If You Go
› Where: Bluewater Grille, 224 Broad St.
› Hours: 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday-Sunday brunch, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday
› Prices: $2-$19
› Alcohol: Yes
› Phone: 423-266-4200
› Website: www.blue waterchattanooga.com
Bluewater Grille has been a downtown Chattanooga favorite for years. Situated a few blocks from the Tennessee Aquarium and the Tennessee River, the eatery, known for its steaks and seafood, has garnered a consistent reputation for fine dining in a cool, casual atmosphere. This is very much the case on Saturdays and Sundays when Bluewater rolls out a special brunch menu highlighting old favorites and some imaginative variations to change things up.
Stepping through the revolving door on Broad Street, diners are greeted by a circular bar and lounge area to the right, which gives way to an elevated dining room and then private dining rooms down a hallway toward the back. The main dining room exudes an air of simple elegance. Recessed lighting illuminates dark hardwood floors and exposed brick walls adorned with maritime-themed art. A pair of large, colored glass lamps breaks up the space.
Unique to Sunday's brunch, Bluewater offers live jazz, which sounded great and created the perfect backdrop on this visit.
After ordering a mimosa ($2) and perusing some half-dozen food choices, I settled on the Steak & Eggs ($19), while my friend and occasional dining companion, Travis, opted to order off the a la carte menu, choosing an English muffin ($2), Canadian bacon ($2), fried eggs ($3) and brunch potatoes ($3).
Bluewater's Steak & Eggs consists of a 10-ounce, center-cut filet seared and broiled. It's then topped with two fried eggs and served with garlic cherry tomatoes, avocado slices and brunch potatoes. And it's delicious.
The steak was prepared just as I requested and arrived moist and full of flavor. The garlic tomatoes also added a lot to the experience. Although I arrived hungry, this dish was more substantial than I felt like finishing at one sitting.
Travis remarked that the brunch staples he ordered were fresh and tasty.
Other dishes on the Bluewater brunch menu include Blue Crab Benedict ($13), Chicken & Waffles ($14), Veggie Omelet ($11) and Apple Pie French Toast ($14).
I ordered the french toast on a previous visit a few months back and found it scrumptious, although somewhat akin to eating an entree-sized dessert, as it's very sweet. They prepare it with locally made Niedlov's brioche bread and top with cinnamon-whiskey apple compote, spiced pecans and coconut whipped cream. It was good enough last time that I was torn between ordering that again or trying something different.
In addition to $2 mimosas, Bluewater also offers a Bloody Mary bar for $5 during brunch.
Our server, Jonathan, provided top-notch service, even as several large groups seated around us kept him and the other wait staff busy. Everything was served in a timely manner.
I have never had a bad dining experience at Bluewater Grille. This visit reminded me that, although I'm all for trying new places and do so fairly often, it's good to have a tried-and-true standby.
Contact Chris Zelk at 757-6244 or email@example.com