Lamberts look-in

LambertsThe Web site doesn’t say so, and the Chron BBQ article this week didn’t either, but Lamberts on Sundays between noon and three offers a brunch, as we hungry people discovered today. That wasn’t what we expected, but we certainly were famished and now we’re not. There were large parties and small ones, some including at least three generations, seated when we arrived, at close to two. I think there may have been some early-bird SxSWers there.

The brunch price is an all-in-one $22, with some self-service aspects and some waitstaff assistance. The napkins are of cloth and they’re about as big as they come. Juice wasn’t evident or mentioned in the little menu, but fresh grapefruit and fresh orange juices were available. I love the coffee cup, resembling the Harlequin pattern in shape but in heavy-duty restaurant service. The ham has a sweet cure, and the ground sausage formed into patties is made in house and is excellent. There was tasty brisket, with lean available upon request. The fresh-fruit salad did not stint on the more expensive items. A standing rib roast of beef was as pink as it should have been and was sliced thick. More than one variety of eggs benedict was available, including one with “Kobe hanger steak,” I’m not sure why. The so-called hash browns were deep-fried quarterd new red potatoes. Wow! They are standouts, with a beautiful gilding and a wonderful nutty flavor.

Among the beverages are a fountain Coke and a super-generous iced tea. The bar faces the street and was doing a fine business. Today there was a six-person mariachi performing admidst the tables in the long, narrow ground-floor dining space (Mariachi en Fuego, performing a good and varied traditional repertory with spirit and returning to Lamberts again on Sunday, April 1). The acoustics weren’t favorable to conversation under these circumstances, but the musicians were young, with everybody doubling in vocals, and that was fun. The miniature corn muffins contained kernals of corn and were a bit sweet; the biscuits were a bit tough. The chocolate cake was more than very good, and the coconut cream pie should be an object of pilgrimage. The buffet is a great way to help people discover some of their favorites to be ordered individually on future visits.

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