Super late with this post but nonetheless here’s another restaurant review! #FoodieFriday As you can see from the title, we’re having brunch. Brunch has become really popular lately especially on social media with the variety of brunch dates. The word brunch itself is a portmanteau (linguistic blend of words) of breakfast and lunch (duh). It’s usually served with an alcoholic drink such as a mimosa or sangria (my preference).
Not sure if I could call this restaurant fairly new but it has been on my ‘to try’ list for quite sometime. I decided to bring along my sisters with me on a not so busy Saturday morning. I almost changed my mind about going due to the weather conditions on that day and the state of Friars Hill road. Luckily, we made it just in time to grab the last window seat (I didn’t make any reservations).
THE LOCATION + VIBE
Vino Joe is a wine and coffee cafe located at Mandolin Place, Friars Hill Road. It’s a pretty good location just on the outskirts of town (about 10 mins depending on traffic). The cafe was smaller than expected but it still had a welcoming and cozy vibe. At one side were tables and chairs, a couch, and a high-top table with chairs in the center and another to the rear. If it was packed with people I can get the sense that it’ll feel squished, but the furniture arrangement wasn’t bad.
First off, we went to brunch at 10:30 a.m. I suppose this is the regular time for brunch but I was actually really HUNGRY before. Ideally, it wasn’t a brunch plan but Vino Joe opens at 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays (7:30 a.m. during the week, closed Mondays).
The menu items included breakfast, lunch and appetizers with drinks ranging from wine, coffee, lattes, espressos and basically anything else you’d get at a coffee shop. Just so you know the lunch menu is more or less salads and paninis. They also offer desserts such as cookies, cakes and other baked goods.
As we were here for breakfast, I found that their menu had a good range of items. There’s your classic egg breakfast, omelettes, pancakes, waffles, burritos, paninis, bagels, oatmeal, French toast – see VARIETY!.
Thinking that I’m still in Texas and this is Starbucks, I decided to have a Pumpkin Spice Latte, you know with it being “Fall” and everything. One sip and I knew it was the wrong decision. First off, I actually never had the latte from Starbucks, only the Frappe but it’s still pumpkin spice. What I had at Vino Joe however was not. I actually tasted zero pumpkin and it was bitter as hell (not a coffee drinker). Since it was money spending though (US $6) I think, I continued to sip it throughout (until I just couldn’t anymore).
Soooo I usually have French toast when I go out for breakfast, but I decided to try something different this time. I also read the restaurant reviews (do ya’ll do that?) beforehand and a lot of people were raving about the pancakes. However, I didn’t see any pictures of them so I was unsure on whether to get 1/2/3 *lol*. I quickly went on Instagram and tried to search for tagged photos, after seeing one option I decided that one pancake should be enough.
There were light, fluffy and definitely filling! I also had a side of scrambled eggs, which I really didn’t need. You have a choice of toppings for your pancakes, such as bananas and other fruit but it comes at an extra cost. In the end there were too many bananas on the top, and I’m not really a fan of it raw like that. I’d give the pancake a 5 out of 5.
BTW I have two sisters, one older and one younger. My little sister had the Breakfast Burrito (without cheese) and she said it was very dry with too many potatoes. My older sister on the other hand had the Classic Egg Breakfast (two eggs any style, one meat, three choices from the salad menu and a muffin or toast). Her choice was an omelette, an English muffin, “salad” choices and sausage. The option for the salad choices seemed weird to me as they were in the omelette and still on a side plate. The egg also tasted a little bland.
Food: 5/ 5*
Drinks: 0/ 5*
Service: 3 / 5
Venue: 3/ 5
Price: $ – $$
*solely my experience
1 – Awful (Would not return)
2 – Okayish (Only if there is no other option)
3 – Satisfied
4 – Good (Would return / Nicely setup)
5 – Awesome (One of my favorites)