Calliope is THE ‘brand-new’ French-Italian-American hot brunch spot in Manhattan. This confusion already doesn’t inspire confidence. But I have decided to give a shot. East Village, Sunday, hopefully it is already a bit late so we ‘only’ have to wait 20 minutes at the bar even though plenty of tables are empty. It is so loud I am almost happy we get the table at the entrance and cannot imagine the sound when it is packed.
With the fresh squeezed orange-juice, I raise my expectation, and even more when I see the coffee cake served at the bar. We go for the eggs benedict, as I rate NYC brunches on this scale. At the first sight, I am already not fascinated. The presentation is not refined, I am sure I could have cooked better-looking poached eggs. Served with ham, I cannot even determine if it is a muffin that holds the whole thing. The ‘pommes Anna’ is actually way too crispy hash browns. At least the coffee cake was delightful, do not skip the crème fraiche, it is good for you with that cold.
Sulking waiters, excessive sound and poor presentation of the dishes: another aberration for me that reminds me how sometimes Parisians and New Yorkers look alike when it comes to being snobby.