Friday, December 2, 2011

Braddock's American Brasserie (Downtown): Take Two

It was yet another delightful evening at Braddock's American Brasserie downtown at the Renaissance hotel.

I have been a fan of Braddock's since having enjoyed two memorable meals there.  The food is amazing and the service excellent.  I had the pleasure of attending a Meetup event there a few weeks ago, and once again, it was a highly pleasant experience.

First, Braddock's had arranged a nice little surprise for our group on this particular evening: A complimentary tasting plate with Lobster Gnocchi, Braised Short Rib Pierogie, and Grilled Strip District Kielbasa.  I had had the lobster gnocchi and the braised short rib pierogie before, and already knew how good they are.  I was glad that this tasting plate was also highly well-received by others who are new to Braddock's.

Lobster Gnocchi, Braised Short Rib Pierogie, and Grilled Strip District Kielbasa at Braddock's American Brasserie
Lobster Gnocchi, Braised Short Rib Pierogie, and Grilled Strip District Kielbasa

We also had a complementary tasting of beers from East End Brewing and Victory Brewing.  People who know me know I'm not much of a beer drinker, but I'm also known to be willing to try before I judge.  Of the three, my personal favorite was Victory Brewing's Moonglow - a weizenbock - which I guess is no surprise given that the very first beer I ever liked was also of the weizen variety.

Local Beers at Braddock's American Brasserie
East End's Big Hop, East End's Fat Gary Brown, and Victory Brewing's Moonglow

Despite not being hungry by this point, I decided to order an entree just to try something I hadn't tried at Braddock's before.  I heard the Seared Scallops calling my name and I couldn't refuse.  It doesn't look it in the photo, but these scallops were quite substantial in size, and served with mashed fingerling potatoes and pea puree.  Several others at my table also ordered the scallops, and we all agreed that they were excellent.

Seared Scallops at Braddock's American Brasserie
Seared Scallops ($25)

About halfway through my entree, I began to realize I had made a tactical error by ordering a big entree and not saving room for dessert.  Just thinking about the Warm Fudge Brownie I had at Braddock's last time made me drool!  But, regretfully, my stomach just couldn't take a whole dessert this time.  Luckily, someone at my table ordered the Pumpkin Creme Brulee and was sweet enough to passed it around for others to try, so I was able to enjoy at least a bite or two of pure heaven.  Gosh, I really wish I hadn't been so full!

Pumpkin Creme Brulee at  Braddock's American Brasserie
Pumpkin Creme Brulee

Throughout our entire meal, the service staff was very professional and attentive.  This is the same experience I had had in my past visits as well, so I know they were not just acting the part because it was a special event.  Chef Brian Volmrich even came out to greet us, and I made sure to tell him that his is one of my favorite restaurants in Pittsburgh.  After yet another great meal at Braddock's, I am ever more convinced of that assessment.

Restaurant info:
Braddock's American Brasserie
107 6th Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15222

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