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Brunch at the Chef’s Table at Joseph Leonard’s

July 24, 2012

Ever since that amazing dinner at Joseph Leonard in April, I had been dying to go back for brunch.  Turned off by the prospect of a line, it took me almost three months before visiting this little endearing establishment one July Saturday afternoon.  Luckily, by 2PM coupled with summers in the city, there was barely a wait before two seats by the kitchen opened up.  They cutely dubbed the two cozy counter seats tucked in the back of the restaurant that overlooked the kitchen the chef’s table.  When we sat down, the kitchen was in full swing as the chef and the cooks danced to the 90s tunes that filled the restaurant.

For some reason, we can never resist ordering toast with butter and jam, no matter where we go.  This particular one was not as memorable as some of the other dishes on the menu.

This bowl of the brussel sprouts, for example, left a much deeper impression on our minds as well as tongues.  Instead of roasting it whole, these were shredded into short ribbons and sauteed until tender.  Finished off with a flourish of Sriracha, these were gone in two seconds flat as we dove in with forks sharpened.

 

For those of you who are in the mood for a side dish that’s a bit more traditional, the country fried bacon will satisfy the cravings.  The slices were thick and coated in a crispy crunchy crust and topped off with a honey and tabasco drizzle.  The spicy and sweet mixture made these incredibly addicting.

 

Being a sausage guy, MD went with the maple sausage plate with English muffin, cheddar, scallion and two fried eggs.  The ingredients were all so simple but well executed.  The juicy pork sausage patties were just the thick and firm and eaten all in one bite tasted like the best sausage egg muffin sandwich, all grown up.

 

As for me, after closely observing the kitchen staff work in perfect harmony and unison to churn out dish after dish, I became mesmerized by the special of the day, a bowl of maple sherry cured salmon, with old bay biscuits, roasted corn and asparagus creme fraiche and two poached eggs.  If this sounds like a a lot in one bowl, it kind of was.  But it also worked so well in my mouth.  The maple cured salmon was surprisingly mild and cut into cubs instead of thin slices of salty smoked salmon that I was expecting.  The creme fraiche along with the corn and asparagus made a wonderful sauce, binding a bite of the biscuit with the egg and salmon.

The portions here are not small but we were able to polish off everything that was put in front of us.  That’s the problem with great food.  I have so very little self-control when it comes to amazing flavors.  Next time I am wandering around the village for a brunch spot, I will know that I can count on Joseph Leonard for beautiful brussel sprouts, crunchy country fried bacon and whatever delicious combination that the kitchen decides to create that day.

Joseph Leonard | 170 Waverly Place, New York, NY 10014 | http://josephleonard.com

 

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