Brunch is a very special social occasion in America and there isn’t a restaurant owner out there who isn’t putting their chef to the task of creating a menu just for it. But, if you think about it, brunch really is a little weird. Even a Publican can admit that a cocktail for breakfast is cheeky. At the core of the tradition though, brunch is meant to be a communal experience on a traditionally do-nothing day of the week, Sunday. Folks at the Smithsonian have even researched its history and, if you are a nerd like me, you’ll find this kind of thing interesting. I mean, how is it really that breakfast food and lunch food got smushed up onto 1 menu and served with bottomless mimosas? It didn’t just happen. There was an evolution within the dining culture. But, either way, when folks are dining and drinking, bar owners are happy. So, it absolutely makes sense why it took off. And, more importantly, that it is here to stay.
We love brunch at Fadó. And, our menu is what you would expect from us (I hope). Great, made-from-scratch food, engineered to cure the head of your Saturday night shenanigans. The brunch customer at our humble watering hole runs the gamut in age and taste palates, and our menu, which focuses on tasty, un-pretentious dishes, considers every one. So, yes, we also want the health conscious Sally Fabulous to leave satisfied too.
You might have noticed though (we sure have) brunch is decidedly young these days. Sure, the Sunday meal with the family continues to be an important occasion and Sunday Brunch on Mother’s Day is never to be missed. But, brunch, as a social occasion, is as important as Friday night with the girls or Thursday night out with the boys. It’s that social space that allows you to recoup from a night out of partying as well as process all the drama (or, a lack there of) that consequently transpires. And, the friend, you know – the organizer – she (ok, occasionally it’s a he) takes her job of selecting the brunch spot VERY seriously for the team. She has a list of criteria that helps her filter out brunch spots and narrow down the pickings for her friends to choose (or at least make them feel as if they have a say in the choosing.)
Here’s a typical brunch spot checklist …look about right?
The Food ‘must-haves’
- bacon (on the side and as part of one or more dishes)
- oatmeal or granola
- eggs prepared fancy and very ‘brunch-y” sounding
- salmon anything
- burger (cuz there’s always someone whose head is rotten and just NEEDs a burger)
- lively music, but not TOO loud …Jake Bugg sings like he is hungover so he’ll do nicely.
- an easy hang …cuz no one is in a rush and wants to feel pushed out.
- live sports …but a place that can transition from an Arsenal, Spurs match to the Falcons, Broncos and Seahawks
Drink Menu ‘must-haves’
- Guinness (no brainer)
- Mimosas (bottomless or at least on special)
- Bloody Mary’s (but funky, like a splash of Guinness we put in ours)
- Cocktails (fresh, fruity and a wee bit dangerous)
Now we are talking …cocktails!
So, what does a wee bit dangerous look like, you ask? Well, its usually those alcoholic beverages that don’t taste like they actually have alcohol but aren’t too sweet either. You are day-drinking and usually recovering so you need something that considers what your body is sorely lacking.
The Berry Good; American Harvest Organic Vodka, agave syrup, freshly muddled, strawberries, sparkling wine
Moscow Mule; Russian Standard Vodka, Crabbie’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer, fresh lime juice
But, there’s another perspective to consider, ours. Everyone in the service industry has experienced this shift …the one where you open the doors for Sunday brunch after a working a double on a Saturday. It’s brutal, yes. But, the silver lining? When our very patrons, who were here at last call, have the same commitment to brunch as they had to the dance floor the night before. When those dry mouthed, puckered faces walk in the door in search of nourishment we know we are doing something right …and, their needs are basic and the steps of service usually goes something like this:
3 -cocktail (or beer)
5 -cocktail (or beer) ….relief.
Now, there is a dark side to brunch too. Yes, we’ll admit it. There are some things that we bar owners don’t exactly enjoy. Check this list out and hopefully you don’t see yourself. It’s pretty funny ….because it’s true.
So, in the spirit of this fine American tradition. Go on …Brunch. Continue to enjoy your lazy Sundays with your mates, as nature intended ….at a bar, drinking.