There is nothing better than waking up on a leisurely Sunday wrapped in warm blankets with brunch plans on the horizon. View Cucina (2200 Victory Pkwy., 513-751-8439), housed on the fifth floor of Edgecliff Residences on Victory Parkway, has the feel of a hotel restaurant with the blend of elegance and comfort that the Stephens’ family of Bella Luna fame has mastered. With an expanse of windows showcasing a view of the river filling the space, the relatively small room feels much bigger.
View promises a superior dining experience at reasonable prices, and it delivers. From the hostess stand to table service, guests feel welcome and cared for. There were several guests who were on a first-name basis with the staff and that’s always a good sign.
The menu features salads, sandwiches and brunch items. Grilled Caesar ($9), Spinach ($9), Chef salad ($9) or sandwiches such as the View Club with Gruyere cheese ($9) or the CBLT ($9) with candied bacon all sounded good, but we were there for the eggy, syrupy sweetness of the brunch items.
They have some typical brunch dishes: Eggs Benedict ($11), Buttermilk Pancakes ($9) and Biscuits and Gravy ($8). Cliftonites are always excited to see Inn the Wood breakfast items on a menu.
View has a version of the infamous Potato Crisp called Will’s Potato Crisp ($10) and that was a must. Eggs Baltimore ($12), a benedict-esque dish with jumbo crab cakes in lieu of the ham made the cut, as did the Eggs Florentine ($11) with a creamy spinach sauce. The Banana Foster French Toast ($10) was what caught our eye first, and, of course, we built our meal around it.
We were quite content sipping coffee, listening to Frank Sinatra and catching up when, out of nowhere, our server sat before us complimentary homemade beignets and elephant ears. I asked several times, “These are free? To every table?” Yes and yes. The beignets, delicious, warm balls of fried dough, and the flaky, buttery puff pastry elephant ears were such a treat we decided to celebrate with Bloody Marys.
The beignets were light and delicious, but it was the caramelized sugar found peeking out from the bottom of each elephant ear that was the conversation piece. Fingers were licked to pick up every crispy flake off the plate.
The Banana Foster French Toast arrived. Smashed croissants formed a large piece of French toast with sautéed bananas and crunchy pecans as the accoutrements, with a sticky but not overly sweet rum butter sauce lightly glazing the dish. I would have liked it to be a bit sweeter, but my friends found it perfect as is. As Will’s Potato Crisp was placed on the table, I had flashbacks of Saturdays at Inn the Wood nursing a hangover. Scrambled eggs, peppers, onion, cheese and Glier’s goetta (our choice of meat) was all stuffed into crispy hash browns. The addition of homemade ketchup on the top gave the massive serving a bit of sweetness.
The Eggs Baltimore and Eggs Florentine were both delicious and unique concoctions. Thick English muffins served as a base for impeccably poached eggs and jumbo crab cakes drizzled with a creamy Dijon mustard sauce. The crab cakes were full of jumbo lump crab with no filler and tasted fresh and light and married well with the rich egg yolk and Dijon sauce. The Eggs Florentine, served similarly to the Baltimore, also had eggs that made the light, creamy spinach sauce even better and the home-style potatoes that were with both meals made sure we were satisfied.
You will have great service, a beautiful view and an excellently executed meal at View. You’d better hop on Open Table quickly.
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