Brunch Bites: I | O Urban Roofscape and 2 Sparrows
(Strawberries in Kentucky at 2 Sparrows)
One of River North's newest restaurants, I | O Urban Roofscape wastes no time jumping right into the brunch game. The Godfrey Hotel Chicago's resident restaurant launches Champagne RI|OT brunch on April 12, henceforth running every Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Expect various small plates, cocktails, and of course Champagne in vast amounts. Items can be ordered a la carte or as part of larger packages. The RI|OT Brunch package goes for $30 per person and includes a mimosa (raspberry-guava mimosas sound downright majestic) or a Bloody Mary, accompanied by a choice of three small plates. Or go for the $200-per-person Godfrey brunch package, which include a bottle of Laurent-Perrier and a choice of nine small plates. Or spring for the Champagne and One of Everything Package, which is pretty self-explanatory, with the Champagne being a magnum of Laurent-Perrier. Or in case you just want to go a la carte, dishes include huevos rancheros, brunch poutine with Wagyu gravy, bourbon- and gin-cured "adult" smoked salmon, and brioche sticks adjoined by bourbon maple syrup crystals, caramelized bananas, cinnamon, and lime fluff.
Now that spring has finally sprung, it's time to stow the hot toddys and replace our boozy cravings with spring punch. And since punch is an apropos replacement for juice in the a.m., head to 2 Sparrows to start drinking early. The brunch-focused restaurant just added a new seasonal punch program, helmed by bartender Ryne Schofstal. This means a new punch takes the stage each season, with the current spring iteration being a fitting libation called Strawberries in Kentucky. It's made with Hirsch bourbon, strawberries, grapefruit, mint, and Santome Prosecco. Let's get tipsy.
- Matt Kirouac