Bryce Gilmore is on a roll. Several years ago, the Austin, Texas, chef shut down his popular Odd Duck food truck in order to focus his energies on the brick-and-mortar Barley Swine. That restaurant has been a runaway success, prompting Gilmore to revisit the truck—in name, anyway—with his second establishment, the brand-new Odd Duck.
Odd Duck is another bastion of farm-to-table food served creatively, meaning shiitake mushroom doughnuts topped with popcorn, and dinner rolls stuffed with rich shreds of pig head meat. Hay-roasted carrots arrive on a savory bed of cream cheese and pistachio crumbs, and grits come topped with pickled shrimp, grilled olives, and fried strips of pig skin. “Our menu is inspired by the best of our local farmers,” says Gilmore. But his reverence for fresh ingredients is matched by his madcap palate, which delivers the most sought-after of culinary experiences: new flavor combinations that actually work.
Take this chicken-fried chicken egg, for instance, served with mushrooms, greens, and house-made hot sauce. Easy to make and hard to resist, the egg is a study in contrasts: runny yolk, crisp crust, earthy mushrooms, and fiery sauce. Serve it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Just be sure to use fresh farm eggs.