By Sophia Ricco
Bottles are popping and orange juice is flowing every weekend at IMC. The modern eatery known for exclusive meats wants to be your new brunch spot.
The Huntington village restaurant is owned and operated by Imperial Meat Company, a Brooklyn-based a meat distributor with 22 years in the industry that’s given them prime selection of ingredients. In just over four years, the company’s Huntington restaurant has garnered a reputation with delicious dishes for dinnertime, and recently debuted a new menu they invite brunch-goers to enjoy.
“Right when we open the doors, our mentality is that everybody is ready to give a warm welcome to anyone who comes in,” general manager Cesar Hernandez said.
The brunch menu offers a variety of items for sweet or savory cravings from the raw bar, salads and sandwiches to sharing plates and breakfast classics. For months, IMC has been collecting feedback from customers and evolving brunch dishes.
At first only serving brunch on Sunday, the morning meal has become so popular that IMC has expanded to Saturday. The bottomless drinks for two hours for $20 is what catches the attention of many diners who sip and socialize over a mimosa, bloody mary, margarita or red and white sangria. IMC is one of the only brunch spots in the area with bottomless specials.
“We want to create a different atmosphere in town, something that no one else has around,” Hernandez said. “We want people to recognize our name and know who we are, our food, our service, our environment and the type of quality we put in our dishes.”
Imperial Meat Company has incorporated their signature meat, wagyu beef, into their brunch menu, putting their twist on breakfast staples. Wagyu comes from single bred Japanese cattle that are fed a special diet and massaged everyday for peak circulation and tenderness. IMC receives shipments of meat every day that is prepared and ready for the night.
“The prices that we have on the menu, no one can compete with because we don’t buy it second or third-hand,” Hernandez said. “Everything is first choice and freshly cut that day.”
Steak n’ eggs ($24), a breakfast standard, is elevated by the wagyu skirt steak and IMC’s housemade chimichurri sauce. The soft meat melts in the mouth, while the Latin sauce kicks up the fresh flavor with hints of parsley and garlic. Accompanied by two eggs and french fries, it is a full feast. Get a taste of the rich meat by adding wagyu bacon as a side. The thick slabs of bacon are succulent and savory, sprinkled with pepper for a slightly smoked taste.
“We cut certain meats fresh, because our products we cannot let sit or age, you have to trim and prepare them right at the moment,” Hernandez said
The brunch burger ($17) is a true mix of breakfast and lunch. It has a little bit of everything, serving up a kobe beef patty topped with a fried egg. The juicy patty and egg ooze together as the burger is devoured, complemented by perfectly-cooked caramelized onions.
On the lighter side, the vegetarian hash bowl ($12) is stuffed with spinach, avocado, mushrooms, roasted corn, home fries and topped with poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. The dish is a favorite with many brunch regulars, who the staff enjoy getting to know over time.
“The environment we create is full of life,” Hernandez said. “When you walk in, you’ll hear the music is great and lively, the staff is smiling and it all comes together for me when we establish a connection with the guest.”
During brunch IMC also offers their dinner menu to give customers even more choices, like the velvety texture of the wagyu meatballs ($12).
Hernandez said he greets every guest as if he is welcoming them into his own home.
“A lot of the time in this business, we think that when you open the door and people come in, that’s what matters, but it isn’t,” Hernandez said. “It’s about the experience and hospitality, what you can provide as a restaurant.”
279 Main St, Huntington
Atmosphere: Chic and vibrant
Price: Raw bar: $3-60, Salads and Sandwiches: $10-17, Brunch classics: $11-24
Hours: Monday, closed; Tuesday, 4-9 p.m.; Wednesday-Thursday, 4-10 p.m.; Friday, 4-11 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.