There's no question that there's some serious dining to be had at Joseph Leonard—both in the morning and at night. But the excitement I had for some new summer dishes on the brunch menu didn't yield such glimmering results.
Maybe it's a little early yet for this watermelon salad ($11), whose diced chunks of yellow and pink watermelon weren't quite sweet enough to play star ingredient. Amped up by balsamic vinegar and a provoking blend of herbs like celery shoots and leaves, flat Italian parsley, chives, and a smattering of shallots, the flavors are undeniably intriguing—at least on the menu. But the vinegar was too watered down to add adequate punch, and only the chives seemed to come across otherwise.
Will I write it off completely? Certainly not--it's a novel dish that's refreshingly light, especially in comparison to the egg and pastry dishes so common on brunch menus. It's great during warm weather like we've had all week, and has great potential once the central ingredient has a chance to really shine.
Since the salad is a bit on the small side, add a side of biscuits and jam ($5) to fill you up--the biscuits are a tiny bit on the dry side, but the seasonal blackberry and apricot jams are a textbook example of how summer fruits can do wonders on a breakfast table.
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