Friday, May 20, 2016

The Chocolate Sanctuary or Purple Reign

The Slow and Savory Review

Poor poor Bailey Blue.  Brandy's dear friend has been put through the ringer in recent months due to classes she has been taking to become a certified expert in decoupage, wood work, and all the things one would need to know to run a refurbished furniture business.  "I'm just exhausted all of the time," Bailey told Brandy, "I can't even relax at home because every time I look at my nightstand, I think how it would be so much better if I sanded it down and painted it teal.  I've constantly got glue under my finger nails and my hand have a permanent yellow tinge from wood stain."  "What you need is a a nice little afternoon road trip ending in a relaxing brunch," Brandy suggested.  "Brunch is your answer for everything," Bailey laughed, to which Brandy responded, "Brunch does fix a lot of things.  But you know what's even better at fixing things than brunch?  Chocolate."

What Brandy had in mind was the newly premiered brunch at The Chocolate Sanctuary in Gurnee.  The nearly year old restaurant recently debuted their "cocoa infused" brunch with two different dining experiences offered: an a la carte menu with lots of sweet and savory options and a buffet for $22, which includes a complimentary mimosa.

The restaurant, which is situated on a sunny corner of a plaza, had an L shaped interior with a bar and high tables on one side and a large dining area on the other side, bifurcated by a gorgeous fire feature.  Dark woods and sparkling tiles set off the interior, predominantly featuring rich purple linens, which Brandy absolutely loved.  "Would you look at that cabinet in the back with all the glassware!" Bailey exclaimed.  "Darling, look away from the furniture.  You're here to relax, remember?"

Brandy and Bailey started off with some coffees to awaken their palates; a macchiato for Brandy and a hot chocolate for Bailey.  The ladies were delighted when they were presented with their beverages to find out that they came accompanied by a couple of the house made truffles.  Brandy's drink, which was rich and warm and delicious, came accompanied by a raspberry heart, which Brandy could not have been happier with, from its thin milk chocolate coating to its luxurious berry center.  Bailey, who commented, "I could drink this hot chocolate for the rest of my life and be happy," received a massive cookie dough truffle, which a thicker dark chocolate coating and even more chocolate, in chip form, dotting the inside.

Heading to the buffet, the ladies first eyed up the array of freshly made pastries and gorgeous fruit.  Bailey especially liked the chocolate croissants, which were buttery and flaky, while Brandy sided with the miniature muffins with fresh berries baked into them.  Next, the ladies attacked the seafood selections, like the chilled shrimps, lox and cream cheese rolls, and a surprisingly delicious ceviche.  They also adored the goat cheese and beet fritters, which were presented beautifully on metal spoons suspended on a magnetic board.  The main event of the buffet was the meat selection, which included ribs doused in a chocolate 5 spice sauce, prime rib with a cocoa dry rub, and cocoa candied bacon.  In fact, one could get the bacon made into the center of what was referred to as a Waffle Pop, where the stick mounted bacon was dipped in batter, cooked in a special appliance, and then topped with the diner's choice of a variety of toppings, like caramel, chocolate sauce, fresh berries, and maple syrup.  "If you would have told me I'd be eating brunch foods off a stick and loving it, I would have thought you'd inhaled too many furniture polish fumes," Brandy laughed.

Of course, no meal at a restaurant themed on chocolate could be complete without some decadent desserts.  There were plenty of bite sized delights to be found on the buffet, such as tiny cups of chocolate mousse, lemon scented cream puffs, chocolate eclairs with a touch of fruit jam, and white chocolate mini cupcakes.  Not content with the amount of sugar they had already injected into their veins, Bailey and Brandy also sampled an item off the a la carte menu, the signature chocolate sourdough bread made into a scrumptious French toast and covered in white chocolate cream and fresh berries.

"You know, a seafood and chocolate restaurant is certainly not something you see every day, but I think it makes for such an interesting contrast!" Bailey mused as she downed one last cream puff.  "I just love that this buffet isn't full of unwatched chaffing dishes, grey eggs, floppy pancakes, and over cooked meats," said Brandy, "Everything here is fresh, very well presented, and original.  It's not every day you see levitating fritters or chocolate infused ribs!"  The service was also exemplary, especially considering how busy the place got towards the late morning, and at only $22 for the buffet, Brandy thought the quality and variety of the food made the price more than reasonable.  "So, have you found a bit of inner peace now that you've had some chocolate for brunch?" Brandy asked Bailey.  "Maybe a bit too much peace," Bailey yawned, "I'm ready for a nap.  I guess that table and chair set I'm supposed to patina for my final will just have to wait until tomorrow."

The writers of this blog were invited to dine by the restaurant free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

The Short and Sweet Review

The Chocolate Sanctuary Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

No comments:

Post a Comment