It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of brunch. Au Cheval, Trenchermen and GT Fish & Oyster are just a few that I’ve blogged about, but Chicago has no shortage of fab brunch spots and I’m trying to work my way through as many as I can! With Spring slowly brightening things up around here it’ll be no time at all before patios are open and we’re able to enjoy a sparkly mimosa under the warm Chicago sun. Until then, I’ll happily take a spicy Bloody Mary indoors and call it a day!
This weekend I visited Frog n Snail in East Lakeview with 2 of my girlfriends. If you’re a Top Chef fan, you may remember Dale Levitski from Season 3. Frog n Snail is Dale’s latest venture.
The space has a clean, modern feel with the warm wood and frog and snail statues keeping it comfortable. After enjoying a tasty Bloody Mary, we ordered Mimosa Bubble Service, just because it was such a fun concept. They bring out a bottle of bubbly (we opted for the house bubbles, why spend more when you’re going to be mixing) along with a small carafe of oj and 3 small bowls of syrups-blueberry, passion fruit, and (I believe) hibiscus. Then you mix away to create your own perfect mimosa! At our table the passion fruit was definitely the most popular!
Along with our bubbles we enjoyed an order of the Lithuanian Bacon Buns with Whipped Vanilla Butter. I’m half Lithuanian and have yet to come across a bacon bun I didn’t like-these were no exception. Warm, buttery, and full of bacon-what’s not to love?!
With a menu full of mouth-watering options it was very difficult to make a decision, but eventually we settled on the 4 dishes we would share. First up we had the Duck Hash Benedict and the Shrimp n Polenta. The Duck Hash Benedict is served on banana bread and topped with brown butter hollandaise. I would never think that banana bread would pair well with duck and hollandaise but it did-and it was fantastic! It definitely took some restraint to keep us from licking the plate when we were done!
The Shrimp n Polenta is usually Shrimp n Grits, but they were out of grits and made a substitute. I don’t know what the grits taste like but the creamy cheddar polenta was awesome. There were just so many delicious flavors going on in this dish and when you add in the beautifully poached egg and the tender shrimp you’ve got an easy win.
Our next two dishes were the Croque Madame and the Nutella Crepes. The crepes were a nice sweet addition to our meal, but unfortunately not a stand out. The Croque Madame on the other hand-holy cheesy goodness! Hands down, the best thing to happen to me this weekend! The crispy ring of cheddar around the sandwich is like no sandwich I’ve ever eaten before. If you’ve ever eaten Pequod’s pizza…it’s like the caramelized cheese along the crust, only way better! Pictures do not do it justice!
I think it’s pretty safe to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this brunch experience at Frog n Snail. Just a few weeks ago their burger graced the cover of Time Out Chicago’s burger issue and it was a beauty! Since we skipped the burger on this visit that obviously means I’ll be returning to see for myself what all the fuss is about!