Sunday, June 10, 2012

Le Pain Quotidien

30 Purchase Street, Rye, NY 10580
(914) 967-1460

Brunch is always a nice sounding word and it always brings to my mind pictures of relaxed and lazy mid mornings with fresh omelets, toasted bread, juice and coffee. There is something common about brunch and weekends. I guess they were always meant to be together. In the suburb of Rye, there are several places that fit this description, but I have one favorite even though it is part of a large global chain of restaurants.

The window dressing of most Le Pain's I have noticed is quite enticing and here too in Rye downtown, there is a lot to take in. There are rows of fresh baked circular rounds and loaves of aromatic Wheat, Rye, Spelt, Five-Grain, and even Walnut breads. Invitingly they line shelves and baskets. I have bought a couple of loaves on friday evenings especially when I plan a nice weekend brunch on Saturday at home, but this time I wanted to sit down and enjoy the ambience.

There are also tarts and desserts that will attract your eye even before you have decided your main meal dish. On the menu was a fresh strawberry and blueberry tart and mini mousse chocolate pastries which are titled 'duos'.

The soup du jour turned out to be butternut squash, which at first I thought seemed to be out of season, but nonetheless was on the menu and was vegan. It came made fresh topped with parsley leaves and served with a couple of organic bread slices. The bowl serving was fulfilling and I realized was not the least out of place on a warm summer afternoon.

Glancing up at the chalk board menu, I saw more seasonal specials that I mused over and thought as options for the next time. Organic granola and yogurt parfaits, fresh fruit salad and steel cut oat meals are standard fare. Same goes for the avocado, tomato, wild mushroom and other organic veggie filled omelets that are listed on the menu.

While I pondered over what to have next, I noticed armoires stacked with jars of jams and fruit compotes. The preserves are part of speciality retail products that Le Pain has added over time. A good accompaniment to take home, after you leave, they come in a wide range of fruit options.

Post the soup, I decided upon the six-vegetable quiche that came with artichoke and garden vegetables on a gluten-free buckwheat crust. Artistically served and delicately assembled, the quiche was a bit too mild for my taste buds. The salad dressing made up for the extra flavor that I thought was missing. I must admit, it was a healthy choice that I made and to be fair, the delicate flavor lingered on for some time.

As a final note, I think the portion servings at Le Pain, are apt for one individual only, so if you plan to share do order more when you are there.