If Penelope is “Pene-lopee,” why isn’t antelope “ante-lopee”?

In my quest to expand my gastronomic horizons (and, sadly, my waistline), I finally tried out one of the much-touted brunch places in Murray Hill yesterday. Okay so there’s, like, TWO much-touted brunch places in Murray Hill and this is the other one (Josie’s being the first). But, still, it was well worth the trip!

Penelope is a cute, kitschy, little place at 159 Lexington Ave and 30th, right on the cusp of Curry Hill, and their $13 prix fixe brunch menu is a deal that can’t be beat. They have about 6-8 dishes to choose from and each comes with coffee, juice, or an apple cider mimosa. There’s an ala carte menu as well. I actually saw a girl a few tables away taking pictures of her food, probably for a foodie blog, but I suck at that sort of thing, so you’ll just have to use your imagination. My friend L. had the Nutella French Toast, which she let me try a little of, and it was suitably delicious. They basically made little nutella sandwiches, slathering the delectable stuff between two thin slices of French toast, and then accompanied it with a selection of fresh fruit. Another friend, E., went the lunch route and had their BBLT, which is, as you might think, a double bacon sandwich. Yum. It was so ginormous she had a tough time tackling both it and her fries but she gave it her seal of approval. As for me, I went with the Pumpkin Waffles, which were an absolute sugar overload and definitely something I’d go back for. Accompanied by apple butter, cinnamon, powdered sugar, and pecans, I could barely finish the dish and the side of bacon I ordered. (Naturally, I finished the bacon rather than the waffles… I’m a pig. Which I suppose made me a cannibal.)

Though Penelope gets very busy and there was definitely a wait, the line moves fairly quickly. Our waitress was a doll and didn’t rush us out even though they probably needed the table. I would definitely go back there to try other things on the menu…and take advantage of the mimosa. I mean, come on, if you’re going to pay for a prix-fixe meal, might as well get something besides standard coffee, right? I learned that lesson too late. In my own defense, it WAS 10:30 in the morning and I tend to be a bit cautious about engaging in the drinky-drinky before noon.

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