Meredith and I have always enjoyed the excellent design and ambiance of Vignola – with it’s large picture windows, exposed brick walls, cool Edison-style lighting, wine bottle fixtures, and ivy covered exterior, it’s a pretty excellent setting for a meal – but we hadn’t visited in quite a while, so when we heard that it had merged with its sister restaurant, to become Vignola Cinque Terre, we couldn’t resist dropping in for a little Sunday brunch to see how things had changed.
In a derivation of a good friend’s saying for choosing gifts for their birthday – “shop early, avoid the rush” – Meredith and I are big fans of “eat early, avoid the rush”. Especially when it comes to a Map & Menu meal, this typically ensures a great table, and the freedom to move about to get pictures of the meal and space without strange looks from other patrons. This morning was no different, and although 10am is far from the earliest we’ve eaten a brunch for Map & Menu, getting to Vignola Cinque Terre right at opening gave us a fantastic seat in the corner, by the window, and gave Meredith pretty much free reign to do her thing in such a cool space.
Enough about the space. I think I can easily speak for both of us when I say that we were absolutely floored by our brunch on this particular Sunday. Meredith ordered the apple and cinnamon stuffed French toast, which was so guilt-inducingly sweet that it probably should’ve just been labeled as a dessert (though I don’t think that would have stopped her from ordering it). And on the other side of the spectrum, I couldn’t have been happier with my oh-so-savory poached eggs with grilled house ham, tomato conserva, foccacia toast, and a herb hollandaise. Both meals were prepared with an attention to detail that can sometimes be overlooked when it comes to brunch comfort foods, and saying that we left that day with a smile on our faces is somewhat of an understatement – we’ll definitely be adding Vignola Cinque Terre to the list of go-to brunches in town.