A Month of Sundays: Brunch at Hopfields
Brunch hours: 11am-3pm daily
Regular hours: 11am-midnight daily
By Mike Sutter | © Fed Man Walking | 04.22.16
Hopfields is the rare breed that serves brunch seven days a week. The standing menu carries corned beef hash, simple French-style scrambled eggs and a Full English breakfast with beans and broiled tomatoes. On the weekends, they’re joined by brunch standards like Eggs Benedict, biscuits and gravy, French toast and a wild-card burger rendition of a Monte Cristo. As good as the food is here — in particular the Pascal Burger — there’s something special about having a beer from Hopfields’ carnival tent tap wall while Chelsea and Man City play on the big screen on a Saturday morning.
What you’re eating
► Corned Beef Hash: Too salty by half, this pan-scramble of shredded corned beef, petite red and purple potatoes and bell pepper is still a reliable workingman’s breakfast, crowned with two sunnyside eggs and toasted marble rye. ($14; available 11-3 daily)
► Mondo Christo: You’ll be disappointed that this hamburger Monte Cristo isn’t batter-fried and dusted with powdered sugar. You won’t be disappointed that it takes the best of the Hopfields’ Pascal Burger — coral-hearted beef, dusky Camembert cheese, caramelized onions — and adds grilled deli ham. French toast is a poor substitute for the usual bakery bun, though, acting mainly as an overused marker of a brunch sandwich and a supporting player for syrup and berries. ($13; 11-3 weekends only)
► Avocado tartine: Because not all pub food has to wear a blue collar, this mash of fresh avocado and herbal zaatar spicing on fresh sourdough bread is like a courtesan’s touch in a knightly man-cave, served with a hot cup of peppermint tea. ($7; 11-3 daily)
What you’re drinking
► Old Rasputin: North Coast’s Russian Imperial stout is dark, sweet and cunningly strong. On nitro, it’s also as creamy as frothed chocolate. ($5.50/8oz)
► Oasis Technicolor Motorhome: The beauty of a busy tap wall is that Hopfields can carry an ambitious local beer like this, a puckeringly tart sour porter with a raisinette finish. The un-beautiful part? It’ll probably be tapped out by the time you read this. ($6 pint)
► Crème brûlée: If you’re looking for hard-shell, spoon-cracking vanilla crème brûlée fresh from the torch, this ain’t it. More like a doughnut glaze over custard in a painfully small ramekin that doesn’t support the $7 price. Styles change day to day, but the orange/cranberry/almond elements each expressed themselves well for this report.
A Month of Sundays: 31 Austin brunches
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)