St Balmain, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY

HONESTLY’S VERDICT
In a word:  Hip
Food:  Freshly prepared brunch & lunch dishes, erring on the side of healthy…well, apart from the DIY donuts!
Service:  Cheery & attentive
Presentation:  White and blue enamelled tableware, funky mismatched decor
Ambience:   Buzzy little place
Location:  Side street off in the heart of Williamsburg, the Shoreditch of NY
Value for money:  Great, with menu items between $7.50 and $15 (£5 – £10), then add a tip of somewhere between 10% & 20%
Worth a visit?:  Definitely, I’ll certainly be popping back for the Brookes Breakfast Bowl when we’re next in NYC

We found this place thanks to the wonders of Four Square.  I’m always a bit sceptical of eateries my husband suggest, but on this occasion(!), he came up trumps and St. Balmain turned into my favourite place for food during our short stay in Williamsburg; consistently good food, prices great, easy to find – i’ll definitely make the effort again, if only for my Brookes Breakfast Bowl.

The exterior of St. Balmain

The exterior of St. Balmain

Williamsburg is perfect for a bit of exploring – it’s the Shoreditch of New York (although technically Brooklyn not NYC); a hipster capital full of interesting eateries, cool independent stores, bars and restaurants, and fab pop-up food and flea markets. It’s only one stop from Manhattan on the L train, so the perfect place to pop over and spend a couple of hours checking things out and grab some brunch at St. Balmain.

The view through the cafe

The view through the cafe

Food:

The rather divine and supper scrummy Brookes Bowl

The rather divine and supper scrummy Brookes Bowl

I got myself a little addicted to the Brookes Breakfast Bowl; a delicious mix of all my favourite things- spinach, kale, quinoa, avocado, halloumi and poached egg. Perfect – serve size felt just right, very healthy, nourishing and warm.

 

The avo on toast with feta and cherry toms

The avo on toast with feta and cherry toms

My partner had the Avocado on toast – wholegrain toasted bread smothered in avocado and topped with cherry toms and feta. Portion size for this wasn’t great, I guess a Williamsburg hipster has got to fit into those skinny jeans! My other half could have done with a double up on the toast, and we both thought roasted cherry tomatoes would have finished the dish off perfectly.

A cup of Rooibos tea

A cup of Rooibos tea

A mini cup of Rooibos tea to warm my fingers on a winter day…whatever happened to tea pots?

Service:

The chicks here, and they all seem to be girls serving with only a male barista in sight, are all cheery and efficient. Not classic over-friendly American service, this is Brooklyn and these girls are busy serving or catching up on last nights goss.

Presentation:

I like the white and blue enamelled tin tableware and cool features – the food looks good on it.

Donut junkies!

DIY Donut junkies!

And the DIY donuts, such cool presentation!  We didn’t try them on this trip…maybe next time!

Wall decoration and drinks prices

Wall decoration and drinks prices

Interiors-wise, the chalkboards, potted plants in the walls, the Zebra logo, coloured walls, posters and San Pelagrino bottled lining the walls all add to the eclectic charm of St. Balmain.

Value for money:

The menu at St. Balmain

The menu at St. Balmain

The Brookes Breakfast Bowl is one of the most pricey items on the menu coming in at $14 (£9), the avo on toast is $10 (£7) and a tea or coffee between $2.50 and $4.50 (£1.60 – £2.90).

All prices are exclusive of the good ol’American tipping system.

Contact:

178 N 8th St, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, US

Tel: +1 71896 32583

Email: 

Website: www.stbalmain.com

Instagram: stbalmain

Opening hours:

Monday to Friday 8am to 3pm

Saturday and Sunday 9am to 4pm

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