There is perhaps nothing more quintessentially New Jerseyan than the “Wawa Run”. Coffee, soda, sandwiches, you name it, and at all hours of the day and night. However, patrons of the Wawa in the Leonardo section of Middletown will have to look elsewhere from midnight into January 21st until February 14th, which is the scheduled reopening. A renovation is planned, and will leave the gas station unaffected. As someone who works five minutes away, this was tragic news! I am there practically every single day. But I am not angry, since these things have to happen, and I will be back and looking forward to the revamped Wawa which will be done just in time for Valentine’s Day. Below are your immediate-area options for the three weeks Wawa will be closed:
QuickChek, 450 NJ-36, Highlands
Depending on which direction you are coming from, this could be a bit of a drive. But, it is the closest comparison, as they are also open 24 hours and have a gas station. I do not think their subs are as good as Wawa’s, but I enjoy their coffee and they have everything else you could want when you are hungry or thirsty on the go.
Mike’s Dairy and Deli, 160 1st Avenue, Atlantic Highlands
This mom-and-pop convenience store lacks the streamlined presentation of a Wawa or QuickChek, but they have all kinds of snacks, bottled drinks, a few coffee selections, and excellent subs (hot sandwiches for breakfast as well). In fact, I would take their subs any day over a bunch of places. Most of them clock in at $5.99 for a half (which is large in itself) and are packed with cold cuts and ingredients. I even wrote a review about them a few years ago. Just be advised that this business is cash only. Located right off Route 36 and less than two miles from Wawa, this may be your best bet.
One Stop Food Store, 804 Main Street, Belford
It is as equidistant as Mike’s to Wawa, and right off Route 36 in the other direction. I’ve never been there, but after looking online, it appears they have everything you could ask of a convenience store. As one reviewer wrote, “If you need it, Rick has it”.