Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Sunday Brunch at The Gallows
The Gallows is at once thought provoking, unconventional and quirky meets welcoming, comfortable and exciting. The versatile feats are present among every aspect of the experience, from the food and the cocktails to the ambiance, decor points and even the staff. Whats makes this spot a neighborhood hangout, one I'd surely frequent if I lived in the South End, is its simple and straightforward presentation, void of any pretension. The unusual decor is subtle, if you didn't look up as you entered the vestibule you'd miss the mounted dinosaur head flanked by a swarm of bats. Same goes for the porcelin hand display parading overhead at the bar. Fists and wrists tied to thick knotted twine loosely carrying gold orbes front well appointed shelving where a single black crow (mascot?) sits mounted in the center. The mod lighting is the opposite of subtle, funky firecracker fixtures explode over the dim lit dining room and translucent globes shine down on the bar area. Following suit are some seriously awesome breakfast cocktails; simple in execution but ever-so-inventive, Adam and I had two rounds each and then proceeded to recreated them at home that afternoon! The Tounge Terror ($9) does just that. A glorified greyhound, in this reinvented classic zippy vodka and tangy grapefruit mingle with the added flair of cumin and a photogenic lime garnish. The extremely tart citrus fruit and powerful, aromatic spice combo indeed wreak subtle havoc on the tongue. Combining Pabst Blue Ribbon on draft and thirst quenching orange juice The Brass Monkey ($6) aka "poor man's mimosa" is surprisingly good. With its light body and carbonation on the heavy side, PBR gets the job done for less. It paired perfectly with Adam's Sunnyside Burger ($15) of which I did get to sample a bite of the runny egg, bacon and American cheese goodness over a juicy flat patty. I ate lots of his lightly crisped fries dipped in excess egg yolk and almost wished I'd ordered the Sunrise Poutine ($15). Almost. I was persuaded by the Fried Chicken and Waffles ($14), and when I questioned the bartender she recommends them without a moments hesitation. The food comes out in no time. Surprise! Golden brown Chinese chicken fingers meet a similarly colored fluffy homemade waffle in this fun, kitschy brunch dish. I have a special affection for Chinese chicken fingers, (I would never order Chinese takeout without them!) so I thought this was really cool. They were exceedingly tastier and more refined than my takeout, though! Cradling crunchy walnuts in its defined squares and piled with sticky caramelized apples, the waffle base loaded with contrasting textures keeps each bite interesting. Warm syrup was drizzled with restraint, achieving an ideal balance of sweet to the savory. (Mostly sweet, a little savory.)Definitely make it a point to get here for Sunday brunch! (Served from 10:30 - 2:30.) We were well attended and felt content to linger at the bar; with the sun streaming in from the windows overlooking Washington Street, it was bright and relaxing. Upon exiting, the host bid a cheerful goodbye as the dimly lit dining room beckoned me back for dinner.