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Friday, February 22, 2013


Penelope stands out in Murray Hill as the one adorable brunch place.  It's a cutesy cafe with rustic windows serving simple but comforting foods like grilled cheese, the BLT, and salads.  Unfortunately, since it's the only restaurant of this category in the neighborhood, the line is always ridiculous.  In no mood to wait for an hour and a half, I always sport a frown and walk someplace else nearby.

Monday, however, appeared to be the best day to try it out for supper.  Since I had the day off work for Presidents Day, I was able to get to the restaurant a little early and put our name on the list while I waited at the bar with coffee and a book.  Turns out, the whole group had to be there, but we showed up during a miracle of a window where we didn't have to wait long for a table.

Since I saw some version of the chicken meatballs on the menu in three separate places, I concluded they must be a house specialty.  I chose the version that came on a bed of arugula with a dusting of parmesan cheese.  Moist doesn't even begin to describe these meatballs.  I was concerned that I'd be disappointed by white meat meatballs, but they were infused with pesto and had enough flavor to render salad dressing practically unnecessary.  I also snuck a fry or two from Lindsay and Beth's plates and they didn't even need ketchup.  Unfortunately, my picture didn't turn out well so you'll have to use your imagination.

No longer deterred by the wait, I'm determined to eat at Penelope again.  It'll take a little planning by putting my name on the list while I run an errand or two, but I think it's worth it for this oasis of a café in the middle of Curry Hill.

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