You know when you ask people where they live, and they say some far off burb’ and you cancel the possibility of visiting? Well, change your mind if they live in Northbrook and grab some brunch!
Prairie Grass Cafe, conveniently located right off the expressway, will make you wanna visit your neighbor to the north. Chef-Owner Sarah Stegner and Chef-Owner George Bumbaris, both formerly of the fancy pants Ritz Carleton, partnered to created a casual environment with local fresh food. Stegner is also a 2 time winner of the ultra prestigious James Beard award so just think of the awesomeness of experiencing her cuisine without the abominable months’ wait of similar city joints. Prairie Grass Cafe hosted us one lazy Sunday afternoon to see what all the fuss was about.
Prairie Grass Cafe was popping with kiddos during Sunday brunch, illustrating its’ kid friendly appeal. Stegner is a founding member of the Healthy Fare for Kids initiative which encourages restaurants to ditch the junk for children and provide them with nutritional sound menu items. The brunch menu for kids was comprehensive and our lil’ guest of honor, Monica’s nephew, scarfed down a cheese, fruit and veggie plate. Prairie Grass was able to work around his allergies with this dish.
One small thing for improvement: as there were so many kids, there was no high chair available. We made due with a booster seat instead thanks to the help of our friendly wait staff but this might not have worked for a littler dude or dudette.
Looking for more than just a meal? Check out “Make Your Own Pizza” Fridays where the toppings come to the table for a more active event for your tots.
Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
Pancakes can be a ho-hum or over the top in sugar at brunch. We flipped, however, over Prairie Grass’ fluffy light Lemon Ricotta Pancakes. The citrus flavor measured up to our preferences and added a delicate sparkle to the cakes. Go for the gusto and add the berry flavorful rasberry sauce and creme anglaise for that WOW effect. We also sampled the french toast and although it was decent, the Lemon Ricotta Pancakes take the taste award.
The Chilaquiles will make any tummy happy with runny soft fried eggs melting over the top of a hearty pile of cheese, crispy beany tortilla chips, guacamole and pico de gallo.
Egg White Omelette
The Egg White Omelette is chock b’gawk full of farm fresh eggs, seasonal produce and topped with avocado and pico de gallo. We added a side of perfectly seasoned crispy potatoes to round out the meal. This omelette is big enough for 2 people so feel free to split.
Prairie Grass Cafe is a dessert lovers’ dream with their bountiful selection of fresh homemade treats. Chef Sarah spoiled us sweetness with the Coconut Cream Pie (seasonal), Double Chocolate Cake, Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee, Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream with local berries, and Strawberry crepe with grand mariner sauce.
The standouts were the Coconut Cream Pie and Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee. Luckily, we had a group of 6 to avoid sugar shock. 🙂
Chicagoans, if there was ever a reason to meet your suburban friends half-way, this is a reason to venture beyond the borders of our city. Not feelin’ the brunch buzz? Get up later for lunch or dinner at your wake up whims.