Sunday, April 30, 2006

Don Pedro's Belly Busting Brunch

Don Pedro's is a Latin-Caribbean restaurant on the corner of 96th Street and 2nd Avenue with excellent food and an excellent belly busting brunch special. For $11.95 on Sundays only Don Pedro's (warning: bad music on their site) serves a very filling 4 course brunch. They begin with a Caribbean bread basket which contains chili popcorn, fried plantains, and toasted Cuban bread slices, all served with a saffron oil dipping sauce. The fried plantain slices were addictively good. The dipping sauce was ok in small amounts, as the flavor tended to be overpowering. I found the chili popcorn to be very hot. The brunch also includes choice of Bloody Mary or Passionfruit Mimosa. Yum.
We began with the Sopa de Frijoles Negros-Cuban style black bean soup, which had excellent flavor due to the crunchy additions of chopped cilantro. After a little wait our main courses were served. CNote had the Ensalada de Pollo a la Parrilla- tangy citrus marinated grilled chicken breast slices over field greens with citrus vinaigrette. The vinaigrette had a slight hint of lime to and was very tasty. I can't comment on the chicken but she said it was good.
I ordered the Bistec de Palomilla- steak sandwich with grilled onions, served with Yuca Frita- fried yucca, and some salad greens with the citrus vinaigrette. The fried yucca was a bit dried and starchy for my tastes but the salad with cabbage was quite good due to that citrus vinaigrette. The steak was very good, seasoned and grilled- juicy and flavorful. The steak sandwich had plentiful grilled onions atop and a small amount of melted cheese on the bottom. It was served on Cuban bread but not totally flattened like a Cuban sandwich. The meal was well presented and extremely filling:
Dessert was also included and since there's always room for dessert we each had the Flan Caramelo. It had a sticky coconut cluster underneath and dollops of strawberry and passion fruit syrup on the plate with a tasty cookie sticking out. Texturewise, the stickiness of the coconut was well balanced by the smoothness of the flan. Muy delicioso.
The service was excellent and attentive, refilling our water several times without prompting. The restaurant was surprisingly pretty empty. Oddly the salsa music level slowly increased to blaringly loud levels before descending back to quiet several times during our meal. Don Pedro's is a phenomenal value for Sunday brunch (the plates are much bigger than they look in the pictures here). It's the type of meal you eat when you know you're probably not going to eat too much else that day.
category: food_ nyc_