Whether it’s for elevenses, luncheon, dinner or supper, The Morgan Café has a new menu to feed a hungry horde of Hobbits.
The eatery’s new spread, "Over the Hill, Across the Water and Even There and Back: A Culinary Journey Through ‘The Hobbit," features bites inspired by J.R.R. Tolkien’s work, including mincemeat pie, twice-baked honey cakes, mead and more.
For $39, wannabe Hobbits will be privy to "Two Fried Eggs (Not Six) and Ham – Not Poached, Not Broken;" cold chicken and pickles; "Enchanting Pepper-Roasted Meat;" mincemeat pie and cheese; "Boern’s Twice-Baked Honey Cakes;" "Sustaining, Not Entertaining, Cram;" dried fruit; gold coins and mead.
For those not well-versed in the cuisine of Middle-earth, here are some definitions:
Cram: A biscuit-like food made by the Men of Esgaroth and Dale, similar to the Elfish lembas bread but far less tasty.
The Men share it with the Dwarves of the Lonely Mountain, and in "The Hobbit," Bilbo Baggins and the dwarves have it on the last stage of their quest. It’s in "The Lord of the Rings," when the dwarf Gimli compares it to lembas bread, which is a special food made by elves.
Honey-cake: A twice-baked cake made by the skin-changer Beorn that are able to last for a long time and taste better than cram.
They are mentioned in "The Hobbit," but also appear in "The Lord of the Rings" when Gimli also compares the lembas bread to the "honey-cakes of the Beornings."
Mead: An actual alcoholic drink made by fermenting honey with water and fruit, spices, grains or hops.
It has been brewed for thousands of years. In Tolkien’s work, elf ruler Galadriel of Lothlórien gave white mead to her husband Celeborn in "Lord of the Rings."
The new menu, which is available through May 12, is a fun addition to The Morgan Library & Museum’s huge new exhibit, "Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth," which includes draft and original manuscripts alongside photos and letters from Tolkien’s childhood, watercolors, dust jacket designs and drawings that Tolkien himself worked on.
If you choose to feast
The café is open Tuesday–Thursday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Friday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Saturday–Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., through May 12.