Archive for the ‘brunch’ Tag

Chicago out of the Loop   Leave a comment

There’s no doubt Chicago is a culinary haven. Mention a culture and its cuisine is represented. A recent, albeit quick, trip included stops at two brunch spots, a bahn mi shop and an excellent dinner enhanced by the company of one of my sons and a new friend. I have no photos of our food at Ba Le Sandwiches or Pauline’s, but I would return to both — especially to the former for the barbecue pork bahn mi.

m.henry, a popular spot in Andersonville, features an array of baked goods, traditional egg entrees and quiche, among other items. The rustic peasant quiche was chock full of asparagus, leeks, bacon and gruyere cheese on a flakey crust. The side salad was practically a meal in itself.

Oaxaca, Mexico, is known for its mole — among other food specialties. The red mole, in particular, at Kie-Gol-Kanee is among the best I’ve ever had. Mole enchiladas and Oaxaquenos tamales are two preparations here. In order to sample the two types of moles on the menu, I had the pork green mole and chicken red mole tamales. These are wrapped in plantain leaves with a thin layer of masa. Once the leaves are removed, the mole escapes onto the plate. The green is tart and spicy, but my palate belongs to the dark red, earthy variety.

Another typical Oaxacan dish is the tlayuda, a large,crispy handmade corn tortilla is topped with a choice of meats, sliced tomatoes, avocados and cabbage. Think nachos on steroids.

Munch at Brunch   Leave a comment


Brunch is one of those meals I really enjoy but don’t often have. I like the possibilities it implies: sleeping in, a combination of breakfast and lunch foods, the likelihood of not eating much later in the day, and it’s usually shared with friends (or family, which recently was, in fact, one in the same)

The Pincho Factory is recognized in the South Florida area for its fresh all-beef burgers. I didn’t try one, but Pincho deserves accolades for its brunch offerings. These include inventive twists on traditional morning fare: Nutella Waffle, Banana Bread French Toast (above), Red Velvet Pancakes, Steak and Eggs, and a Bacon Wrapped Omelet. A handful of sandwiches are available, as was a special: Vaca Frita Toston, which was a spin on the Cuban Ropa Vieja.


Here’s the description on the chalkboard at the place-your-order counter. Cuddled  is not the word I would have used, but I was hooked at slow braised. The shredded beef, which practically melted in my mouth, was dressed with a subtle but tangy cranberry sauce and nestled between hamburger bun size fried plantains (below). It was an unusual but successful combination of flavor and texture.


The four-egg omelet boasted 12 slices of bacon sounds like an invitation to a cardiac arrest. A bacon basket effect was created by weaving the pieces together for the omelet, which was covered with lettuce and tomato. At least it looked somewhat healthy.


Ah, brunch!

Pincho Factory
Slightly More Than Four Plates
Four Plates
30 Giralda Ave.
Coral Gables, FL