Have you ever had a weekend and thought, “how did this weekend happened?”. Well, that was this weekend for me. It was long, chaotic, and mildly unfortunate due to my phone being stolen. Needless to say, Sunday was a welcomed casual, mellow day that deserved a low-key brunch with friends so we could recap the exactly what did happen over the weekend with mimosas in hand.
A classic go-to restaurant with my friends and I is the Standard Market Grill in Lincoln Park. The SMG, is the restaurant extension of the Standard Market—a gourmet food market that is located in the western suburbs of Chicago that sources all the local and seasonal ingredients used in the dishes at SMG. Personally, I love going to restaurants that support the local communities and that create well-balanced, good for you meals. After the weekend I had, I desperately needed food that packed full of nutrients and that was unprocessed but that had mimosas, obviously.
Standard Market Grill has a very open and airy design with lots of large windows, and glass walls towards the front that are opened during the warmer seasons. There isn’t a patio persay, but when the walls completely open it’s almost better than being on a patio.
Since I live so close, I ended up arriving before Britt and Ashley but was able to be seated immediately. Normally, this restaurant is wall-to-wall people so sometimes waiting is inevitable. But today was my lucky day, and I was seated immediately in the back where it was considerably quieter and would offer Britt, Ashley, and I more of a chance to talk.
None of us of ever been there for brunch before, but the menu online and our past experiences for dinner were what brought us in. To start, we opted for the Mimosa party which comes with a pitcher of fresh squeezed orange juice and a bottle of Mas Fi Cava. This gives you the option of making your Mimosas tableside allowing you to make it the way you like it, which means: more cava, less OJ. It was a nice little spread to have, and gave us each two Mimosas, at least.
Once the Mimosas were taken care of, we needed to order our other ‘food group’: caffeine. I chose my usual hot coffee, while Britt chose iced coffee with caramel and Ashley chose iced coffee with vanilla. My cup was a nice balanced blend, and was filled frequently, which I appreciated. Both Britt and Ashley enjoyed their coffee choices, each saying that the vanilla and caramel were great choices. Personally, I never even think to add flavor to coffee, but now I know SMG has that option. Noted!
We decided as a table that since we had the Mimosa party and our coffees, that an appetizer would be too much going on, so we went straight to entrees.
For my entrée I opted for the Early Riser breakfast pizza—funny name considering I’m such a night owl. The hand-tossed thin crust dough was adorned with beets, asparagus, and covered with goat cheese. There was also a and a fried egg on top, which I ended up giving to Ashley to put on her toast. It was everything I wanted it to be—crispy, well-cooked crust and loaded with vegetables. It was a guilt free breakfast pizza for me and I would absolutely, without a doubt, order it again. Delish!
Ashley selected the omelette of the day which was packed with goat cheese, spinach, mushrooms, and asparagus. A wonderful vegetarian option that was a hefty portion with a side of breakfast potatoes with sauteed onions and peppers. Ashley is our potato fiend, so she was especially delighted with the potatoes. Ashley also said that the omelette was delicious and quite filling.
After wavering over the menu, Britt ended up choosing for the quesadillas—normally, it’s a solid choice but this time Britt was left disappointed. She felt like they were definitely sub-par by comparison to what you would get from SMG and felt that she would have made these at home. It also didn’t help that the dish came to the table lukewarm and cooled quickly leaving her with cold quesadillas when she was halfway through. Next time, go with another dish.
The Bitches say A-. Having had Standard Markets lunch and dinner entrees previously, I was happy to find Standard Market offered a variety of brunch options to keep us all satisfied, and hopefully the sub-par quesadillas were a fluke.
Standard Market Grill
444 W Fullerton Pkwy,
Standard Market Grill serves brunch every Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.