Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Brunch: Calle Ocho

Ahh...boozy brunch.  What better weekend activity is there?  I've been hearing about the bottomless sangria brunch at Calle Ocho and just finally got around to trying it!

Located inside the Excelsior Hotel on the UWS by the Natural Museum of Natural History (they moved to this location last year), this is definitely a popular destination on the weekend.  Make a reservation if you can!

Outside of Calle Ocho (boooo scaffolding)
When you walk into the restaurant (note you access the restaurant entrance via the hotel lobby), you'll notice that the decor is colorful, energetic, and fun chic.  It's crowded, as expected for an all-you-can-drink brunch spot, but it has just the right amount of energy.

Love the colorful walls and decoration
When you sit, you are presented with the menu - brunch comes with all you can drink sangria so get excited!  There are 4 white and 4 red sangrias for you to choose from on the left side of the menu.  The entrees are listed on the right.  From what I heard, at Calle Ocho's previous location the sangria was located in the middle and you poured your own.  At this new location, you order from your waiter.  I guess that slows it down a bit, but the waiter was easy to flag down when needed. 

Sangrias on the left, entrees on the right
The AYCD rules - nothing out of the ordinary
First to come out - bread basket and our drinks!  My favorite out of the ones I tried was the Roja!  Loved that it was served in a big glass.  Keep it coming!!  And the bread basket comes with an assortment of muffins/biscuits and fantastic strawberry butter.  You all know how I feel about bread baskets and especially butter...this box pretty much lived next to my plate until I finished it all hehehe.

Assorted muffins/breads and strawberry butter
In the meanwhile, make sure you don't wait to use the restroom.  With AYCD, there's always going to be a wait for the restroom.  Check out the line!

Line for the bathroom - don't wait until you need to go!
And finally, the food!  We ordered the Pollo Ranchero (i think that's what it was??), Cuban Sandwich, and the Vaca Frita.  Everything was pretty tasty (although the french fries and Vaca Frita were my personal favorites).  The Pollo Ranchero portion was kind of sad, but that's ok - an extra round of sangria to make up for it!

Pollo Ranchero (I think??) - crispy corn tortilla, refried black beans, chicken escabeche, scrambled eggs
Cuban Sandwich - with roasted pork, panela basted ham & swiss cheese
Vaca Frita - skirt steak with fried rice, tomato escabeche, avocado, fried egg
Out of all the AYCD brunch spots in the city, this is probably my favorite.  You can make a reservation, its located at a relatively easy to get to location, its decorated nicely, and the food is decent.  And according to the waiter, the Sunday Dinner (also served with AYCD sangria) is excellent and comes highly recommended.  If it's anything like the brunch, I can't wait to give it a try!

Piggy says Yes!

Calle Ocho 
45 West 81st St (btwn Columbus and Central Park West)

Thanks for reading - Piggy KK

sunday dinner

No comments:

Post a Comment