Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Speckled Hen: This Week's Dining Review

Posted By on Thu, Jun 7, 2012 at 1:03 PM

Crêpe with fresh Tennessee peaches
In this week's Dining column in the Nashville Scene, Carrington Fox reviews The Speckled Hen, a new operation at the Nashville Farmers' Market that serves only one meal a week: Sunday brunch.

But oh, what a brunch. Chef-entrepreneurs Rachel Hinson and Mike Moranski, who both work at Flyte World Dining and Wine, have taken advantage of the Farmers' Market's business incubator, the Grow Local Kitchen inside the Market House. As Fox explains, GLK "offers entrepreneurs a certified professional kitchen, without the high overhead costs of a stand-alone restaurant."

"Guests order at the counter, pay via iPhone, dine in the communal seating area of the market hall, and bus their own dishes back to the counter."

Fox was very impressed by the small but excellent roster of made-from-scratch brunch fare. As befits a restaurant inside the market, the menu is deeply entwined with the bounty of fresh produce available locally:

"While the chalkboard menu of a half-dozen dishes is short by restaurant standards, the printed roster of farmers who provide Speckled Hen's ingredients is remarkably long. On our visit, that list included Rosson Orchards peaches, Bells Bend garlic scapes and Noble Springs goat cheese, among other locally sourced elements."

Fox adds: "Headlining the ever-evolving brunch menu was an omelet with Windy Acres eggs swaddling molten white cheddar from Kenny's Farmhouse and smoky hunks of Walnut Hills bacon. A meatless alternative traded salty pork for cubed turnip tops and tangy garlic scapes, laced with creamy Noble Springs goat cheese. Omelets came with a side of sautéed cubed sweet potatoes and two slices of sourdough toast, which Moranski makes from scratch."

Hey, enough said, as far as I'm concerned. I can't wait to check it out myself. If any of you are going there or have gone, feel free to tell us about it in the comments. For more info, read Fox's full review and visit The Speckled Hen on Facebook.

Also, see more of Michael W. Bunch's photos after the jump.

Chef Mike Moranski cooks up brunch at The Speckled Hen, presented Sundays at the Grow Local Kitchen at the Nashville Farmers Market
  • Photo: Michael W. Bunch
  • Chef Mike Moranski cooks up brunch at The Speckled Hen, presented Sundays at the Grow Local Kitchen at the Nashville Farmers' Market

Local farm egg and biscuit with sweet potato hash

A recent blackboard menu at The Speckled Hen

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