Tag Archives: brunch

Contemporary Pub Fare

May 20, 2016 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Jackson Street Tavern offers contemporary American cuisine in a casual atmosphere. Chef and co-owner Deke Reichardt is hesitant to label it “fine dining.” He explained, “People have a lot of options in this neighborhood and city, so we pride ourselves in not being pretentious.”

Reichardt also explained that the inclusion of the word “tavern” in the name was never meant to imply a bar-like atmosphere. “The name of the place was meant to imply that it’s a relaxed tavern-esque atmosphere that serves good quality food.” He is proud of the menu options and the quality of the cuisine. “We source as much as we can when the season is right. It’s good stuff. We don’t even have much in the way of freezer space, which is by design because of physical limitations.”

Jackson-St.-2Of note is the extensive gluten-free menu options available. “My wife eats gluten-free and my mother-in-law has Celiac,” he explained. “We wanted to not just offer a couple items but have something a little more extensive for people with special dietary needs.” Though the specific menu items frequently change and evolve, gluten-free options range from appetizers, to entrée salads, to bunless burgers, desserts, and more.

One of the most popular items—the duck tacos—landed on the menu as a result of Reichardt’s ingenuity. He explains, “The irony is that when I put the original menu together I definitely wanted to have duck on the menu. Roast duck was my first preference, so the only issue was what am I going to do with the leftover duck?…So we started to break it down and pull the meat and make little tacos with fresh tomatillo salsa. Honestly, we roast more ducks for duck tacos than we do for roast duck.”

Jackson Street Tavern is also known for its Sunday brunch. “It was just going to be Easter, Mother’s Day, and those popular brunch days, but it was so well received we decided to keep doing it,” said Reichardt. “We do brunch every Sunday from 10 to 2. It’s not a brunch buffet; it’s a la carte table service. It’s one of the most consistent meal periods that we have.” Reichardt added that reservations are encouraged; however, “generally speaking, there’s going to be space for walk-ins.The exception would usually be on those special occasions.”


Beyond the menu, the casual atmosphere of Jackson Street Tavern is one of the most appealing aspects for regulars. FITGirl founder Cheri Dickmeyer says, “I love the ambiance. The dark wood and low key lighting make the entire space comfortable and relaxing. The menu is unique and fresh, and I was pleasantly surprised at how affordable the items were on the menu. Very upscale restaurant with Midwest pricing—I love it!”

Jackson Street Tavern recently added a private dining room to accommodate large groups and opened a patio space that Reichardt calls “a nice addition.” He’s proud of the solid reputation Jackson Street Tavern has built and foresees a bright future. “We recognize that we’re only as good as the last meal we serve or glass of wine we pour, and we don’t take that for granted.”  Encounter

Visit jacksonstreettavern.com for more info.


Weekends are for Waffles

May 29, 2015 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

This article was originally published in May/June 2015 edition of The Encounter.

In a society were the graphic tee is king, it’s only natural to spot one reading Weekends are for Waffles. Even with the growing population of millennials living downtown in the Old Market, NoDo, Little Italy, and surrounding areas, it’s proving to be a lot more than just designer-tee-wearing hipsters and your typical waffles and syrup. If you’re looking for a way to spend your weekend morning, it’s clear downtown boasts some great mid-morning eateries that will excite even the crankiest morning person.

Waffles, yes. Bloody Marys and Mimosas, yes. Poached eggs on a bed of homemade corn beef hash, yes. And of course, a group of your closest friends for a good gossip session called ‘brunchin.’

This easy-to-follow route for your downtown brunchin’ crawl is not your typical Easter or Mother’s Day brunch, which the urban dictionary defines as a breakfast and lunch usually occurring around 11 a.m. for snobs who like tea and jam. Brunchin’ is just an excuse for anyone who wants a cocktail before noon when it’s not football season in Huskerland.

The queen of the world of brunchin’ is the Bloody Mary. Whether you are working through a hangover or just like to drink you vegetables, this cocktail is a sure-fire thirst quencher and hangover mitigation device. Almost any restaurant hosts their own version of this popular drink, but Stokes Grill & Bar at 11th and Howard allows you to build your own. The buffet line features a do-it-yourself Bloody Mary bar with different tomato juices, spices, vegetables, pickles, shrimp, and even bacon. Yes, we said bacon. Squeeze in a lime, head out to their patio and lounge in the sunshine on comfy couches, and wait for your order of the chocolatiest chipped pancakes this side of the Missouri River.

If fruit juices are more your thing, J’s on Jackson at 11th and Jackson runs a weekend special of $4 mimosas and Bloody Marys if you have a group. The special runs all day long. Bring your pooch because their patio is dog friendly. They will even bring your furry friend their own bowl of water!

A favorite of soccer fans is Wilson & Washburn at 14th and Harney. Opening at 10 a.m., the owners are aware of the time difference between

the United Kingdom and the central United States and will air almost all of the English Premier League soccer games with a newly developed brunch menu. (Yes, sure, Americans and fans of sports involving the arms are welcome, too). The smaller menu consists of a few traditional items, but with their own funky twist. It’s your choice if you want to pair the smoked peanut butter and berry-compote-topped French toast with a hot French press coffee, or, one of their brunch cocktails. We suggest the Dirty Wicked, a cold brew coffee with bourbon, simple syrup, and bitters that will have any brunchin’ patron cheering. If you’re not in the mood for something sweet, try the hangover-slaying, homemade corned beef hash topped with two soft poached eggs and horseradish aioli.

Wheatfield’s Eatery and Bakery at 12th and Howard is a natural stop for a brunchin’ crawl. They offer a large, basic brunch menu. Perk up with a creamy, whipped-topped, hot hazelnut latte. This is a great meeting place with early-bird specials starting as early as 6 a.m. on a Friday or Saturday morning. Pair your coffee with eggs, eggs, and more eggs. Not for the small stomach type, the Grandma’s Scrambler is ham, eggs, and potatoes scrambled with a drizzle of Hollandaise sauce. Did we mention it comes with a very large side—Ron’s Large Hot Cinnamon Roll?

If you’ve done the downtown brunchin’ crawl right, your stomach is about to burst, but your once-throbbing head isn’t. What better way to get a proper late start to a weekend day?