Route 9 Now Open For Lunch; Brunch Starts This Weekend

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When we checked in with new Coral Gables restaurant Route 9 a few weeks ago, before it officially opened, owners Jeremy and Paola Goldberg promised full dinner, lunch, and weekend brunch service upon opening. Befitting the independent, casual neighborhood feel of the place, Route 9 opened last week with little hype, but a brisk stream of friends, family, and well-wishers.

Dinners have been busy, and now they've taken the plunge into expanded hours. Lunch officially launched on Tuesday, and this weekend marks the first brunch service.

Like the dinner menu, the lunch menu focuses on well-executed, but fuss-free new American food with a slight Latin flare. Also like the dinner menu, there's a selection of charcuterie and artisan cheese, soups and salads, an offering of small plates, and a handful of a la carte vegetable sides.

Replacing the larger plates, though, are a selection of sandwiches (and other hand-held items, like fish tacos), served with a choice of greens or fries. Besides the requisite burger (with balsamic-marinated mushrooms, provolone, and bacon), highlights include a black bean and chorizo grilled cheese and even a vegan grilled vegetable, arugula, and hummus panini.

Brunch, meanwhile, is served both Saturdays and Sundays. The charcuterie, soups and salads, and small plates return, but bunch-only sweet and savory creations rule here. For egg-lovers, there are some eight different options, including a classic eggs Benedict as well as other twists like chorizo, egg, and cheese tacos with black bean puree and a smoked salmon croque madame.

Sweets sound promising too. Besides Belgian waffles, filled pancakes, and Brioche French toast, the weekend features a changing basket of house-made pastries. This weekend those include blueberry-crumb coffee cake, Nutella Danish, Maple-bacon sticky buns, and cheddar cheese biscuits. That should be enough to beat a hangover into submission.

Route 9 is open continuously Tuesday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; lunch is served until 5 p.m. Same deal on Friday, except the restaurant stays open for dinner until 11 p.m. On Saturdays, brunch is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and dinner follows until 11 p.m. Route 9 is open for brunch only on Sundays from 10 to 5 p.m., and closed on Mondays.

Route 9, 1915 Ponce de Leon Blvd., Coral Gables. 305-569-9009; route9miami.com

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