biscuits + botanics


After the best (and longest) night's sleep I've had in over two months, I have a nice breakfast with mom. It's a slow Sunday morning - just the way we like it. We burn the CD's we bought the day before, listen to them for the first time, write for our respective blogs, watch Gainsbourg's 'Bonnie and Clyde' video on Youtube, and (perhaps more importantly) get Morris to try on his new cat harness. We forget to call the grandparents, but hey, they can wait a few more days.

Because it's beautiful outside, we decide to head out to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens for a picnic. The 4 train drops us off on Franklin Avenue, where there are many eateries to choose from. I had looked up places beforehand, so we already know we're going to Butter & Scotch, a small diner-style restaurant specializing in pies, biscuits, ice cream and cocktails. I feel really old -in a good way - because the waiter lets us sit at the bar (which is only a big deal in the US, as usual). The brunch menu includes half-a-dozen biscuit sandwiches, and we opt for two different ones: mom gets the BLT ($7), and I the egg & cheese ($5). It's quite torturous to be sitting so close to the kitchen, because we can't help but stare at other customers' orders coming out. Tantalizing.

Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

Our sky-high biscuits arrive after a rather long wait, but they're well worth it. Surprisingly, they look and taste exactly the same as my mom's scones, which inspires the both of us to try using those as sandwiches for brunch at home. Mom says her bacon was divine, and I'm very pleased with how moist my scrambled eggs are (it's hard to find a scrambled egg that's not desert dry in this country).

Biscuit BLT Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

Egg Biscuit Sandwich at Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

It's out of the question for us to leave without trying one of Butter & Scotch's famous sweets. Much deliberation ensues, as we're torn between something more chocolatey (the S'mores pie, for instance) and something on the fruitier side. Just then, another patron's blueberry pie comes out of the kitchen, and we both agree that this is the one. Our own blueberry pie ($6) is served a few minutes later, slightly warm and topped with a generous serving of super fresh, homemade whipped cream. Oh, and did I mention the blueberries are fresh, too? Butter & Scotch clearly doesn't use that horrendous grocery store-bought pie filling, and they deserve our atheist blessing for that.

Blueberry Pie at Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

Blueberry Pie at Butter & Scotch in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

We step out of this colorful, wonderful eatery and are back onto the tropical streets. The Brooklyn Botanical Gardens are but minutes away. Once there, we visit the peaceful Japanese gardens (where mom has a koi fish meltdown), the Shakespeare Garden, Rose Garden, Rock Garden and Herb Garden. We also walk on the Celebrity Path, which is essentially a the Brooklyn equivalent of the Hollywood Stars (except here, the stars are leaves and the celebrities are all Brooklyn natives). We spot a few familiar names, including Woody Allen, Maurice Sendak and Judge Judy, but are surprised not to see Jay-Z.

We settle onto the grass for a nice book-reading session. I start Anna Gavalda's new book, Des Vies en Mieux, and immediately love it. Just like Katherine Pancol, Gavalda has a casual, effortless writing style that somehow manages to be incredibly poetic. I'm only a hundred pages in, but I'm hooked.

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Rose at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens

Back home, we watch two documentaries: The True Cost and Bite Size. Both are equally saddening and informative. And both feature Monsanto as their major antagonist. (No surprise there.) I highly recommend!

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