and Eat!

By Sharon Merkel Prudhomme ~
Ha! Who doesn’t like to wake up HAPPY? Oh, not a morning person are you? Then, this may NOT be your go-to breakfast spot, but rather your go-to lunch destination! All I can say is you’ll surely get a kick out of this quaint and happy little eatery. My husband and I were up rather early to drop off a car for service.

I followed in my car, after dropping off my husbands’ we decided to look for a likely place for breakfast. We love diners and small out of the way places as they usually have quick service and great simple morning options.
After turning a corner, the sign and name caught my eye! The “Shut Up and Eat” sign with a screaming face made us do a double-take and we just had to turn around and park! Upon walking up to the door, we were getting a kick out of the interesting items in the front window! Among the mix of objects, proudly displayed were two cement pig statues, engaging in a mating position! LOL!

I just knew this would turn out to be a fun experience and hopefully a tasty one. The place was packed, no available tables, but a couple of seats at the counter were free, so we bypassed the waiting line and sat right down. As we waited for our coffee, I scanned the place and began to giggle. A stuffed goat from the chest up was up near the entrance. A mannequins’ leg with a fishnet stocking stuck out of a wall in the dining room. An old vintage Barbie (in the original box) sat above the back counter along with hundreds of interesting and humorous “artifacts”.

Somewhere near the front in the waiting area, I noticed a little card which read, “Everything is for sale”, so if you spy an item you just can’t live without, this could be your lucky day! We got a kick out of the tables, chairs and table cloths! Everything is mismatched, on purpose! Even the salt/pepper, mugs, flatware, glasses…you name it, all mismatched making for a cute look. And, all the wait staff is dressed in matching PJs! And IF customers come wearing “full matching sets of PJ’s”, they get 13% off their meal.

At first, I thought everyone knew each other as tables began leaving, everyone yelled, “have a good day”, “see ya’”, “enjoy your day”, etc. Apparently it is customary (and fun), so the staff calls out goodbye and tables seem to follow suit, lending a very happy, friendly start to the day. Our coffee was perfect and the hefty hearty breakfasts came out quite fast considering the crowd packing the place.

The humor doesn’t stop with the sights! You’ll definitely laugh at some of the names and categories on the menu:
The Bread Filled with Stuff Section – Not Bobby Flay’s, Oy Vey, The Mystery Box (‘member when your ma packed your lunch?)
Odd Balls- Sloppy Joe DiMaggio’s, Messy Giuseppe
GINORMOUS 3EGG OMELETTES- Computer Wizz, No Pigs Veggie, Matzoh-Brah, Uncle Sals’ Meat
Wild and Wonderful Waffles- 48 interesting tasty Morning Waffles are listed along with 34 creative Afternoon Waffles ready to fill ya’ up. Pancakes, French Toast, including Stuffed French Toast to which you pick the “glue”, such as Nutella, Cream Cheese, Peanut Butter and more.
Bennie’s Go Home- 11 Benny choices!
Yummy & Gooey- 21 varieties of grilled cheeses!!
Reggie’s Favorites – KAY-SUH-DEE-AHS- 15 choices here!
And of course the Burgerology section with 52, yes 52, fun burger combinations to dance on your tongue and tickle your ‘buds! How about a La Cooks Siracha or the Yo Adrian? No? Then perhaps the Eye Talian or a “Joisey Shore” burger will trip your trigger! I just really get a kick out of the fun and whimsy-nothing beats a smile and a sense of humor.

I didn’t see the hot dogs, but they’re referred to as “Shoe Sized Dogs” on the menu with about 18 choices such as the Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Hounds on an Island and Peggy Sue Got Married! With so many fun-sounding choices, including sliders, soups and wraps, it may take a while to decide on your meal. I’d suggest either getting in early or later as this is quite the popular hoppin’ restaurant.
Shut Up and Eat! Breakfast and Lunch
804 Main Street 6:30 am – 3:30 pm
Toms River 08753 (Monday – Saturday)
732-349-4544 6:30am – 3:00pm (Sunday)
This is a cash ONLY business. An ATM is available for your convenience. Open 7 Days a Week