Photograph by Andy Lee
Ford Fry’s coastal European spot, St. Cecilia, will start serving Sunday brunch this weekend. Led by executive chef Craig Richards, St. Cecilia’s brunch is designed “to reflect relaxed Italian elegance.” Richards is particularly interested in providing a relaxed pace for the meal.
To help create that leisurely feel, Richards has designed an a la carte menu in which every meal comes with complimentary antipasti and dessert, available from the chef’s counter.
“A lot of our cooks go out for dim sum on Sundays for brunch, so that was an inspiration—providing a lot of antipasti options for guests to choose from [while] at the same time putting our own Italian spin on some brunch classics,” Richards says.
“This format makes for a nice, leisurely brunch with a lot of options for our guests,” he continues. “It will also show off what we’re getting from farms and what’s in season right now, with a very abundant Italian farmhouse table feel. All of this, mixed with a little vintage hotel opulence, fits perfectly in Buckhead.”
Chef’s counter antipasti and dessert offerings include leafy green salads with shaved heirloom vegetables, smoked eggplant with sun-dried tomato pesto, marinated house-made mozzarella with wild oregano and chiles, salumi and cheeses, fresh breakfast breads, linzer tortes, and seasonal hand pies. Entrees include eggs and polenta with braised greens and speck, wood-grilled swordfish, and risotto nero with basted shrimp in a kale-pine nut pesto. There will be three rotating fresh-pressed juices.
“Atlanta has always been a big brunch city, whether it’s people recovering from Saturday night or families eating together after church,” Richards says. “Brunch is a social event in Atlanta that, I think, is a reflection of southern dining culture.”