Anyone who’s spent even a little amount of time with us knows that we’re not big fans of full-service chain restaurants. (Even though every seven years we sneak into Outback Steakhouse for a Bloomin’ Onion all to ourselves.)
Trying our best to be open-minded in all things, we realize that sometimes chain restaurants can be every bit as good as local establishments. And we’re reminded of that every time we have our first bite of food at Maggiano’s Little Italy. Yes, it’s a major corporation with more than 50 restaurants, but there are real chefs in the kitchens making real food rather than simply reheating items mass-produced in a factory.
So it should come as little surprise with that kind of a lead-in like that we genuinely loved their brunch.
Even though you’ll find decidedly non-Italian fare such as chicken and waffles, most dishes feature ingredients that’ll remind you of Sunday supper in the Old Country.
Our hands-down favorite, the Meatball Benedict, takes one of their massive signature orbs of beef and cheeses, slices it in half and splits it between two tender, toasted English muffins, tops it with roasted tomato, poached eggs and a velvety-smooth Hollandaise. It shouldn’t go without mentioning, either, that the poached eggs came out perfectly.
Other Italian-skewing dishes include an Italian sausage frittata (as big as your head, just like we promised), as well as fluffy lemon ricotta pancakes. Italian sausage can be added as a side to anything, too, for a little infusion of Italy no matter what you order.
Of course, as the “unch” always reminds us, some people are less enthusiastic about breakfast foods than we are. For anyone who falls into that category, fear not, the entire (massive) menu is available during brunch.
The best bargain among the multiple pages of offerings still has to be the pasta dishes because if you order any pasta dish, you get a free classic pasta dish to take home. And if you have a normal appetite, that duo of pastas can easily turn into four or five separate meals.
Besides, that leaves more space in your stomach for $2 mimosas.
Maggiano’s Little Italy Weekend BrunchFood and beverage photos courtesy of Maggiano’s Little Italy
Saturday, 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Sunday, 10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
NorthPark Center and The Shops at Willow Bend