Thursday, August 30, 2012


Secco Wine Bar, 2933 West Cary Street, Richmond
VA Beer Brunch Menu

Karisa: In the interest of full disclosure, I barely ate anything at this brunch. In fact, I probably shouldn't have been there at all. However, I'm a dedicated bruncher (and have a very nice manfriend willing to drive me places), so there I was. I will also say this - Secco is not the place to go when you have a hangover. The huge windows, the open space, the bustle of Carytown - ow. I do the research so you don't have to; you're welcome.

What other helpful tidbits of information can I provide from this brunch? Let's see... Secco does a beer brunch on the last Sunday of each month, featuring local beer and ingredients. It's not a paired meal (like other beer brunches I've been to), and we had a bit of a difficult time figuring out portion sizes from the menu. We got the beignets with blackberries as an appetizer (although it came at the same time as the entrees), and I settled on the huevos rancheros (my home away from crab benedict home) as my entree. From what I could eat, the beignets were tasty, but I was less than impressed with the huevos. It seemed a little on the small side for an entree, and I think the eggs were too runny. Oh, and the coffee wasn't very good. But please, feel free to ignore anything I just said. Did I mention that it was bright?

Michele: Secco has been a standard first or second date location for me since it opened.  It’s nice to go have a glass of wine, maybe split a cheese plate. If it’s going well, have another glass of wine. If it’s going poorly, dip out of there. Easy peasy. I could not tell you if Secco normally has a real menu. I’m on the email list for River City Cellars right next door, and when I got the message about beer brunch, I knew we had to jump on it.

The menu featured 8 to 10 small to medium sized dishes and three beers. For my drink I selected the Wild Wolf Belgian style blonde. This beer was perfect for a hot summery morning. It was cool, crisp, and refreshing. It was made with Virginia honey which added just enough sweetness. We ordered the beignets with blackberries to share, and I selected the breakfast sandwich for my meal. I was a little hesitant to order this sandwich, which comprised of a fried egg, foie gras, and a sweet pepper relish on Billy Bread. I've had foie gras once before and did not care for it, but I decided to give it another shot. Plus, who can go wrong with Billy Bread? I love that stuff. The beignets were quite good. They were light and fluffy and covered with just the right amount of powdered sugar. The blackberry preserves complemented the pastry very well. 

My sandwich arrived, and I immediately had sandwich-envy of Shannon’s giant BLT. My sandwich was on the smaller side, but thankfully the rest of the plate was filled with some pretty tasty fries. My sandwich was good, just not to my taste. The egg was cooked perfectly for a sandwich, and the pepper relish added moisture and flavor. The giant piece of foie gras on my sandwich was juicy and cooked very well. Unfortunately, I confirmed that I just don’t care for it. I may have enjoyed the sandwich more if there was a slice of tomato or some crunchy lettuce or slaw on there to add some acid and texture. Shannon let me have a bite of her BLT, and I seriously wanted to steal the rest of it from her.

Overall, we had a nice brunch at Secco. I’m not sure if I will come back for another beer brunch. I really did miss having a bloody mary, and beer just doesn’t sit well with me that early in the day. I will certainly be back for drinks and nibbles, though. These folks are in the wine and beer business, and they certainly know their stuff.

Shannon, repeat guest bruncher: I really liked Secco for brunch! There were three beer options, but they were varied enough to please everyone. I am a picky eater, so not everything on the menu appealed to me, but there were a couple of options I had a hard time deciding between  I ordered the BLT, and it was the best BLT I've ever eaten in my whole life...seriously! I still can't stop thinking about how tasty it was. We went around 1230, and I was concerned it would be packed, but we had no trouble getting a seat. It was quiet enough that you could chat without being overwhelmed by the other patrons and restaurant noises. Great place, I really enjoyed it and highly recommend it!  

Rating: 4
Food: Good. A diverse menu with varied prices and styles of food, made from local Virginia ingredients  Shannon loved her BLT and said it was the best one she's ever had (and Michele was quite jealous of it!)
Ambiance: Very good. Huge windows (much to Karisa's chagrin), but a a very nice Carytown spot including good people watching.
Service: Good. She was fine. Nothing wrong, but did nothing to stand out either.
Coffee: Fair. It was bitter and the handle of the coffee cup made it hard to drink. On a positive note, it was hot.
Mimosa/Bloody Mary: Not rated - this was a beer brunch!!!
Beer: Very good. Awesome local selection that all went well with brunchy food. Plus, they were a great price at $5!

Secco Wine Bar on Urbanspoon

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