Gizi Chocolate, Wine and Cheese in LIC launches new brunch menu

Photos by Bradley Hawks


“When my wife and I first started hanging out, we ate nothing but cheese for almost three months,” says Armin Mrkanovic, owner of Gizi Chocolate, Wine, & Cheese. A gifted ballerina, it seemed that his wife, Mona, had only one vice—cheese. Wine and chocolate came in at a close second place, so when the two decided to open a restaurant on Vernon Boulevard, fondue, chocolate, cheese and wine seemed the only natural theme for the duo. “We were best friends for seven years,” recalls Mrkanovic, “and one day she sat me down and told me she loved me.” The rest is history.

Make no mistake—these two take ridiculous care of their bodies. He was born in Bosnia and raised in Germany, while she is Persian—and between training at the gym and her background as a dancer, the two miraculously maintain peak physical form while serving cheeseboards, charcuterie and Jacques Torres truffles (which are delivered every couple of days).

Boasting a selection of nearly 40 cheeses, two decadent fondue options and a variety of plates intended for sharing, Gizi just launched a brunch menu. Waffles arrive topped with mixed berries and maple syrup. Grilled cheese is served both savory and sweet, with fillings ranging from pesto and roasted peppers to shredded mozzarella with dark chocolate and raspberries on buttery toasted house bread. Seven flatbreads and seven frittatas round out the brunch menu.

“Our classic grilled cheese is probably the most popular in the evening,” Mrkanovic says, “along with the burrata and peaches.” One bite of the toasted secret three-cheese blend, and there is no question this place is offering something special. But that’s what is to be expected when you build a restaurant based on love.

The name is even an expression of love. “Gizi is the nickname for our teacup Chihuahua, Gizmo,” Mrkanovic says as he pulls out his phone to proudly show pictures. There is undeniably a lot of love here.

Guests will fall in love with the dark, romantic, antique décor and even more so with the wine specials. Between 4 and 7 p.m., you can order a flatbread and a glass of wine for just $15, or a glass of wine for only $6.

A handsome menu from a beautiful couple served at attractive prices—now that’s a reason to fall in love.


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