The Fremont neighborhood’s gastronomical scene has really exploded over the past few years, a delightful observation for a neighboring resident and glutinous little lady like myself.
New restaurants, happy hours, and hidden menus are popping up all over the place, and quite often I find myself in a frenzy trying to figure out which place to indulge next. After a morning run with my dog, or night out with the gals, I love to treat myself to something hearty in the early afternoon. Brunch is a fascinating meal shared between girlfriends, family and partners; it’s a meal that sets the tone for the rest of your day, a place where sacred secrets (mostly gossip) are divulged and dissected- A meal over which many laughs, several morning cocktails, and memories unfold. I’m very particular about where I choose to unwind on a Sunday; sometimes after a long night I need a low key atmosphere in the morning, with mimosas that keep flowing (and coffee – LOTS of coffee), and decor that in no way resembles the bar I let loose in mere hours before I woke up. Preferably somewhere within walking distance from my humble abode below the Troll (yes he is my neighbor, and yes it’s infuriating that he pays far less rent than I do).
If you’re looking for somewhere beyond the hustle and bustle of the breakfast serving restaurants along Fremont Avenue, and an ambiance appealing to family, friends, or a mid- morning date, then I’m happy to report that Agrodolce’s brunch lineup is anything but agro, and won’t disappoint.
Located on 35th Avenue with a sign out front that reads fresh pasta here, Maria Hine’s authentic Italian restaurant is among the quintessential cozy dining experiences that make this neighborhood so great and we happily sampled their brunch offerings at their request.
With a plush bench seated along the windowsill, marionettes hanging from chandeliers, a corner bar and private curtained area for a party in the back, the layout alone proves this space is quite accommodating to an array of diners. The tables were spaced just right so as not to be bothered or notice a fussy baby a few feet behind you, or eavesdrop on the gossip shared between flushed women in yoga pants.
Although the ambiance was appealing and certainly set the mood, the food was clearly the main attraction. Every detail was intact, from the aromatic Caffe Vita brew to the crisp salty asiago potato wedges, we ate, we drank, we concurred.
We started with mimosas and a ‘Capri Sun’ cocktail, a blend of limoncello and sparkling wine which is a delightful concoction that tiptoes on the edge of too sweet, yet the bubbles cut through nicely to round out. You won’t find Cook’s or Andre’s behind the bar for these bubbly cocktails, and if you’re here to indulge you can go bottomless for $15 (they’ve done their homework too, and enforce diners to order a meal with your unlimited drinks to soak up the suds).
The focaccia french toast bites with a trio of dipping sauces was an excellent prelude to the chicken and waffles, a savory yet delicately sweet dish that demands the attention of the most discriminatory palates. You could tell this hen lived a happy healthy life, and we know because all the food is sourced as locally as possible, like the thick nearly caramelized bacon from Skagit River Ranch.
The subtly smoked sablefish cake benedict deserves a moment in the spotlight, enveloped in a creamy yet savory (was that turmeric?) Hollandaise sauce.
We finished with yet another cup of coffee, and a chocolate, candied orange cannoli that could have easily transported me back to strolling along the Ponte Vecchio in Florence.
I thoroughly enjoyed my brunch at Agrodolce, and I’m confident that if you love to indulge mid-morning, you will too. The menu was reasonably priced, the food was delightful, and the plush cushioned bench perfectly coddled my derriere.