Cape Gazette
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The Business of Eating

Sunday brunch can cure what ails ya’!

By Bob Yesbek | Jan 15, 2013
Photos by: Bob Yesbek Fried egg meets boiled egg atop Chef Lion's sausage and grits.

Post-Christmas letdown is upon us. Apparently Santa was busy texting when you asked him for that Maserati. Pity. But the next best thing for the winter doldrums could be a stick-to-your-ribs brunch. Yes, breakfast at the beach is good, but brunch is even more effective at picking up where dinner left off. Add a mimosa, a bloody mary or a white sangria, and Sundays never had it so good.

Brunch at Blue Moon is among the best. Chef Lion Gardner gets playful on Sunday mornings (probably post-traumatic stress from Friday and Saturday nights), so you never know what you might find on the menu. For example: sausage and grits. Sound ordinary? Chorizo sausage lounges comfortably on a bed of greens, basking in the company of sautéed mushrooms, asparagus, bits of smoked bacon and … wait for it … a crispy boiled egg. Not ordinary.

Another Moon must-get is Liz’s brioche cinnamon bun. Just slightly smaller than a ’72 Chevy Vega panel wagon, this towering cloud of warm wonderfulness is slathered with a shimmering glaze laced with Grand Marnier. Let’s pause and think about that for a minute…. Actually you’ll have to pause for about three weeks until Blue Moon opens again for the season. By then you will have worked up an appetite.

Brunch takes on a spicy south-of-the-border flavor at Yolanda Pineda’s Mariachi restaurant. Spice up your Sunday just steps from the water with eggs Benedict, scrambled eggs full of homemade chorizo, Yolanda’s handmade pupusas and darkly sweet fried plantains. Mariachi braves the ocean breezes to serve Sunday brunch year-round.

The Sugrue boys have thrown their chefs’ hats into the proverbial ring by rolling out a brand-new Sunday brunch menu at Salt Air. With a fork in one hand and my Nikon in the other, I’m poised to check it out. If their gangbusters 2012 season is any indication, there should be no disappointments.

Try something different (farther east than even the Atlantic) at Confucius Gourmet Chinese, one of Rehoboth’s brunchy mainstays for many years. If you ask nicely when he’s not too busy, Shawn Xiong is happy to whip up off-menu items in his satellite-dish sized wok.

There are so many spots where you can while away the noon hour on a Sunday, but I’m only allotted a certain amount of ink. When it’s gone, I just sort of fade out…. So before that happens, I’ll give you a Sunday brunch roundup: Barbecue lovers should not miss Bethany Blues’ BBQ Brunch with action stations and an extensive selection for kids. (Slightly bigger kids can enjoy bottomless mimosas.) Nage is well-known for clever Sunday morning fare, and there’s always a surprise in store. Denizens of Milford love Kevin Reading’s Sunday menu at Abbott’s Grill. Reasonable prices and consistently good food draw diners from Rehoboth and Dover. Slightly west, Baywood Greens is open on Sunday mornings, featuring great views of the handsomely landscaped links. Irish Eyes and The Buttery in Lewes welcome Sunday diners, while Saketumi out on the highway combines made-right-before-your-eyes sushi with a variety of pan-Asian goodies.

Back downtown, sip away the morning at Rigby’s (beg them for the mushroom mac ‘n’ cheese), Purple Parrot, Modern Mixture (churros and hot chocolate) and Victoria’s in the Boardwalk Plaza Hotel for a buffet and live entertainment.

As I write this, I think about the late ‘60s and early ‘70s when my fellow musicians and I ventured north to Rehoboth from Ocean City after a busy weekend rockin’ and rollin’ at Jack and June Fisher’s Hideaway Lounge. Few lights flickered on the Avenue: Grotto, Pappy’s Pizza and the Robin Hood were pretty much it. Ghost town would have described it well.

Those days are gone. But better days are here, and Rehoboth sparkles year-round - especially on chilly Sunday mornings when there’s always something for everyone.

Liz's cinnamon bun at Blue Moon can change your whole day.
Sundays get a Mexican kick-start at Mariachi.
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