Brian Oliveira was inspired with an entrepreneurial spirit created by his family’s history in the restaurant business and a trip to California. He left Temple’s pre-nursing program for the Culinary Institute of America, where he graduated in 2011. His dream was to open his own restaurant and in 2015, that happened. Girard on Girard is a little Fishtown BYOB “bruncherie” serving breakfast, lunch, and brunch 7 days a week.
Walking inside you can’t help but smile at the bright and cheery color palette and modern design of the restaurant. Customers can dine at bright yellow booths or the beautiful white marble counter that overlooks an open kitchen (there’s a second kitchen hidden downstairs).
Owner and executive chef, Brian started at 14 working at his family’s luncheonette in Point Pleasant, NJ. His family has roots in Portugal and some of his best memories revolve around his Grandmother’s garden and enjoying eating with family and friends.
The harsh reality of the restaurant industry is that since 1992, in Philadelphia servers only make $2.83 per hour plus tips, while kitchen staff make less than $10 per hour. Its a matter of quality of life, when business is slow or a customer is having a bad day- servers can leave a restaurant barely having made any money for the hours they put in. After seeing a restaurant in California with a similar model- Brian designed the menu and prices at Girard so that the gratuity is factored into the price so that servers start at $12 per hour. Customers have the option to tip additionally if desired, but it is not required and no additional charges are made when customers receive the bill.
The menu at Girard is a delicious mix of simple, fresh food. Start an early morning with the Early Morning Brekkie Special with 2 eggs any-style, potatoes, and toast for only $5! This deal is offered weekdays from 7 am – 9 am. They’ve also got some delicious baked goods like Daily Coffee Cake, as well as fresh squeezed orange juice and seasonal drinks like Hibiscus Berry Iced Tea or Coconut Chai Lemonade. Don’t forget its BYOB and Girard has some great drink mixers!
Of course we couldn’t resist trying the Avocado Toast piled high with smashed avocado, and seasonal garnish on toasted pumpernickel bread from Philly Bread Co. Our garnish consisted of balsamic strawberries with crushed pistachio and chopped basil. You can also top your toast with lump crab meat for an additional charge.
If you’re gluten-free we’d suggest the Housemade Yogurt with berries, honey-nut granola, lemon zest, and mint!
And if you’re not a breakfast person at all, try starting off your meal with the Baked Mac N’ Cheese oozing with Cabot’s extra sharp cheddar cheese, garlic and thyme.
Breakfast lovers both savory and sweet will be more than satisfied with the savory Gravlax Bagel topped with house cured smoked salmon, herbed cream cheese, pickled red onion, red beets, and cucumber on a Philly Bread Co. everything bagel. Believe us when we tell you, Girard’s French Toast is the BEST. With macerated blackberries, maple-hazelnut butter, and mint, this luscious brioche french toast is everything you could want and more. The subtle tart of the berries with the creamy, sweet butter is absolute bliss.
The gluten-free breakfast favorite is the Huevos Rancheros with toasted corn tortillas, black beans, avocado, crema, cheddar, shaved cabbage, pickled jalapeños, 2 sunny side up eggs, and cilantro. The Spicy Baked Eggs are inspired by a Portugese recipe made with fresh tomato sauce, roasted bell, poblano, and jalapeño peppers, and topped with fresh cheese, two eggs, pecorino, and herbs (also gluten-free).
Every weekday from 11 am- 1 pm you can also catch the Fishtown Fast Lunch Specials for only $10! Specials rotate monthly. Luckily you don’t have to pick between breakfast and lunch- at Girard you always have both!
We loved the bright and fresh flavors of the Char-grilled Piri Chicken inspired by Brian’s Portugese hertigae with marinated boneless chicken, red cabbage slaw, and hot chili-garlic sauce on toasted ciabatta.
Vegan diners go crazy for the Hummus Wrap with garlicky hummus, za’atar spiced vegetable slaw, pickled raisins, cucumber, and sunflower seeds on herbed flatbread. If you’re in the mood for a fresh salad try the Grilled Shrimp Salad with crispy fingerlings, sautéed radish, seared brussels sprouts, olives, poached egg, and lemon vinaigrette.
Stop by Girard any day of the week before 3pm to enjoy all the deliciousness we’ve showed you and more! Delivery is also available via Caviar and Postmates if you can’t make it to Fishtown. There are no reservations, but if you call ahead on the weekends you can get your name put on a list, and don’t forget to BYOB!