Brunch at Colonie

This past February at the Grace Church Winterfair Silent Auction my wife bid on, and won, brunch for two at Colonie, 127 Atlantic Avenue (between Clinton and Henry). We finally got around to doing it today. We arrived at around 11:30 (brunch there starts at 11:00) and found all tables occupied (Colonie only takes reservations for parties of five or more) but were offered seats at a counter facing the open kitchen. This proved to be a lucky circumstance, as we enjoyed watching the kitchen crew at work and later, when the pace of orders slowed, some conversation. My wife ordered the biscuit Benedict (see photo, and menu here–scroll down to brunch). Judging by the number of times I heard the sous-chef call out “Benny!” I take it this is the most popular brunch item. More photos and text after the jump.

My wife was pleased by her choice. The egg was, she said, the most perfectly poached she had ever seen, and the seasoning was just right. The biscuit was excellent. I took a sample, and my only dissent was that the “heritage ham” was less flavorful than I expected.

I chose the duck hash (photo at left) and had no regrets. The duck was sliced in thin strips, and very savory, the potatoes were done to the right degree of crunchiness, and the seasoning was just so. There was another of the perfectly poached eggs. I washed it down with a “bloody Caesar,” a bloody Mary made with Clamato juice.

Here’s the crew who made it all so well. As we finished our meal and the pace of orders decreased, we were able to have some enjoyable conversation about cooking and baseball. I call them the “anything but the Yankees” crew–note the Red Sox (to my wife’s delight) and Orioles caps.

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  • Karl Junkersfeld

    Claude, I couldn’t agree more about the quality at Colonie. Hope you win a gift certificate to Govenor, which I loved, so we can get another excellent review. Emily and her partners definitely have the right recipe. Also, sitting at the bar at Gran Electrica eating guacamole and chips with a couple fish tacos paired with a Pacifica draft on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon ain’t a bad deal either.

  • HenryLoL

    Easily the best restaurant in The Heights. They’re friends place next door is really good too.

  • PBL

    Duck hash is my personal fave as well … love this place, what a neighborhood gem!

  • princess

    My spousal unit and I tried Gran Electrica yesterday, and loved it! The garden was packed so we stayed inside. Very pleasant experience. Still haven’t made it to Colonie or Govenor, but we’ll get there. This group know how to run a restaurant. Go Red Sox! :)

  • Topham Beauclerk

    It’s extraordinary to me that New Yorkers who have a wealth of fine restaurants from which to choose would tolerate the noise and cramped quarters of Colonie because its food is good. Madness.

  • HenryLoL

    Well, @Topham, if you want something in the Hood, there is certainly no wealth from which to choose… Will take a taxi any day of the week to Tribecca for a planned dinner, but for a last minute idea, there are really only about 3 good places in all of The Heights… So yes, it’s worth the noise and crowd.

  • Topham Beauclerk


    A chacun son gout.

  • Quinn Raymond

    Yep, Colonie is great.