812 Grand St
Brooklyn, NY 11206
Cuisine: American Cafe
Our Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★
Cards: All major
Price: Fairly Cheap
Hours: 7am-11pm, Daily
Booze: None for now
Subway: G to Grand St.
Menu: Click Here
Brooklyn Exposed says:
The new Alien Cafe in Williamsburg is not as foreign as you might think. Opened in early November, the space has been in owner Robert Sandoval’s family since 1999 – first as Grand Street Grill run by his father and then by Sandoval himself. The new cafe has a big name attached to it as well, with L’Artiste menu creator-chef Luis Santos at the helm of this menu. Cozy up at a two-top with warm butternut squash soup ($7) while you ogle at the designed wallpaper. Or select from varied and large servings of sandwiches ($8-10), omelettes ($6), and salads ($7-9). Real meal deals come in the form of duck ragout parpardelle ($14), a brioche bun burger ($12), and even a braised lamb shank with mushroom polenta ($18). And it would be no cafe with no cafe – robust Blue Bottle is available in drip or a personal French press. With that, skip straight to dessert for a perfect pairing with the nutella, banana, and berry crepe ($7). Though no liquor license as of yet, don’t wait to enjoy these earthly delights.
I Heart Brunch says:
There has been a lot said about the gentrification of Williamsburg over the last decade, and particularly the last few years since the rezoning of 2005 opened up the waterfront areas for development. Much of this “urban renewal” has taken place on the North and South sides, which are generally divided by Grand Street, but it’s the East side that is now experiencing a broader transition period.
Nowhere is this more evident than east of Union Ave on Grand Street where the gentrification process is noticeably making its way down the street, block by block.
Alien Cafe takes brunch in East Williamsburg up a notch.
Opening in early November, Alien Café aims to take the neighborhood up a notch. Formerly the Grand Street Grill, a quick-service takeout joint, Alien Café owner Robert Sandoval decided to revamp the space his family has owned since 1999 to create something a bit different and more refined. And he’s serious about the food, enlisting award-winning L’Artiste chef Luis Santos to create the menu.
On the exterior, Alien Café sports a spaceship sign that bulges from the front of the unassuming building and lights up at dusk. But don’t let the kitschy name and sign fool you. Once inside you’ll be eased by a casual bistro atmosphere, charming enough to bring a date, and impressed by food that may be the only thing otherworldly about the place.
Options like Eggs Benedict with chipotle hollandaise or French Toast with sautéed apples and walnuts are delicious and worth the visit, but it was the Three Color Omelet that truly impressed me. Perhaps the most perfectly cooked omelet I’ve ever had, the egg was light and fluffy and had a perfect ratio of mozzarella, fresh tomato and basil meticulously diced and speckled throughout the egg. Every egg dish is accompanied by mixed greens and nicely prepared home fries and I added a side of crisp apple wood smoked bacon to round it all out.
The food is as easy on the wallet as it is delicious – no breakfast entrée eclipses $7 and the lunch options are just a couple bucks more. Plus, coffee lovers will delight at the café’s use of the classic French press, emphasizing the bold flavors and captivating aroma of organic Blue Bottle Coffee.
Alien Café is a welcome addition to the East side that will delight neighborhood residents and hopefully continue the trend of culinary innovations in the area.