Hubby and I have watched this corner of New Albany transform into a new dining establishment over the last few months, but had yet to try Brooklyn and The Butcher out until we saw they were starting to serve brunch this weekend.
We walked into the beautifully rehabbed building greeted by an entry lobby full of light with a contemporary and neutral decor. All around were quaint little touches that tried to channel a little vintage flair, such as the key rack behind the hostess desk which served as a nod to the building’s history as a hotel. It was pretty quiet when we came in a little before noon so we were seated right away. From our booth I could see right into the kitchen so I was entertained by watching the line calmly assemble dishes. There were also some other references to the butcher name on the walls, a cleaver and apron hung on a hook near the kitchen and an assortment of turn of the century photos.
We had already looked over the menu at home, but I was still debating what drinks to try when we settled on the Julep and Mimosa Bar. Our visit accross the establishment to the bar to concoct our own cocktails, also came with complimentary commemorative derby glasses. Both great and terrible for the indecisive the julep and Mimosa bar offered a variety of liquors, herbs, and fruit purees to customize your beverage with. I had never tried a julep before so I asked the bartender for some basic recommendations to get me started. I ended up with a little peach puree, Old Forrester, simple syrup and a bit of mint all of which was a wonderfully light and refreshing.Hubby got a simple little strawberry mimosa, that was pleasant if a little sweet. I really enjoyed easing into my morning with this lovely drink though next time I might have to go with their tasty sounding Bloody Mary.
For as quiet as it was it the food service did seem a bit slow, but between reading the interesting names of derby winners on our glasses and watching the kitchen staff we were able to pass the time. When the food arrived we were excited to dig in.
My Shortrib Roesti looked lovely and tasty, generally the taste lived up to the look. The shortribs were beautifully tender, each chunk just falling apart, and full of delicious umami flavor. Some of the other elements lagged a bit behind them though. The potatoes though adequately cooked to a nice soft consistency, would have better complemented the other parts if they had been prepared to a more golden, crisp finish to add some contrast. The mushrooms and asparagus were also fine, but didn’t necessarily add much to the dish. I could see where the combination was going, but richness of the dish craved some balance, so I was a bit disappointed.
Hubby got The Croque which was a wonderfully delicious mess. The waffle bun was a lovely crunchy yet soft vehicle for the variety of scrumptious interior elements, which sadly gushed everywhere with each bite. The roasted potatoes that came as a side were also pretty crunchy and yummy, but were made better by the surprising maple aioli. Our server was kind enough to bring two containers of the aioli when he realized they were left off the plate.
Hubby and I also shared the Omelet of the Day, which was nicely prepared and filled with spinach, goat cheese and mushroom. We both thought it was fine, but were mostly happy to have some extra potatoes.I’m not sure the roasted pepper added much to the potatoes, but they were seasoned well enough on their own. I kind of wish I had given the pastry plate a try instead. Oh well, live and learn.
Overall it was a decent first experience for a brand new brunch spot. There are certainly areas that could be improved upon, but I think Brooklyn and The Butcher is at a good starting place with its opening weekend for brunch. In a few months I’m sure it will be great.
Hope you enjoyed this week’s post, I’ll be taking off next week due to some time consuming work engagements. I hope you all don’t mind missing my ramblings for a couple weeks. Until next time keep eating and drinking well in good company.
Today’s featured brunch: Brooklyn and The Butcher, 148 E Market St, New Albany, IN 47150