"I don't believe it. I really don't believe it," Brandy said, her mouth hanging open in awe as she watched the men in blue on her television screen jumping for joy like a group of little kids. She had witnessed some amazing and historic things during her life, but nothing compared to the moment the Cubs won the World Series for the first time in over a century. The joy and elation coursing through the city has been palpable ever since. "And to think, if I had never gone to that brunch at Punch Bowl Social, all this may have never happened."
The story started early on in the series. Brandy, terrified to alter anything about her routine, wore the same clothing for a week, ate the same things for a week, and retraced her steps every single day. "I'm not about to be the person responsible for ruining things for everyone!" was her reasoning. But when things started to go in the wrong direction, Brandy knew it was time for drastic measures. "I need to leave the city," she said Sunday morning, "I need to change everything up and get that good mojo flowing again!" So she wrangled her friends Bailey and Hawk and headed out to Schamburg to grab some brunch at Punch Bowl Social.
She'd heard about Punch Bowl Social when Bunny visited it earlier this year and concept had really intrigued her. Modeled on a Victorian hunting lodge and decorated with all kinds of eclectic miscellania, the Colorado based establishment not only boasts an impressive drink and food menu (which has been newly revitalized by world renowned chef Hugh Acheson), but it stands as an activity rich spot to spend a few hours with friends. From the private karaoke rooms to the bowling lanes, to the giant versions of classic board games and the vintage arcade games, one could easily loose one's self for hours in a plethora of fun and deliciousness.
The trio began with a round of drinks from the crafted cocktail menu. Punch Bowl Social, having "punch" in their name, pride themselves on using only house made mixes to create truly unique concoctions and twists on old favorites. Hawk ordered the Old Fashioned, which came with a bit of muddled orange peel to give it something extra. Bailey went for a visit to the Bloody Mary Bar, where she filled her cup with the house made mix and then created an extravagant garnish of house pickled vegetables, cheeses, meats, and plenty of other goodies. Brandy picked one of the Adult Milkshakes, favoring the decisively brunchy sounding Malted Maple Royale, which was spiked with whiskey and garnished with a thick slice of candied bacon.
They next indulged in two appetizers, the Farmer's Board and Hugh's Pimento Cheese. The Farmer's Board was a collection of more house made pickled veggies, accompanied by some luscious burrata, whole grain mustard, sweet onion jam, and salty slices of prosciutto. Brandy adored the bright and still crisp veggies, which had the perfect amount of acidity to them. Hawk especially enjoyed creating little toast bites with the onion jam, mustard, burrata and prosciutto, while Bailey was simply smitten by the cut wood circle everything came served on. Next, they all dived into the pimento cheese, a Southern classic, which came topped with a sweet bacon marmalade and was served with a Pullman toast, an especially soft, but sturdy bread. This stuff was such a perfect combination of sweet, salty, and cheesy that Bailey and Brandy were soon requesting more toast.
Now full with food and drink, Brandy, Bailey, and Hawk began wandering around the massive complex and trying out some of the different activities. Bailey loved playing skeeball and the vintage video games down in the basement level. Hawk flexed his skills at bowling by out doing Brandy on the lanes in a very close match. Brandy's delight was sitting down in one of the private karaoke rooms and belting into a microphone until the other two had to beg her to stop.
The writers of this blog were invited to dine at the restaurant free of charge in exchange for an honest review.
The Short and Sweet Review