Saturday, December 21, 2013

Brunch at The Cecil

One snowy Saturday, my dear friends traipsed up to Harlem to eat brunch.  It was tough finding a spot in the neighborhood that could accommodate vegan palates and carnivores alike, so thank goodness for The Cecil, a trendy new spot offering Afro-Asian fusion (say what?).

Such a blustery day calls for good food and plenty of it !  We started with an order of the bread basket.  The assortment of bread, bacon cheddar cornbread, sweet potato rolls and pecan rum rolls, comes to the table piping hot,

with an assortment of spreads - the maple butter was my favorite on everything (including my finger), but the apple butter and marmalade were good too.

Light and nutty, with the faintest hint of rum
Moist and delicate - perfect little cornbread muffin
The spicy crispy squid with okra was well-fried in a light batter and drizzled with a sweet chili sauce.  I think I ate this whole plate myself because I am just an absolute monster around fried squid.

The signature oxtail dumplings were slippery wontons with strong meaty flavor in creamy, green apple curry sauce.

Jamie ordered Afro-Asian po boys which came as a trio of baos filled with hoisin duck, smoked salmon salad, bacon and eggs and a generous pile of rough cut fries.

The vegan ordered one of the four menu items available to him, the collard green salad with cashews and coconut dressing.  A comment one says to all vegan dishes: "Actually looks pretty good!"

Peter ordered the roti pizza, featuring oxtail, fried egg and aged cheddar,

with a side of cassava hash - thick, thick chunks of cassava fried with caramelized red peppers and onions.

Like a good friend, I did not ask anyone if they enjoyed their foods because I was too busy focusing on my wagyu burger.

Just look at that buttery lettuce !

The thick burger is topped with smoked pork belly, beautifully melted gruyere cheese and a warm tomato compote that adds just the right touch of sweetness.

The meat is well-seasoned and moist, and the brioche bun stands up well to the burger's size.  I was actually pretty surprised at the tastiness of this burger, and coming with a light little warm coleslaw salad, the giant plate is a great, hearty brunch option for only $16.

Han's Nonsensical Rating: I can't speak for anyone else (because I forgot to ask!), but I really enjoyed brunch at The Cecil - the burger is one of the best in the neighborhood, the atmosphere is fun and warm, and man, those sweet potato buns with maple butter.  Just roll me home! (Ha!)

The Cecil
206 W 118th St
New York, NY 10026

1 comment:

  1. you're joking. this place looks too good to be true!