March 25, 2024: Celebrate spring with a breakfast-lunch-brunch feast at Sunny Bay Cafe in Rehoboth Beach, DE


Monday Magic from Inkandescent® PR + Publishing Co.Created as an act of love by longtime restauranteur Chef Laurie Orfanidis, Rehoboth Beach’s favorite breakfast-brunch-lunch spot is her newest bistro — Sunny Bay Café. Where delicious homemade food meets small-town charm, the popular restaurant is located just a few blocks from the sea. There is often a line to get into the 161-seat hotspot, for locals and, of course, tourists know they are about to enjoy the best meal in town.

Come sip hot delicious coffee or a perfect mimosa and enjoy the robust taste of American-Greek fare, inspired by Laurie’s husband for 40 years, Nick Orfanidis. A native of the Island of Crete, Nick and his family ran Baltimore’s Greek Village restaurants for decades. Laurie helped open five of the restaurants in Maryland before taking a stab at starting her own place in 2012: Sunny Day Café in Bel Air, MD. In the seven years she owned the restaurant and catering business, it won dozens of awards, including Hartford County’s Business of the Year.

At Sunny Bay, guests enjoy plate-size chicken and waffles ($14.50), crab and cheese 3-egg omelets ($18), Chicken Caprese Panini ($13), Apollo burgers ($15.50), and more. My massage therapy friend Victoria, owner of Juniper’s Massage and Apothecary, swears by the Surfer Girl crepe (with bananas, honey, granola, and peanut butter garnished with whipped cream, $10). But my favorite is the giant chef salad or turkey with lettuce and tomato on wheat — both of which last for two meals! Click here to check out the menu to find your favorite dish.

Mimosas are also insanely popular at the full bar, where the juice is fresh-squeezed. The Grapefruit Mimosa is my go-to, but guests can often be found enjoying their meal at the bar, where they meet new friends and are entertained by the staff.

Recently, ABC News reporter Hannah Cechini popped in for brunch and knew she had to a piece on the place. “Sunny Bay Cafe in Rehoboth Beach is sure to become a new favorite if you’ve never been before. You can start your day there with a tasty and hearty breakfast or indulge in delicious dishes for lunch,” she explains in her Feb. 23 Foodie Friday episode. (Check out the TV episode above, and scroll down to read the transcript.)

I had the opportunity to interview Laurie for the 2023 Father’s Day issue of Delaware Beach Life magazine. She shared the recipe for one of Nick’s favorite dish: Chicken Souvlaki.

“I have been making this dish for Father’s Day since I started working at the Greek Village in Baltimore in 1980,” says Laurie, who met her husband when she was a junior in high school. She had a part-time job cooking, and it wasn’t long before Nick fell in love with the energetic new cook. They married in 1985 and have two sons, Evan and Jerry. Find the recipe below. 

Until next Monday: May your belly be full of delicious, healthy food and your heart be filled with the love of friends. — Hope Katz Gibbs, founder and president, Inkandescent® Inc.

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Chef Laurie Orfanidis’ CHICKEN SOUVLAKI (Serves 2)

Image by Timolina

What you’ll need for the tzatziki sauce

  • 16 ounces sour cream
  • 3 deseeded cucumbers (shred, and then squeeze the moisture out with cheesecloth — this is important because, if not squeezed, the cucumbers will make the sauce be too watery)
  • 3 cloves fresh garlic, pressed
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 sprigs fresh dill
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Here’s how: Combine all sauce ingredients and let sit 24 hours before topping souvlaki.

What you’ll need for the chicken:

  • 2 large chicken breasts, cubed in ¾-inch pieces
  • Olive oil to coat
  • 3 tablespoons oregano
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • ¼ cup chopped tomatoes
  • Dash of smoked paprika
  • 2 pieces of pita bread

Here’s how: 

  1. For marinade, mix olive oil, oregano, lemon juice, and salt and pepper.
  2. Pour of over cubed chicken and let sit 24 hours in refrigerator.
  3. Sauté chicken breast until cooked (about 8 minutes).
  4. Heat pita bread on both sides.
  5. Put chicken on pita, top with 2 heaping tablespoons of tzatziki sauce
  6. Add onions and tomatoes. Season with a dash of smoked paprika.
  7. Roll the bread and enjoy

Come in to try the dish made by Chef Laurie:

Foodie Friday: Sunny Bay Cafe

Sunny Bay Cafe in Rehoboth Beach is sure to become a new favorite if you’ve never been before. You can start your day there with a tasty and hearty breakfast, or indulge in delicious dishes for lunch.

On this edition of Foodie Friday, host Hannah Cechini and Foodie Photog Mike got a taste of both. We start with a crepe, fresh from their authentic 16-inch crepe iron, straight from France

“In the summertime, we sell hundreds of these,” said cafe co-owner Laurie Orfanidis. “It actually is an art, making the crepe. He makes it look very easy, but it not really is that easy to do.”

On this visit, Antonio is whipping up a Nutty Monkey crepe; one of their more popular selections.

“The goal is to get it really nice and thin, and even all the way around,” Laurie explained as Antonio slowly and carefully dragged the batter to the edges of the iron in a circular motion. “It cooks very quickly.”

Add in fresh sliced bananas, a generous helping of Nutella, and give it a fold. And, of course, it’s got to look pretty.

“We decorate the outside of it. It also helps our servers identify which crepe is which, since everything is inside,” Laurie explained as the crepe was finished with whipped cream and freshly sliced bananas. “Gotta have the whipped cream, and gotta have the powdered sugar!”

“This is almost like a work of art. Like, I don’t want to cut into it because it’s too pretty,” Hannah quipped before making the first slice of the knife. “I mean, who doesn’t love banana and Nutella? [The crepe is] just really airy and light and thin, and just exactly what you’re looking for out of a crepe.”

Another breakfast blockbuster at Sunny Bay is the stuffed French toast, which starts with a thick slice of Texas toast, before getting a generous helping of homemade cheesecake batter.

“It’s inside and out,” Laurie said as the inside was pumped full of batter. Add on another slice, and top it with fresh berries and whipped cream.

“That is a great piece of French toast,” Mike marveled. “Moist, almost creamy interior. They have so many pieces of lovely, fresh fruit in here.”

But, as mentioned before, it’s not all about the breakfast. Laurie says the cafe’s chicken souvlaki is another one of their best-selling dishes. Because of it, this eatery is also known for serving up a perfect lunch in a pita. It’s filled with fresh marinated chicken breast, tzatziki sauce, fresh chopped tomato and onion, and powdered with paprika.

“The chicken is really well-seasoned,” Mike said with enjoyment. “Let’s try the tzatziki. Very fresh, very bright.”

Also on the menu: more than one iteration of crabby goodness. The crab soup in its tomato base is heavenly.

“There’s huge chunks of crab meat all throughout this soup,” Hannah said. “There’s a lot of veggies in here, too, and they’re all really, really tender and flavorful.”

And of the crab cakes, some of the best Hannah’s ever had: “This is what Delmarva is all about. The crab has that subtle sweetness to it. It’s very fresh tasting. It’s just so, so good. I’m almost at a loss for words right now.”

“And finally, the beignets,” Mike said as we moved onto dessert.

We all know Foodie Photog Mike is the connoisseur of dipping. And, these desserts aren’t safe from him. “Nice little pockets to hide some flavor in, like our caramel,” said before taking a bite of the fluffy-on-the-inside-crispy-on-the-outside goodness. “That’s lovely.”

Sunny Bay Cafe: 236 Rehoboth Avenue, Rehoboth Beach, DE, 302-567-2344. If you go to check it out, tell the team that you saw them on Foodie Friday.