150 Dollar Brunch



My brother and sister-in-law very generously gifted us a super fancy brunch at Lacroix, in the Rittenhouse Hotel, for Christmas last year. We kept putting off making a reservation, convinced we needed an Extra Special Occasion, but figured a four day holiday weekend was the best opportunity we would get. So this past Sunday we put on our fanciest eating pants and went. At $70 per person for brunch (not including drinks), it wasn’t something that had even made its way onto my radar before, because while I LOVE brunch food, I’m content with $8 waffles from a diner. But having been now, I can safely say it is the only thing I want to eat forever and ever, amen. You guys, when I say there was SO MUCH GOOD FOOD please trust that I am not exaggerating. We’re talking (and these are just the things I can remember) stations of ceviche, and house-made sushi, and grilled octopus skewers, and four kinds of caviar, and east and west coast oysters, and shrimp, and fresh croissants, and yogurt panna cotta, and fresh fruit, and waffles, and pancakes, and smoked duck, and grilled salmon, and fleur de sel potatoes, and flank steak, and cheese boards, and shooters of Vietnamese broth with quail eggs, and two chocolate fountains, one milk, one dark, with homemade donuts and marshmallows and pretzels for dipping, and an ice cream station with lavender ice cream and blood orange sorbet, and a towering dessert table with miniature chocolate lava cakes, and macarons, and The Best Thing I Have Ever Eaten Ever Ever: cherry ricotta bread pudding with a croissant crumb crust. I thought about taking a giant scoop home in my purse, were it not decidedly déclassé.

The service, as you would expect in this kind of establishment, was totally top-drawer. Every waiter and chef (because the majority of the stations were in the kitchen, which was neat) seemed to be placed on earth solely to ensure you had the perfect meal. The restaurant itself looks out over Rittenhouse Square, and the broad stretch of windows were equipped with automatic blinds that lowered incrementally throughout the meal to make sure the sunlight streamed in beautifully.Was it a luxury? Absolutely. Did I roll myself home and nap for two hours? You better believe it. It was one of the best meals I’ve ever had, second only to our hilarious engagement dinner in Paris.

Lacroix Restaurant at The Rittenhouse Hotel, 210 West Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia. Brunch served only on Sundays.

23 thoughts on “150 Dollar Brunch

  1. Now I’m hungry!!! Sounds like a wonderful time courtesy of 2 wonderful people, your brother and sister in law. They do give the best gifts!!! Garces Restaurants, Stephen Starr Restaurants, William Sonoma ( My mecca), Rescue Spa……Lacroix. Amazing, generous, loving. You’re a very lucky lady!

    1. They really do have a knack for giving the perfect gifts! One of my many favorite things about them, for sure. xo

    1. I was hoping they would have them, being a French restaurant and all, and I was happily correct. I just wish they had more flavors, but beggars can’t be choosers! :) xo

  2. this sounds heavenly. i have been watching the show masterchef, i have never watched it before but when i saw that one of the bloggers whose blog i read often was on there, well you know – i had to watch. the show is actually pretty good and i am slightly addicted to it now. but it makes me hungry, like this does. for really really good food. food i have no idea how to make and looks as pretty as it tastes. xo

    1. I loved Masterchef when it first came on! I’m a Ramsey girl, pretty much any show he is on I’ll watch (except for Hell’s Kitchen, too much cursing and meanness!). Have you seen his original BBC series Kitchen Nightmares? Not the US ones. He also did a series on finding the best restaurant in England. That was a great series, though I’m blanking on the name. xo

  3. Oh, I love brunch and I love nice restaurants, so this is pretty much my idea of HEAVEN. Every single thing you describe sounds absolutely wonderful and delicious, and what a wonderful, wonderful gift to have been given. Seriously, someone needs to give me a nice brunch, although honestly, I’d take Bubba’s or Dockside where the boats come up alongside the restaurant and they have crab eggs benedict and a bloody mary bar.

    1. We should go the next time you come in! We can dine & ditch, haha. Seriously, it’s one of those things I am so grateful to have been gifted, because I would be hard pressed to spend that on myself. Even though I’m a brunch fanatic. xo

    1. It really was, Shoko! Probably a once-in-a-decade experience given the cost, haha, but I loved every second. xo

  4. All that food just for a brunch and stuffed to the rafters too! Wow, glad you had such an amazing time.
    You have lovely brothers ‘n in-laws :-)

    1. “Stuffed to the rafters” is the PERFECT way to describe it! Haha. I debated unzipping the side of my dress just to create more room to breathe, haha. I do have a particularly wonderful brother & sister, I can’t deny it. xo

    1. Epic it was! I hope I get to experience it again in my lifetime, though I still think I’m making room from last week…xo

    1. If you ever make it down this way you’d have to treat yourself & Richard! It’s only £35 per person in your currency ;) xo

  5. oh, sounds fabulous. I’m a sucker for big, fancy dinners, lunches, brunches, whatever… I don’t need them and am more than happy with street food, but that doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy something special every so often. lucky you!! hope you get to do something like that again soon xxx

    1. Yes! I think because I don’t have the most refined palate (seriously, give me a bag of candy and I’m set) I felt like I didn’t deserve such a treat. But it was really great and now I can’t wait to go back! xo

  6. What an amazing gift! Gifting experiences are the best and I must keep this one in mind the next time I’m at a loss for what to give. It sounds like the experience was worthy every penny. One year for Mother’s Day, we went to the Ritz Carlton for their brunch and it sounds like the two experiences were very similar – delectable, decadent food and incredible service. Not a bad way to spend a Sunday. ;)

    1. Ooh I bet the Ritz was just as plush! Service like that makes me feel like royalty for a day, haha. I think that’s a good treat for Mother’s Day, you definitely earn a brunch like that with all you do throughout the rest of the year! xo

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