"Understatement" is the best one-word description of all the items on the menu at Common Bond, the Montrose bakery-cafe that initially won over the hearts of Houstonians with its elegant yet accessible renditions of classic European pastries.
Those able to distract themselves long enough from Common Bond’s sweet dainties—brioche, kugelhopf and pain au chocolat among them—find more pleasures in their savory matutinal dishes such as soft scrambled eggs dusted with herbs and Parmesan or a caramelized, onion-stuffed bialy served with a generous dollop of cream cheese. Linger on through lunch and you will be faced with another côterie of delicate and delectable options, described in minimalist terms that belie their sophistication.
Case in point, the grilled cheese, which has come in various forms during Common Bond’s short history, including manifestations involving provolone or mozzarella, pain de mie or sourdough. The current version is perhaps the most excellent to date: in between two thickly-cut slices of white country loaf lies a hefty layer of nutty raclette cheese topped with roasted squash and mushrooms. In perfect balance with the rich cheese and earthy vegetable flavors is a final schmear of sweet apple butter. It’s the perfect autumnal pick-me-up lunch during Houston’s “winter”—which by most any definition is really fall anyway.