after dinner sneeze

a lot of g says, t says

supper’s brunch disappoints [despite a big dog]

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t says:  adsz likes Supper’s brunch, having recommended it in the past as a great place to go for Saturday brunch, as our perennial brunch favorite (i.e. Cochon) is closed on Saturdays.  Having a hankering for some red velvet waffles, we went again.  Here’s how it went down.

November 2011, Sunday Brunch, Party of 2.  g and I strolled in and confirmed our opentable reservation (another 100 pts!  yes!).  We were seated within 60 seconds and had our heads in menus in another 5.  Exxxxxcellent.  The menu had some new sweet breakfast items that I had to choose between: Pumpkin Pie French Toast and Gingerbread Pancakes.  Feeling in the mood for some pumpkin pie in breakfast form, I opted for the French Toast:

pumpkin pie french toast = pie crust + spiced sour cream + chunks-o-pumpkin

The dish came out and I was ecstatic.  It looks awesome, right?  Sure did!  Unfortunately, something about it just didn’t deliver.  The spiced cream was very subtle – mostly because my brain kept wanting it to taste like pumpkin, but it didn’t (that’s probably my brain’s fault).  The pumpkin, itself, didn’t really have much oomph to it, either, adding more of a textural element than any real “pumpkin”.  And the pie crust was just that: pie crust.  Actually, the crust crumbles were a little on the anemic side – more like the pie crust on the bottom of a piece of Pumpkin pie and not that fluted edges that get brown and tasty.  So basically, I was left with the French toast as the main harbinger of flavor (with maple syrup, of course).  Normally, that’d be ok, as I’m a sucker for egg-dipped bread.  In this situation, however, the bread, while browned to perfection, suffered from the same fate that Distrito’s French toast had in the past: too heavy/oily/fatty.  It’s the kind of thing that you bite into and immediately react, “whoa, that’s rich” … which is surprising because it’s not a piece of PORK BELLY or chocolate cake – it’s French toast!  It’s most certainly a side effect of the cooking process and likely intentional – some will love it and some will hate it.  After the first bite, I kind of hated it.  To illustrate just how overwhelming this sensation was, I only finished one of the slabs, and the other one I opted to not take home (and I normally take everything home).  Yea, that’s some serious aversion.  So in the end, what I had was some exceedingly unctuous French toast but not a a single thing to take the edge off of the richness (n.b. the toast, itself, didn’t really bring much to the table – it was more like a vehicle for fried-ness).  Damn.

g went for the chilaquiles navidad, fondly remembering the chilaquiles from San Francisco’s Ferry Building Market.  Supper’s rendition was a bit more, shall we say, “refined”.

chilaquiles navidad = eggs + tortilla + red salsa + green salsa + chorizo

I want to say first and foremost that these were not bad, as g did get around to eating the entirety of her plate.  That said, these did not quite live up to her memories and were certainly not worth the $14.  The problem list is long.  The chorizo was cold (i.e. cooler than room temperature), which is a big error.  Neither of the salsas were as cooked down or as deep as she was expecting – but they weren’t fresh and zingy, either.  g takes the mic:  It’s like they put together some Mexican ingredients, but it didn’t really have that punchy flavor that they had in San Francisco.  t yanks the cord to steal the mic back:  My question – why serve the cilantro with stems?  I mean, maybe I’m just a sissy, but I don’t like trying to chew stems.  That’s the second time they’ve done this, so maybe it’s their style: no sissies allowed.

g and I also shared that Supper Dog.  We loved their Supper Burger, so we figured the Supper Dog would be a smashing success as well.

supper dog = PORK SHOULDER dog + BACON + bbq onions + sauerkraut + bun + fried pickles

I have to confess that this dish looks a little ridiculous.  It’s clear that it’s composition is for wow-factor moreso than practicality.  Seeing no way that I’d be able to distribute the bread to the unclad parts of dog, I was forced to attack this thing with a fork and knife.  As far as taste goes, g was particularly surprised with how “hot doggy” the hot dog tasted, and I guess I was as well.  It’s like you’d imagine it would taste like straight-up PORK, but there’s no mistaking that the inspiration was indeed “hot dog”.  sr would have been proud.  But that’s where the similarities end, because no hot dog tastes this good (it had a meatier, sweeter taste to it).  Couple the dog with those bbq onions and I was in heaven.  The sauerkraut and BACON, on the other hand, were a bit superfluous, as I would have easily traded in either/both for more of those onions for my dog.  I’m normally not one to turn down BACON, but, as usual when bacon wraps things, the side touching the bacon (i.e. not exposed to heat) wasn’t texturally pleasing, coming across very chewy/slimy/unappetizing.  The sour and delicately fried pickles were a great way to reset the palate, while the aioli really didn’t do anything for me, so I skipped it.   The bread, let’s face it, was unnecessarily fussy; give me a softer bun that actually promotes the use of my hands instead of a fork and knife and I would have written a title of, “Supper’s Super Dog Saves Brunch!”.  So I guess what I’m trying to say is that the dish was a little “too much”; “over-accessorized” is what g would say – but there’s something here for sure.

In conclusion, I’m a little disappointed in this brunch, overall.  Actually, maybe I’m more than a “little disappointed” – I am going to have to remove Supper as our Saturday choice for brunch.  Sorry guys.  On one hand, I feel bad about it because the proprietors seem like such nice, hard-working people.  Then again, I’ve also heard that they claim to have “started” the farm-to-table concept in Philly.  While I’m not Philly-food-historian, I think that may be a bit untrue.  While I don’t know exactly who “started it”, I’m pretty sure that White Dog Cafe has at least been doing it longer, having had its roots from even before Fork opened its doors.  Be that as it may, we’ll be back around to Supper eventually to give its brunch another go.  In the meantime, stay tuned for the brunch spot that will take Supper’s spot on our “gold standards” list.

Written by afterdinnersneeze

29 November 2011 at 3:46pm

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