by Eric Ginsburg
There is no reason to order the mimosa at the Marshall Free House — just go straight for the flight.
On the weekends, pallets normally used for holding four small glasses of beer are put in the service of juice and bubbly. And while mimosas may be a standard option on brunch menus, there’s nothing typical about the mimosa flight.
For starters, it’s brilliant to bring out three small cups of different juices, a carafe of sparkling wine and a champagne stem glass together. The variety of juices flanking the standard — orange juice — alternates, allowing patrons to pour their own glasses and experiment with ratios and flavors.
On a recent Saturday, the Marshall Free House staff brought out a cherry juice and an apple spiced with cinnamon, providing a spectrum of flavors. Intentional or not, the most interesting pairing may have been the cinnamon apple with a dash of cherry, the latter giving a rougher edge to the former.
When people think of mimosas they typically think of Champagne, but this is cava, a bubbly white Spanish wine produced by the giant Freixenet. Technically speaking, official Champagne is only produced in the region of France by the same name, though to the average consumer, there is no noticeable difference.
The supply of juice with the flight is generous, and though the amount of cava matches the price tag, it wasn’t enough to merit the three full juice glasses. At least not with a strong pour.
In lieu of the recommended food and cava pairings on Freixenet’s website — for whatever reason the page refuses to load — I can say with authority that the mimosa flight pairs well with the yorkies, sausage and eggs. Yorkies, a cross between a bread bowl, English muffin and a chewy roll, proved to be a great vehicle for consuming poached eggs in a spiked hollandaise sauce and bangers, accompanied by grilled asparagus and fresh fruit on the side.
Though it may sound daunting, the flight is the perfect brunch amount for one person. If bloody Marys are your preferred morning beverage, there are two options to choose from, and later in the day there’s a long craft-beer list, wide-ranging wine selection, 20 mixed cocktails and an entire whisky menu with separate sections for scotch and bourbon.
Some people have criticized developer and owner Marty Kotis after signs for conservative political candidates appeared out front, though Kotis has supported progressive Greensboro City Council candidates, too, singing the praises of Democrats like Greensboro Mayor Nancy Vaughan and Councilwoman Nancy Hoffmann and Republican state Rep. Jon Hardister alike.
Kotis catches flak for his deep pockets as well — after all, the liquor order he placed when he opened Marshall Free House was the biggest in Greensboro ABC’s history. But for people looking for new drinks to try, be it a mimosa flight or the more complex things cooking in the lab on site, those pockets create chances to experiment.
Visit the Marshall Free House at 1211 Battleground Ave. (GSO), serving brunch Saturday and Sunday.