Just last Saturday I was feeling bored with the city, so I took a meandering drive out of my usual territory and stumbled across the coolest little brunch place that you’re going to have the best time ruining.
Fletcher’s Kitchen is a old converted Victorian mansion. Cracked white paint on the outside, green shutters, a porch where you can hang out while waiting for your table. Of course, after you’ve taken to Twitter and announced your new find to your 1,100 jaghole followers, the porch will be roped off when stamped-out cigarettes are found there too often.
Inside is a handful of little round tables, salvaged from a local train station cafe after it closed. They’re perfect for a party of four, or for one person to spread out with books and a laptop. I’m sure they’ll be willing to drag four of them together when you arrive with your group of twelve, including three people who won’t be there for half an hour because they have to hit the gym first.
The walls are lined with shelves of gorgeous old books: you can pull one off the shelf and read while you’re there. The owner and chef, a woman named Alex Fletcher, is a retired librarian; The books are her private collection. I leafed through Treasure Island while waiting for my order. I forgot how beautiful the original illustrations are. The books will be removed when your buddy’s three-year-old, Maxim, tears the pages out of an early edition Bleak House.
The menu, printed on old parchment card stock [they’ll switch to laminated copier paper when your followers keep stealing them to admire for a month and throw out] is simple: pancakes and eggs. Most of their ingredients are local but no, they won’t be able to tell you which farm produced the cilantro. Or “scrounge up” a balsamic reduction because you can’t eat eggs without it these days. Or make half a pancake mixed with barley for your dog.
A big basket filled with homemade muffins sits on the counter: a server brings the basket around to your table and you choose your own. After you lose your mind that the last peach-cinnamon muffin was given to the person before you, the basket will stay in back. The only flavor will be bran.
An old upright piano sits in the corner; Sometimes local musicians, friends of Alex, will stop by and play. When I was there a woman sat at the piano playing jazz, and a young man – maybe her son, or a high school student – accompanied her on violin. Soon they’ll be drowned out by you shouting directions into your phone for the friends coming from the gym, or shouting some new goddamn impossible omelette item to your server.
When I visited, Alex even came out from the kitchen to see how I liked the eggs. I told her they were perfect, and she glowed with pride. [You’ll eviscerate them in your Yelp review for being cold after you let them sit on the table for twenty minutes while taking pictures of them.] “I’d always dreamed of having something like this,” she told me, wiping her floury hands on her apron. “The first six months have been promising. Please, tell your friends!” I promised her I would.
Six weeks from now Alex will be diagnosed with heart palpitations from chronic stress. Remember to tip your server. [You won’t.]