There’s pretty much nothing better than bubbly, bacon, and brunch at Bloomies, am I right? This is a trifecta in the Bitches’ book and one that I was lucky enough to experience a few weekends ago. #Blessed
This dream came true at David Burke at Bloomingdale’s, celebrity chef David Burke’s dual-concept restaurant on the first floor of the iconic Midtown department store. The chic eatery features a full service Burke Bar cafe on one end with a Burke in the Box eat in/take out counter on the other, perfect for shoppers on the go.
I met my friend Andrea for a late brunch at David Burke before an afternoon of checking out the world-famous Fifth Avenue window displays to get in the New York holiday spirit. Andrea works for David Burke so this brunch was on the house, but it is to be noted that the fancy pants price point at the restaurant is on par with upscale retailer.
We sat right by the windows at the cafe, which was perfect for people watching during the hustle and bustle of holiday shopping. Hank, the gregarious manager of David Burke at Bloomies, promptly ensured that we had cocktails in hand and then was whisked away to check on the rest of the diners.
The beverages were stunning and tasted as good as they looked. Little touches like an edible flower in a champagne and St. Germaine cocktail or the crystallized sugar rim on the Icy Lady went a long way and we clinked our glasses in girlish delight. Dining at Bloomingdale’s in general had a fun and girly element to it–in an Eloise-esque way–even though the crowd was an even split between men and women.
Before we had a chance to digest the joint brunch and lunch menu, popover bread magically appeared on our plates. Andrea informed me that David Burke is famous for this bread and after one bite of the fluffy, buttery carb, I understood why. It was warm and decadent, while still leaving plenty of room for our feast to come. I also thought it was refreshing to be served popover bread outside of a heavy steakhouse.
After properly whetting our appetites with the bread, we placed an order of the tuna tartare wontons to start. I absolutely adored this appetizer. I’m a big fan of raw fish, especially for brunch…I know, that’s weird, and loved how the tuna was neatly encased in the crispy wonton wrappers and topped with a dollop of avocado mousse and chili oil. It was the perfect bite or two of crunchy, creamy goodness with a slight kick.
We geared up to order our main dishes until Hank checked in on us and insisted we couldn’t move on until we tried the bacon and truffle fries. Twist my arm. Pretty much every head turned in the restaurant when we were presented with this stunning display of pork.
Thick strips of candied bacon were coated with a black pepper maple glaze and hung up like a clothesline with rosemary garnishes. This was the perfect presentation for a clothing retailer and extremely fun to eat. Both Andrea and I aren’t huge meat eaters, but the bacon was undeniably savory and delicious, and kept us coming back until the last bite.
I haven’t met a truffle fry that I didn’t like and David Burke’s take on the classic did not disappoint. The fries were warm, well seasoned, and hit the spot on a chilly afternoon. Plus, they came with those cute mini glass bottles of Heinz ketchup, which get me every time.
Our game plan was to split a variety of dishes so Andrea and I teamed up on the main courses as well. We had a tough time deciding between the whimsical takes on American classics, such as the smoked pastrami salmon pizza and the lobster wedge salad, but eventually we landed on the Caesar salad and frittata.
Most of the elements of the salad were pretty standard–the romaine, the parmesan, the dressing–but the fun twist was the crab croutons. They looked akin to regular croutons made out of bread, but delighted us with fresh crab once we dug in. The crab definitely elevated this salad as a satisfying main course.
After all of our decadent dishes, the light frittata was warmly welcomed. The eggs were served with cherry tomatoes, asparagus, Asiago cheese, and topped with a generous handful of microgreens. This entree is a great option if you’re craving a classic brunch dish on the healthier side.
We had good intentions “eating light” with the frittata, but we were surprised with a tasting of the cake pops off the dessert menu. Typically this item is served in a lollypop tree structure, but the chef could tell we were bursting at the seams and provided a sampling of sweet treats. Andrea told me that David Burke had cake pops long before Starbucks, so these were the real deal.
The cake pops have cutesy names like cherry pink cashmere, triple chocolate tuxedo, and toffee top hat, but they weren’t light on flavor. Each packed a delicious punch of pure decadence and we could only muster a bite of each. My personal favorite was the creamy cheesecake base of the cashmere pop.
By the time we bid our goodbyes, we were shocked to learn that we spent three hours at brunch. Through the various courses, glasses of prosecco, and hilarious conversations, the time flew by. Surveying the area, other diners clearly hunkered down in the inviting space before braving the Midtown crowds.
The Bitches say: A. Charming service and ambiance, a great location for shoppers and tourists, and most importantly, delicious bites and cocktails. The perfect place to dine with your girlfriends or parents!
David Burke at Bloomingdales
1000 Third Ave.
(Entrance on East 59th St.)
New York, NY
David Burke at Bloomingdale’s serves brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.