The grandiose nature of the American’s space paired with its unabashedly bold name cast a giant shadow for any chef. Maybe Celina didn’t find inspiration in shadows. When I heard that Tio was opening Julian, a casual joint in the former Joe D’s Wine Bar space in Brookside, I was intrigued. How would she handle the food, the presentation and the atmosphere? The answer: fresh, casual and low key.
Outside the entrance I was greeted by a sad, deflated, rotting pumpkin. My only reaction was the feeling that Julian was too busy putting customers and food first. The rotten pumpkin was a good sign!
I booked my reservation on Open Table, which ended up saving me a lot of hassle as we walked by a room full of hungry patrons straight to our two-top.
The space was clean, spartan and modern.