No, Tommy Pickles is not some extra that gets whacked in a Sopranos episode. Tommy Pickles is one of MC Kitchen's beer cocktails ($12), served at brunch (and thankfully any time you're jonesing for it).
On Saturday afternoon, I decided to try out MC Kitchen's new brunch, served weekends from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Dena Marino was behind the open kitchen, working the wood-burning oven when we walked in. The menu features a mix of regional Italian and breakfast favorites ranging from parmigianino reggiano cavatelli ($15) to a Dawson Bay omelet with Chilean smoked salmon, egg white, asparagus, capers, chive, and mascarpone ($15).
Though the restaurant has an extensive list of wines by the glass and a full bar, the suggested beverage pairing for brunch is a beer cocktail. All start with one of Dogfish Head's brews, and are mixed with sweet or savory ingredients. After about one second with the menu, Tommy Pickles caught and held my eye. The drink features Brooklyn Brine Company pickles, bell pepper, and onion marinating in Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA.
When our server came along, I asked about Tommy Pickles. He tried to ascertain whether or not "T-Pic" was for me, by asking a key question -- "do you like pickles?" Only after he heard I was a fan of the doctored up vegetable did he acknowledge that, indeed, Tommy and I would make a good match. He then explained that some people (non-pickle people, I'll presume) might like a sweeter option like the Palatine Hill, made with Dogfish Head Etrusca Bronze, Redland strawberries, and rosemary ($14).
After choosing the food (we'll get to that in a minute), I was
introduced to Tommy Pickles. The cocktail is twofold
and comes in a long glass cylinder. First you strain the
pickle-infused beer into your glass. Then, you eat the savory, salty, veggies . The Dogfish was strong enough to stand up to the brine, which enhanced it rather than overpowering it.
pickles, jarred by Brooklyn Brine Co., are soaked in Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA, apple cider vinegar, maple
syrup, bourbon, and smoked paprika. Marino, by the way, plans to sell
the pickles at her next door market when it opens.
Ribollita Tuscan bread soup ($8) is a hearty starter, filled with vegetables, buttery croutons, and white beans.
sunny side up farm egg pizza ($12), made in Marino's wood-burning oven,
smiles at you when served. Topped with Eden Farms' bacon, broccoli
raab, and caramelized onion, and two sunny side eggs, it's rich,
satisfying, and enough for two.
I'm a sucker for oven baked
eggs, and these were decadent and rich. Served in a crock, the eggs are
served over a brioche with spicy sausage and fontina bechamel ($12).
there was a tempting list of meal-ending sweets, I had something else
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on my mind, as I pulled off Tommy Pickle's strainer and dug into the savory mixture for dessert. As I finished the last crunchy remnant, I wondered what was the protocol to follow when obsessed with a cocktail... How many days do I have to wait before I call on Tommy Pickles, again? I'm thinking 48 hours -- tops.