If you walk too quickly down Tenth Avenue, you might just miss The Marshal. Tucked next to a nail salon and hidden by the awnings of the restaurants next door, I may have never discovered this hidden gem myself if it wasn’t for working in Hell’s Kitchen.
The farm-to-table eatery opened up a little under a year ago, and despite being hidden, manages to fill up regularly. The menu changes with the season and sources ingredients from local farms, which are highlighted on the back of the menu.
I chose The Marshal for brunch with my mom, aunt, and grandma, who had all trekked into the city for the day to visit. Though we had a reservation for 12:30, our table wasn’t ready, so we took a seat at the bar to order a round of cocktails, opting for a mix of mojitos and Bloody Marys. The mojitos were light and refreshing and the Bloodies (a $8 brunch special) were fairly spicy, with a peppery punch.
As we waited for our table, we took a moment to soak in the interior, which was dark and snug, akin to a farm house. Small wooden tables were cozied together in a line, making for somewhat close quarters. However, despite the tight space, every table seemed to receive attentive, personal service, making it feel like you could very well be eating at a farm.
After a twenty minute wait, we were brought to our table where we immediately dove into the brunch menu. Leaning towards the heavier side, the menu included a range of hearty offerings like hash and bacon-laden frittatas, and for the extra ravenous, pot roast, and grilled cheese.
We started with an appetizer: fresh mozzarella, hyssop, and heirloom tomato salad. The salad was drizzled with white balsamic and olive oil and speckled with little red berries, which we later found out were currants. While basil would have been preferred to the slightly bitter and somewhat minty hyssop leaf, it was an innovative pairing and overall, a light and flavorful dish.
Following the appetizer, we agreed to split a range of menu items and adjusted our belt loops a notch to prepare for the quartet ahead. The smoked chicken and duck bacon hash was up first. The hash was diced with onions and potatoes and topped with two perfectly poached eggs. The crispy bits of duck bacon and succulent chunks of chicken were complemented nicely by the fresh egg yolk and caramelized pieces of onion, leaving us digging our forks repeatedly for more tasty bites.
Having heard many rave reviews about the wood oven mac ‘n cheese, we had to give this a try. With salty bacon bits and a heavy dose of Swiss, the corkscrew pasta was creamy, with slightly sweet, nutty undertones. As would be expected, it was extremely rich, and between the four of us, we only managed to make a small dent in the skillet.
Our third and final savory entree was the Maine lobster and bacon frittata. With my first bite, I was surprised by how light and airy the eggs were. Even better, they were filled with plump chunks of lobster, which were enhanced by specs of bacon and warm, pockets of cheddar cheese throughout the dish. This ended up a table favorite, which we had no problem finishing.
Rather than ordering dessert, we capped off brunch with one of the only sweet menu offerings, the apple and maple cream cheese stuffed French toast. With a drizzle of local maple syrup, the crispy brioche bread and creamy apple, cheese mixture were an excellent pairing. I would have preferred a little more flavor, with the additional of either citrus or nutmeg, but my sweet tooth was satisfied nonetheless.
Bitches say: A-. The west-side eatery is a nice, home-like setting for brunch, with fresh menu offerings. This is a perfect mid-town spot to visit before catching a show on the weekend.
628 Tenth Ave (Between 44th & 45th)
New York, NY
Brunch is served on Saturdays and Sundays, starting at 11 a.m.