We don’t go to brunch very often and when we do, we usually stick to either Shango or Trattoria Aroma (on Bryant). We’ve heard some good things about Black Rock Kitchen & Bar’s brunch menu and thought we’d give it a shot. It’s been a while since we’ve been to Black Rock, and we have been long over due to update our initial review from 2011. When we first visited the restaurant had only been open for a couple weeks and our pictures were rough, so we decided to revisit the Amherst Street restaurant on a Sunday afternoon.
When we walked inside the restaurant it was very relaxed and we realized our reservations for 2pm were definitely not required. There was a table of women who were definitely enjoying their Sunday Funday but everyone else was quietly enjoying their food. The restaurant itself is very nice inside; I really like everything about the design. The bar set up, elevated tables and lighting fixtures all create a very hip vibe that bring a wide variety of customers to the Black Rock area.
After looking over the menu, we decided to start our meal with some donuts. The menu didn’t specify which types of donuts but we weren’t worried. The order had five donuts and each one was different; peanut coated, glazed, cinnamon sugar, chocolate filled and powdered sugar. They were warm and came out within minutes. Some were better then others but the chocolate filled donut was awesome and I wish I could have ordered just five of those. We took home a second order.
Our main entrees were a little less exciting. Alli opted for the BELT (bacon, egg, lettuce, tomato) on a bagel while I ordered their sausage and egg on a cheddar biscuit. Alli enjoyed some parts of the dish, the thick cut bacon was nice and peppery and the fried egg was runny. Unfortunately, the bagel itself was pretty stale, which was a bummer. My sausage and biscuit was also a disappointment. The cheese that was melted on the sausage looked like it had been there a while and had lost any ‘gooey’-ness. The biscuit was a little rough too, the texture was too dry and the entire thing crumbled apart as I tried to eat the sandwich. I gave up in the end and just used a fork and knife. Home fries were served as sides for both of our dishes and were actually the highlight of the meals. They were seasoned well, topped with some green onion and had large grilled pieces of red onion mixed in.
All of our food came out to the table in record time; I think we ate everything and left within 30 minutes. I understand the restaurant wasn’t very busy, but some of the food tasted like it had been pre-prepared or had been sitting out for a while before we ordered. We know enough people who swear by Black Rock’s brunch that makes me want to give them a second shot in the future, but it was still a bummer. I’d rather go back for dinner and grab a couple beers off their impressive bottle and draft selection and maybe a small plate or two. That said, there was nothing about our brunch experience that would persuade me from getting a better meal at Shango/Aroma or a much cheaper meal at Nick’s Place across the street.