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Best Brunch Discoveries In Rhode Island

Thursday, August 15, 2013


We like brunch. A lot. It usually signals the beginning of a leisurely Sunday, and for us, it always involves a gaggle of family and friends. We have lots of local stand-bys we like to haunt, but recently we set out to find a few places that take this tradition to a tasty new level.

Succotash, Providence

We were pleasantly surprised by the transformation of this space from…what was it last? It has seen its share of bars come and go, but we hope its latest incarnation, Succotash “bruncheonette,” succeeds. Bright and modern, Succotash features a nice selection of fresh juices, teas and espressos, omelets and breakfast specials, salads and sandwiches, many with Southern flair. Our omelet came alongside some tasty cheddar grits and biscuits and gravy. The kids went nuts for the Smores French toast with Nutella and marshmallows. But there are plenty of healthy options on the menu, too. We’ll be back soon as the selections are vast and all sound creative, fresh and promising. 373 Richmond St, 228-7222 www.succotashri.com

Vanderbilt Grace, Newport

The menus at this venerable Newport boutique hotel is overseen by none other than Chef Jonathan Cartwright, well-known by chefs and foodies alike for his tenure at the White Barn Inn in Kennebunkport, Maine. Muse by Jonathan Cartwright is Vanderbilt’s signature restaurant, marked by a menu featuring the chef’s signature takes on fresh and classic New England ingredients. The Conservatory is the hotel’s more casual dining spot, and features a delightful Sunday brunch menu. Cartwright’s tendency for freshness and simplicity shines through here too. Our buttermilk pancakes were light and fluffy and accompanied by a blueberry compote bursting with fresh flavor. A crabcake with a poached egg and Hollandaise was perfectly executed, much like everything else at Vanderbilt Grace. 41 Mary St. 846-6200, www.gracehotels.com/Vanderbilt

North, Providence

If "Soul Food" is your idea of a terrific brunch, then head over to the West Side and let the guys at North take care of you. Most Sundays you can find the fuel you need to start the week. It also helps that they donate back some of every meal to incredible organizations like Amos House and the RI Community Food Bank. So you can feel good about your meal. And that would be enough if it weren't for the fact that their food rocks. There is a definite Asian bent to brunch--if you haven't been--but is all delicious. From tried and true flavor profiles comes an inventive and thought provoking brunch. "The Cure" is our favorite and it seems to do everything it's name implies. Also check out the freshly made donuts. The buttermilk in the dough and the pickled fruit was a perfect start to our week!
3 Luongo Sq., Providence, 421-1100

The Cooked Goose, Westerly

A recent weekend at the parent's beach house left us in search of a new breakfast place. We always end up in Narragansett or at the Ocean Mist. This time we went further south and found The Cooked Goose. What we found was a delicious breakfast served by happy people in a bright and clean environment. We started with the deluxe bagel platter and split that between us. The bagel was very nice and the Lox were smoky but not overly salty. We then moved on to an updated version of french toast that was highlighted by toasted almonds and a sweet vanilla syrup. It was a winner in our eyes. 92 Watch Hill Road 348-9888, www.thecookedgoose.com

XO Café, Providence

No surprise to those who read us regularly that we’re big fans of Chef Marty Lyons’ creative take on XO’s dinner menu. But don’t forget that this chic spot also serves a killer Sunday brunch (and yes, if you wear your jammies you’ll be rewarded with a complimentary mimosa or bloody Mary) that’s particularly hearty. Favorites of ours include the Meeting Street, a sandwich made with pork belly and asparagus hash, two poached eggs and mornay sauce on grilled house-made bread, or the XO Benedict with local short rib, a yummy chive potato pancake and chipotle Hollandaise served atop an English muffin. Those with simpler tastes will find an ample selections of more traditional favorites, too.125 North Main St., Providence, 273-9090, www.xocafe.com


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