RVA Breakfast: Parkside Cafe

Aside from brunch, one of my favorite weekend activities is going to the South of the James Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings. Funnily enough, the cold weather didn’t deter me much from attending their smaller winter market this year, which is held in the parking lot of the Patrick Henry School of Science and Arts. It has about half the amount of vendors compared to their summer market, but this hardly affects its atmosphere and selection. (While I’ve enjoyed the winter market, I’m extremely excited that the huge spring/summer market starts back up in Forest Hill Park next weekend, May 4th!)

The other weekend, Boyfriend and I went to the market pre-breakfast and we left starving. Not having much dining experience in “south side”, my hunger pains and I were big advocates for trying something nearby. Parkside Cafe is located directly across from the Patrick Henry School on Forest Hill Avenue, right next to Crossroads Coffee & Ice Cream. From the outside it seemed quiet, yet lively and inviting with its bright green painted brick.

This breakfast review is slightly different than my others in that Parkside Cafe does not keep a consistent brunch menu. All of their offerings were written on a chalkboard that the server kindly brought right up to our booth to view.

Coffee refills came by way of an adorable antique coffee/tea pot rather than the typical bulbous pot. Actually, a lot of Parkside’s charm derived from the speckling of antique details throughout the space and meal. Another example included the homemade bread and jam we were offered prior to our meal…

I took Parkside’s queue and broke the mold by ordering something savory, versus the one sweet option on the menu–french toast. The generous piece of eggplant & tomato quiche had a sprinkling of veggies and what I believe was mozzarella, in addition to cheddar. My favorite part of quiche is the crust (no surprises); lucky for me, there was plenty of it. The texture of the quiche itself wasn’t overwhelmingly heavy, which I appreciated. I have a hard time eating extremely custard-y quiches. The breakfast potatoes that came on the side were good, although I would have preferred them to be a bit crisper.

Overall, brunch at Parkside Cafe is worth a try, especially if you are in the area tomorrow for the last winter market! (I should note that their location is also very convenient to the summer market at Forest Hill Park.) Unlike other places you’ll find on the north side of the river, I found the restaurant to be fairly quiet during our meal, which also makes it a great option for those looking to have of slow morning with old friends.

Happy weekend, folks!