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The Best Brunches

The Best Brunches
…From the pages of South Jersey Magazine…

When I lived in the South, Sunday brunch was a ritual. With fruit daiquiri in hand and hours of conversation to enjoy, no one thought to rush around with a “to do” list. When I want to revisit that special time in my life, I make my way to a wonderful brunch right here in South Jersey. Although these spots may not have ham biscuits and hominy grits with gravy on their menus, they all offer a leisurely break from our daily troubles; something we all need.

Mark Smith, chef/owner of The Tortilla Press in Collingswood, has seen his Sunday Brunch double in volume since its inception three years ago.

This is not surprising. With the soothing sounds of classical guitarist David Kelly accompanying the Mexican-influence gourmet cuisine and colorful surroundings, The Tortilla Press is a great place to gather with friends or family for a leisurely feast.

“Combining favorite foods with the fresh tastes of Mexican sauces and seasonings makes brunch the most flavorful and exciting of meals,” says Smith. “There are few things more delightful than fresh tossed omelets with a series of fillings that range from the classic—ham, peppers, mushrooms—to the deliciously different—fire-grilled shrimp, black bean, corn salsa, and many others.”

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The new brunch menu includes adult entrees for $8 to $15, and kids’ selections for $5 to $6. Try the pan perdida (the Mexican version of French toast with caramel and triple sec), Huevos Rancheros, spicy beef hash and eggs, or a breakfast burrito filled with scrambled eggs, pinto beans, cheese, tomato jalapeno salsa, and lettuce and tomato. Don’t forget to bring along the tequila. The BYOB offers superb frozen virgin margaritas and smoothies for mixing or to enjoy alone. For the adventurous, order the scrambled egg tacos filled with beans, cheese, lettuce, and tomato.

Reservations are recommended for groups of five or more, and lunch entrees are also served at brunch. Two popular choices are the shrimp, scallop, and guacamole wrap served with superb sweet potato fries, and the rainbow shrimp and tenderloin medallion served with poblano-spinach rice and vegetables.

The Marlton Tavern offers a casually elegant Sunday brunch from 11:30am to 2:30pm in a Victorian setting. Built in 1898, this landmark, located in downtown Marlton, has hardwood floors, stained glass windows, a sun porch overlooking the town, and a fun and informal atmosphere.

Its inviting American menu features popular entrees such as Mediterranean chicken and the Marlton rib eye. Start with a mimosa or champagne cocktail followed by the crab and spinach dip. Round out the meal with eggs Benedict, eggs quesadilla, and the tavern’s signature crab cakes.

With two dining rooms, a banquet room, and the sun porch, the restaurant can accommodate both small and large parties. Reservations are recommended for large groups. There’s also a special children’s menu with dessert included.

To take part in The Mansion’s bountiful Sunday Brunch, you must make a reservation. This fabulously famous brunch has been a family tradition for thousands in South Jersey. For $29.95 a person ($15 for children 10 and under), you’re treated to an experience that “is only found on luxury ships” as The Mansion’s website describes. Start with the complimentary mimosa and then take a stroll among the various stations filled with everything from smoked salmon and whitefish salad to fluffy waffles and omelets prepared in front of you. The buffet also includes fresh fish, carved roast beef and turkey, and a wide array of decadent desserts.

A favorite spot for weddings, The Mansion’s opulent atmosphere and impeccable service also has made it a top spot for brunch. If you’re looking for a special treat for your family, this is it. Sunday Brunch at The Mansion is served from 10:30am to 1:30pm.

If You Go

The Tortilla Press
703 Haddon Ave., Collingswood
(856) 869-3345

Marlton Tavern
65 East Main St., Marlton
(856) 985-2424

The Mansion (on Main Street)
Evesham & Kresson Roads, Voorhees
(856) 751-1717

Published (and copyrighted) in South Jersey Magazine, January 2006.
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Author: Christine Norris

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