Beauty & Essex was bustling with (possibly) their previous night's revelers for its newly launched (as of last Sunday) brunch yesterday when I dined with my darling friend Kate. Now, you can indulge when the sun's up, although that doesn't mean the antics will change. Pass the pawn shop in the entrance, and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back into your Saturday night heels. We were dolled up in black lace and red lipstick, as the chandelier was still swinging and the champagne (now in the form of mimosas and bellinis) still flowed. Beauty & Essex opened in December, and quickly became a favorite for a girls’ nights out (where free champagne is doled out in the ladies room) and as the perfect dinner destination to impress your date. Chef Chris Santos, from the successful Stanton Social, is a master at creating delicious “multi-ethnic” small plates served in a sexy ambiance.
From sweet to savory menu options, everyone will find something they love for brunch. Start with the Creamy Three Cheese Fondue ($14) with apples, pears, strawberries, breakfast potatoes and mini croque monsieur sandwiches to dip into the hot cheese. You seriously can't go wrong with melted gourmet cheeses. The Sweet Roasted Tomato Pizzetta ($14) is a light and airy crispy pizza with black olives and goat cheese. For the perfect protein, make sure to try the Oven Braised Chicken Meatballs ($15) topped with sheep’s milk ricotta and truffle. A must-order is the Braised Short Rib ‘Huevos Rancheros’ ($15) as the sunny side eggs perfectly compliment the tender short rib and black beans. With a list of both sweet baked goods and classic desserts, it’s tough to choose just one way to satisfy your sweet tooth. Without a doubt, order the can’t-miss Apple Bacon Donuts ($8). These fluffy deep fried balls of dough are filled with chunks of bacon and drizzled with sugar. Simply amaze.
Beauty & Essex is already one of the hottest spots for dinner and drinks in the city. Make sure to make reservations for brunch asap, and it may quickly become your mandatory Sunday afternoon.