The Syndicate | Facebook | T: @syndicateohio | IG: @syndicateohio
213 S. Main St. (map it!)
Bellefontaine, OH 43311
Open Wed-Thurs, 4-9p; Fri, 4p-1a; Sat, 10a-1a; Sun, 10a-9p (brunch served Sat & Sun, 10a-2p)
Vegetarian/vegan/gluten free? Y/N/Y
Visited: Saturday, November 7, 2020 at 10 a.m.
Earlier in 2020, the owners of Brewfontaine, a beer bar and restaurant in Bellefontaine’s revitalized downtown, opened an event space called The Syndicate next door. While the year’s events have curtailed plans for a full schedule of hosted events, they’ve converted some of the operations into a full-time restaurant and bar, including weekend brunch service.
In order to help spread the word, they kindly invited us to try their brunch, and we turned it into a full day of shopping, biking, coffee, and historic sites around Bellefontaine.
We started, of course, with a pair of drinks for the adults.
Both are boozy selections:
- The Wake Up Call (left) blends espresso bean-infused Watershed vodka, Kahlúa, and cold brew from local Native Coffee
- The super boozy Bourbon Brunch (right) looks like an innocent cup of coffee but hides Maker’s Mark, coffee liquor, vanilla, and heavy cream inside, and arrives with a slice of bacon and corner of waffle
But it’s not all about the booze. The brunch menu features kid’s and adults’ offerings, with a lot of creative spins on the classics.
The Syndicate’s building was home to Jackson’s News Stand for nearly 50 years, and the owners continued that newsy theme with old newspapers and decor reminiscent of a newsroom.
We tried four dishes from the brunch menu, largely relying on the advice of our server. First off was a worthy version of shrimp and cheesy grits, layering nicely seasoned shrimp with roasted poblanos and red peppers.
My favorite of the meal was the chicken and waffles. They wisely used thigh meat, which is more succulent and has better flavor. It’s expertly breaded and fried, then laid atop sweet potato waffles (again, good choice) with a drizzle of Ohio maple syrup.
Our youngest Owen is on a mission to try the eggs benedict everywhere he goes (a man after my own heart), and this traditional version (English muffin, Canadian bacon, poached eggs, hollandaise) earned his thumbs up. It came with a side of potatoes, which were a little soft and under-seasoned.
Kudos to the biscuits and gravy, too, made with zesty chorizo gravy that’s balanced by a drizzle of local Nate’s Nectar honey.
All in all, The Syndicate has a solid brunch going! It’s a big space, too, and includes a covered front patio, so there’s plenty of room to safely spread out. It made for a terrific start to a day exploring the city.