Brunch is a terrible thing to waste.

Or so I’ve heard.  That’s why Brenda’s, a bustling cafe in the Tendernob famous for its Cajun cooking, is a solid place to be on a weekend.  Early in 2011, the restaurant renovated its once-cozy (read: cramped) space and started dinner service.  I haven’t yet been for dinner, but luckily when I went back the brunch menu hadn’t changed much.  The beignets and the watermelon iced tea were still on the menu, and that was a good start.  The restaurant looks very different now than when Myra first took me there a few years ago, when we waited outside in the rain for an hour and a half and squeezed into a tight row of bar seats.  The food made the wait more than worthwhile, but I was glad to see the restaurant had done well enough to essentially double in size.

Mirrored Interiors at Brenda’s

Since the watermelon iced tea and beignets were still on the menu, it was only natural to order the sampler (chocolate, Granny Smith apple, crawfish, and plain powdered sugar).

Crispy pork belly was one of the specials, and in the name of unbridled hedonism, I ordered it.

652 Polk Street
San Francisco, CA 94109

(1) Watermelon iced tea, (2) beignets (especially the crawfish), (3) gumbo, (4) molasses ham benedict, and (5) grillades & grits.  If the crispy pork belly with cheesy grits is on the menu, it’s definitely worth a try – but plan for a solid nap afterwards.

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