The Hippo


Nov 21, 2019








Erica Cole-Tucker (right), Hale Cole-Tucker (middle) and one of their investors Kevin Mallette (left) open Tucker’s in Hooksett. Emelia Attridge photo.

Tucker’s Restaurant

1328 Hooksett Road, Hooksett

“Good eats” at Tucker’s
New Hooksett restaurant focuses on wholesome foods


 You won’t find french fries on the menu at Tucker’s, Hooksett’s newest restaurant, or a fryolater for that matter. Instead, the menu features wholesome eats.

“We’re trying to bridge the gap. People want to be able to eat healthier, they want locally sourced ingredients, they want organic ingredients, they want gluten-free, but we also understand that there’s still people that want to come in and get your traditional eggs and toast, home fries and bacon,” owner Hale Cole-Tucker said. 
Cole-Tucker isn’t new to the breakfast and lunch restaurant scene. He and his wife, Erica Cole-Tucker, are co-owners of Tucker’s and previously owned Maddie’s in Salem. After selling Maddie’s, the couple decided to take a break from the restaurant business for good, but that didn’t last for long.
“Honestly we thought we were done,” Cole-Tucker said. “Then right around Christmastime, both of us started to get the itch. We just love it. It’s definitely what we’re supposed to be doing.”
Their new restaurant has the Cole-Tucker touch like Maddie’s — they’re both bright, cheery and family-friendly.
“As far as being different from Maddie’s, first of all, it’s bigger. We have about 35 more seats, we’ve got that pick-up window, which we’re really excited about. So we were really able to do everything that we always wanted to do at Maddie’s, but we couldn’t do because of the space,” Cole-Tucker said. “But I think the best part is we see people come in here waving to each other. Like we’ve created that kind of community. We’re huge about that. We always said at Maddie’s, the greatest thing about it was the culture. I think we serve great food, but that’s why our motto at this place is ‘good eats, great people,’ because we are really all about the experience when people walk through the door.”
Some of those “good eats” include salads packed with fresh ingredients (like the Fresco salad, with baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, mandarin oranges, honey maple glazed walnuts, diced apples and grilled chicken served with an organic raspberry vinaigrette), sides like soup, macaroni & cheese and pasta or potato salad. There are plenty of wraps and sandwiches, too (including a Cajun Chicken Panini, Cape Cranberry Chicken Wrap, Tucker’s Reuben, a southwest veggie burger, grilled cheese options and club sandwiches). And that’s just the lunch menu. 
Breakfast is served until 2 p.m. and includes quick picks like parfaits and organic steel cut oatmeal, traditional plates (like eggs, Applewood smoked bacon or sausage with home fries), omelets, frittatas, skillets, breakfast sandwiches and “Tucker’s Specialties,” which include the banana nut bread French toast, eggs bruschetta or the sweet potato Bennie, a gluten-free eggs Benedict alternative with sweet potato hash.
“We’re trying to be a little bit outside the box on breakfast and lunch,” Cole-Tucker said. “We wanted people to come in here and feel like they’re eating fresh, honest, healthy food.”
Tucker’s also serves Aerosmith’s Joey Kramer’s Rockin’ & Roastin’ coffee, along with smoothies, like Acai Berry and Immune Boost and Energy Green. Any smoothie can be made dairy-free with organic soy milk. The yogurt comes from Stonyfield Farm and only organic pure cane sugar is used as a sweetener.
The building now home to Tucker’s has seen a few changes over the years. Previously it was Four Seasons Diner and Veano’s Italian Kitchen, and before that, a Burger King. Tucker’s has refurbished the pick-up window to accommodate customers who call ahead. 
“We’re gearing that towards, first of all, people in the morning. We realize this a huge commuter road,” Cole-Tucker said. “We want you to be able to get a fresh breakfast sandwich here, a smoothie, a parfait, a healthy breakfast. But then most importantly we were really thinking about moms with kids. We used to have so many moms at Maddie’s who would come in and say, ‘If you guys only had a pick-up window.’”
To use the pick-up window, customers can call ahead and place an order for anything from the Tucker’s menu to pick up at the window, from breakfast sandwiches and lunch wraps to smoothies.
Family-friendly dining is important to Tucker’s, Cole-Tucker said. The kids’ menu features options like “power cakes” — protein-packed whole-grain and gluten-free breakfast pancakes — as well as a Mickey Mouse pancake plate, and Little Tucker’s Smoothie (with organic yogurt, strawberries and mangos) for breakfast. For lunch, kids can choose from meals like organic PB&J, macaroni & cheese, grilled cheese and soup and Tucker’s Lunch Box (sliced carrots, cucumbers, flatbread crackers, turkey and sliced apples with hummus or ranch).
Before opening Tucker’s, Hale and Erica Cole-Tucker were living in Auburn and surveyed their friends and family in the Auburn and Hooksett community about opening a breakfast and lunch restaurant.
“Everybody we talked to said, ‘Please do it, this area needs something like that,’” Cole-Tucker said. “It was just overwhelming.”
As seen in the May 8th issue of the Hippo. 

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