Jacob’s Pickles?! or, The Battle of Brunch

Emergency personnel were on the scene, picking through the rubble of what was once a beautiful place, tossing aside the wreckage of the battle… it was a long one. The trauma teams were finished extracting the wounded and were picking through the dead bodies now. It was a bloody one and not everyone survived… A whole week this battle had raged on, Monday through Friday, practically sucking the life right out of the armies battling to just get through, each fighting for what they most believed in and wanted. It was a Saturday morning and the sun was coming up over the cityscape. The New York City air was crisp with the smell of fall leaves, trash, and a plundered battlefield… but the birds started to chirp again. Hope.

There was a stir from a man that everyone had left for dead… a slight movement, he didn’t know where he was. He couldn’t role himself over but had enough strength to take a breath. “Brunch,” the man said as loud as he could. It was hardly audible but one trauma worker barely heard it. “He’s ALIVE! We have a code GREEN everyone. This man is ALIVE!” There was a moment of shock before everyone cheered and the weekend came running! “Bring in the hydration, we need some bandages! Let’s get these wounds from the week cleaned and treated!”

Alarms going off. People rushing around with complicated life saving devices. Scrambles. Muffins. Utensils. Grits. Sausages. Things started flying through the air. A nurse rushed over, rolling a long IV pole to get the coffee moving through his veins.  The EMT team loaded him onto the stretcher and into the ambulance, in a thick Brooklyn accent, he EMT hollered to the driver, “Get this man to Jacob’s Pickles! And make it fast, boss!” He slammed the door shut and gave it an extra hit on the back to send it on its way. The ambulance sped off into the morning sun and when it arrived, the man stumbled out of the ambulance. He struggled to get to the sidewalk but made it with the help of a friend. He sniffed and the smell of life filled the air… maple sausage and coffee. His mouth watered, he had survived. It was the weekend!

Destination: Jacob’s Pickles!

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A friend and I decided to go to Jacob’s Pickles! I had never been, and so many people here have told me, “You HAVE to go to Jacob’s Pickles!” First of all, what a name!? I love it! I don’t know who the heck Jacob is but he makes some great pickles and his brunch food isn’t too shabby either. 😉

Waiting in line, we met a Canadian couple who said they had come from Canada just for JACOB’S PICKLES! I thought that was a little overboard and responded, “Uh, wow! I came from Washington Heights…” (like… 15 mins on the C train). We waited for about ten minutes to get to the host stand and they were able to seat us right away since we only had two people in our group (YAY!). There were multiple groups waiting around on the sidewalk for a table. It was intense, when we walked up the block it was a totally empty sidewalk and then all of the sudden it felt like all of NY was there and ready to commit crimes if they didn’t get their brunch.

It seemed like we should make it an “event” so we ordered some apps: The Poutine (The Canadians were seated near us and they did not order that… I wanted to see a Canadian eating a natural food of theirs, but alas). THE POUTINE: Fries smothered in brown gravy, cheese, hollandaise drizzle.

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This mound of poutine must have been six inches high and the cheese was stringing away as we pulled the fries off. We just laughed as the server set it down. A mountain of cheese on this beautiful mess and it was heavenly torture to put into our mouths. We also happened to be seated right in their center window seat, right where all the hungry New Yorkers (and tourists) were waiting, just outside, for their revival from the week. About every two minutes someone would stop and point and their jaw would drop, I even saw a few people sneak some pictures (that could also have been our striking beauty but I’m a humble guy so I’ll attribute it to the food). That sort of made the experience even more fun!

We got an order of Jacob’s Special Sour Pickles – they were really good as far as pickles go, and I’ve honestly had a lot of pickles in my life! I LOVE pickles! SPECIAL SOURS: 

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After we submitted ourselves to all the pickles and about 25% of the poutine (so much leftover!), the main dishes arrived!

I ordered THE COOP PLATTER: Three fried eggs, sterling bacon, house-made breakfast sausage, grits, biscuit & home fries:

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This was amazing! I had high expectations after all the excitement (thank you, Canadians) and it really was fabulous! The sausage was so flavorful like maple and it just hit your tongue with a WHOOSH! Eggs are eggs and bacon is bacon… The grits were a creamy delight and the biscuit had me begging for more!

My  brunch-buddy ordered the HONEY CHICKEN AND PICKLES: buttermilk fried chicken, hot sours (pickles), clover honey & grits.

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How all this “goes” together, I’m not totally sure but it was so good (yes, I had to try it!). The hot pickles aren’t my total favorite because I don’t love super spicy things but the CHICKEN! You guys. THE CHICKEN! I’ve never had chicken like this… the honey flavor in the crust was amazing and the chicken had a nice savory balance to it, the breading was soft and crunchy at the same time (really! I don’t even know how!) and it all simply melted in your mouth…  It was chicken from another planet!

On another note, I was surprised at how affordable it all was! I was expecting higher prices because of how well known the place is (uh… the Canadians… but can you really trust them? *wink*), but all in all, it was about $25 each when we split it. I’d say that this place is definitely worth checking out if you’re in town (no need to make a special trip from Canada just for it… ehem), but really… it was a great experience! Super cute vibe, fun music, the decor was that new old style and felt comfortable, clean and bright but not sterile and had a touch of nastalgia. We sat in the “outdoor” area that is enclosed for the winter and it was great to be able to see the people on the street and taunt them with our amazing food.

This was the damage… AFTER we couldn’t eat another bite! We had SO much leftover and took it home in boxes, it made for a delicious dinner!

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Ever been? Try it out! Let me know what you ate and what you thought!

Peace and blessings 😉

Dan

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