by JULIAN STOUT
Most days we have breakfast, lunch, and afterwards dinner. Sometimes hanging out between the first two we find brunch; an easy going mid morning meal charming its way into the roster of the day’s meals, graciously giving breakfast and lunch the day off. On the surface the concept is simple, but the nuances of a good brunch aren’t easy to nail down. The food is generally breakfast like in tone, perhaps more substantial but stocked with the morning standbys of eggs, coffee, and orange juice. Socially brunch is a different animal. Brunch is an easy way to get together and quietly catch up. To chatty (inevitably mimosa soaked) Sunday morning socialites “lets do brunch” is an invitation to a venerated weekend ritual. For others the same phrase is only uttered laced with the harmless cynicism of bleary eyed hung over self awareness.
I have to admit my experience with brunch places me in the latter group. Living near PNU’s The Brunch grants me the added bonus of picking the low hanging fruit of brunch related word play. “Lets do the brunch.” Like a lot of my jokes, I suspect I’m the only one really laughing. The Brunch is very Korean in that however close it may come; it doesn’t quite fit the mould of stateside restaurants. Like many places, it’s smaller than you’re used to. To say that three is a crowd at The Brunch would be an exaggeration, but three to four small groups would easily fill most of the seats. It’s cozy without feeling crowded, and makes the most of the space avail;able. You shouldn’t have to worry about not finding a seat and even at capacity it’s quiet enough inside to have a conversation without having to raise your voice at all. I like that. A nice and easy relaxed brunch always fits the bill, and The Brunch provides that.
Fittingly, the menu is also small without feeling that it is lacking. There are two main breakfast sets, either of which comes with a choice of beverage and seemingly endless supply of toast. The first is a thick, fluffy pancake nestled over fried eggs, cheese, and ham. The pancake is sweet, the eggs are done satisfyingly runny, the ham is delicious, and the cheese evenly melted just as it should be. The portions are decently sized and any feeling you want a bit more after you finish probably has more to do with the way it tastes than anything else. The second is a set of bacon, scrambled eggs, beans, and a side salad. Fans of bacon will be pleased with The Brunch’s. It’s good thick, no frills, and satisfying. The scrambled eggs come with ketchup on the side, but are good enough without it. The beans aren’t heated at all, which is the only surprise in an otherwise very familiar meal. Simplicity is one of The Brunch’s strong suites. Choosing is easy, and the small kitchen easily keeps up with orders without sacrificing quality.
The food is fantastic, and the restaurant a pleasant place to spend time. Service at The Brunch is friendly without fail, and even though it’s a small restaurant with plenty of business walking through the door, there is no one rushing you out of your table. You could even pick one of the plentiful English language books of a shelf to leaf through while you eat. It may not be quite like restaurants you’re used to, but whatever you’re expectations are of brunch The Brunch is sure to be enjoyable. It hits all the right notes in a way all its own, and for that it’s more than worth a visit.
How to get to The Brunch (Its across the street from Farmers)
The best way is to go to the main gates of PNU.
From the Orange metro line PNU station go out exit 3. Take a right and follow that road until you get to a bigger cross walk. Take a left and follow that (big road) to the top of the hill. The main gates are right in front of you. When the road stops and the university begins take a right and walk down a little road, one that does not have sidewalks so be careful. You will have the NC shopping center on your left. When the road comes to a “T” across from a “Jasmine coffee” take a right. The Brunch is about a block down from there on the left side.
View The Brunch in a larger map