February 5, 2023
Ithaca, NY | 24°F

Life & Culture

Brunch spot mixes sweet and savory

When walking on The Commons midmorning on a Saturday, it is not uncommon to see a long line weaving its way out from one of the most popular breakfast locations in Ithaca — Waffle Frolic. 

For nine years, the restaurant has offered a variety of sweet and savory waffle combinations. Even better yet, the restaurant was founded by two Ithaca College students, so it has a strong tie to the college. Waffle Frolic is open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends and from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays. 

Although it is a bit pricey for breakfast, and the wait can be long, the second that the perfect mix of toppings and waffle hits the taste buds, all else is forgotten. The food is great, but, because of the price, Waffle Frolic is more of a treat than a weekly destination. 

If you tend to be more of a sweets person, Mr. Popular should be your first choice. Mr. Popular is a waffle drizzled with Nutella, covered with strawberries and topped with whipped cream. A single Mr. Popular waffle is $7.50, and a double is $10. The waffles here are substantial enough to withstand a plethora of toppings and soft enough to melt in the mouth. For others, the right choice might be a savory waffle, like the restaurant’s signature Fried Chicken and Waffles. 

The Elvis is an option for peanut butter lovers. The waffle is topped with real peanut butter and an added fried banana, which makes for a mouthwatering combination. The peanut butter caramelizes the banana to make for a quality topping. Although the whipped cream on top is most likely from a can, it has just the right amount of sweetness. 

Be careful with portions. A single waffle can be just right, but the double waffle should be reserved to quench an unreasonable hunger. Waffle Frolic definitely does not skimp on the portions. 

The restaurant recently adopted a new system for notifying customers that their order is ready. Previously, the restaurant called out the customer’s name on a loudspeaker. For the secondfloor diners, this call was often hard to hear. Now, Waffle Frolic has adopted buzzers that customers can bring to their tables. The restaurant is a little late on this adoption, but it is a perfect solution for such a busy locale. 

The restaurant is also keeping up with recent trends to become more environmentally friendly. Plates and silverware are all reusable rather than single-use plastics, which is not usually the norm for eateries where food is picked up rather than served. 

The wait for a waffle can be long during the restaurant’s popular times, and it can take over 45 minutes until you can cut into a waffle topped with eggs and bacon. However, there is just enough egg to fully cover the waffle and the bacon is perfectly crisp. A single waffle costs $8, with a double costing $10.

Pair a cup of hot chocolate with a savory waffle to be completely satisfied. For coffee drinkers, the coffee is not out of the ordinary in its taste. It has some fruity notes, but it is not outstanding. 

Each of the waffles is served with a side of syrup, but try ordering a side of honey instead to spice or sweeten things up.

Waffle Frolic is a top choice for all breakfast and brunch needs, especially if you are craving a sweet way to start your morning.


Ashley Stalnecker can be reached at astalnecker@ithaca.edu or via Twitter: @Ashley_Stal