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Sunday Brunch: The Trials and Tribulations of a Sunday brunch Enthusiast

Front of Chelsea Grill
Front of Chelsea Grill
Dawn Simmons

The Chelsea Grill


There’s something about the thought of a Sunday brunch that’s always been enticing to me. Maybe it’s the thought of enjoying some well-cooked cuisine on a breezy Sunday afternoon. For some time, I’ve yearned to devour a serving of eggs benedict and French toast, while sipping a mimosa. I dreamed about dining on an outside patio while enjoying the crisp spring weather; the time of year when leaves and flowers bloom, giving you a newfound appreciation for life’s simple pleasures. But as luck would have it,
I never really found the perfect sanctuary where I could enjoy all three. So for months, I resisted Sunday brunches all together, instead choosing to partake in my own culinary creations. Some meals turned out to be a great success while others an awful failure. But in life nothing lasts forever, and I was hopeful that the same was true of my Sunday brunch misfortunes.

Like so many times before, I was determined to find a new contender. This time around it was going to be different. Yet this wasn’t going to be an easy undertaking; after all, my previous experiences had left me a bit jaded. But this was a new year and a brand new beginning. I was determined to find a Sunday brunch spot I could enjoy. After hearing several positive reviews, I decided upon The Chelsea Grill. The grill is mixed in among a number of empty store fronts, and located in the heart of the Museum district. I hoped this was the spot that could change my string of bad luck. So I parked my car, took a deep breath, and was determined to remain optimistic. I was more than prepared to partake in a delightful culinary experience. Once inside, I was pleasantly surprised. With its moderately spacious, open floor plan, and relatively dark interior, it felt like the perfect place to relax and enjoy some American cuisine.

The grill’s modern art deco decor, and casual dining experience, was refreshing to say the least. It’s the place where you can bring the family or have happy hour with a couple of friends or colleagues after work, and enjoy a drink or two on their outside patio, while listening to a live jazz band. Perhaps, I had found the spot I had been searching for. But before I could get my hopes up, I had to taste their entrees. I heard the Seafood Enchiladas were superb, but didn’t know if I was in the mood for that particular dish. So I skimmed the menu looking for an alternative. The menu selection had something for everyone; crispy calamari, braised beef short rib empanadas, and baja shrimp tacos. The possibilities seemed endless. Yet I decided on the Tiger Salmon. If only it tasted as good as the menu made it seem. I was surely prepared to find out. While waiting on my entree, I sipped my mimosa, enjoying its tangy citrus flavors linger on my inviting palate.

Though service seemed a bit slow, I was hoping the food was well worth the wait. Suddenly, it was delivered to my table. The aromas of the entrée protruded from the dish into the open air.

“Here you go ma’am enjoy. Is there anything else I can help you with?” said the waiter in an optimistic tone. My reply, “No thanks, everything looks great.”

Then, before I could dive into the enticing meal, I admired the entrée’s color palette (the vibrant orange hue of the shaved carrots, and the lush green of the broccolini). Then I went in for the kill. Once I tasted each dish, I was in culinary heaven; baked salmon drenched in a sweet tangy Asian style sauce, and two perfectly grilled shrimp, served in a bed of white rice, sautéed carrots, and broccolini. The marinade on the salmon was exquisite and was coated in a tangy honey teriyaki sauce. At just under $20, the Tiger Salmon dish was delightful.

In that moment, I decided that this was the place that had fulfilled my Sunday brunch dreams, and that I would definitely be coming back to create more memorable culinary experiences.