Thursday, June 23, 2011

Brasserie 19

Though I missed the highlight for this new noteworthy opening, thanks to my girlfriend Janice, I was duly informed.  If the description from My Table Magazine of "So you think all the ladies who lunch are at Tiny Boxwood's?  Not if they know about this new spot from Grant Cooper and chef Charles Clark", doesn't interest you, then you probably won't like Brasserie 19 at all.  Same owners as Catalan and Ibiza.

Walking up, I'm already impressed.  I love that summer-white-wicker-Hamptons-brunch spot look.  If you do too, then I'm sure you'll like Brasserie 19.  This new restaurant is located in the old Tony Mandola's Gulf Coast Kitchen (TMGCK) spot off of W. Gray.  Tony Mandola's is currently constructing their new building, almost done, off of Waugh, close to the New Whole Foods Market Montrose. 

Kevin made a comment about the average age of TMGCK being 72, funny, but true.  The demographics here was definitely younger than TMGCK, but not young either.  This crowd was a mixture, young, old, working, priviledged, groups of women, etc.

The interior is just so indulgent.  I love the lighter interior than TMGCK had.  Lots of white, marble, wicker, pin cushion banquette seating...very pretty.  Kevin is already eyeing the Lobster Club sandwich and when our server walks up.  Coincidentally, that's what she recommends, so he's already got his item down.  I let her choose my sandwich and she decides on the Tartine sandwich (olive oil poached tuna sandwich with quinoa salad).  I did let her know I'm a blogger, so the pressure was definitely on.  But, she seemed confident with her choice.  The quinoa salad that came with my dish was light, hints of nice subtle flavors, texture good, everything was nice.  However, on arrival of my open faced sandwich, I was a little disappointed.  She said it was going to be seared, as I'm not a huge cooked tuna fan.  However, it was cooked...but, I took a bite, wow, it was really good.  The combination of the subtle tuna flavor and capers were actually really good and had a nice little kick to it.  I tried Kevin's lobster roll sandwich, yum.  The bread on both sandwiches were really good!  His sandwich I could really taste the bread and the bacon, the bacon was, my gosh, delicious!

The service was excellent.  It seemed like all the servers were helping each other out.  I liked that the servers were wearing jeans, including the managers.  The managers were topped with jackets, but it was a good look for the entire restaurant.  They all had a look of excitement and pride about the resturant, and rightfully so. 

Our server also brought us the wine list on an iPad.  How technologically advanced is that?!!  It was actually really informative, you could quickly pick a glass or bottle and look at an elaborate description with a map of the region!  I thought that was just so impressive.  They have an incredible selection of beers as well, which was suprising.  But, no wine for me for lunch, maybe next time for dinner.

We ordered the Apple Galette, but they also brought us the Dark Chocolate Cake and the chef delivered it himself, awesome!  The DCC with ice cream was nice, rich, but the cake could've been warmer.  The Apple Galette, was delicious, the crispy flaky crust with the warm spiced apple middle with ice cream was just mm mm mm.

Wow, I really liked my entire experience.  I don't usually give a really horrible review, unless deserved.  But, I'm also not generous with excellent reviews, unless deserved.  My entire experience here was excellent.  I definitely like Brasserie 19 in this spot better than Tony Mandola's Gulf Coast Kitchen...actually, love it.

1962 West Gray, Houston, TX 77019 | 713.524.1919
OPEN: Mon-Th: 11-10 | Fri-Sat: 11-11
Sun: Brunch 10-3, Dinner 3-9

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