Mae, the supper club billowing Southern charm behind Old Salt Marketplace, is starting brunch September 4, and owner-chef and 2016 Eater Young Gun Maya Lovelace shared the details on her favorite meal of the day. "Brunch is basically a religion in the South," says Lovelace. "We're working to bring a fresh-to-Portland take on Southern brunch that's a little more refined, a little less heavy, and full of soul."
Brunch will run four composed courses (it won't be family-style like Mae's dinners) with coffee and orange juice for mimosas for $40 (just bring your own sparkling: Mae is BYOB). Lovelace is ready to announce a couple opening-day dishes, too. The first brunch will feature shrimp and grits (sumac and thyme-poached shrimp, smoky bacon-laced pepperonata, creamy Anson Mills Carolina Gold rice grits, crispy fried okra) and a three-fat fried chicken wing, served with toasted stoneground cornbread, wilted collard greens, poached farm egg, and hot sauce hollandaise.
Brunch plates will change with the seasons, and Lovelace is currently working on a couple possibilities for the inaugural meal. "We're hoping to have compressed summer melons with country ham, smoked salt, shiso, and toasted benne as our opening second course," she says, "and sweet buttermilk biscuits with fresh peaches and lemon verbena whipped cream as our dessert."
Like dinner at Mae, brunch will be a ticketed affair, so sign up for updates on the website to get a seat. Starting September 4, you'll be able to choose between two seatings: one at 10 a.m. and another at 12:30 p.m.