Place: Extra Virgin
Neighborhood: West Village, 259 W 4th St. (between Charles St. & Perry St.)
The scoop: Extra Virgin is another brunch staple in the West Village and is usually packed regardless of the day or time of year. You often see people hanging out around the outside waiting to get in. Even on a day reaching 90-plus degrees, there were people willing to sit outside to get a taste of the delicious food.
It actually wasn’t super busy when we got there. It was pretty early in the day, though. The bar can get busy with single diners and those just wanting a cocktail. The restaurant itself is a small, dimly lit energetic spot — perfect for dates, yet also a great place to catch up with some close friends. It is not as loud during brunch as it is during dinner. The modestly priced menu seems even lower than the average West Village brunch spot, so no complaints there!
The service started out pretty great but slowly declined. The server never checked back on us during our meal, which doesn’t usually bother me. She never brought the bill until we finally motioned for her to come over. We attempted to split the bill five ways, but something went wrong and this didn’t go as planned. Again, things like this happen in restaurants, but it all comes down to how they handle it. It took awhile to get payment straightened out, and we had to speak with two different people.
Bottoms up: After a long weekend in Montauk, we decided that drinking was not the best option! However, Extra Virgin does have delicious-sounding summer cocktails for around $12.
Chew on this:
Fresh bread and olive oil / Complimentary
Be sure not to skip out on the complimentary fresh bread and olive oil. This place is called Extra Virgin after all!
Baked Eggs $14 / Pancetta, spinach, roasted tomato hollandaise
This is hands down the best dish out of all the amazing dishes we had. It was an interesting twist on an egg dish. I have not had hollandaise in a dish other than eggs Benedict. The sauce added a fantastic creamy touch. The pancetta, tomato and spinach soaked up nicely with the baked runny eggs, as did the bread baked under everything. The bread in the dish was a pleasant surprise since it wasn’t mentioned in the list of ingredients. This entrée was served in an oven-baked dish and was just delicious all around. Get this if you’re an eggs Benedict fan, but want something a little different.
Basque Scramble $14 / Peperonata, creamy polenta, salsa verde, avocado purée, chorizo
Between the peperonata and the chorizo, there was a bold blend of flavor and even a little spice to this dish. The mixture really worked well together. There was delicious avocado purée and salsa dolloped on top. You really can’t go wrong with this one. This dish is also pretty generously portioned.
Banana French Toast $14 / Caramelized bananas, whipped mascarpone
This is an extremely rich and decadent dish — everyone raves about it. After my friend’s amazing description of it, I had to order it. The caramelized bananas are sprinkled over the French toast and maple syrup is drizzled all over. It was right up my alley! The mascarpone cheese melted over the warm pieces of toast and created a creamy ice cream-like texture. Order this dish if you’re in the mood for something sweet.
Extra Virgin $11 / Baby arugula, cucumber, tomato, red onion, avocado, grilled bread, Chianti vinegar
If you want a great starter or something really fresh, this dish is for you. This was a great veggie salad with amazing dressing. The salad has even amounts of all of the veggies listed, particularly the avocado.
Virgin Frittata $13 / Goat cheese, roasted tomato, arugula, basil pesto
This dish is a real winner! It’s light yet is generously portioned much like the scramble. My friend had difficulty finishing it. The goat cheese and pesto were not overwhelming and provided outstanding flavor with the perfectly cooked eggs. This is a great dish to order, even if you aren’t a vegetarian.
The final bite: Extra Virgin has delicious quality food and a pleasant atmosphere. It’s one of West Village’s quintessential brunch spots, so be sure to check it out. I know I will be back!
Reviewed by: Erica