While I was home this weekend, I went out to brunch on Sunday. After a bit of research we settled on Area Four (multi-concept food establishment), which I’ve had on my list for a while now, but after we were told that the wait would be 40 minutes we opted for Sam’s instead. Sam’s basic concept is an “American Diner”, as the website describes, but believe me it’s far from what you’d expect when you think “diner”. There are just a few tables, 15 or so, simple seating, the chairs were quite comfortable though, and a black and white color scheme. We didn’t order anything from the modest bar, but you could see that small selection was well considered. Along the short hall opening into the restaurant, the walls were painted with chalkboard paint to allow for customer doodles and the notice of ever changing specials. To generalize, the place is comfortable, but aesthetically appealing and engaging.
I really liked the atmosphere of Sam’s. The wall facing the harbor was all windows, so you’re audience to a great view and natural light gracefully illuminates the whole room. There’s a deck as well, closed I presume until the summer season begins, and I can only imagine what a pleasure it is to enjoy the meal out there in warmer weather. It became quite loud as every table was gradually filled, but not offensively so. Our server was attentive and friendly, and Esti, one of the owners, was constantly engaging with her guests.
And now to the part that everyone cares about most, the menu. Everything that we ordered, that I tried, was great. First, a server brought out a sample of house-smoked salmon, compliments of the chef. The plate looked great, giving a great first impression. I ordered a frittata (spinach, caramelized onion, feta, and tomato) which came with homefries and a small salad. Even the homefries were delicious, not because they were coated with fat (as most homefries are) but because they had flavor. I sincerely wish that every place that serves homefries would give the simple side a little more thought. The homefries at Sam’s were a bit spicy and well seasoned. I actually felt compelled to eat them rather than just push them off to the side. The salad was just a salad, no fancy vinaigrette, but I could see pea greens which is neat – this unique addition shows, yet again, that they care about the food they put out. And then the frittata, cooked perfectly and super tasty! We also had the mushroom tofu burger. The texture was a bit tough, as I expect an over done beef burger would be like, but it packed some seriously rich mushroom flavor. Each dish looked great, and tasted even better:
My personal opinion of Sam’s: cool place, simple and engaging atmosphere, unique bar, unpretentious but high quality menu, and superb views. It’s a simple concept, executed exceptionally.
p.s. The mediterranean diet, just another word for proper eating habits, as told by Mark Bittman.