Sunday brunch in San Francisco has become a tradition here for some reason. I think it's because folks like to go out and drink the night before and just get up late on Sundays thus becoming a default kind of breakfast for everyone. Either way, it seems no matter where you go there is always some kind of wait regardless of either how good or bad a place seems to be. So it is on this Sunday when me and the SO head out to meet his cousin and girlfriend in Dogpatch at Serpentine.
A quick ride on the T line, it is a small place and yes there is a wait, which normally the SO isn't up for but since we are with others we decided to put our names on the list and chat the time away. Just over an hour later a table opens up. Needless to say we are hungry and everything on the small focused menu looks good. We decide to share a dish right away while before the main dishes come and go with the buckwheat pancakes.
One large buckwheat pancakes topped with pears, apples, bananas, strawberries, candied walnuts, maple syrup and whipped cream. Normally I'm not a fan of buckwheat, especially in pancakes, I sometimes find the flavor to harsh and bitter, but here it was not as overwhelming as usual and I like this dish. The pancake was thick and fluffy and not overly crisped on either side. The fruit mixed well with light buckwheat flavor giving it a hearty fruit and granola bar flavor. The whipped cream and syrup can make it seem a little like a dessert for breakfast, my suggestion would be to skipped the cream and ask for butter (which doesn't come with it) and it will give it more of a salty sweet flavor, but that's just a personal choice. For the main dish me and the SO went with baked eggs and red flannel hash.
Two eggs with spiced garbanzo beans, broccoli di cicco, hen of the woods mushrooms, tomatilla green salsa and toasted levain bread. The SO really liked the dish, me, eh, not so much. It was hard for me to pinpoint what wasn't clicking for my taste buds. A little was a texture issue, the mix of the egg and the slightly al dente beans and add in the acidic little bitter aftertaste of the tomatilla---for me it just didn't work.
The red flannel hash was a mix of beef brisket, crisped potato cubes, roasted beets, horseradish creme fraiche, a poached egg and a side of grilled levain bread. All the separate parts of this dish were good. The brisket was tender and tasty, the egg was poached perfectly, the beets had a nice roast on them and the creme had a nice tangy kick from the horseradish. I'm a big beets fan and like how they were done here but I didn't like them when mixed with other ingredients, I didn't like the flavor mix. Take the beets out and this is a really good bowl of food. I could see myself getting this again, but I would be one of those Sally's (from When Harry Met Sally) and ask for the beets on the side. Again personal taste thing. I also like the fresh made grilled bread, though I did have to ask for some butter, it came with the SO's but not mine. Butter should always come with bread!
All in all this was a decent brunch and a trip out to a different neighborhood is a great way to spend a lazy Sunday. While I would go back to try some of their other intriguing menu offerings, next time I would make a reservation ahead of time, unless you are into waiting and waiting and waiting........