After excessively stalking Clarkville’s Yelp reviews and online menu, we were very eager for our meal. At first glance, Clarkville looks awesome. With its bright industrial interior filled with colorful art, modern decor and chalkboard walls, this restaurant provides a fun, young and alternative dining setting. However, known for its weekend brunch, Clarkville on a Sunday afternoon was less crowded than we anticipated.
Our waitress escorted us to the second floor, where our food journey began. We immediately decided on the shakshuka ($10) and brunch salad ($12) but could not make the most important decision of them all: which pizza we would get. After much deliberation, we settled on the first pizza our server recommended, the potato pie ($14), to complete our meal.
The shakshuka came out first: two poached eggs in a sweet tomato sauce, topped with fresh arugula and accompanied by two slices of grilled house–made foccacia. We added fennel sausage for $1, which gave the sauce a spicy kick and transformed it into something more resemblant of a ragù. One egg was overcooked, but the finger–licking sauce made up for it. The dish was very well seasoned and came out sizzling hot, and we ate the whole damn thing. #noragrets (not even one letter), until our next dishes came out.
The potato pie looked epic yet slightly daunting. Topped with sour cream, crisp yukon gold potatoes, scallion–pine nut pesto, shaved ham and sea salt, this pie unfortunately sounded much better than it tasted. There was something off from the first bite onward: the tang of the sour cream overwhelmed the other flavors and was slightly nauseating. Plus, there wasn’t any actual cheese on the pizza, which was heartbreaking for two cheese–lovers, and made us question if it even qualifies as a pizza (Ed. note: for more info on what qualifies as pizza, see page 30).
The brunch salad disappointed as well. Other than also not having cheese (our poor hearts couldn’t take this), this salad was over–dressed and had far too much black pepper. The lone poached egg was buried in soggy potatoes, onions and a salty ham specimen that was not the bacon we were promised in its description on the menu.
Even though things seemed dismal, we weren’t ready to give up on Clarkville just yet. From the very beginning, we had our eyes on the pizza frittes ($6) listed under desserts. These warm cinnamon sugar– covered fried doughnuts were little bites of perfection pushed over the edge by the accompanying salted caramel sauce. We started eating the sauce plain after the doughnuts were gone, making it the first time ever where a bad ratio was more than acceptable.
CLARKVILLE: 4301 Baltimore Ave
DON'T MISS: Pizza Frittes. They’re basically the love–child of beignets, churros and Jesus Christ himself. Amen.
SKIP: Potato pizza. The sour cream and lack of cheese confused us. Also, the brunch salad was weird and defeated the purpose of getting a salad. Just don’t.
WHEN TO GO: Brunch. Saturday and Sunday. 11a.m.- 3p.m.
BONUS: Add an egg to any pizza for $1. Runny yolks are never a bad idea.
Price Range for a Normal Brunch Person: $$$