This past Monday, Cafe Pedlar on the Lower East Side launched a new breakfast and lunch menu. Previously, there were only a few savory bites offered at the cafe; sweets and coffee dominated the menu. A shame, because it was a fine place to linger for a light lunch or afternoon break. But now? I'll be returning for lunch more often, especially for the Egg and Cheese Sandwich ($6).
The sandwiches comes on your choice of pizza bianca or buttermilk biscuit. I'd recommend the latter, flaky, with a crisp crumbly top, and just salty enough, baked in-house by Frankie's. Scrambled eggs and melted Grafton cheddar complete the creation, oozing out the sides of the biscuit; add bacon, sausage, or ham for another $3. It's a lunchtime luxury to get breakfast food done this well. And the salad, greens tossed in a lemony vinaigrette—a thoughtful side to complement this buttery, filling affair.
For a light lunch, I'd stick with the Mushrooms and Eggs ($9). There is only one egg pictured above, but this dish comes with two. A pile of hot sautéed mushrooms, with chopped parsley, sides of toast, and poached eggs. Again, nothing inventive, but simple dishes done very well. These egg dishes are tucked under the Lancaster County Farm Fresh Eggs section of the menu—which includes Roasted Vegetable Frittatas ($9), Gruyere and Caramelized Onion Omelette ($9), and a Farmer's Breakfast ($11) with eggs, sausage, bacon or ham, and home fries and toast.
Still hungry? End your meal on a sweet note: you can do no wrong, between the Olive Oil Bundt and the Stout Cake. The Almond Brioche is equally fantastic, but that's more breakfast than dessert fare. Bonus points: the cafe stays remarkably calm during the day, and there's free WiFi as well.
This post may contain links to Amazon or other partners; your purchases via these links can benefit Serious Eats. Read more about our affiliate linking policy.