Balthazar – Brunch in Soho

Balthazar_entrance

Balthazar in Soho is pretty much THE brunch spot in New York City for tourists, locals, and everyone in between. Reservations need to be made well in advance, and though they do take walk ins, expect to wait for at least an hour depending on the size of your party. It’s always packed and the vibe inside is chaotic at best, but once you are seated, it is all worth it {in my opinion anyway}.

This was my third time at Balthazar, but the first post-blog so I was happy to be able to share the experience this time around. An old friend from grade school in Florida, who now lives in Belgium, contacted me through Facebook {see, FB does have redeeming qualities!} to get together since she was spending the weekend in the city. I decided I had to take her to an NYC classic, which is where Balthazar came into the picture.  We didn’t have a reservation because it was a last minute decision so I knew it was going to be risky, so we went at noon and lucked out with a one hour wait time. Luckily, since she was visiting, and it was her first time in the city,  and it was actually really nice out, she didn’t mind walking aimlessly around Soho while we waited for our table to be ready.

The hour flew by and before we knew it, we were being led by the hostess and weaving through throngs of people to get to our booth. As I mentioned, I’ve been here for brunch before and I love their Oyster Mary which is touted as one of their “Hangover Drinks”, and is garnished with an oyster.

Balthazar_oystermaryBetter view of the oyster…

Balthazar_oystermary2For our entrèes, I chose the Eggs Bella Donna – poached eggs with polenta, pancetta and tomato and my friend got the classic Eggs Benedict {she wanted something that she couldn’t get in Belgium}. It seemed like we had just ordered, when a couple of moments later our food appeared. I guess they have to run a pretty efficient kitchen in order to turn tables around quickly enough to meet their never ending demand!

Balthazar_EggsBellaDonnaI loved my dish! I thought the presentation was very visually appealing, I liked the mix of colors and textures as well as the combination of breakfast items (eggs) with the savory non-traditional breakfast items – the polenta, spinach, pancetta and provolone. When the egg yolk spilled all over the polenta, it created a flavorful creamy concoction which was the perfect complement to the salty pancetta and sweet tomatoes.

Balthazar_EggsBenedict

My friend said she loved her Eggs Benedict, and it was exactly how she remembered it from her years of living in the US.

As full as we both were, I had seen some Profiteroles at the table next to us, and I insisted we had to try them!

Balthazar_profiterolesMy mouth is watering now as I remember how chocolatey and delicious it was! The chocolate sauce was rich and decadent, the vanilla ice cream was sweet and creamy, and the profiteroles were soft but flaky and crispy at the same time.

To recap our experience at Balthazar: Was it expensive? Yes. Was it over crowded? Yes. Did we have to wait forever to get in? Yes. Was the server running around like a chicken with her head cut off? Yes! But it’s all about the experience and the food, and for me, both were great, and next time I have guests in town, I will surely bring them here again.

Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Balthazar | www.balthazarny.com |  80 Spring Street

Balthazar on Urbanspoon

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