Brenda’s French Soul Food in San Francisco

When hunting for breakfast places, Brenda’s French Soul Food constantly came up as a breakfast place with a twist. This restaurant focused on offering foods from the deep south of the US.

Apparently they extended their premises recently and it shows from two very distinct styles in each section. The first is a thin corridor holding only a smattering of tables. A huge painted mural sits on an exposed concrete wall. The section next door opens up into a brightly lit dining room fitted with nicely lacquered woodwork and more space between tables than the first section.

Influences from the deep south permeate the entire place with the cutlery served out of emptied steel cans from the “famous” New Orleans’ French Market. A cute twist to it all. Bottles of hot sauce and tomato sauce also readily available on the tabletops.

The menu offerings for a brunch seemed a bit confused including heartier meals like gumbo, shrimp and grits, a croque monsieur as well as classics including omelettes, french toast and eggs benedict. My sister ordered oyster omelette that incorrectly came with grits. As you can see from the picture below, the appearance of grits swimming in a pool of melted butter wasn’t exactly appetising.

I went for a classic brioche french toast with associated bacon. It strangely arrived with even more butter that I set aside. The toast was perfect. Crisp on the outside, light and fluffy on the inside. Yes, it was dusted with powdered sugar and I probably had a sugar overload when added with the maple syrup but it went perfectly with the bacon.

Reviews also recommended trying some of the beignets. Brenda’s offer interesting combinations including a crawfish variation, granny smith apple filled, and a chocolate with molten chocolate one. We asked for an order of some plain that arrived, also dusted in icing sugar. As you can see a serve includes one plate. Although nice and light and airy, I think the oil was too hot with a crust verging on the edge of being burnt and the insides of the two of them still clearly doughy and undercooked.

I liked Brenda’s but not sure it’s the sort of place I’d come back to all the time for brunch. Great for something unusual and probably a great place to try dinner as well.

Name: Brenda’s French Soul Food
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