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Palm Beach Post Review - Sunday September 23,2012

Sunday Special: Gallery Grille

By Liz Balmaseda

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

THE PLACE: There’s a full-scale restaurant hiding in this daylight café tucked into a corner of Tequesta’s Gallery Square North plaza. The stylish Gallery Grille may be open just for breakfast, lunch and Sunday brunch, but it welcomes you like a place with dinnertime aspirations. With a handsomely set dining room, and a sweet, brick-paved courtyard for outdoor dining, this is “country club meets Parisian bistro,” a place where the most loyal customers are rewarded with name plaques at the redwood bar.

Owner Bruce Nierman, who opened the café 11 years ago, considers it a priority to make customers feel welcome, even years after their passing. “Some of the name plates are now in memoriam,” says Nierman, who once co-owned Jupiter’s now-defunct Backstage supper club with Burt Reynolds. Back in the ‘80s, he was booking jazz acts like Herbie Mann and Rare Silk, and catering to after-hours hobnobbers. At Gallery Grille, he serves the flip side, the impeccably dressed brunch set that knows there can never be too many eggs Benedict variations on a Sunday. (The menu lists 12, priced from $9.95 to $14.95.)

FOOD AND GOOD BITES: We visited for brunch on a recent Sunday and feasted on one of those Benedict dishes, the original ($9.95). It was an abundant platter with two beautiful, gently poached eggs atop slices of ham and English muffin, topped with rich, creamy hollandaise and served with Yukon gold home fries. The egg yolk, poached just lightly, easily runs into the hollandaise, further enriching the sauce. (If you prefer a less runny yolk, let your server know.)

Other Benedict interpretations include Maine lobster and Key lime hollandaise, or andouille sausage, or fried green tomatoes, or crispy mozzarella, or fried fish, or Cuban-style with pork loin and ham. Speaking of eggs, they’re cooked in real butter at Gallery, which is why they’re old-school delicious. But there’s much more on the breakfast-brunch menu (and full lunch menu, featuring freshly roasted meats and homemade soups and sauces) here. The French toast ($6.95 alone, $7.95 with fresh-cut fruit or pecans) is made with thick-cut egg bread and does its best to satisfy your morning sweet tooth. That said, it is not an overly rich rendition. The chicken apple sausage ($3.25) may not be the prettiest item on the menu, as it arrived slightly cracked and seemingly charred – but it was good, meaty and moist, a sweet-salty complement to our French toast syrup.

We couldn’t resist taking a couple of fresh baked items home for a late afternoon tea. There were fresh lemon-blueberry scones ($3), which were just delectable, moist beneath a crusty top. There also were hefty blueberry muffins ($2.50) bursting with juicy berries. If you sit at the bar, you just may have to order one of these pastries, as they’re temptingly displayed.

SERVICE: Our young servers were attentive and efficient.


Food and service, B+.

The info: 383 Tequesta Drive, Tequesta; (561) 575-3775; GalleryGrille.com; open for breakfast Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.; for lunch Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2: 30 p.m.; Saturday to 2 p.m.; for Sunday brunch from 7 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

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“Always a delight, this gem of a bistro near Tequesta's art plaza is an established player in the breakfast/brunch game, dispensing great New American vittles.“ Zagat 2006
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