Sunday, June 17, 2007

Champagne Brunch @ Red Lion

Today being Father's Day, we decided to try the champagne brunch at the Red Lion Tavern (a German restaurant, bar and beer garden located in Silverlake, CA). Parking in the adjacent lot is limited, so we always park across the street. U. and Astrid crossing the street.U. used to live in Silverlake within walking distance to the Red Lion, and we used to be frequent visitors when we were dating. It was perfect to go for a nice walk, have dinner and a drink and then walk home. Awww...I even got a smile.U. and Astrid studying the menu.

This was the first time we've brought Astrid here.Behind U. & Astrid is this door with traditional German kitsch on it.

The building has three levels.

  • First level - a dining room and bar (also where the kitchen is located)

  • Second level - a second indoor dining room and bar, as well as an outdoor beer garden and bar

  • Third level - is private - I think the owners live up there.

We also saw stairs going down to what looked like a cellar. I asked if they had a high chair for the baby, and the waitress said there was one. It was up on a stage and looked like part of the decoration. Looks like an antique German high chair. I thought it was pretty cool - different but functional. Astrid and U. looking over the beer selections. U. is showing her his favorite beer.Beer they have - and lots of it! Watching the waitress.
The waitress commented that Astrid was the cutest kid that she's ever seen come into the restaurant. She loved how Astrid would sit there prim and proper with her hands folded neatly in front of her.

Cheers!

When we were in Joshua Tree last month for U.'s birthday, our friends taught Astrid how to do "cheers". Now whenever we have drinks she wants to clank her sippy cup against our glasses and say "cheers!".She has a habit of eating with her finger in her mouth sometimes. I can only assume she likes to feel around as she eats.I noticed that in a lot of photos of Astrid speaking, it looks like she's yelling. I realized it's because she's very expressive when she speaks. Us adults speak while barely moving our lips but kids open their mouths really wide and move their lips all around and make all these faces.The outdoor beer garden upstairs. This is where we sat.

Such a beautiful day.The place has flags for each and every German state displayed (even the former East German states - to U.'s surprise).

Our waitress must have been very fond on this guy at the bar, because she spent most of her time talking to him, and the service was painfully slow. Los Angeles is the sister city to Berlin.
Father and daughter holding hands on Father's Day.

How sweet.I brought this toy along to amuse Astrid. Here's U. showing us how it's done.U. showing Astrid the photos on the stairwell wall. It features photos of famous Germans.
U. mentioned to me how the place is getting dumpy and they need to fix it up a bit. If they did just a few things the place could be really nice again. I didn't realize how bad until I got home and saw the photos of the stairwell. It's really dark inside so you don't notice it unless you look closely (or have a flash on your camera). And at night everyone's drinking, so that's really the last thing on their minds.

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Update: What a coincidence - shortly after our visit I read that the Red Lion closed temporarily to do some "upgrades and renovations" to get the place code-friendly -- stair repair, new taps, that sort of thing. It should be open again for business by Saturday 6/23. What We Ordered

  • Entree #1 (for U.) - 2 eggs with bacon & potatoes

  • Entree #2 (for me) - Baunhof Fruhstuck - 3 egg omelet made with ham & potatoes

    Each of the entrees also each came with a small bottle of champagne.
  • Dessert (to share) - German Crepe

  • Drinks - 2 beers for U., while I had the champagne

The Price

The total price for all of our food and drinks, including tip was just a tad over $50.

Better than Four Seasons

U. commented that it was better than going to the Four Seasons for brunch. Local, cheap, good food and you don't have to dress up.

(Inside scoop - the Four Seasons in Chicago, IL is the best brunch we've had to date. We went there when I was in my first trimester, pregnant with Astrid, and had morning sickness galore -but they had such a great selection and the food was so delicious that I almost forgot I was nauseous. Brunch was around $75/per person, and it was fabulous. We've been on the quest to find a better, or as good brunch since, but to date it's been like the search for the holy grail. So U.'s comment about it being better the four seasons was a bit of a stretch.)

Review

The food was good and filling. Not something you'd eat all the time, but once in awhile is fine. It's also perfectly fine to bring a kid with you. No lines, no wait. Although the service was slow, our food came to our table promptly. They have a huge beer selection and I enjoyed my small bottle of champagne very much. It was a nice way to relax, eat, and enjoy a drink. Very casual and nice setting. And you can't beat the price! We will definitely go back.

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