Classic Cars & Costa Rican Cuisine


Somerville Cruise Nights
At Division Café and Somerville Cruise Nights

If you had the choice between having a personal chef, housekeeper, butler or driver, which would you pick?

I’d have to go with the driver. I love riding in cars— especially with the windows down. (One thing I have in common with dogs is we both enjoy sticking our faces out car windows )

I also love looking at classic cars but I don’t know what I’d do if I actually owned one.  Unless there is no one else on the road, I’m not usually comfortable driving and that’s with an automatic transmission. Forget about stick.

Speaking of cars, I finally made it out to Somerville Cruise Nights last week.  Every Friday from Memorial Day to Labor Day for the past 27 years, Somerville NJ has run a classic car show.  Now 100+ classic cars regularly line Main Street on Friday evenings turning the event series into a nationally acclaimed classic car show.

Somerville Cruise NIghts Division Street
If you’re not in the mood for Costa Rican food, check out Origins, a French-Thai restaurant also on Division Street.

To celebrate my father’s birthday, my family ate in Downtown Somerville and then leisurely walked along Main Street enjoying all the cars.  There are a couple restaurants in Somerville that we enjoy but we decided to try Division Café, a small Costa Rican joint on a pedestrian-only side street.

Sliders from Division Cafe in Somerville

We started with Beef Tostones Sliders— shredded beef, cheese, lettuce, tomato and chipotle mayo on green plantain slices.  They were good but nothing mind blowing. At $7.95 for only two sliders, I probably wouldn’t order them again.

Division Cafe Empanadas in Somerville

If you want a better deal, order an empanada.  One empanada for $2.75 isn’t bad. They sell them at the counter so if you’re looking for a cheap snack while walking around Somerville, grab a Division Café empanada.

We chose two from the six varieties— Chipotle Chicken and Spinach & Cheese.  They were tasty but I still prefer Esquina Latina’s $8 for three shrimp empanadas starter.

Division Cafe Arroz con Pollo in Somerville

Although I love the classic meat-rice-bean-plantain-egg combo, I went for the Arroz con Pollo.

Yes, it was chicken and rice but it was very different from the Arroz con Pollo I’ve eaten in other restaurants. It was good but not what I was expecting. I liked the celery in the rice so if I happened to be in the mood for a fresh and lighter-tasting dish, I would get it again.

My mother ordered the Bistec Encebollado (Steak & Onions), which came with this brightly colored beet salad.

Division Cafe Beet Salad in Somerville

Apparently it didn’t taste much like beets.

My brother chose the meatless Gallo Pinto and my father got the Costa Rican Casado with Beef Stew. Both their entrées came with a “slice of frying Cheese” so we were all curious to see what exactly that meant.

Division Cafe Dinner

It was more a rectangular block than a slice of a mild white cheese with a browned exterior. I thought it was the most interesting part of dinner.

With a firm texture reminiscent of paneer and the taste of cheese curds, who wouldn’t like this panfried cheese? If you want to try some, look for it under the name Queso Para Frier in the grocery store.

Division Cafe Panfried Cheese in Somerville

After dinner, we walked along Main Street looking at all the cool cars. Some owners put the hood up so you could see the engine.  On one of them, you could see straight through to the street pavement!


Want one with a funny license plate?  Or instead of candidate bumper stickers, advertise your political views with metal plates! 

Somerville Cruise Nights License Plates

And if licenses plates aren’t personalized enough for you, choose a furry friend as your carpooling buddy!  HOV lane with Scooby Doo or a Pink Elephant anyone?

Somerville Cruise Nights Stuffed Animals

All in all, it was an enjoyable and laid-back evening. If you’re a big fan of classic cars or if you’re just looking for something free to do in Central New Jersey, I’d definitely recommend checking out Somerville Cruise Nights.

And if anyone is in the market to buy a classic car, there were quite a few for sale!

Things to Note:Division Cafe

  • If you can’t find parking along Main Street during Somerville Cruise Nights, try the lot on the corner of North Doughty Ave and Main Street. There are a couple other lots off Main Street so parking shouldn’t be too much of a problem.  As a last resort, Shop Rite has a large parking area. However I don’t know how they feel about non-customers using it.
  • Looking to go out on a rainy Friday evening?  Although I’d imagine it’d have better attendance in nicer weather, Somerville Cruise Nights do happen rain or shine.
  • Division Café is a Costa Rican restaurant, even though it has an Argentinian flag in the windowsill.  (It greatly bothered my brother.)


Where to Try It

Division Café
8 Division Street
Somerville, NJ
Somerville Cruise Nights
Main Street
Somerville, NJ

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