Root & Bone
I searched but didn't find a thread or much at all related to Root & Bone, so I thought I'd do a quick post about my great brunch there last week.
I went to the sister restaurant, Yardbird, in Miami a few years ago and loved it. I was thrilled that a similar restaurant would be opening here. So I gathered up some friends and headed over for brunch.
We got there a couple minutes before they opened at 11 and there were already about 10 people in front of us. They won't seat you until your whole party is there so we had to wait for someone who was delayed. Because of that, there were no tables left but the four of us sat at the counter seats next to each other. It wasn't ideal for sharing, but at least we didn't have to wait.
We shared a ton of things and almost everything was great. Seemingly simple things are embellished in very creative ways without taking away from the integrity of the dishes. For example, the cornbread is served with clotted cream and delicious preserves. Delicious on its own, the cornbread was even better with the toppings. Same went for the airy biscuits-- almost textbook perfect on their own, but elevated to another level dipped in the chicken jus and sesame seeds. The salad was a gorgeous array of seasonal veggies including a rainbow of neon peppery radishes.
We also ordered the mac and cheese, waffle fries, two chicken and waffle sandwich orders (total of 4 mini ones), and the waffles benedict. I'm not a huge fried chicken person but it was tasty (my fried chicken obsessed friend said it was close to perfect in her eyes). Not too greasy and the coating was crispy and flavorful. I preferred taking apart the sandwich and eating the components separately-- especially with the addition of the suggested (amazing) syrup it just ended up falling apart and was too difficult to eat. The waffles are really too delicate to be used as bread. The waffles benedict I loved-- the combination of the waffle and egg with the syrup on top was over the top rich and delicious. Mac and cheese came out gooey and cheesy with a really nice crunchy crumb topping. The fries I could have done without but I liked the remoulade.
We had the ice cream sandwich and the banana bread for dessert. The best part of either dessert was the strawberry ice cream sandwiched between the fresh baked chocolate chip cookies. I've been making an embarrassingly large amount of homemade ice cream this summer and I neeeeeed this ice cream recipe. Unbelievable. I'm not really into banana desserts but my friends liked it.
Cocktails were somewhat forgettable and the beer list is not great.
Our server was really, really friendly and chatty (in a good way) and all the hosts and bussers were friendly too. It got very crowded and there is not much aisle room for passing. Our waitress said the only time the crowds die down is really late at night, like 11, so keep that in mind.
We had a really great time and enjoyed our meal here as much if not more than Yardbird (probably more because with four of us we were able to try so much of the menu). Can't wait to go back...
Despite hearing about ridiculous waits getting into this place for dinner (although a Saturday night the week before Labor Day is hardly indicative), we were out for a pre-dinner walk, and since we were passing by, I stepped in to check on the wait - we could've had counter seats instantly - and I was quoted 30 minutes for a table. Fine - gave my number and popped into a dive bar across the street, where I had barely finished 1/2 a Guiness before my phone rang; since it was 2 for 1 drinks, I told them to give my seats to the next people on the list, move me down one, and call me again. 5 minutes later - the phone rang, I had finished 2 Guinesses and we were off to the races.
We ordered "lightly"; my wife enjoyed her filthy Manhattan just fine - at $12, a veritable bargain (and made with WT 101 - which is $40 a bottle stuff at retail). We shared and liked the peach caprese salad, my only complaint being that the peaches were not as delicious as the peaches we've been eating all summer; however, it's very difficult to grill a fully ripe, juicy peach, so I can understand why they have to use peaches that aren't totally soft - they'll just turn into mush on the grill.
We had both the shrimp and grits and 1/2 a fried chicken, along with a side of mac 'n cheese. Everything was kinda good...in that bad for you way. My shrimp were cooked just right and I love grits and I love country ham, so what's not to like there? Delicious. The fried chicken was crisp and juicy, but I think it would be that much better without all the lemon flavor that comes from some sort of dusting with lemon powder prior to hitting the fryolator. My least favorite dish was the man 'n cheese - though Sig Eater really like the topping. I think I like my mac ' cheese less Southern, if that makes sense. Portions are not skimpy on anything.
We ordered no dessert because I still have homemade ice-cream in the freezer at home (vanilla rum with chocolate chips).
As to the crowd - a mix. There are plenty of Top Chef acolytes; that is, people taking pictures of the chefs, 'cause they're famous! - even from outside the window. Looked like some neighborhood types as well as, you know, screeching girls out on a Saturday night.
And guess who served us our mains? Janine! Working her ass off, as a matter of fact. I'd return and want to try more of the menu. Bill was reasonable at under $120 before tip (including cocktail and 3 glasses of wine).