Sunday, October 16, 2011

Southport Grocery and Cafe

Location: 3552 N Southport
Cost: About $13 per person

So my sister Lisa and Noam having lived in Baltimore for the past little while wanted to stay downtown the Saturday night of their visit to catch up with old friends and such. There was still some more wedding planning to be had, and my parents wanted to meet up for brunch before that all got started. We decided to hit up one of my favorite spots, Southport Grocery.

Southport Grocery is pretty small and very popular. The indoor seating probably fits 30 some people, mostly because prime real estate is being taken up by shelves of specialty goods. They have outdoor seating when it's nice out, and during our visit it was right around 60 degrees outside. We could've sat down outside right away, but of course it was too cold for my mom. Also, there was a group of particularly "sneezy" children climbing all over the tables. The wait for the five of us was about a half hour at 9:30 which is a little tougher than you'll find at a lot of brunch places.

The service was efficient and friendly. A good mark of our server's kindness was that she put up with the woman at the table next to us who had clearly finished her meal some time ago and was continuing to take up a table while reading and drinking coffee. There's a time and a place for this, but it's not at a restaurant with a line building around the corner. The cost was again on par with what you should expect for brunch. Everything was between $8 and $11. Portions weren't grotesquely large, but they got the job done sufficiently.

The Food
The first thing we went for was the Sour Cream Coffee Cake. It was a great dish to split amongst the table and get things started. It was perfectly crumbly and moist with a sweet and sour filling. The warm cake and cool filling were very complimentary.

The Sour Cream Coffee Cake

From there my dad got the Sweet and Savory French Toast, Noam got the Southern Omelette, Lisa got the Hash, and my mom and I each got the Bread Pudding Pancakes. The french toast came topped with smoked ham, swiss, and a healthy helping of syrup. The smokey ham played very nicely on top of the well textured french toast, and the cheese wasn't too heavy. The Omelette had sausage and red onion, but most importantly came with this wonderful jam-filled biscuit on the side. I thought the hash was a bit more like a scrambler because there was such a high proportion of eggs, but that's probably a good problem to have. Lastly, and most importantly, the bread pudding pancakes were amazing. I've had these before, and they are by far my favorite pancake in the city. They were so good that I broke my rule of ordering the same thing as someone else at the table. They have this unbelievably gooey center leaving you with a rather doughy sense. They're topped with a cinnamon butter and custard that bring the perfect amount of sweetness to the dish.

The Bread Pudding Pancakes

The Southern Omelette

 The Hash

I usually go savory for breakfast but not at Southport Grocery. Those pancakes and coffee cake are just so damned good. It can be a bit of a logistical challenge, but it's definitely worth it. I'm giving them a Pearl Necklace, 5 out of 5 pearls.

Southport Grocery & Cafe on Urbanspoon


  1. I've never heard of this place before even though I live close by. I'm definitely going to check it out after the elusive pearl necklace.

  2. Sounds delicious!! I'm hungry, now!!

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