Tucked into the restored Foley Building, the second oldest in the Historic District of downtown, is a gem of a restaurant: Hearsay Gastro Lounge. Fresh off the plane from five days of some of the worst food around (thank you, Walt Disney), I met some friends for brunch there last Sunday.
It was my first time at the restaurant, and I was immediately struck by its interior; the upscale-casual restaurant is, in a word, beautiful.
A stunning, vintage crystal chandelier, highlighted further by dark exposed brick walls, calls you back to another era. The glamorous high ceilings, open staircase with custom handrail, and long mahogany bar give the space a certain warmth and antiquated chicness. "I feel like I need a corset and a pocket watch," I thought, as I scoped out the place for Jack Dawson (with no such luck, I guess Rose finally let him go).
Such a striking place was surprisingly empty for a busy brunch hour, with only a few couples chatting and enjoying the live musician playing soft riffs on his guitar (later, he would take requests; a little Radiohead on a Sunday morning never hurt anyone).
But no matter. We had a full table coming, and they were serving $12 bottomless mimosas; regardless of who else was there, we were set.
After a week of chicken nuggets and funnel cake, I was craving vegetables bad. So although I wanted nearly everything on the menu, I ordered the Veggie Hash ($10), a seasonal vegetable sauté topped with a fried egg, and a side of Texas Toast ($4).
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And I couldn't have been happier with my choice. A bowl of diced summer squash, carrots, potatoes and onions came freshly sautéed with the most wondrous amount of garlic, which I absolutely love (ask around, I'm always the one starting the "more garlic!" chant at hibachi restaurants).
The veggies were light, crisp and perfectly seasoned with salt and cracked black pepper flakes. I requested my fried egg be cooked over-easy so I could dip the vegetables in the thick, creamy yolk. The pieces of Texas toast weren't as large as I had imagined, but that didn't stop me from scooping up the yolk and hash onto the browned and buttered slices.
I was also able to sneak a bite of a few entrées around me, mainly my fiancé's sweet and savory French Toast PB&J ($10), egg-battered and fried toast stuffed with fresh-ground peanut butter and berry preserves and served with a side of bacon. Hint: Stick the bacon in the sandwich before taking a bite for maximum pleasure.
I am definitely heading back to try out more of the menu (hopefully for lunch, dinner and happy hour, too). But until then, here's a bit more gastro-licious food porn for you guys.