Brunch isn't new. The concept of something in between breakfast and lunch has been around a long time. The craze of making the meal an all-day affair is newer, but even that has been going on for years now. It almost seems inconceivable that a restaurant could open today and not offer a Sunday brunch. They've become so popular, especially among the younger set, that it's becoming common to see brunch offered on Saturdays and Sundays. In New York, I've seen some restaurants with weekday brunch menus.
Soco, the Thornton Park Southern contemporary restaurant, did not offer a Sunday brunch when it first opened more than three and a half years ago. But it soon joined the list of restaurants offering Saturday and Sunday brunch menus, and both days have become wildly popular.
And why not, with so many inventive things on the menu? I finally stopped in to try brunch (on a Sunday; I'm old school) and enjoyed my food very much.
Enjoyed my drink even more. There seem to be a lot of special brunch drinks and even pitchers of cocktails and bottomless mimosa options that... Ohhhhhhhh, now I get why brunches are so popular.
You would expect the pinchos at a place called Willie's Pinchos to be good. And they are. The barbecue skewers are impressively large, even before you consider the ridiculously reasonable three dollar charge. And the pork version that I had had a nice smoky flavor and a bit of sweetness from the barbecue sauce coating.
In this episode of On the House, bartender Karla Mendoza demonstrates how to make the Oceanaire 2.0, the signature cocktail of the upscale seafood restaurant. It's as refreshing as an ocean breeze -- it even has a seaweed garnish.
Might make a good cocktail to make for Father's Day -- think Old Man and the Sea.
Pointe Orlando, the entertainment and shopping complex on International Drive, is certainly going through a transitional phase. As I reported in April, Tommy Bahama, both the retail store and the restaurant, has closed. Word on the street, or the Drive, as it were, is that Parker Restaurant Group of Chicago is looking at the space, possibly for a Hampton Social, one of its three restaurant brands.