As much as I love Tom Douglas' restaurant empire, I wish I could say I love Dahlia Lounge just as much. Brunch at the Dahlia has gone downhill in the past few months. I spent my bridal shower here just last August and I can't believe how much the food has changed since then. I feel let down...
Brunch at the Dahlia used to be filled with fantastic biscuits, perfectly cooked scrambled eggs topped with Beecher's cheese, tasty Shumai sausage pattys and really good smoked trout. Not anymore. Now brunch is mediocre at best. I am disappointed that there's no congee (Chinese style hot pot) dim sum, or standard eggs benedict. This has been replaced by standard breakfast fare.
The new Dahlia Lounge Brunch Menu
While planning to order the fantastic eggs benedict, I saw that the shaved ham has been replaced with smoked pork loin. You used to be able to get two eggs any style with smoked trout, or even crab cakes. Not anymore. Now you have a choice bacon, sausage or pork loin. Why Dahlia? Fortunately the crab cakes are still on the menu, but on the lunch side.
Two Eggs, scrambled with House Made Sausage, Potatoes and a Biscuit $15
I hoped that since the opening of the Dahlia Workshop, that the Dahlia Lounge would have reverted back to the old cream biscuits. Nope. Still that same sad little round biscuit. It wasn't very good, and I was so disappointed to see it on the plates. bleh. The sausage was good, it's similar in taste to the shumai sausage they used to serve. The potatoes were lackluster and nothing like the potatoes served at Lola across the street!
Shrimp & Grits $15
Since they didn't have the usual eggs benedict on the menu, I decided to take a stab at the daily special. Shrimp and Grits. Uhh, big mistake. The grits were bland, there was way too much sauce, that wasn't all that great, and the shrimp were small and translucent, almost as if they were slightly steamed, or par boiled. I opted to get a biscuit instead of bread, thinking I would eat it with the rhubarb jam and butter, but that wasn't going to happen with the biscuit swimming in the sauce on the dish. I ate maybe half, then decided it just wasn't worth it. As much as it pains me to say this, this was possibly the worst Shrimp & Grits I have ever had. I will stick to brunch at Lola, I don't think I plan to return to Dahlia for brunch again.
Dinner at Dahlia Lounge is much better, and pretty consistent. I love the Tuscan Bread Salad, and the recipe can be found in Tom Douglas' Seattle Kitchen Cookbook (see below). I've made it at home, and although a lot of work, it's fantastic. I will likely come back for dinner again, the crab cakes are truly awesome - they can also be found at Etta's, so that may be the dish I stick with!
2001 4th Avenue
Seattle, WA 98121
Lunch: Monday - Friday 11:30am - 2:30pm
Brunch: Saturday - Sunday 9:00am - 2:00pm
Dinner: Monday - Thursday 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Friday - Saturday 5:00pm - 11:00pm
Sunday 5:00pm - 9:00pm
I also love Tom Douglas's cookbooks for inspiration and recipes for some of the famous dishes are even available in the books! I've provided links to the ones I own below...