If you happen to be on Smith Street in Cobble Hill on a weekend afternoon–and you’re looking for sustenance that doesn’t require you to shell out a significant portion of this week’s paycheck–head over to Pane e Vino, where you’ll get subtle Italian flare woven into brunch basics plus booze for $14.95.
We’ve never had to wait for a table at this spot, which also makes it a good option if you’re dining with someone who bristles at the idea of waiting in line. Nab a seat in the cozy lounge area, or head for the dining room, especially if you’re in a large group: A huge family-style table sits in the center of the room. Nicest of all, though, is the enclosed garden patio in Pane e Vino’s rear. Most weekend afternoons, the space is taken over by events like bridal showers and birthday parties, but when it’s open, the setting is a great way to feel like you’re outside, even when you can’t be.
The restaurant runs a nine-item prix fixe menu on weekends that covers the expected bases. A spinach and Italian sausage omelet is as fluffy as it is hearty, while a vegetable omelet with ample slices of buffalo mozzarella is a solid vegetarian option that will stick with you longer than French toast or pancakes, the other meat-free choices on the menu. Well-poached eggs, which spill their runny yolks from feathery whites, are a highlight of a smoked salmon Benedict, though that dish is sometimes served with traditional Canadian bacon when the kitchen runs out of fish. Another good option is the classic steak and eggs sided with roasted potato wedges, a meaty, savory hangover killer.
Everything mentioned above is available for $10.50, but for $14.95, brunch includes a bloody mary, mimosa, or red sangria plus coffee or orange juice–which seems like a good excuse to tie one on this holiday weekend, especially if you can secure a garden seat.