Located on Manhattan's Upper West Side, Kirsh Bakery and Kitchen is a true bakery. You can smell the fresh German-style breads and pastries, including danishes and kougelopfs, that are baked in-house every day when you step into the clean, white-tiled storefront. But Kirsh's homemade milk bread is the star of one of the restaurant's most beloved brunch dishes: French toast. The dish is so popular that the restaurant goes through 80 or 90 loaves of the milk bread every single weekend. "And it's a big loaf," notes Dan Kirsh, who owns and operates the restaurant and bakery with his wife Anat. "Almost three times the size of a regular loaf."
There are the sweet French toasts, served with cinnamon and pear, mascarpone cream and mixed berry jam, or chocolate and peanut butter. But Kirsh's savory French toasts are the real standouts on the brunch menu. The lox French toast with crème fraîche is popular, but our favorite is the thick-cut slice of French toast topped with bacon, Swiss cheese, and a fried egg. The milk bread gives the French toast the perfect texture to hold up to the yolk, the melted cheese, and the dairy richness. We visited Chef Kirsh at his eponymous restaurant and bakery to learn how to make this savory-sweet brunch dish.