I was missing America. I was particularly missing those sweet-meets-salty moments you only experience at weekend brunches. I had a taste (or two) in my palate and had a strong feeling that I would find them here in Verona, Italy. So, I started researching and interviewing locals and there it was: Elk Bakery!
Literally a bridge walk from the historical city center, it is located at the entrance of the more residential Borgo Trento neighborhood. The first impression is that you are in a contemporary Ikea-style mixed with a more country Scandinavian interior with a few creative touches (such as bottoms of espresso pots holding sugar packets or a black chalkboard wall with specials and drinks highlighted on it).
The crowd is made up of 25-35s and yuppies but also lots of internationals and/or expats passing by. I interacted with Swedish, Americans, Brits, Polish, Germans, Austrians, and even Koreans. I say whatever your age, you should give it a try once. Although the menu was an interesting multicultural blend, and bilingual in English and Italian, I would say it primarily resonated “American:” pancakes, bagels, eggs and bacon, muffins, cupcakes, cheesecakes, chocolate chip cookies, brownies, American coffees (even flavored), but also wild Norwegian salmon and gazpachos.
Because I went spontaneously in the middle of the week, I actually missed the brunch experience but created my own by ordering a few dishes off the a la carte menu. So, if you want to experience it, you must go on Saturday or Sunday. I would call and make reservations. The space is lovely but a bit small. Also know that while drinks and a few dishes match the U.S. for prices, others felt a bit too pricey. But, I highly recommend Elk Bakery if you love/miss the U.S. or simply want to be immersed in and enjoy a different kind of day and culinary experience! For more info, visit http://www.elkbakery.it
Francesca and her sister Giovanna are the owners of “Sicilian Sisters Travel,” an online travel boutique specializing in personalized journeys to Sicily and Italy. They invite you to visit their facebook page and website for more info www.siciliansisterstravel.com