When was the last time you had a great meal at a restaurant with a view, or in a picturesque location?
I would have said the same thing until we had the best brunch ever at a restaurant with a beautiful view.
Brunch is often the ugly step-sister of restaurants and if that was the case at the Roundhouse, OMG, I can’t wait to try dinner! As a matter of fact, we were almost tempted to linger at our table until dinner.
We decided to go with the prix fixe brunch—three courses at $28.
There were lots of interesting choices on both sides (prix fixe or à la carte) of the menu. Two of us decided on the cucumber “gazpacho” to start and Frank went with the “sausage and eggs”.
A ladle of pale green gazpacho was poured over a nice-sized mound of peekytoe crab salad. It was cool and delicious, with the sweetness of the crab offsetting the slightly spiced cucumber “gazpacho.” Pickled stems, very thinly sliced croutons and dill made this a dish to remember.
It was repeated throughout the meal—a contrast of tastes and textures, enhancing and elevating even the most common brunch dishes.
I’m not generally a runny egg person, so I picked around Frank’s 65° egg (perfectly poached) and went for the sausage—a nice house-made chorizo and the shards of toast. All good.
For a main course, Frank went with more eggs, this time eggs Benedict, served with a thick slab of pork belly on a slice of their sourdough bread. It was about as perfect a Hollandaise sauce as I’ve ever had in a restaurant!
I had the Vietnamese rice bowl, a mélange of grilled chicken thighs with baby bok choy, shitake mushrooms, cilantro and Thai basil served in a bowl of jasmine rice with a slightly spicy sauce. Delicious and just what I felt like eating.
Lynne had the brioche French toast with roasted honeycrisp apples, maple syrup and a delicious blob of what turned out to be cinnamon-maple crème fraiche. Even Frank, not generally a French toast guy, thought it was great.
Believe it or not, we managed to find room for dessert.
Frank had the apple gateau, which was made of at least twenty thin slices of apples cooked together and formed into a slab. With it was an amazing whey caramel ice cream and a walnut crumble for crunch.
Since he had the apple, I went for the lemon diplomat. Two thin disks of cookie held a lemon puree. Three meringue dots added some sweetness, while candied bits of black olives and a basil oil added a savory contrast. A tasty mix of savory and sweet, tartness and texture.
Lynne opted for vanilla ice cream, creamy and resting on a cookie disk. Definitely not plain vanilla.
The house sent over a pineapple panna cotta which may have been a special as it wasn’t on any of the menus we saw. Thin ribbons of pineapple (note to self, next time serving pineapple, hit it with a peeler) mixed with the panna cotta, some pomegranate and a cookie crunch. A great surprise were three leaves of cilantro that had been candied—a lovely touch.
While all the food was just amazing and we lingered, not wanting it to end, the service was terrific. Our server, Sarah, had answers to all our questions and made great recommendations. Kate, the manager, filled us in on why the servers were so knowledgeable—her sixty-one-point menu questionnaire!
A second brunch visit had some additional menu items, such as a grilled octopus appetizer with chorizio bread crumbs (tasted great, but the octopus was a little chewy) and skate with a panzanella salad as a main course (perfect summer food).
This time Frank had the baked (“what’s the difference between roasted and baked?”) beets with ricotta, which he said was a nice change from the usual beet and goat cheese combo and the Roundhouse Burger.
There was a fabulous chocolate dessert that I had mostly to myself (hehehe).
Oh, and yes, the view is still spectacular, but this time not as spectacular as the food.
We can’t wait to go back—next time for dinner!