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Sanford Brunch

The first borough I lived in when I first moved to New York was Queens. So when I was recently prompted by a reader to go for brunch in my old borough, a walk down memory lane seemed very fitting and due.

For some context to those who may not know, Queens is NYC’s most diverse borough and also its biggest. Most notable as an up and coming (although arguably it’s already there) neighborhood is Astoria. A stone’s throw from Manhattan and easy to get to on the subway, it’s already set up for an influx. But one place that hasn’t jumped on the Astoria bandwagon is American restaurant Sanfords. It was established in the 1930s! Now under the guidance of brothers Gus and Chris Karalekas it’s still thriving.

At first glance, it’s a sleek and darkly lit with warm pendant lights, exposed brick and a healthily stocked whiskey bar (they’ve won awards for it). Seems like the kind of place that would suit a late night dine, however, Bitches gotta brunch.

We were seated by the windows at the front of the restaurant at a comfy chocolate brown booth, handed our menus and promptly offered some beverages. We opted for the Tokyo and the Brunch Revolution.

The Tokyo contains Roku gin is served in a champagne glass with lemon juice and prosecco. Best described as a subtle mix of bubbles and zest, it is finished off with lemon peel. This is a cute little take on what I would say is a hybrid of a mimosa and Aperol Spritz. 

The Brunch Revolution is pretty nice to look at. It comes in a vintage style champagne glass (the kind of ones that Gatsby drank out of) and has a lovely rich raspberry color to it. And to finish off it has a cute little flower in the middle! Taste-wise, it’s floral and fruity with a little bit of a spritz to it. Made with vodka, pineapple juice, and prosecco.

Both drinks are more of a subtle flavor, which is fine but if you’re looking for something to knock the socks off your taste buds I recommend choosing something else from their cocktail menu.

Sanfords is known as an American comfort food place so their Sweet Chorizo Hash and the Nutella S’more Waffle (also a choice of pancakes) jumped off the page when it came to decision time.

The Sweet Chorizo Hash was made up of sweet potato, grilled onions, guacamole, two poached eggs, and it also came with a side salad that was a mix of garden greens and a light dressing. Atop the hash was some fresh and vibrant guacamole, I could barely wait to dig in and when I did it didn’t disappoint. The hash was a great mix – chorizo that wasn’t “sweet” per se but had the spicy edge taken off of it so it was a nice little change from what you’d expect. The guac on top was delish and paired nicely with the whole lot as well as did a good job of lightening the dish. The side salad is pretty standard and what you’d expect but a good addition to just snack on.

 

The Nutella S’more Waffle was generously topped with Nutella, crushed graham crackers and mini marshmallows that had been torched so they were charred just right and melted across the waffle – just like how they would be on your homemade s’more! I had in my mind that the marshmallows would be big but the mini ones are such a better idea.The ratio between waffle, marshmallows, graham crackers and Nutella was perfect. The waffle itself was a nice consistency, not airy or crunchy but instead nice and fluffy. Let’s not forget the maple syrup too! Provided on the side and at your discretion to drizzle or dip to your heart’s content.

The Bitches Say: four champagne flutes

Elevated comfort food in a sleek yet comfy setting with well put together cocktails. If you’re in Astoria you should go here!

Alex Gillies

NYC Associate Food Editor

A self-proclaimed "Southern Hemisphere Belle" originally from Melbourne, Australia who traded in flip flops for snow boots. She can often be found wandering the streets of New York listening to a podcast or tackling the city one diner, biscuit café, and Bloody Mary at a time.

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