Photos: Linger serves up international street food and $3 cocktails for Sunday brunch
The chorizo tacos.
All photos by Kate Gibbons.
With ingredients like sambar curry, lacinato kale and pickled jalapeños, Linger's new brunch menu allows you to travel the globe without dusting off your passport.
No strangers to traditional eggs and bacon, chef/owner Justin Cucci and his team also incorporate Japanese, Indian, New Orleans and Mexican influences into their "street food"-themed brunch menu for Sunday. Given Cucci's success with brunch at Root Down, adding it to Linger's offerings wasn't a complicated decision.
"Brunch is the gateway drug of restaurants," he says.
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If addiction to delicious food alone isn't enough, the Linger brunch menu also features cocktails. You won't find a bottomless mimosa on it, but you will find three $3 options. Aiming to create drinks that would be especially delicious on the patio, beverage director Mike Henderson created the Linger mimosa, a Bloody Mary and a coconut fizz.
The $3 cocktails.
Swapping out orange juice for ginger, Japanese yuzu citrus and Thai basil, the Linger mimosa is heavy on ginger and packs a sparkling punch. Brunch without a Bloody isn't a brunch for some, and Henderson didn't want to ignore them. With just the right amount of heat and more than twenty ingredients, the Bloody Mary is garnished with an olive, lemon wedge and cucumber slice to balance out the spice.
While Henderson likes the new mimosa and Bloody Mary, he's most proud of the coconut fizz. Taking inspiration from the Ramos in New Orleans, he set out to make a tasty gin fizz. Combining gin, coconut milk, simple syrup and sparkling water, the coconut fizz isn't too sweet and goes down quickly, even if gin isn't your favorite.
To soak up the libations, "street food" has been brought to the table as "a way to intimately connect with communities different than our own. All around the world, 'street food' is vibrant, social, humble and diverse," Cucci proclaims on the Linger menu.
For a taste of New Orleans, combine the coconut fizz with the sopapillas. Beignet-like pastries served with cinnamon whipped cream and dulce de leche and sprinkled with powdered sugar, they can satisfy any sweet tooth.
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Feel like heading south? Try the chorizo taco, which packs scrambled eggs, crispy potatoes, cotija (a Mexican farm cheese), pickled onions and avocado into blue-corn tortillas. Cucci, who has a self-described unhealthy addiction to tacos, has given these real street cred.
The espanola Benedict.
If tacos aren't your speed, try the Espanola Benedict. Lasagna-like layers of potato, kale, egg and caramelized onion are topped with a poached egg, drizzled with roasted-garlic Hollandaise, and served with a side salad for a savory meal that doesn't feel heavy.
If you don't have time to hop a flight to Japan, order up the Tokyo White Castle sliders. Having discovered the kabocha burger at a Japanese Burger King, of all places, culinary director Daniel Asher was inspired to add a similar item to the menu. Eye-catching with their steamed, then fried black squid-ink buns, they are loaded with spicy mayo, caramelized onions, bacon and Angus patties. The inspiration may have come from the fast-food giant, but these burgers are fit for a King -- burger, royal or otherwise.
The Tokyo White Castle sliders.
Other honorable mentions on the brunch menu include the enormous breakfast dosa, the tempura-battered chile rellenos, "Hangover Ramen" and the Kaya foam-topped French toast.
Linger's brunch menu features ten entrees in all, along with two salads, two smoothies, numerous sides and three sweets that can come before, during or after your main. Looking out for all of its patrons, the restaurant also has fourteen gluten-free and five vegan options available.
Launched just this month, Linger's brunch is available on the patio or inside from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Sundays, with last call at 3 p.m. -- so plan accordingly.
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