Place: Friend of a Farmer
Neighborhood: Gramercy, 77 Irving Place (between 18th and 19th St.)
The scoop: I wanted to do an early, solo brunch on a Saturday, and my immediate thought was to visit Friend of a Farmer. They don’t take brunch reservations, but I thought I’d be OK since I was going early and I wasn’t with a large party. This place gets packed for brunch on weekends. It was a crisp fall morning, and I enjoyed walking through Gramercy Park on my way to the restaurant.
When I arrived at the very cozy Friend of a Farmer, I chose to sit upstairs, where there are two dining areas separated by open window panels. On my way upstairs, I noticed pumpkins, gourds, zucchinis, limes and lemons lined the staircase. There was a table of fresh fruit next to where I sat. Friend of a Farmer actually sells fruits and vegetables, a sure sign you’re getting fresh ingredients in your meal. Flower wallpaper and a variety of ornaments, dishes, photos, etc., adorned the walls. The décor reminded of an old country kitchen. There were more pumpkins scattered throughout the restaurant. I loved how there were signs of autumn everywhere you looked! I sat in a high- traffic area, but I didn’t mind. The service was good. They have a lot of servers (who were dressed in jeans and jean shirts — very country-esque), and they’re pretty on top of things.
Hot mulled apple cider $4
Served in a mini pot, which I loved, this apple cider hit the spot. It didn’t taste that different from other hot apple ciders I’ve tried, but it stayed warm throughout my meal. The price tag may seem steep for apple cider, but I got three servings out of it, so you definitely get your money’s worth!
Chew on this:
Old-fashioned pumpkin pancakes $12.95 / With toasted walnuts and maple syrup
Is there anything that screams fall more than pumpkin pancakes? With walnuts baked into the pancakes, this dish was the perfect complement to my apple cider. You’re provided with your own mini jars of butter and maple syrup, which I thought was cute and practical. Although the pancakes weren’t as warm as I would have liked, they had great pumpkin flavor. I did find that they were more bread-like and a little dry. The maple syrup helped with that.
The final bite: If you’re like me and love fall, you should definitely check out brunch at Friend of a Farmer soon. While their brunch menu — dishes and drinks — is great all year round, the homey, seasonally themed atmosphere is what stood out and is unmatched by any other restaurant I’ve been to lately.
Reviewed by: Stephanie