Beyond Brunch

A Sunday-morning jaunt around the Mediterranean

Many believe brunch requires a dousing of syrup. We would like to change your mind.

Save for two conciliatory offerings, cannoli and pannettone French toast, the new Sunday-morning meal at Autre Monde Café is a salty affair. Inspired by flavors from the countries that ring the Mediterranean, it's a journey into savory territory–and to the nearby suburb of Berwyn–well worth taking.

On a traffic-free weekend, it's a short ride to the restaurant, which sits south of Oak Park. Settle in with hibiscus-tinged Kashmiri chai ($4) served in an ornate Moroccan tea glass, or The Persephone, a lightly sweet cocktail of Clementine juice, cardamom-rose syrup and tequila ($10).

Then, on to the substance: One cazuela (clay casserole) is Italian-inspired, with eggs poached in San Marzano tomatoes, to be spooned over polenta (pictured; $10). The poached eggs, potatoes, onions and chorizo ($12) of the other cazuela reference Spain, where chefs Beth Partridge and Dan Pancake once lived. Olive-oil-fried eggs have impeccably soft yolks, which run over speck, arugula and grilled bread ($11).

Supplement an eggy feast with sautéed spinach and chickpeas ($5), or a round of burrata ($10) garnished with eggs of another sort: caviar.

Autre Monde Café, 6727 Roosevelt Rd., Berwyn; 708-775-8122 or autremondecafe.net