Saturday, July 7, 2012


"Brunch is for Assholes", as the t-shirts agree.  But sometimes there is no avoiding it (friends/family in town, unpredictable feeding schedules, etc.) and on these occasions, it's nice to have some reliable places to nosh.  You'll find a friend in Friend of a Farmer, practically a New York institution for this duly overrated meal.  I know they serve lunch and dinner, too, but certainly there's not much reason to eat at FOAF anytime after 2pm.  The decor is rustic and sweet, and hasn't changed in decades (if ever).  It's kind of like a Grandma's barn or a spiffed of version of Little House on the Prairie.

 The menu is not exceptional.  It is full of options, though, so whether you're in sweet or savory mood, healthy or gluttonous, you should be able to find something satisfactory.    A fruit plate is a safe option for lighter fare, with a nice chewy homemade granola and rich maple cream sauce to keep you sated as long as more indulgent table mates.  Three varieties of pancakes, a waffle and french toast keep the griddle busy.   Eggs arrive still in their cast iron skillets, a nice presentation that manages to keep their vittles warmer longer, too.  An egg  white scramble for the cholesterol verse jumbles mushrooms and spinach- and they threw in some dubious American cheese (ask if they could at least sub in cheddar, as the gummy processed wads not only pale in flavor, but sort of stick to the roof of your mouth.)  There's no toast to help scrape it off with, either, so make sure you mete out your home fries bite for bite.  The Country Omelette could sate Paul Bunyan, with bacon, onion, potatoes and cheddar, a dish only a few calories away from being a cardiological nightmare.   Coffee, perhaps the most important component of brunch, is served in super-sized French presses, and as strong and fresh as these devices always make it.  They may've serviced many a brunches, though, so it takes a little more elbow grease than you're used to to squeeze the press down adequately.

Everything at FOAF is "fresh baked" and "homemade", whether it actually is or isn't, it's probably close enough.    At least in New York, where nearby Gramercy Park is practically a botanical oasis.

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