Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 6/5/22
Marble and brass extend out from the warm wood bar, dotted with happy hour patrons enjoying fancy drinks and small bites. To the side the dining room is packed with warm leather booths juxtaposed to the orange and blue ornate plates and the slats in the wall that peer into the hall next to the restaurant. On the back end, the décor changes to a modern black with white tables and dark napkins. This beautiful spot is Brassica, the opulent French-Inspired Southern fare restaurant nestled in the lobby of the Waldorf Astoria Buckhead. They put just the right spin on traditional French and southern dishes, while offering upscale cocktails and an extensive wine list.
Brassica does everything well, including their cocktail and wine offerings. For the cocktails we tried the fancy James Bond inspired Vesper. Shaken not stirred, botanical gin, vodka, and the right amount of lemon make for a boozy, strong, floral, smooth cocktail where the flavor profile changes as you drink. If boozy isn’t want you’re looking for, go for the Roman Punch, it’s like drinking tea on the porch! Lemony, tangy, and sweet, it’s smooth as you can get. That might be dangerous. Plus, they have a great wine list that pairs with the great French-inspired southern menu. We tried the Licia Albarino from Spain and a Cabernet that were both delicious and went so well with the dishes we got, the Trout, and the Roasted Rack of Venison.
For starters, you can never go wrong with a solid Beef Carpaccio, tender and savory with tangy olives, earthy capers, and the sharpness of the cheese and tangy onion. A great bite when you roll it all up into one. We paired that with something we don’t see every day on menus, frog legs! The Sauteed Frog Legs are deconstructed and taken off the bone, and surround a crunchy, buttery toast with roasted garlic on top. Then underneath a fantastic creamy, earthy parsley cream adds the right amount of balance to the tender frog, buttery, crunchy toast, and sharpness of the garlic. This mix and match dish is a keeper.
Of the sides, we are in love with the Butternut Squash Jambalaya. This one is an experience all on its own, served in a smoked dome and the smoke released at the table. The smokiness is prevalent in the dish and pairs with the lightly spicy Cajun spices and creamy rice then contrasts the hearty and earthy butternut squash. Beyond that we had to opt for the Mac N Cheese that is served in a pot. It is creamy brie and tender macaroni all topped with a layer of sharp cheese.
The chef surprised us with a pair of Little Gem salads that is one part crunchy with pecans and apples and one part earthy of the greens. The best part is the buttery, tangy brown butter vinaigrette. It goes so well with the overall flavor profile of the salad. This is so good you may want to lick the plate. Another fun surprise we can talk about here is the cornbread that comes before the meal. It’s thick, dense, sweet, and savory bread that’s topped with a beautiful, warm brown butter sauce that give off hints of caramel. It’s some of the best cornbread you can get in Atlanta. It almost is like a dessert!
We can’t stop thinking about this stunning Roasted Rack of Venison shared plate. Have you seen venison presented so perfectly (see article cover)? It is tender and savory with a balanced amount of seasoning. On top boozy, sweet, and tart marinated cherries marry with the meat for an explosion of flavor, then underneath creamy and smooth mashed potatoes and savory, earthy Brussels pair with a savory, meaty sauce that just knocks the flavors out of the park. This is the best Venison we’ve EVER had! Go try it! The other main that we got is the Pecan Rainbow Trout. It is tender and flaky fish with a light crunch of the fish skin on the top. The pecans dotted on top roll into the creamy corn and sauce below for a warm, crunchy, overall great bite that is popping with flavor. This is a light dish that goes so well with the heftiness of the Venison.
To finish out our meal, we had to try the Oven Roasted Georgia Apple. It’s a whole cooked apple, skin on, that’s stuffed with sweet apricots, topped with a sweet, caramel sauce, spicy cinnamon, and paired with a cool dollop of ice cream. The uniqueness of the crunchy apple skin, sweetness of the apricots and creaminess of the sauce and ice cream make for the perfect pair.
This was epic.