Sunday, November 29, 2020 08:42pm
North Adams, MA now: 30 °   
Send news, tips, press releases and questions to info@iBerkshires.com
The Berkshires online guide to events, news and Berkshire County community information.
SIGN IN | REGISTER NOW   


Past Reviews
Unfussy, Unpretentious, and Unbeatable: Gramercy Bistro

I’ll admit it. I’m a brunch person. For me, there is no ritual more sacred than a good Sunday brunch. I love waking up late, filled with that delicious “no particular place to go” feeling. I love taking my time as I get ready, anticipating the satisfying, leisurely meal ahead. I love settling back in my chair, scanning the restaurant for familiar faces, and sipping one cup of coffee after another. Most of all, I love – I mean, I simply adore – brunch menus: steaming blueberry pancakes, fluffy eggs benedict, hearty homemade granola. Of all the meals we eat in our lives, Sunday brunch is the one that was truly meant for savoring.

You can imagine my delight, then, when I discovered that Gramercy Bistro, one of the newest restaurants to locate in downtown North Adams, had not only opened, but that it was also serving classy, affordable brunch fare on weekends.

Little fanfare or hoopla accompanied Gramercy Bistro’s opening. During the months prior to their opening, observant passers-by probably noticed that the Marshall Street space, formerly occupied by Joe’s Diner, was being renovated. But it took a keen eye to notice on Saturday, June 30, when the “Sorry, We’re Closed” sign that had adorned the restaurant window for months, was quietly flipped to read “Open.” The opening, like the restaurant itself, was unpretentious and unfussy.

Gramercy Bistro is reminiscent of an old-world saloon. Ceilings are high, and crossed by heavy, dark wooden beams. Ceiling fans turn high above head. Plain, wooden chairs scrape across bare, tile floors. A tavern-style bar with swivel stools overlooks the kitchen, and rose-tinted walls are decorated only by a handful of black-and-white photographs of urban landscapes. The overall effect is minimalist and sophisticated, but with a familiar, comfortable feel.

The brunch menu offers your typical fare: pancakes, omelets, French toast, eggs benedict, coffee, teas, juices, and the like. The food, however, is exceptionally good. I ordered almond cinnamon French toast, and my companion a bowl of oatmeal and an herb goat cheese omelet.

The oatmeal was hearty and pure, hand-cooked on the stovetop, of the sort that Mom used to make. The omelet was light and fluffy, slathered with delicious puddles of melted goat cheese, and freshly-snipped chives and parsley. The flavors were blended with subtlety, and to perfection. The accompanying fried new potatoes, while simple, were anything but humble. They were full-flavored, cooked to a lovely, satisfying texture, and not at all greasy.

The almond cinnamon French toast was even better. Homemade, rounded, cinnamon bread was thinly sliced, lightly battered, then topped with heaps of toasted, slivered almonds, and garden-fresh strawberries, blueberries, and bananas. A fresh, orange edible pansy finished the handsome presentation. The dish was so tasty and well prepared – the cinnamon bread and fresh fruit so inherently sweet and savory – that it barely required the maple syrup that came with it.

Service was swift and friendly, and water glasses, as well as the all-important coffee mug, were filled regularly, without our having to ask. The tab for one coffee, a bowl of oatmeal, and two dishes? A mere $13.15, plus tip.

Gramercy Bistro is owned and managed by Sandy Smith, a friendly, down-to-earth guy who has been involved with several Northern Berkshire favorites, including Williamstown’s Cobble Café, Mezze, and Wild Amber Grill. Gramercy Bistro features a lunch menu of tasty, reasonably-priced sandwiches, soups, salads, and burgers. Dinners are more upscale, featuring elegant entrees cooked with a delicate, almost international touch.

It’s worth noting that while I was enjoying my brunch, a table of other local restauranteurs – including Jeff and Susan Bendavid of Il Tesoro, and Dan Weissbrodt and Liz Canarossi of Joga Café – were enjoying a champagne toast to Gramercy’s opening. This was refreshing; as they’re part of a wave of new restaurants appealing to the North Adams market this summer, these restaurant owners could have adopted an attitude of bitter competition. Instead, they’ve embraced the spirit of cooperation and community, supporting each other, and even toasting to each other’s success. Referring to Gramercy Bistro, Jeff Bendavid remarked to me, “this is the place to be on Sundays. Every Sunday, you’ve gotta come here for your brunch.”

No problem, Jeff. I’m there.


Submitted By:
Back to Food & Dining
 
View All
Monument Boys Secure Inside...
Peter LaRochelle, Keegan Leach and Diego Salinetti finished...
Golf: Mount Greylock vs...
Wahconah and Mount Greylock tied, 170-170, to share the...
Mt Greylock Boys, Girls Earn...
The Mount Greylock girls and boys cross country teams...
Monument Mountain Boys and...
Monument Mountain's girls won their dual meet by seven...
Mount Greylock Tops Wahconah...
Depth was key for the Mount Greylock golf team Saturday as...
Humane Society Puppy Flight
The Berkshire Humane Society participated in a Wings of...
Golf: Lee vs Mount Greylock
Alexander Axt carded a 7-over-par 43 on the front nine at...
Naumkeag Pumpkin Show
Naumkeag holds its annual Incredible Pumpkin Show featuring...
Boys / Girls Cross Country
Crosier, a ninth-place finisher at last fall's Western Mass...
Wahconah Golfers Strong in...
Wahconah went 2-0 on the day, picking up wins over...
Golf: Wahconah vs Mount...
Alexander Axt and Owen Petropolus led the way, each scoring...
Golf: Mount Everett vs Lee
Lee. Takes on Mount Everett Tuesday at Greenock CC. A...
Babe Ruth Baseball: Wahconah...
Zach Archambault hit a grand slam to center field and...
Motor Bikes
Motor bikes practice at COR MX & Mini Golf, 1190 S State...
Adams Aces Take BABL...
Gary Munson went 2-for-3 with a triple, and the Adams Aces...
Pittsfield Americans Blank...
The Americans finished the week without allowing a run in...
Monument Boys Secure Inside...
Peter LaRochelle, Keegan Leach and Diego Salinetti finished...
Golf: Mount Greylock vs...
Wahconah and Mount Greylock tied, 170-170, to share the...
Mt Greylock Boys, Girls Earn...
The Mount Greylock girls and boys cross country teams...
Monument Mountain Boys and...
Monument Mountain's girls won their dual meet by seven...
Mount Greylock Tops Wahconah...
Depth was key for the Mount Greylock golf team Saturday as...
| Home | A & E | Business | Community News | Dining | Real Estate | Schools | Sports & Outdoors | Berkshires Weather | Weddings
Advertise | Recommend This Page | Help Contact Us | Privacy Policy| User Agreement
iBerkshires.com is owned and operated by: Boxcar Media 102 Main Street, North Adams, MA 01247 -- T. 413-663-3384 F.413-664-4251
© 2000 Boxcar Media LLC - All rights reserved