Drink of the week: Rescue Me Grilled Pineapple Greyhound
Where you can find it: Uncommon Ground and Uncommon Ground on Devon
The damage: $9, a portion of which Uncommon donates to PAWS, which operates no-kill shelters and spay/neuter clinics in the city
Why here? The long wait at most brunch places was the first cause of my disdain of the mid-morning meal. But lately, that hasn't even been the issue for me. With how closely we're supposed to be watching the bottom line right now, I can’t justify spending $12 on a plate of eggs, which seems to be the going rate at most eateries these days (save for Salt 'n' Pepper Diner, where you can get a egg and pepper sandwich—with hash browns—for a quarter of the cost). But my pals swore to me that the $9-plus plates at Uncommon Ground's brunch, chock-full of seasonal, local goods, would be worth forking over a little extra coin.
How it went down: To be fair, if I were taking my spending seriously, I would've gone for the bloody mary special for five bucks. But I have a hard time resisting outside-the-box breakfast cocktails, and after the Rescue Me got a vote of confidence from my server, I was sold. As a bonus, the menu proudly exclaimed that proceeds from the sale of the drink benefit PAWS, so I could get my fill of food and philanthropy all before 11 a.m.
The pale-yellow beverage, served in a martini glass with a half-inch-thick orange wedge as garnish, combined grilled pineapple-infused organic Rain Vodka with fresh grapefruit and pineapple juices. We were sitting at a patio table sans shade, so the refreshing libation went down quickly—likely aided by the fact that it tasted like the bartender forgot to spike it. I knew there was vodka in it, as evidenced by the slight smokiness and grilled flavor from the house-infused booze, but it tasted so smooth and citrusy that the vodka was an afterthought. Heavy on the pineapple flavor with a touch of bitterness from the grapefruit, the Greyhound was a welcome fruity alternative to the mimosa.
Would I want to become a regular? Uncommon Ground's brunch was starting to win me over, but I remained skeptical when I received my food: black bean cakes sprinkled with locally grown red and green peppers and topped with two eggs. The peppers had a nice crispness to them, but I felt slighted when it came to the size of the bean cake. The eggs were perfectly poached, though, and the creamy chipotle hollandaise didn't feel too heavy. My meal may not have been 100-percent worth its price tag, but the atmosphere—a lively patio with a view of passersby trekking down Clark and Grace and prompt, friendly service—paired with Uncommon's support of sustainable eating and conscious thinking, made me pleased with our choice for brunch. And it didn't hurt that we only waited 10 minutes for our table.
Dana Kavan scours the city for drink deals so good you'll offer to buy a round and creative libations that outshine your average on-the-rocks concoctions. Want to give Dana tips on where to rack up a bar tab? Share your finds before her next night out.