The sleek design is there. The undulating leather banquettes with fresh cala lillies that match the color. The curved ceiling. The shiny bar.
Strip By Strega feels different during the day, though. The glittering night scene with drinks freely flowing, the occasional pro sports star spotted in the crowd of beautiful people, a DJ and music that pumps loud separate it into a different affair on a quiet Sunday. It's still signature Nick Varano: great service, the old-school glamor feel of the place, great design elements, a staff that instantly makes one feel like an old friend and the food. Yes, the food.
Yet, it still has that private club feel and as the minutes tick by a crowd trickles in for the Sunday brunch. We are among them, at the invite of the restaurant. We start with, of course, Mimosas. Here, there is not just a Bloody Mary bar where one can mix but also a Mimosa bar.
It's no surprise that I order the Smoked Salmon Benedict With Asparagus, Hollandaise, Lemon Zest and Dill. The sauce is lemony rich, the eggs perfectly turned out in bright yellow, runny drips.
My dining companion goes for the Bacon and Cheese Omelette with Spinach, Feta and Caramelized Onions. It arrives looking like a comfy pillow.
It is fluffy and light on the tongue and the inside packed with flavor, with juices just waiting to be sopped up by the whole grain slice of toast served with it.
The Truffle Frites are about as good as it gets, crispy with a good potato taste and hint of truffle.
We had to, of course, try at least one dessert so we went with the White Chocolate Cake With Raspberry Jelly and Raspberry Sorbetto. Served on a slate tray, it is a beautiful combination and even better with the frothy cup of cappuccino ordered with it.
The brunch service here is fairly new but they are clearly at the top of their game on the food. That's always the case at any Nick Varano spot we have visited. The only thing missing was the full cast of colorful characters that also accompany any time spent here. Not to worry. It's only a matter of time.
This would be a great spot for a nicer, even dressier brunch with a quality of food that is pretty much guaranteed in a sea of places where it's just average.
64 Arlington Street
Boston, MA 02116