Disclosure: The following post is sponsored by Marchand’s Bar and Grill.
A few weeks ago, I met the other ladies from the Tampa Bay Brunch Tour for an amazing brunch at Marchand’s Bar and Grill. This restaurant is located inside The Vinoy Renaissance Resort in Downtown St. Petersburg. Growing up, the Vinoy was always one of those glamorous hotels that I always dreamed of staying in. I spent some time in the hotel two years ago when I volunteered for the the Women’s Half Marathon. My junior prom was also held in one of the ballrooms. While I still have not seen the inside of the guest rooms, I can say that this hotel truly lives up to its reputation of exceptional service and exquisite food.
The Sunday brunch at Marchand’s is held from 11 am to 2 pm every week. The menu recently went through a significant change when it switched from a buffet style to an al a carte menu. Many of the items on the new menu were offered on the buffet. At first glance, I was completely overwhelmed by all of the delicious items on the menu. I really wanted to try everything. Thankfully, the chef had already decided which items our group would have the chance to try.
I have said this many times before but I truly believe that a delicious brunch deserves an equally delicious beverage. Besides the assortment of coffee, juices, and teas, Marchand’s offers guests a selection of adult beverages that truly tested my decision-making abilities. While I love a good Mimosa especially when they are endless, I had to try one (or two) of the Bottomless Bellini’s. They have quite a selection of fruit purees to choose from, including blueberry, watermelon and raspberry. In the end, I decided to go with a blackberry one followed by a peach one.
If Mimosas or Bellini’s aren’t for you, the Build Your Perfect Bloody Mary bar might be the drink choice for you. The numbers of toppings available to add to your drink almost made me reconsider ordering a Bloody Mary. Beef jerky and shrimp?!? Seriously!
With drinks in hand, it was time to start enjoying some food. To start off the meal, the pastry chef brought out a selection of pastries from the bakery. We tried the Jumbo Pecan Sticky Bun, the Sour Cream Coffee Cake, Warm Donuts with Strawberry Jam, and the Monkey Bread.
All of the pastries were amazing but my favorite was definitely the Monkey Bread. The bread itself was soft and gooey on the inside with just the slightest crunch on the outside. It was covered in a cinnamon syrup that reminded me of the holidays. (I now have a severe craving for monkey bread …) I was able to bring the leftovers home so my boyfriend could enjoy them. I think he enjoyed the Monkey Bread almost as much as I did.
Once we finished with the pastries, the chef brought a selection of his favorite entrées and some of the most popular dishes. The first selection of entrées included Eggs in a Jar, House Brined Corned Beef Hash, and Crispy Maple Cured Pork Belly. The Eggs in a Jar is a jar filled with anson mills cheese grits, poached eggs, corn meal fried rock shrimp and topped with a roasted chili hollandaise sauce. The flavors of this dish were so much more than I was expecting. I have had shrimp and grits before but the addition of the poached eggs and the spicy hollandaise sauce really brought this dish to life.
The House Brined Corned Beef Hash was accompanied by fried duck eggs and heirloom potatoes. After the first bite, I knew that this dish would be perfect for my boyfriend. He loves a good corned beef hash and this one is amazing. The corned beef and potatoes were roughly chopped so that the distinct flavors were prominent in every bite. The touch of hollandaise sauce on top added a subtle hint of cream to the dish.
The Crispy Maple Cured Pork Belly was served with a parmesan fried egg and placed on top of a mound of roasted corn grits. I absolutely love bacon especially when it is combination of crispy meat and chewy fat. (Yes, I know that bacon is not the healthiest but it is an indulgence of mine.) When I saw the roasted corn grits, I was intrigued by the color because I have honestly never seen purple grits. The chef told us that they used blue corn to make the dish, which gave it the color. The parmesan fried egg was just as delicious as I imagined it would be.
When we finished the first round of entrées, the chef brought out another three entrées for us to try. This second round of entrées included Quiche, Rhubarb French Toast, and Red Wine Poached Egg. The Quiche was made with lump crab, roasted pepper, charred leek and cheese. It was served with a delicious roasted red pepper sauce, which added a new dimension to the dish. Normally, I won’t a quiche unless the ingredients really jump out at me. This quiche is one that I would order because all of the flavors work very well together.
The Rhubarb French Toast was the sweetest entrée we tried besides the pastries, which messed with my taste buds a little bit. It was served with oranges, candied almonds and crumbled bacon. I loved that this French Toast was so different than the usual powdered sugar and cinnamon toast. There was a subtle crunch from the almonds and bacon as well as a citrus zest from the oranges.
The Red Wine Poached Egg is Marchand’s version of the Eggs Benedict, which happens to be my favorite breakfast food of all time. The eggs were poached in red wine and served with prosciutto on top of sourdough bread. I have entertained the idea of poaching eggs in anything besides water but these were amazing. Also using prosciutto instead of Canadian bacon really balanced well with the poached eggs.
Now if eating all of those delicious entrées wasn’t enough, the chef next brought out three desserts for us to sample. I am not sure how in the world I managed to eat anymore. I love dessert so I decided to try at least a bite of everything. For dessert, we had the Blackberry Cobbler, the Lemonade Cake and the S’mores Cheesecake.
Overall, I thought that the food and drinks at Marchand’s Bar and Grill were absolutely amazing! The pastries were delicious with jus the right amount of sweetness. The menu included a variety of both sweet and savory dishes. I loved the Eggs in a Jar and the Red Wine Poached Eggs. I also really enjoyed the selection desserts available to choose from. The S’mores Cheesecake was to die for! I can definitely see myself bringing my boyfriend back here for brunch in the near future. I just know he will love the House Brined Corned Beef Hash.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Marchand’s Bar and Grill. I received a free meal in exchange for this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.