Where: Smith, 332 15th Ave. E, 206-709-1900
When: Sunday morning. Weekend brunch served 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
Level of Hangover: I spent most of the morning nursing the aftermath of my friend's thirtieth birthday party. It wasn't a complete nuclear fallout, but by 11 a.m. I was quite famished.
The Soak: My plus-one and I walked into Smith to find a "Please Seat Yourself" sign. Usually this would amount to a couple minutes of confusion, looking around as if we were lost in an Indian train terminal, but I quickly jumped at a chance to sit near the infamous Smith garage door.Shortly after settling into our little table for two by the window, I noticed a rather scraggly man parked in a pickup truck outside the restaurant. We got quite a kick out of the long conversation the man was having with the bird on his shoulder. The irony manifested itself as I took in Smith's ambiance. The walls are covered in flocks of dead birds, deer heads, and distorted images of possibly historic figures (I could only discern a hatless Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy).
Because the menu didn't make my slightly intoxicated heart instantly skip a beat I did what any good foodie does: I slyly scoped out each table to check out if the plates were more appetizing than the menu. Finally, I spotted gold -- the day's special, biscuits and gravy (thanks to the waitress for not telling me that in the first place).
Whether it's genius or torture, Smith's brunch menu is nearly a la carte which forced me to decide between eggs or sausage. I quickly got over it once I took my first couple of bites. The thick and beautifully seasoned gravy was paired with the kind of homemade biscuits you rarely find north of the Mason-Dixon. I took a voyage back in time to my childhood in Texas, where they teach the girls to eat as well as they cook. My sausage, however which I assumed was chicken, wasn't flavored by much more than the grease it was cooked in, and I snapped back to reality.
My plus-one delighted herself with a Belgian waffle, a light and fluffy take on what could have been an overpriced toaster variety.
Success of the Soak: Smith's menu lacked imagination, and this might just be the unfortunate result of being formulated as hangover food for people who eat every meal in a pub. It seems out of place amongst the families one would normally encounter on 15th Avenue. After thoroughly gorging myself, I found time to be late for an appointment, get caught in the rain, and possibly fall hard for my plus-one (but don't tell her I told you).