Restaurant Review: Brookville Brunch

Brookville Restaurant is on the historic, downtown mall in Charlottesville, located directly above one of my favorite restaurants there, the Whiskey Jar.  The menu might give the impression of casual fare with seemingly simple dishes in which some form of pork often makes an appearance.  The chef’s so-called “meat-centric” menu is far from lacking in elegance or sophistication, however.  Even for brunch, the presentation was clean and beautiful, with just enough flair to make it fun without being one of those plates that’s too pretty to eat.

The restaurant overlooks the downtown mall and has the feel of a cozy, renovated barn or country farmhouse with exposed brick and distressed, dark wood floors.  Pork-themed drawings and sayings hang from chalkboards as art in the main room.  For a regular, Sunday brunch, the tables are set with pristine, white linens, establishing a blank canvas upon which to showcase your meal.

When you arrive at the table, you find that the water glasses are Ball canning jars, and when the coffee comes, the cream is served in an adorable pig-shaped pitcher and the sugar is piled in a tiny, fancy, soup terrine.  But everything is clean and white and homey.

The fresh corn muffins that arrive with butter in a tiny jam jar that are served with brunch are the perfect southern touch.  Every detail enhances the notion of upscale, homey, comfort food.  The restaurant is owned by a husband and wife couple (the husband is the chef and the wife runs the front of the restaurant), and they’ve said that they want people to feel comfortable and at-home when they come to eat in their restaurant.  That is certainly the impression I received; their food is classic and southern, with the feeling of an exquisitely-prepared home-cooked meal.

The regular scrambled eggs are slow-cooked in olive oil and topped with shaved Parmesan and delicate microgreens.  They were the creamiest eggs I have ever tasted.

And of course I couldn’t leave Brookville without sampling some of their famous pork!  Even after the sausage that came with my breakfast, we ordered an additional side of sausage and bacon because they were so delicious.  Their Surry sausages come from a small town in Virginia (aptly called Surry) which is known for its pork, and they are served sliced in half and grilled so that the links are caramelized and crisp.  Their bacon simply melted in my mouth.

To finish off the meal, I had fun playing with my food and created this heavenly pork creation of bacon sandwiched between two slices of sausage.

Brookville is known for their pork, and I’ve recently discovered that pork in all forms (bacon, roast, BBQ, chicharones, chops,tenderloin, belly, bacon fat, lardo) is my favorite group.  So when I heard that Brookville occasionally has pork belly on their menu, I knew it must be my quest to return for dinner one day and sample the chef’s interpretation of one of my favorites dishes.  In fact, according to their website, Brookville is serving grilled pork belly tonight with slow cooked egg and maple syrup!  Look forward to a post about it soon!

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