Brunch at The Biltmore Bar and Grill

I am not really in the business of doing restaurant reviews. This is a recipe blog, after all. But I am going to make an exception and let me tell you why. I was fortunate enough to win a place at the table with the Boston Brunchers a few weekends ago and it was a glorious experience. This is a group run by Renee of EatLiveBlog, and she chooses a different restaurant each month for local area bloggers to do brunch and test out the menu. Let me be honest, I was getting a free meal. You might think that makes me feel obligated to do this review, but such is not the case. If I hadn’t enjoyed my experience, I’d likely just stay mum on the subject. If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all, right? However, I thoroughly enjoyed myself and it wasn’t just the amazing bloody marys talking.

Let me apologize for the mediocre pictures, first and foremost. They do not do the brunch justice at all. I was at the far end of the table, towards the dark part of the restaurant and I am not such an experienced photographer. Try as a might, I couldn’t find a way to adjust for the lighting and hold my camera still enough to not get blurry photos. What you see here is the best of the lot.

The meal was purported to be a “tasting menu”. And it was, if your definition of tasting is an almost full portion for every one of the five courses! But the food was so good, every one of us was hard-pressed to pace ourselves and not eat all of each course. By course number three, I was stuffed. But I managed to press on. We started off with mimosas and bloody marys. These were hands down the best blood marys I’ve ever had, lots of spicy horseradish and homemade pickles and pickled onions for garnish. Then came two courses that were not on the regular menu – a lobster frittata and a perfectly poached egg atop an herb biscuit. The frittata was good, the poached egg and biscuit was phenomenal! In some ways, my diabetes helped me out with this brunch, because I had a good reason to resist eating the whole of every course.

Next came the Biltmore’s version of pigs in a blanket – a homemade breakfast sausage rolled in a pancake, with their special apple maple syrup. I am usually not a fan of breakfast sausage, I prefer spicy italian sausages. But this was delicious and I ate every bite, without the pancake. Then came the best part of the whole meal, a dish that the Biltmore is known for, it’s fried chicken and waffles. To this girl born north of the 49th parallel, the two things seem like an unlikely combination. Except that they’re not. They’re awesome, at least when done by the Biltmore. The fried chicken was crispy and flavourful and the waffle, of which I only had a few bites, was the best I’d ever had. I’ve always loved waffles, they used to be my favourite thing to order at breakfast or brunch, so I think myself well versed in waffles. And this one was perfection. So crispy, so utterly perfect, it was VERY hard for me to restrain myself.

The final course was a parfait of berries, whipped cream and their homemade granola. After all the wonderful food, I could barely fit in a bite, but my impression was of a lovely crunchy granola and fresh berries. But really, if you go to the Biltmore, you would be cheating yourself if you chose this for brunch. Go for the chicken and waffle, go for the chicken and waffle! Or the pig in a blanket. Really, whatever you choose, you won’t be disappointed. The Biltmore makes so many of their items on premises, including the garnishes and condiments – the pickles, the hotsauce, the breakfast sausage, the granola…even the maple syrup! They care about the little details and it shows.

When I was growing up in Toronto, there was a commercial for a leather goods store in a town called Acton, and the tagline was “It’s worth the drive to Acton”, a phrase we repeated as kids all the time. The Biltmore Bar and Grill is in Newton, which is a bit of a hike from my neck of the woods and for many towns in the greater Boston area. But I will be heading back there and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Without question, the Biltmore Bar and Gril is worth the drive to Newton.

Biltmore Bar and Grill on Urbanspoon

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Comments

  1. I love BRUNCH! It's such a fun thing to do with friends on the weekend. I look forward to my brunches in NYC end of April.

    I think your pictures came out fine :)

    Thanks for sharing. YUM!

  2. Everything looks so exquisite and delicious!!!!! Lucky you!!!!!! I LOVE brunches…

  3. Parsley Sage says:

    Everything looks incredible. Yuuuuuuum. I love tasting menus that leave you in a food coma by course three. That's why I always bring my hollow leg :)

    Thanks for sharing!

  4. Kim - Liv Life says:

    We have a Biltmore in Santa Barbara where my husband took me to brunch shortly after we were married and the memory of just how wonderful it was has stayed with me over the years. Your brunch looks fantastic! Isn't it nice to have a meal that really makes an impact? I'm so glad you had a good time!! (Also glad that you wrote about it!!)

  5. In and Around Town says:

    Great Review – the food definitely looks worth the trip!

  6. Wonderfully written, and the pics are great!

  7. Lauren at Keep It Sweet says:

    That food looks amazing, no wonder you were full half-way through! I've never been to a brunch tasting menu but now I want to!

  8. Tastemonials says:

    This sounds SO good!!! I hope you didn't have to walk around the block 100 times to get your blood sugar back down to normal after all those carbs. But it looks like it would be worth it.

  9. Katrina {In Katrina's Kitchen} says:

    Wow! I'm so jealous! I want to be eating lunch with you all! How fun!!

  10. What a great idea..brunch with bloggers..wow! Looks like you had fun and food look amazing!

  11. Lauren@LittleYellowKitchen says:

    Despite the awkward lighting in restaurants for pics, you still made this brunch look fantastic. I've never been a fan of pigs in a blanket (maybe its the name?) but that version looks mighty tasty!

  12. Beloved Green says:

    I'd have a hard time picking a favorite part, but their version of pigs in a blanket sounds amazingly good.

  13. She's Cookin' says:

    It's tough taking pictures in restaurants, but you managed to convey how utterly delicious the Biltmore's brunch is! Chicken & Waffles is enjoying a "revival" and is currently a very trendy sweet/savory pairing out here, too. I've never been to the Biltmore, but when we come out to Boston this summer I hope to be able to day trip to Newton.

  14. Jill@MadAboutMacarons says:

    Gosh, what an amazing sounding menu. I would also have been stuffed after course 3 but good on you for "plodding on" ;-) your photos are better than you think… especially after the Bloody Mary and Mimosas… (just joking, heehe)..

  15. Leanna @ Raptortoe.com says:

    That poached egg on the biscuit honestly made my mouth water. There is NOTHING better than the simple things.

  16. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says:

    oh my… heaven! Yum yum. I love breakfast. I love brunch! It all looks and sounds so great.

  17. Brunch is already the best meal ever, and this looks like an awesome one. I could so use one of those Bloody Marys right now…

  18. Emily @ Life On Food says:

    I love brunch and have always wanted to try chicken and waffles. The pictures are so tasty looking. Next time I am in Boston I will have to check it out.

  19. Kimberly says:

    Sounds like an awesome time, and delicious food! Brunch is hands down my favorite meal of the day!

  20. This brunch sounds wonderful with all of the different courses. I wouldn't be able to finish all of that food either. There are so many wonderful dishes, and just so much room in your stomach:) Your were able to restrain yourself:)

  21. Angie's Recipes says:

    That looks like a great brunch. Love that chicken wing…fingerlicking.

  22. Farmgirl Gourmet says:

    I'm suddenly very hungry and thirsty! That bloody mary looked yummmmm!!! I heart brunch!

  23. Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels says:

    Oh my goodness, what a brunch!! The chicken looks incredible. Actually everything looks incredible. And I think your photos are beautiful. :)

  24. mywanderingspoon says:

    Thanks for sharing and writing this post. It is very interesting. We are planning to visit Boston this summer so every nice food story is welcome:)
    http://mywanderingspoon.wordpress.com/2011/04/14/manhattan-beach-farmers-market-homemade-carrot-soup-kumquats-bagel-shop/

  25. Butrcreamblondi says:

    Everything looks amazing! I'm definitely going to have to check this place out!

  26. What an incredible array of delicious food! Lucky you! I think I need to finagle a trip to Boston :)

  27. The Mom Chef says:

    Wow,I think it all looks amazing. I was especially enthralled by the biscuit and poached egg. It looks soooooo good. I think you had a great job (who would turn down a free meal??).

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