Recently, we profiled Fontleroy’s as one of our top new restaurants to try in 2016, and then we wrote about what was the most popular dish on the menu, and the winner was the house-smoked Berkshire pork chop. At the time we wrote that article, they were open for brunch only on the weekends. Now they have expanded their brunch and lunch offerings to seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., due to their popularity on Saturday and Sunday. To quote our friends at Fontleroy’s, there is “no need to wait for the weekend” to eat brunch. The morning and midday menu’s overarching theme is Biscuit Social, with the headliner being the housemade buttermilk biscuit.
On a recent visit, our group split the menu, making selections from both breakfast and lunch items. The chicken ‘n’ biscuit arrived with piping hot chicken served over an open-face biscuit topped with a perfectly runny fried egg and ladles full of sausage gravy. The gravy’s texture was perfect, with fried sausage crumbles in varying sizes just like Mama used to make. This is definitely a knife and fork operation, and the first cut into the yolk created an even more savory sauce for the biscuit to soak up. The chicken was soaked in buttermilk beforehand, giving it the classic — and intentional — taste of fried chicken.
The short rib skillet is the best of both the breakfast and lunch worlds. With falling-off-the-bone, fork-shredded, short rib meat as the base, diced fried potatoes are combined with that and Fontleroy sauce (a slightly spicy, sweet and smoky chipotle pepper aioli) to create a meaty base for this dish. Topped with fried eggs and pickled chiles, you’ll need some sturdy silverware to consume this meal. This dish reminds me of a shepherd’s pie, with eggs as the topper instead of mashed potatoes. The runny yolk combines with the meat and potatoes to create another layer of flavor. But it is the pickled chiles that steal the show. Made in-house, they are the perfect blend of vinegar, hot and sweet that punctuates the entire skillet.
We ordered a side of cheese grits, well, because we just had to. Treat them like ordering a side of fries for the table for everyone to enjoy. They are Kentucky’s finest Weisenberger grits made with mascarpone and fontina cheeses. The end result is a rich, but delicate, side item.
We highly subscribe to the notion that the burger should be tried at every restaurant, and the Fontleroy Burger did not disappoint. Made with a housemade buttermilk biscuit as the “bun,” this hamburger is topped with cheddar cheese, egg, bacon, caramelized onions and Fontleroy sauce. There are so many complementary flavors here that there is no need for typical toppings or condiments. It is perfect as is.
Like the burger, any menu’s hot chicken items should be tried. That in mind, we tried Fontleroy’s spicy fried chicken served over an open-face, housemade biscuit, topped with coleslaw and housemade pickles. The chicken was hot, but not too hot, with the creamy coleslaw and light biscuit rounding out any spiciness factor. Like the housemade chiles on the short rib skillet, the housemade pickles are absolutely delicious and are actually sold separately by Fontleroy’s. We will definitely be picking up a jar of those.
We’ve tried Fontleroy’s for dinner, and now brunch, too, all of it delicious and available seven days a week!
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