JEM Social: Bad Santa Brunch

Address7601 N Kings Hwy, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572
Social MediaJem Social

Christmas has always been my favorite holiday, from the music to the food and that special magic that you feel as Christmas Eve approaches.

JEM Social the gregarious cocktail lounge, offered a preview of Brunch Social, their aspiring morning social hour for those who wish to have elevated breakfast favorites, in the release of a theme during Christmas as Bad Santa Brunch.

The full menu for Brunch Social will officially launch in early 2023.

After our first few visits, Becca (@beccerzzzzz) and I knew we had to come yet again for a festive event as it grew closer to Christmas. This location has perfected their ways on how to spark the Christmas joy.

While walk-ins were available on first come basis, it was highly recommended to purchase tickets ahead of time. Becca had reserved a 10AM table for two for the price of $20 however, the fee of $10 per person deducts from the total purchases spent.

Still very clear that the chefs, bartenders and waitstaff give extreme attention to detail in presentation and hospitality as we are welcomed to the brunch with a display of choices.

“From soufflé pancakes to chicken and waffles; pork belly burnt ends to sweet potato hash browns,” JEM Social is hitting the brunch scene of Myrtle Beach with an exclusive twist on the sweet and savory breakfast favorites.

As we scan the menu, we place an order for the espresso martini which features vodka, coffee liquor and espresso.

The iconic espresso martini was the answer I had been searching for as I had walked out the door before I could grab my usual morning mug of caffeinated comfort.

After overhearing one of the waitresses to the neighboring table, the Shareables could be below $10, the Mains approximately $15 to $20 and the Tartines could be priced from $5 to $10 by time of official release, these prices are still to be confirmed.

Becca and I became overwhelmed by the choices, excited for many and uninspired by few. Instead of the $50 brunch for two, which would have included 1 Shareable, 1 Tartine and 2 entrées, we decided to have three entrée orders.

After enjoying their Crispy Chicken Sandwich, my eye immediately caught to the KFW & W.

While Becca was not a huge fan of this dish, I will remember it as a legend. Laying upon a sugar coated waffle was a Korean fried chicken, a sunny side up fried egg all drizzled with hot honey sauce, orange blossom butter and sprinkled with pecans. The chicken was so juicy and tender however, the sauce ruined parts of its glorious crunchy texture, making the breaded coat soggy.

This dish was so very close to perfection. The flavors married delightfully as the sugar waffle was thick with the pearl sugar that became extremely present, even after being piled under a flavorful Korean fried chicken and fried egg.

Overall, I felt satisfied with this dish with only trivial moments of unsatisfactory.

The moment we had been waiting for, the Stuffed French Toast which was nearly the size of a small cake. The fluffy, airy brioche, is soaked in custard prior to being fried and then glazed with crème anglaise completing it’s final stage with the toppings of house made whipped cream, raspberries, pecans and walnuts.

This was the Main that took center stage at our table, with eyes from the four other tables that had joined in on the event.

Nearly the size of our heads, the brioche loaf makes me concerned as to how much material might be prospected to see wasted, especially since it is sourced locally.

While the loaf was light & airy despite it’s size, the fruit and nut toppings disappeared within the first few moments of us sharing that by the time it came to get the bill and ask for a box, we took home half a loaf of sugar coated bread from the velvety barrel aged bourbon maple syrup, nearly unusable except to reheat and hope we had fruit or whipped topping at home.

While it is an absolutely photo-worthy product and extremely delicious, I’m concerned about the materials necessary to keep up with demand by time of official release. After all is said and done, this dish is worth advertising as a Main worth sharing with others.

The nomenclature for the soufflé pancake confused Becca and I when this dish was placed on our table. The description gave, Japanese soufflé pancake, orange blossom butter, topped with whipped cream and barrel aged bourbon maple.

While the toppings were present, and then some with added fruits, the specificity of “Japanese soufflé pancake” had us in thought that it would be the ones seen here, instead we received what we believed very delicious but not the “tower above traditional” for pancakes. The batter was so flavorful with the pairing of the orange blossom butter and much like the brioche loaf, fluffy and is one dish I hope to see perfected to see the “distinctive height” that gives Japanese soufflé pancake it’s name.

If you have not scheduled plans for New Years Eve, be sure to check out JEM Social for their Gatsby Gala, more information here.

“The food might be good, but is it worth the price?”

It should be acknowledged that the Brunch Social preview lacked in some areas as the menu is still very new. The official choices for the menu, the kitchen being slow for having many empty tables, some of the items not as described and prices that are still left unknown to the staff are the most notable for me.

After enjoying the dishes I was presented with, I have high respect for Chef John and Owner Jason, that their creativity and uniqueness has solidified JEM Social as an outstanding player for a highly-elevated move in the breakfast/brunch game that has become overly saturated along the Grand Strand. Making this establishment one to be revisited time and time again, and not only for their Happy Hour.

Rather than choosing the $50 brunch for two, which included a bit of everything the menu offered, Becca and I walked away spending $16 per Main dish which totaled to $76 however, totaled to $56 for three Mains, after the $20 reservation deduction.

It is to my understanding that JEM Social uses high quality, local ingredients and sourced material, like microgreens from Microledon Farm, and their locally sourced brioche loaf which would explain the cost of the menu items. With that stated, the menu rates emulate that of other establishments in the local area.

In the upcoming New Year I look forward to my future experiences at JEM Social as well as other establishments.

To read more of my experience at JEM Social, see here.


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