The Penrose was one of the first “cool” places to open in the UES. It was neither formal/stodgy nor casual/neighborhoody. It had a gastropub vibe and mixologists behind the bar. It’s the kind of place that your trendy downtown friends won’t mind travelling to you for (because don’t you feel like you’re allllways going to their ‘hood when really the distance between your apartments is the same?)
I had been for drinks and apps before but never for brunch, which is a pretty popular meal there. Though they have a menu filled with all sorts of things, there are plenty of fried and full fat items on the menu that satisfied our need to indulge after running a 10K.
We started with drinks at the bar. Their entire drinks menu is great – you really can’t go wrong. For my first drink I knew I was having a bloody because I heard they make a good one. I am very picky about my bloody marys so it took several positive reviews to convince me, but I’m glad I listened. I got the bacon one and thought it was nice and balanced. Later, I tried the Coffee is for Closers (Jameson Caskmates, plantain, branca menta, cynar, orgeat, coconut cream, cold brew coffee, cherry vanilla bitters, and mint) which looks like it has too many ingredients but basically tasted like the best iced coffee ever.
We ordered fried mac and cheese balls to share because it’s hard not to. I wish they were a liiittle gooey/cheesier, but they were still good, and I liked the accompanying aioli. Albert and Conor both ordered the burger, which is a general highlight of the Penrose menu, even during dinner. Albert kept saying he thought it was cooked perfectly. Meredith ordered the breakfast burrito and seemed pleased, though her real win was ordering a side of fries for the table. You should do the same, but make sure to ask for more of that ailoi (from the mac and cheese balls) to go with them.
I ordered the bacon, egg, and fried oyster sandwich. I’m not sure what the sauce was but I liked it and thought the pickles were a nice touch. This is definitely not your standard breakfast sandwich, but that’s probably why I enjoyed it so much.