There needs to be more places like Resto in the Gramercy brunch scene. Its storefront is not very conspicuous, set on 29th street between Lexington and Park. With its metal signage and conservatory-like window display, one might easily pass it off as a specialty store, if it weren’t for its outdoor seating arrangement.
Unpretentious and effortlessly chic, this Belgium joint welcomed a whole spectrum of patrons without even trying. Within our hour-long brunch, we saw all sorts of diners walk through their door. From young double-daters and a couple with a baby, to a man enjoying waffles with his paper and a student treating his visiting parents, Resto provided a warm, welcoming setting balanced with just a hint of MPD fashion.
Jay had a bacon grilled cheese – melted white cheddar smothering thick slices of bacon between two slices of brioche. Obviously not the healthiest choice, but a nice little trip down memory lane for grilled cheese lovers. I had the usual – eggs benedict, but this time with a cute twist with a set of Belgium waffles beneath softly poached eggs. While it may not have been anything extraordinary, both the hollandaise sauce and mesclun greens were light but flavorful, as brunches should be.
The winning point at Resto is its atmosphere. You’ll be hard pressed to find a quaint Sunday morning brunch spot like this that gives you a trendy yet unassuming feel as well. The entire restaurant is brightly lit – a nice contrast to its dark and almost goth rustic decor. As we watched other entrees come out from the kitchen – breakfast skillets and dipping sauce in porcelain vases – we noted to make a special return trip to try out the rest of the menu.