Picnic – French Brasserie and Market
2665 Broadway (@ 101st st)
Take the 1/9 Train to 103rd street
Serving Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch and Dinner
The weather these days in New York is quite dreary, cold and bitter. Luckily as we were walking down Broadway last weekend trying to decide which store to pick up some bagels, the bright cheery awning of Picnic caught my eye and directed us to a warm respite from the elements. I had seen crowds of happy customers dining on the outdoor patio in the Autumn so I had always wanted to check out Picnic.
Smells Like a Winner to Me…
The first thing you’ll notice is that if the friendly manager doesn’t greet you first, you’ll soon be welcomed to Picnic by the wonderful array of aromas coming from the kitchen. This is partially because the kitchen is wide open onto the dining area. You can basically get a front row seat on the action from some of the tables in the back. Half of the restaurant is also a market place where you can buy an assortment of prepared foods, meats, cheeses, and desserts.
For brunch today we ordered the French Toast which is served with a mascarpone cheese mixed with a fresh berry jam and served with real maple syrup. The bread is not your stale day old bread white bread that you’ll find in most diners in Manhattan, but the French Toast bread is baked fresh daily just a few blocks away at the Silver Moon Bakery (same owner). I’ll have to review that bakery someday because the bread was very delicious. On top of that was the mascarpone cheese and mixed berry jam that is a fantastic topping to the buttery crispy French Toast bread. The berries are not too sweet nor is the cheese overwhelmingly creamy. This French Toast is so good alone that it really doesn’t need any syrup at all.
We also ordered the special Spinach Frittata which was served with a cup of french fries. The fries are fried to a golden and thick crunchy crust – a rare treat considering how soggy fries can be. The Spinach Frittata is also a great choice for brunch – a great blend of potatoes, eggs and spinach. Not too dry and cooked just right.
As we were eating our meal, we noticed blueprints of the restaurant spread out on the table next to ours and I was imagining that perhaps the Food Network was doing an episode of Restaurant Makeover, but as we chatted with the manager he informed us that Picnic will be going through some slight renovations in January. They’re going to keep that same great menu but create a bar and add more comfortable seating for their evening clientele. Which I definitely want to come back and check that out soon as well as the other dishes on their menu.