Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Recent Eats

Brunch at Char No. 4

Char No. 4 adds a twinkle of Southern charm to Smith Street in Brooklyn. They've got the biscuits and gravy and the grits on the menu. And several "house smoked" items on there as well. It all added up to a more interesting brunch menu than most.

Smoked &fried pork nuggets with Char No. 4 hot sauce
The innards
When I think of nuggets, I think of solid chunks of meat that make you aware of why you need teeth. But these nuggets were filled with ground up pork, tender and subtle. But it was perhaps because of that that the fried taste overwhelmed them a bit, despite a light breading. The special sauce had a nice kick; it was like a slightly sweet Tabasco sauce, mixed with chili seeds and maybe some honey.

Beef brisket hash
There were a few specials and this was one of them. It was not my dining companion's first choice, although her eyes did light up at the sound of it. When the waitress informed us that the beef brisket sandwich was not available for brunch and when we opted for this instead, she said she thought this was what my dining companion really wanted anyway. There were two glowing eggs perched atop three beef brisket hash cakes served on top of a lightly creamy sauce dotted with mustard seeds.

Unfortunately we both felt the texture was off. The brisket had been mashed into the potatoes giving it the feel of refried beans. My dining companion was disappointed because she would've preferred a chunkier hash. And for me, if I'm eating meat, I'd rather be able to tell that I'm eating meat.

House made parmesan chicken sausage with bacon gravy, biscuit & egg sunnyside up
This dish was much more successful. The sausage went really well with the shreds of parmesan that coated it. The biscuit, hidden under the egg and shaped more like a mini poundcake, was buttery and delicious and the chunky white gravy was hearty.

Post brunch we headed to the Brooklyn Lyceum for the Spring Food and Craft Fair, where lots of great local vendors had samples of their goodies. The hot weather made the sparkling sodas from P&H Soda a good first purchase. I went with lime while my dining companion opted for hibiscus. They tasted natural and not overly syrupy.

I'd been reading a lot about a new ice cream delivery company called MilkMade. You can sign up for a subscription and every month, you'll receive a pint of their creative concoction, but for quite a price — $20 ($15 if you choose to pick it up). I'm a sucker for interesting flavor combinations, but I was excited to be able to sample here for cheaper. They had two flavors: Lavender Honey Granola and Mint Chocolate Brownie. We decided to go for the Lavender Honey Granola in the form of an ice cream sandwich. It was so good I didn't manage to get a photo before we'd eaten most of it. But the ice cream was just slightly flowery but smooth and rich. The buttery cookies were fresh and homemade. I'm definitely looking forward to trying more of their flavors when they make appearances at other local markets. And maybe one of these days I'll give in and go for the monthly delivery.

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