Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Essex Restaurant - Bar at Night, Brunch by Day - $20 Brunch served with 3 Alcoholic Beverages

Did you just have a late night of clubbing in the Lower East Side? No? Well, if you want a little taste of it, come to the Essex Restaurant for brunch on Saturday, where you'll feel as if you just walked into a nightclub -- except its daylight. Yes, the sun is shining through the beautiful glass panes and onto the bar that is now serving Mimosas, Screwdrivers and Bloody Marys ... ah, yes, the best cure for a hangover -- bloody mary's!

And as you take a look around the restaurant, you notice, the music is on and the place is packed with people who look as if they went home and decided to come back for brunch. Ok, perhaps, not that extreme, but I would say the crowd is a close resemblance of the crowd who visited Essex the night before, when it was a bar. And if you didn't know any better, you wouldn't know that Essex was a restaurant during the day.

So what's on the menu ? Too much to describe, but to make it simple - they have a $20 brunch that includes one entree and three, yes three drinks. Can you guess which drinks? Yup, you guessed it - Mimosa, Screwdrivers and Bloody Marys !

(L) 3 Eggs any style with Chicken Apple Sausage (M) Mexican Matzo Brei (R) Eggs Benedict with Canadian Bacon

They have the regular brunch fare - pancakes, french toast, eggs whatever style you like, eggs benedict, bagels with lox and more. We ordered the following three entrees:
  • 3 eggs any style with fresh fruit & choice of bacon, chicken apple sausage, breakfast sausage, or tempeh bacon
  • Mexican Matzo Brei – scrambled eggs with tortilla crisps, monterey jack, avocado, black beans & pico de gallo
  • eggs benedict with canadian bacon, salmon gravlax or spinach
Of the three entrees, the Mexican Style Eggs (forgot the name of the entree) was by far the best, followed by the chicken apple sausage in the 3 poached eggs entree. Most entrees come with home fries and salad, unless notated on the menu. If you're not in the mood for brunch, Essex Restaurant also offers sandwiches and other hearty meals. And, yes, you can still order the Mimosa and Bloody Mary's for $4.

Overall, the food was okay, nothing too exciting -- but why so busy and why wait 30 minutes for a table? My bad guess is that there are limited brunch spots in the LES, or the more likely reason is the 3 alcoholic beverages that comes with your brunch. By the way, I forgot to tell you BRUNCH IS CASH ONLY ... So, the million dollar question - would I come here again? Probably not -- Essex Restaurant is too busy and is busy for the wrong reasons; I prefer busy with good food, so I would suggest trying other restaurants in the neighborhood before Essex. I've listed a few other restaurants below.

Other brunch options around Essex Restaurant:

- Clinton Street Baking Company - 4 Clinton St (awesome brunch, but get there early)
- Little Giant - 85 Orchard Street (been here for dinner, was good)
- Schiller's Liquor Bar - 131 Rivington Street

If you're inclined to pay the place a visit, the address is below:

Essex Restaurant
120 Essex St
New York, NY 10002
(212) 533-9616

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I went there last year and totally agree with your assessment. It's not worth the wait. It was only 4 of us but we waited FOREVER!

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