Penny Cluse: a breakfast heaven

Ella Webster, Staff Writer

When I stepped into Penny Cluse during the bustling Sunday brunch rush, I was immediately hit with the aromas of a classic American breakfast.

The scents of sizzling bacon, pancakes dripping with Vermont maple syrup and eggs fresh off of the griddle welcomed me.

The popular breakfast spot, nestled on 169 Cherry St., just celebrated its 20 year anniversary.

Penny Cluse is a quaint but cozy Burlington gem, open 6:45 a.m.-3 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m.-3 p.m. weekends. 

Penny Cluse gives off serious mom and pop diner vibes, all while exuding modernism—the walls are speckled with eye-catching paintings for sale.

Large windows stream sunlight onto cheery breakfast goers as they sip Speeder & Earl’s coffee through green-rimmed teacups.

Despite being open for only breakfast and lunch, Penny Cluse provides a diverse menu.

There are endless options here, from classic American breakfast staples like buttery pancakes, omelettes any way and sourdough french toast, to dishes like crispy fish tacos, huevos verdes and spicy chorizo and eggs.

The lunch menu brings fresh salads and sandwiches to the table.

Try an item like the marinated tofu salad or the Orb Weaver Vermont Farmhouse Cheese Sandwich with crispy lettuce, tomato, mayo and a tart cranberry relish.

Classics like biscuits and gravy get a modern take in “The Penny Cluse:” flaky biscuits served with eggs smothered in herb cream gravy.

The expansive menu caters to vegetarians, vegans and meat-eaters alike.

Tofu scramble acts as a replacement for classic egg dishes, and the sauteed vegetable reuben on butter-griddled rye covered in swiss is a great alternative to the original pastrami.

Whether you opt to chat over a Bucket-o-Spuds — a heaping mound of home fries with melted cheese, salsa, sour cream and green onions — or sip coffee with pals, Penny Cluse is a rustic home away from home, right in the heart of  Burlington and just off of bustling Church Street.

Although wait times can be lengthy since Penny Cluse does not take reservations, their breakfast is absolutely worth it. Stick it out in the long line and you won’t regret it.