Amidst the holiday buzz, we decided to check out Batch GastroPub, the latest restaurant to pop up in Brickell (two blocks south of Mary Brickell Village.)
I feel pretty confident in saying that this place is going through a tad bit of an identity crisis. I realize that a GastroPub is a fusion of high-end cocktails (mostly beer) and food, but there’s a consistency in that concept that I just didn’t feel at Batch. I’m not sure if its aim is to be a pub with its big screen TVs, a restaurant with its sit-down service and excess of tables, or a lounge with its DJ and loud music off to the side. I’m all for celebrating and embracing hybrid concepts and ideas, specifically a damn good GastroPub in Miami, but Batch feels like it’s trying to be a lot and ends up being nothing.
The menu is small – one page cuisine, one page specialty cocktails. The boyfriend and I enjoyed some fresh Patron Margaritas that were very tasty and to Batch’s credit, they do have some specialty cocktails that seem promising. I also thought it was rad that some tables house their own taps, where drink orders are placed via an Android tablet. I’ll never dismiss the idea of endless beer.
So, I must state that although the drinks didn’t exactly disappoint or impress, the food was entirely forgettable. We had coffee rubbed pork belly (with pumpkin and cranberry jam) and Batch Chili glazed wings (with Blue Espuma and Dorito Dust). In theory both sound incredibly appetizing, but the pork belly was a nice chunk of fat with barely any meat. The wings lacked flavor, and I’m pretty sure I’ve had pre-packaged frozen wings that were more appetizing than this dish. Other items served included the Wedgie (a salad with tomato, red onion, double smoked bacon and blue cheese vinaigrette) and Toasted Quinoa. The toasted quinoa was pretty good. With baby carrots, avocado, radish and arugula pesto, it was refreshing and light. The salad was a nice wedge of anticlimactic greens topped with bacon bits.
I’d like to share that Mitch and I value integrity and try to be as unbiased as possible in our reviews. I would never want to talk trash about a place and I fully understand that this restaurant is still very much new and has time to blossom into a place of potential. Unfortunately, I think they have a long way to go.
Mel’s recommendation: If you’re hungry and have stumbled out of a neighboring Brickell bar after having consumed one too many drinks, try this place out. Remember, you’re not coming for good food and order another beer while you’re at it.