From a mansion to a roadside eatery, a café to a pub, the WBC sampled an eclectic mix of morning meals in May and June. Here’s our roundup to give you some breakfast inspiration during these hot, hazy days.
Remember to check us out at www.westchesterbreakfastclub.com!
May 5: For a celebratory birthday brunch, we headed to Haymount House in Briarcliff for the $29 prix fixe brunch. The setting is beautiful: an old estate overlooking the Hudson River that was featured in the film Gone with the Wind. Our expectations were high. The view from our corner was breathtaking, but our meals were, sadly, not as epic as the location would imply. There was a series of misses: a hamburger ordered medium-rare that arrived charred all the way through; an ingredient substitution in a dish that, while not bad, was nevertheless made without warning; and the overpowering citrus maple butter atop the fried chicken and waffles. Chicken and waffles was an intriguing choice, one that several members of the WBC selected…and were let down by. The waffles were generic and dry, the chicken had the quality of reheated frozen fried chicken pieces and were all dark meat. But the main problem was the citrus maple butter. The chicken and waffles were arrived smothered in it, and rather than having a light, syrup quality it was, well, gloppy. When a waffle with the citrus maple butter was held up sideways, the stuff didn’t budge. Flavor-wise, it was overpoweringly sweet, to the extent that everyone who sampled it puckered their lips and promptly scraped the rest of it off their food. While not a complete bust—the appetizer biscuit and sausage gravy with a poached farm egg was unanimously enjoyed, Haymount House just didn’t live up to our expectations.
Patisserie Didier Dumas
June 15: We crossed the bridge to Nyack to pay a visit to Patisserie Didier Dumas. We placed our orders at the counter and squeezed into one of the small tables inside (it was a surprisingly windy day, not ideal for enjoying the large patio outside). The wait for our crepes was considerable, the result of a single crepe maker preparing all the orders. But the results were well worth the wait. Each crepe was carefully prepared and the mix of flavors was successful. The most intriguing option was the sunnyside up crepe. The oversized quiche and various croissants pleased as well. And for those who can’t get enough coffee, the iced coffee is served with coffee ice cubes. Didier Dumas is a great spot for a quick French bite in Nyack.
June 23: There’s a new restaurant in Ossining. And it serves brunch! Keenan House offers a 3-course prix fixe brunch for $22. For the three visiting members of the WBC, the meals were unanimous successes. We were pleased to discover that Keenan House is not like many other pubs that just throw together eggs and call it brunch. Instead, Keenan presents well thought and well-executed dishes like bircher muesli (greek yogurt, nuts, muesli, local honey, and fruit) and polenta with lamb sausage and two eggs. Between the more unique offerings alongside successful standards like pancakes and omelettes, Keenan House is a welcome rivertown addition suitable for a meal any time of day.
June 30: We rounded out the month with a trip to Putnam. Why? We just had to try the legendary cannoli pancakes at Countryside Kitchen. They were indeed a sight and taste to behold, although we found that they’re more of a sharing dish; between the thick pancake, abundant cannoli cream, and whipped cream, it was simply too much for only one WBC member to handle. If you’re looking for something a little less sweet, don’t worry; there are plenty of other pancake options to choose from. The strawberry/chocolate chip pancakes were delectable, with the ingredients well-distributed in the fluffy, silky pancakes. And if you can dream it, they can make it; Sylvia went off menu and requested a coconut-peanut butter pancake combination, which the kitchen happily and successfully fulfilled. Definitely worth the visit.