Bloomfield has beguiled us with 23 Skiddoo Cafe, the Green Grocer Food Hub and the promise of a soon to be open artisan bakery — all centered around Carteret and Morse Streets in a pretty residential section of Bloomfield, a stone’s throw from Watsessing Park.
All of these businesses are relatively new (23 Skiddoo came on the scene in 2018), but for the last nine years, Morse Street has also been home to Narda’s Ginger Punch, which up until recently was solely a wholesale operation. That changed with COVID-19, when founder and CEO Narda Morant decided to pivot.
But first – what is Narda’s Ginger Punch? It’s a non-alcoholic, ginger-infused, citrus-based drink that was first created at a restaurant Morant had years ago.
The punch was a big hit with customers and when Morant closed her restaurant, she took the recipe and started a new business in 2011, bottling Narda’s Ginger Punch and selling the drink to restaurants and stores like Manhattan’s Fairway, as well as Foodtown and ShopRite.
The ginger punch is aptly named because the ginger gives the drinks a spicy kick and its the health benefits of ginger bring many customers back for more. Ginger can settle gastrointestinal troubles and boost both energy and the immune system.
Although the original punch is famous, customers clamor for Morant’s other specialty flavors, too. Visit Narda’s Ginger Punch and Morant will set you up with a colorful array of samples to try.
Favorites we tried were a coconut lime ginger drink, ginger lemon-lime and a passionfruit peach drink. A popular drink for its health benefits is Narda’s turmeric ginger concoction. The drinks are great on their own, or as mixers for cocktails, too.
Morant, who has a background in finance and works as a math coach at an East Orange’s Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. Academy on Midland Avenue, devoted her summer to bringing Narda’s Ginger Punch to new customers as a retail endeavor.
The tipping point, says Morant, was when a woman walked across the street and said “I can’t believe all these years I lived in Manhattan and would get your product at Fairway. And now I moved here, and I walk across the street and get your product.”
Morant says having people follow her because they saw the Narda’s Ginger Punch decal on her truck and wanted to get some, was another sign that she should open her business to the public.
She picked up some yard-sale finds and pretty plants and created an idyllic outdoor seating area with a tropical vibe. Customers call in orders for curbside pick up and new customers have been discovering Morant and her healthy juices, along with her welcoming outdoor setup.
Morant has also held outdoor events this summer, with live music. Her next event will be Saturday, October 17 (6 p.m.) with live music by Emmy-award winning Montclair native Hunter Hayes.
Drop by Narda’s Ginger Punch (76 Morse Ave., Bloomfield, 973-953-3655) to try samples and find your favorite flavor. You can then order directly from Morant (cash or cash apps like Zelle).