last weekend, i was honoured to be invited to sample brunch at etc. (pronounced et cetera) i was immediately impressed by the modern contemporary décor – the restaurant is cozy with luxurious touches; yet still well-spaced out with a great vibe. even more impressive was the exceptional and personal service we received from maître de hermann and general manager carol.
as sister restaurant to downtown’s “etch”, etc. occupies a 2400-square foot space in the atlas building just behind the green hills malls in nashville. the restaurant opened its doors in august last year and is already a popular lunch and dinner location for diners. the addition of a sunday brunch menu is only going to take their reputation for a quality dining experience to another level.
at the helm is chef deb paquette, previously from etch, and incorporates her favourite spices, produce and global recipes. she was also the first woman in tennessee to qualify as a certified executive chef. the menu is additionally bolstered by chef de cuisine jess lambert and pastry chef megan williams.
our food selection for the morning certainly crossed over several cuisines – french, middle-eastern + decidedly southern – making for a delightful morning.
croissants with chef’s jam and butter. freshly baked and served with a strawberry + cranberry jam – a flaky and buttery start to the meal.
nashville hot chicken benny: springer mountain chicken, poached eggs, dill pickle hollandaise and english muffin
as an ode to nashville’s favourite chicken dish, this nashville hot chicken benedict proved a surprisingly delightful combination of flavours – the heat + spice of the hot chicken melding well with the creaminess and herbaciousness of the dill pickly hollandaise. presentation could have been more eloquent, and i felt it was a little heavy-handed on the sauce, however the flavours were all there.
shakshuka: tomato eggplant ragu, sunny egg, hummus, feta, lovage, za’tar spice with toasted sourdough
shakshuka (commonly known as baked eggs, or middle-eastern eggs) is my 2nd favourite brunch dish (after french toast due to that sweet tooth of mine); and i honestly haven’t had a good shakshuka since leaving melbourne last year. etc,’s shakshuka fixed all that! the tomato eggplant ragu was brilliantly cooked – tender, rich and full of spices and flavor. the eggs themselves were cooked well – my personal preference would’ve been for a runnier yolk – however i know that eggs are very particular to an individual.
pear crumble tart: pecan streusel, honey vanilla ice cream, pear puree and black current sauce
just when i thought i couldn’t fit in any more, we were served an incredibly presented pear crumble tart. delicious in every aspect, this dish had texture contrast – with the softly poached pear and crispy pastry – as well as flavour distinction – sweet and tart delicately balanced. absolutely delicious!
in summary, a very high quality and flavourful meal! i would’ve loved to see a selection of healthy juices/smoothies on the menu (for those looking for healthier/non-alcoholic options), and a better quality latte would have definitely taken my brunch to the next level!
verdict: nashville is definitely lifting its brunch game!
(note: inlovewithbrunch dined as a guest of etc., however all remarks and reviews are honest and genuine)