Continuing our search for the Best Sunday Brunch In Tucson, Ms. Karen & I knew perfectly well that the brunch at Hacienda del Sol would be one of the strongest contenders. We had dined at The Grill, their signature restaurant, many times, including one of the best dinners we have ever enjoyed. Tom Firth, managing partner, and his staff do an excellent job of making sure their guests have a most pleasant experience.
As expected, the HDS brunch is the traditional buffet of fresh fruits, veggies, bacon, sausage, potatoes, etc. etc.; plus two chefs ready to carve a slice of prime rib, or bacon-wrapped pork loin, or cook us custom omelets.
They also had an extensive array of pastries & desserts, including many that were gluten-free. My guess is that the gluten-free morsels came from our friends at Gourmet Girls Gluten-Free Bakery. I’m reasonably certain because Mary & Susan are the only ones who make gluten-free anything that I like. And I liked the ones at Hacienda del Sol.
As I picked up a plate and started to graze on this extraordinary banquet, the image of a Roman orgy came to mind (sans dancing virgins, of course). There is so much food here, and so much variety, and it’s all so delicious-looking that there is the temptation to try one of everything. But if I tried one of everything, they’d have to wheel me out on a gurney. Choices; choices!
And then, with plate nearly full, I wandered over to the big chef with the big carving knife and requested the unthinkable … “One of each, please!”
We were seated by the big window overlooking the golf course with the Santa Catalina Mountains in the background. As views go, this one’s a winner.
So I tried the bacon-wrapped pork loin. Flavor-wise, it too was just OK. Certainly the bacon helped in the flavor category.
I moved on to the cheese blintz. No lack of flavor here. Thin blintz, rich cream cheese filling and topped with a little raspberry syrup… definitely sweet, but not TOOO sweet. Delicious.
As we sat there in the dining room enjoying the view, enjoying the food, and enjoying each other’s company, I noted that Ms. Karen’s eyes got real big and she had a rather startled look on her face.
It looked like a miniature onion, so I popped it whole into my mouth and took a bite. Then MY eyes got real big and I’m sure I had a startled look on my face. Seems these little fellers were onions all right, but onions that were probably marinated for a couple of years.
Come to find out they were cocktail onions; a sweet pearl onion pickled in brine with a tad of turmeric & paprika. I suppose at our age we should have experienced cocktail onions along the way, but Ms. Karen usually drinks wine, and I usually drink wine or straight bourbon on the rocks. So this was a new experience for both of us.
Brunches at upscale resorts like Hacienda del Sol are a bit on the expensive side: $40 per person. That said, it’s literally all you can eat and all the mimosa refills you can handle.
In conclusion, the food was fresh & delicious, except the meat was not as flavorful as the price suggested it ought to be. In retrospect, I think we would have been better off with a custom omelet.
The service was typical Hacienda del Sol … attentive, but not overbearing. We never emptied our mimosa glasses. A waiter was always there to refill, and refill, and refill again. And the view? Most pleasant.
Overall a very good experience, (one pays for ambience) which earns Sunday Brunch at Hacienda del Sol 4-Saguaros.
The Grill at Hacienda del Sol
5501 N. Hacienda del Sol Road
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