One of my former bosses is a well-heeled, world traveler and he mentioned one of his favorite restaurants in the South End is Union Bar and Grille. I concur.
Located near the now defunct Ginger Park and The Gallows, Union Bar and Grille has black leather booths which are luxurious and have high backs, which makes the dining experience semi private. In fact, on our most recent visit, we thought we spotted Kal Penn (Harold and Kumar and the Office of Public Engagement) enjoying brunch.
Union Bar and Grille is part of the Aquitaine Restaurant group and has the same fantastic coffee at all their restaurants. I look forward to it every time. In fact, the coffee and coffee cake are my favorite aspects of Union Bar and Grille’s brunch. The coffee cake used to be a Cinnamon Swirl Sour Cream Coffee Cake, but now the cake is topped with a granola crumble.
We all had a brunch cocktails including the special blood orange mimosa for $11, UNION Eye Opener chilled espresso, Svedka Vanilla, Kahlua, Bailey’s, Godiva chocolate for $11 and Sunrise Sidecar brandy, St. Germain and orange juice for $10.
The Early Riser All-Inclusive Brunch for $9.99 from 10am to 3pm Saturday and 10 to 11am Sunday is a great incentive to brunch early. The all-inclusive brunch includes freshly squeezed juice (orange or grapefruit juice), coffee cake and unlimited coffee.
The house-made granola dried fruit was laden with sesame seeds and fresh raspberries for $9. The crisp New England Cod Cakes, 2 poached eggs, “old bay” hollandaise looked decadent and the eggs looked like they were cooked perfectly for $10.
I had the Smoked Salmon Scramble, house cured salmon, crème fraiche, scallions. The juxtaposition of the smoky flavor with the creaminess is a classic combination. The potato skin of the home fries were well-seasoned and crisp.
At a previous visit, I tried the chorizo omelet, cheddar cheese & asparagus served with home-fries and toast for $8 and Union’s huevos rancheros, which are better than those at Toro and South End Buttery.
Overall, the ambiance of Union is very cozy and lush, but not pretentious. The service is very conscientious, constantly refilling coffee, and the food was spot on. Really look forward to trying Union Bar and Grille for dinner.
Special thanks to one of my brunch companion who lent her Iphone for my temporary usage! No camera = blog crises.