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The Short Version: Whether you’re there for a romantic getaway or Sunday brunch, Moody Gardens Hotel offers an escape from everyday life. This world-class destination goes to great lengths to satisfy guests and create memorable experiences in the heart of Galveston, Texas. If you want to treat yourself to a fine-dining date — without busting your budget — you can head to Shearn’s at Moody Gardens Hotel on Sunday and enjoy a scrumptious brunch in a beautiful restaurant overlooking the city.
Every Sunday, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., Shearn’s at Moody Gardens Hotel is all about brunch. The culinary team makes a fresh start to the day with fresh foods that feature the flavors of the sea. They stay busy in the kitchen whipping up a creamy hollandaise sauce and flipping pancakes as bacon sizzles and Texas-shaped waffles turn a buttery brown.
In the summer of 2019, Moody Gardens started serving an upscale Sunday brunch, and people have come from all over to try its savory and sweet dishes.
This isn’t a typical hotel buffet brunch where lukewarm food sits under a heat lamp. This is a sit-down meal with fast service and made-to-order omelets, pork chops, and seafood. The kitchen is equipped to make just about every breakfast treat you could want.
Executive Chef Felipe Gonzalez, who has worked at Shearn’s since 2016, brings over 30 years of culinary experience to the table and puts a lot of thought, effort, and care into the brunch menu.
With such high-quality and locally sourced dishes, you may expect the Moody Gardens Hotel brunch would be rather expensive, but it’s actually one of the most affordable (and delicious) brunches in town. Some couples come dressed to the nines, while others are in more casual wear, and they all enjoy the same world-class hospitality.
If you want to start your Sunday on a romantic note, you can book a table at Moody Gardens Hotel and savor an upscale brunch experience in a beautiful setting.
“Brunch is well-suited for first dates based on the speed of service,” Chef Felipe said. “You can stay as long as you want and stretch the morning into the afternoon or keep it to a macchiato and pancakes.”
One glance at the Shearn’s Seafood and Prime Steaks menu is enough to make your mouth water. During dinnertime, the restaurant is best known for its juicy steaks and tenderloin, but these elegant entrées aren’t the only thing the kitchen does well. Taking things up a notch, the Shearn’s brunch menu offers everything from pancakes to crabcakes.
The menu is a la carte with all items prepared and plated with personalized care. All Moody Gardens’ seafood is certified sustainable and locally sourced for maximum freshness.
The Shearn’s kitchen staff actually takes the time to cure and smoke the bacon in-house, and many diners notice a difference in the quality of its bacon strips.
The farm-fresh eggs and house-made hollandaise sauce also add a little something special to the plate. And, if you’re looking for something sweet to share with your sweetheart, we recommend trying the Banana Foster French Toast or a stack of Blueberry Danish Pancakes.
It’s easy to fill up at Shearn’s and start the day with a hearty meal. Couples can split a side big enough for two, which includes buttermilk potato purée, white cheddar mac and cheese, jumbo grilled asparagus, and lobster mashed potatoes. Every table also gets a complimentary basket of butter biscuits and croissants served with whipped butter and potatoes.
Chef Felipe told us he wanted to make the fine-dining experience more accessible, so people wouldn’t feel like they have to put on airs to enjoy brunch. The restaurant isn’t just for special occasions — it can also be for first dates, weekend outings, and casual meals. The budget-friendly menu and friendly service can satisfy people from all walks of life.
“We knew that we could offer an unmatched experience,” Chef Felipe said. “It’s an approachable fine-dining option. It’s a romantic way to cap off a hard-earned weekend. Shearn’s brunch is unlike any other brunch on the island.”
Shearn’s often invites local musicians to come play acoustic jazz and serenade guests while they eat. Whether you’re scarfing down a Gulf shrimp cocktail or sipping on a spiced Bloody Mary, you can enjoy yourself in a relaxing restaurant full of joy, music, and laughter.
“One visit is sure to be a gateway for a dinner reservation or a repeat visit,” Chef Felipe said. “The menu spans the distance between classic brunch fare and coastal favorites. Of course, we’ve added most of the items from the dinner menu as well, in case you weren’t able to get a table the night before.”
Shearn’s has received a lot of praise for its fresh food, live music, attentive service, and picturesque views. TripAdvisor reviewers have given the restaurant 4.5 stars and ranked it among the top 10 fine dining establishments in Galveston.
Houston resident John Axelrod said the food was sensational but “what made the experience surely great was the hospitality.” He pointed to the general manager Emmett Rodriguez as someone committed to providing top-notch service.
Other reviewers have praised the musical talents of guitarist John Carl Escue or given a shout out to Chef Felipe for the decadent food. “This is one of the greats, with a true chef’s kitchen,” said a mom from Texas. “Plenty of interesting touches on the menu, but keeps plenty of standards to satisfy the less-adventurous gourmand.”
“The Sunday brunch was excellent. Food, view and service were all terrific,” said Bob A. in another testimonial. “A really nice experience all around.”
The Moody Gardens Hotel staff are always cooking up something special, and Chef Felipe encourages guests to keep an eye on the calendar for special holiday events. Shearn’s puts on a popular Thanksgiving and Christmas brunch every year, and the team also plans to ring in 2020 in style with a big celebration. From Valentine’s Day to Mother’s Day to New Year’s Eve, there are so many opportunities for people to make Shearn’s part of their holiday traditions.
“Our Cirque Joyeux Dinner and Show is a personal favorite,” said Chef Felipe. “It always brings out the holiday cheer with magic and food.”
Moody Gardens Hotel is a welcoming place for out-of-towners on vacation, locals on a brunch date, and everyone in between. The romantic, luxurious, and fun-loving setting can put people at ease and help them let go of their cares while they enjoy many wonderful sights, bites, and experiences.
Under Chef Felipe’s leadership, Shearn’s at Moody Gardens Hotel has become a bastion of goodwill and great food in Galveston. The restaurant puts on a Sunday brunch for couples, friends, and families, and the team also gives back by working with local colleges and gardening programs on efforts to improve the local culinary scene.
“We desire to impact the community through ripple waves of sustainable culture. Not only through our food choices, but also our service,” Chef Felipe said. “When we care for and support each other, we stand united with locked arms for a stronger community.”