Circa 33 Brunch

Circa 33 on SE Belmont is probably most  known for in the evening as a neighborhood Prohibition-themed cocktail bar. But, did you know they also offer an al fresco dining alley area, and on weekends by the restrooms when the red light is on, host a speakeasy type bar? And don’t overlook the additional hidden gem of its weekend brunch, served 10 AM – 2 PM, featuring a curated list of dishes which include several vegetarian and vegan friendly options and of course, cocktails. Today I share my brunch visit, and here’s a look at the secret speakeasy – which will be put to good use on a Prohibition Party in a couple weeks!
Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 brunch, Bloody Mary c.1921 with vodka, summer-spiced bloody blend, creole-salt rim and choice of bacon/veggie/combo garnish

The name Circa 33 is a nod to the neighborhood street block they are on (SE 33rd block on Belmont) as well as the year prohibition was repealed, 1933. Their cocktails are a mix of drinks from the late 1800s and early 1900s as well as more current inventions that follow the framework of spirit, sugar, citrus, and bitters. You’ll see a dozen options of specialty cocktails. If you are not into cocktails, not to worry – they have almost a dozen wines by the glass and smaller selection of beer, and non-alcoholic beverages like a ginger limeade. Below, you’ll see the Circa 33 cocktail, The Huntress which is c.1937 with Effen vodka, bubbles, black currant, citrus, Becherovka herbal liqueur
Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar. This Circa 33 cocktail, The Huntress is c.1937 with Effen vodka, bubbles, black currant, citrus, Becherovka herbal liqueur

The center piece of the Circa 33 space naturally, is the bar…
Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar

If you come for brunch, in the light of day you can notice the details they have in the decor. Although the front section looks like a hole in the wall from the exterior, the restaurant is roomy and has lots of seating.
Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar Circa 33 interior during the day for brunch. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar

For brunch, the Bloody Mary c.1921 with vodka, summer-spiced bloody blend, creole-salt rim gives you a choice of bacon/veggie/combo garnish so is friendly to those who want or don’t want the bacon. I really liked how the bloody mary here has good kick to it!

Circa 33 brunch, Bloody Mary c.1921 with vodka, summer-spiced bloody blend, creole-salt rim and choice of bacon/veggie/combo garnish Circa 33 brunch, Bloody Mary c.1921 with vodka, summer-spiced bloody blend, creole-salt rim and choice of bacon/veggie/combo garnish

For the non-meat eater, you may have a hard time choosing from the vegan Kale Sprout Hash, Vegetarian Biscuits & Gravy, or the on trend Avocado ‘Toast’ that also is gluten-free because instead of bread they layer avocado, chili, smoked paprika, roasted garlic, and scallions on sage polenta ‘toast’.

I brought F along and he picked out the very generously portioned Cardamom French Toast with challah, Grand Marnier maple syrup, and fresh fruit. We both loved this dish, the portion is so generous we took it home and had it for a little breakfast the next day too.
Circa 33 brunch, Cardamom French Toast with challah, Grand Marnier maple syrup, fresh fruit

As an omnivore, the most popular dish for brunch is the Circa Benedict with a base of housemade biscuit, topped with coppa, poached eggs, béarnaise, and served with a side of house potatoes.
Circa 33 brunch dish of Circa Benedict with housemade biscuit, coppa, poached eggs, béarnaise, house potatoes Circa 33 brunch dish of Circa Benedict with housemade biscuit, coppa, poached eggs, béarnaise, house potatoes

You’ll also find pub favorites as part of their brunch menu, as well as their regular food menu, with comfort food like a Fried Chicken Sandwich with bacon, rosemary honey, baby kale, gochujang mayo on ciabatta, or Vegan Burger with housemade butternut squash & apple patty, or Blue Cheese Nachos with smoked blue cheese with optional add-ons of meat (like bacon!).
Circa 33 Blue Cheese Nachos with smoked blue cheese potato chips and optional add-ons (not here) of meat like bacon or chicken Circa 33 Blue Cheese Nachos with smoked blue cheese potato chips and optional add-ons (not here) of meat like bacon or chicken

There’s even more on their regular food menu, offered from happy hour at 4 PM to late, from small to large plates, with a variety to accommodate any diet.

Circa 33 menus.

Coming up soon on February 17 is their annual Prohibition Party featuring food and drink from the 1930s era and live music, and the speakeasy will be swinging. You can make sure you get into the 7th year of this shindig via Eventbrite to pay your $10 cover benefiting the Sunnyside Elementary SMART Program.
Circa 33 7th annual Prohibition Party

During a recent media visit (though I’ve visited before that, and returned after on my own dime) for brunch, I was able to see the speakeasy, so here are a few photos to tease and encourage you to visit on Friday and Saturday evenings – look for the light to be on, and find out the code for the handle behind a special book…
Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code Circa 33 interior during the day. Circa 33 is a Prohibition-themed cocktail bar and on Fri Sat boasts a hidden speakeasy - look for the light to be on - and you can enter past a bookcase door with a special code

Have you been to Circa 33 before, or any speakeasy? Are you planning on attending a Prohibition party? What’s your favorite spot for brunch that has plenty of options for non-meat eaters?

Circa 33 Happy Hour cocktail The Coach with light and dark rum, apple, lime, cinnamon, black walnut and Angostura bitters. Circa 33 Blue Cheese Nachos with smoked blue cheese potato chips and optional add-ons (not here) of meat like bacon or chicken

Circa 33 Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Some of the photos above are from a media sponsored visit that paid for part of what you see, and others are from visits where I paid for it myself. I will always provide my honest opinion and assessment of all products and experiences I may be given. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own.

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Comments

  1. I was supposed to have brunch here a few weeks ago but travel plans changed. This makes me want to make up for that and head in for brunch soon! What a cool looking spot! I need the fried chicken sandwich.

  2. I haven’t been to this place in a couple of years and your photos reminded me of how cool it is! I’m going to check it out again next time I am over in SE Portland.

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