Stitch and Bear

A long-running Irish blog with reviews of the best restaurants in Dublin and throughout Ireland. Some wine and cocktails thrown in for good measure!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Brigs Restaurant, Raleigh, North Carolina

Imagine you're away from home for work, and it's the weekend. You can't turn to the other person in your life for company, or share the usual weekend morning routines of coffee and relaxing. You need to find some restaurants or cafes that will fill that void.

I've made several visits to Brigs restaurants in Raleigh, NC, in the past few months. It constantly turns up as a popular brunch spot on Google, and the queues waiting to get in seem to confirm the popular opinion. The first time I visited was a bitterly cold January morning (think everything coated in silver frost), so I was glad to park and head indoors only to be faced by a large queue of people all waiting to get in. I registered with the hostess and received an electronic tag which would alert me when a table became available. I settled down with my book in the unheated porch area and waiting, cursing under my breath.

I don't think I was waiting long though, whatever my frozen backside might say, but I did jump a mile in the air when my alarm buzzed in my lap. I was seated at a table for 4 in the corner but looking around, Brigs doesn't really seem to do tables for one or two people. They are clearly used to feeding groups. Like a lot of American restaurants, the menu is substantial, but could be broken down into categories such as skillets, omelettes, scrambled eggs and pancakes & waffles.

My friendly waiter made sure that I quickly had the essentials (coffee and water) and then returned to take my order. I went for one of the monthly specials - the imaginatively titled Three Little Pigs benedict. The blurb on the menu promised the following...

The big bad wolf would have loved this one, and so will you! This tasty benedict has two large sausage patties, shaved smoked ham, poached fresh eggs, Hollandaise sauce, and a sprinkle of bacon atop a toasted English muffin. Served with fresh fruit and choice of grits or homefries. $9.79
Three Little Pigs Benedict at Brigs, Raleigh
Repeated (and unsuccessful) efforts in NC have taught me that I just don't like grits, so I went for homefries. When the eggs arrived, I was amazed at the amount of food that had been piled onto the plate. In the little skillet sat an english muffin with thick slices of ham, poached eggs, sausage patties & hollandaise sauce. Piled around it were cubes of homefried potatoes which slices of pineapple and melon and a sprig of grapes lurked on the other side.

Fast forward two months and I return to Brigs in March. This time the monthly specials had an Irish theme. I shuddered to see the corrupted wording "St Patty's Day" on the menu, but even so, the Dublin benedict sounded very tasty.
A favourite from the past - we top a toasted English muffin with steamed asparagus, shaved lean corned beef, poached eggs and a special stone ground mustard hollandaise! Served with fruit and home fries or grits $9.89
Stitch and Bear - Brigs Raleigh - Dublin Benedict
The Dublin Benedict at Brigs, Raleigh
Again, I received the same type of platter. The generous amount of thin sliced corned beef and delicious mustard hollandaise sauce went down very well. My new wheat-free diet meant leaving the English muffin behind me, but hey, given that it was an Irish-themed dish, I felt quite patriotic.

Brigs isn't a fancy place - the dining room is quite basic in design and decor. But Brigs knows what it's about. It's about good, tasty, filling food that the whole family can enjoy. My total breakfast (which kept me going for most of the day) cost under $15, including coffee & taxes. Best of all, what you don't finish can be boxed up and taken away to eat later.

Brigs, Brennan Station Shops, 8111 Creedmoor Road, Raleigh, NC 27613 Tel: +1 (919) 870 0994

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