Between the architecture and decor, Hyde Park Bar & Grill radiates a familiar feeling of a water-side, cabana style restaurant, without the water. Warm colors, retro signs and an open dining area are all features of the interior, leaving it nostalgic and inviting.
After being seated almost immediately, my eating partner and I were guided to a cozy table-booth along one of the further walls in one of the many dining rooms. We started with mimosas and coffee before putting in an order of tamales to truly whet the appetite. Having recently been brought tamales from 'The Valley', I did my best to temper expectations for the dish and, ultimately, was only moderately impressed. Described with the words 'fresh corn masa, sweet corn, cheese,' the consistency of these Sweet Corn Tamales ($5.99) was discerning in that it was, well, inconsistent. Parts of the tamale were dry while others were moist and fell apart at the touch of the fork. Overall the flavors were announced in their own respect, but the hickory tomato salsa was entirely necessary for any degree of satisfaction or flavor.
In the time that it took us to seat, order and receive entrees, our server was as non-existent as possible without him actually being fake. However, the server assistants were kind enough to come with coffee refills, ask how the meal was and clear any plates. Our entrees; Eggs Benedict ($9.99) and an omelette, were aesthetically pleasing upon first glance. Upon diving into my benedict, though, I was greatly disappointed to discover the sheer lack of yolk in the egg. To regard the eggs as over cooked would be an understatement, as they flaunted with being hard boiled. Outside of the hollandaise sauce (which itself was sparse and uninspiring in this case), the execution of the poached egg is vital in any variation of a benedict. Additionally, the accompanying lettuce was wilted and limp, leaving no room for any added texture.
Fortunately, the 'Waltons english muffin' was serviceable. As for the side of potatoes, they were decent in that some were cooked well while others were flimsy and soggy. To take matters further, our server was not even around to hear any of these concerns.
Maybe we came on an off day. Maybe brunch isn't all it's cracked up to be at this location. Or maybe the location and decor sells the restaurant enough for people to return. In any case, with Austin's plethora of options for food, there's no hurry to dine here for brunch.
Rating: 2 Hard Boiled Eggs (out of Five)
(Items ordered: Sweet Corn Tamales, Eggs Benedict)
Hyde Park Bar & Grill - 4206 Duval St, Austin, TX 78751