02.01.2013 by Andrea
Well g’morning Friday, hello February, and adios no drink January. The past month has been a whirlwind of activity and it feels like things are finally getting into sync. Along the way I’ve gotten to scratch the surface at a couple restaurants in the famed NY brunch pool with friends and shared some amazing breakfasts with other comrades. Take a peek at a few favorite first meals.
I think I’ve mentioned that I am a sports super fan. Oftentimes people ask me, if I’m athletic due to being taller than the average gal. I always chuckle because that couldn’t be further from the truth. Plain and simple I’m a klutz. A huge one, and without hand eye coordination a person doesn’t have a lot of depth in the talent pool to lean on. It’s only natural then that I became a lover of cheering people on with skills far beyond my wildest dreams. My inability to not fall going up stairs has been noted throughout my lifetime and I struck gold again when on the day the Seahawks played the 49’ers I managed to split my shin open doing a box jump at the gym. The upside to this beautiful kerfuffle was that I got to get a nice piece of needlework done on my leg [to the tune of 10+ stitches], and since I didn’t get to enjoy my work holiday in Mexico I scarfed up a fabulous holiday meal with my favorite family, the W’s of Vancouver. Not only were there savory dishes for days as well as handmade sweets piled high, the brother sister duo AA & NW made a smoked salmon egg benedict and handed me extra hollandaise sauce. Christmas miracles do happen! A gift of Just Dance 4, [where I accumulated lots of blackmail video] with four hyper-energetic kiddos definitely ensured that the calories were quickly burned off and then more space was added for the second, third and fourth meals. Couldn’t have asked for a better day of eating and dancing.
Tickle me spoiled but a quick work trip the first week of January was just what the soul needed to kickstart a fresh calendar year.
Breakfast buffets may have you thinking back to the requisite Vegas don’t stop till you drop eating fest but the Sheraton in Kona does a lovely display daily. Plus, who doesn’t want to gorge on a macadamia nut pancake/waffle bar, unlimited fresh fruit and the elusive but sometimes sighted Kahlua Pork Egg Benedict?
I really wanted to jump in with gusto but opted for 3 plates of pineapple [for a usual non-fruit eater person, that’s huge], an egg white scramble with lots of veggies, and of course a balanced portion, read heaping helping of breakfast potatoes! Can’t go wrong with the view and the food here!
Back across the pond, my friend E and I chat food, football, literature, and life over cappuccinos [for him], chai tea [for me], and breakfast burritos. We normally try to sneak/ask the counter staff if its permissible [what, I get a guilty conscience easily and don’t lie well] to eat these amazing wraps into a coffee shop with wide open space. All good and fine until you: a] haven’t been to said coffee establishment for some time. b] head to said beverage house and find the doors closed, permanently. c] have to come up with a plan B and land at a vegetarian/coffee/burrito villa, also known as Walnut Street Coffee.
Anyone West Coast traveler who has jetted off to Europe is pretty familiar with the name Rick Steve’s. RS has done some wonderful things for communities and travelers who are looking for some unique areas off the beaten tourist track. Since we were dining in Edmonds, a community North of Seattle, and RS’s hometown it only seemed natural to ask if he was going to come sauntering through the back door à la his series name, Through the Back Door. No avail.
The food was tasty, nutrient rich, and the counter staff was far more empathetic and understanding than I when E pronounced quinoa, canoe-wahhh and I was guffawing and sputtering at his error. Admittedly, I was merciless in my laugher. Those darn q-words. Definitely will venture back up to E-town for another Walnut Coffee Shop lazy morning
Recently E settled down in Oklahoma after playing American football overseas for a short time. He’s been telling me about a place in Houston that rated high on his “when in Houston must eat here” list for over a year. It just so happened we were able to coordinate coinciding work trips to the big H and check out the finest breakfast dining to be had. After google mapping it and realizing it was within a mini-marathon [think 6-ish miles or so] of my hotel I thought briefly of running there and sauntering back. Luckily E’s early morning meetings made it prohibitive to execute that because I was FULL after all the nibbling.
Walking into the Breakfast Klub in Houston is like being welcomed into a family reunion of long lost relatives. The deep sense of community immediately emanates from the moment you open the door. Everyone is fixin’ to help you pile your plate with the best that the restaurant offers. Couple that with a motherload of hot sauces and condiments to choose from and I was sold before the first bite crossed my lips. Being that it was 5am West Coast time my stomach wasn’t quite ready for the generous portions they served up in no time flat. I went for the Southern standard, biscuits and gravy, and barely got through a quarter of my platter. E went for the highly lauded chicken and grits and my hand might have snuck across the table a time of two. Two words, food coma. I was lucky enough to get to go back to my hotel and snooze. I’m giving E credit on this one and have already started to spread be word to co-workers that the Breakfast Klub is not to be missed when in Houston.
And finally, as we all know I’m in the deep into the giggly girl smitten stage of unadulterated NY lust. I got to brunch with my friend DFP this last Sunday at hundred acres. Just a stones throw, skip and hop from where we both Iive. I met D when I had moved to Seattle and he was an integral part of stretching my culinary aptitude for trying different cuisines. He left Seattle and traveled internationally for several years and about 18 months ago returned to the States. He lives about 4 blocks from me, or I him since supposedly he was here first. We had grabbed food and caught up when I first started the apartment hunt out here and I trust that he has a good pulse on neighborhood nuggets. As anticipated he didn’t let me down.
He’s also the master of straight talk so when I confessed not wanting to balloon in weight while in the city he thoughtfully pointed out that downing a plate of bacon and my gruyere grilled cheese with thick sourdough bread and thinly sliced tart apples sprinkled with pecans may or may not be the way to keep my svelte [in my own mind] figure. He also pointed out some gyms as we walked back to our respective pads. That’s what friend are for! I’m glad he didn’t see me give in to my favorite candy, hot tamales, hours later. Sometimes a girl has to indulge.
I have always proclaimed I’m not a champion of breakfasts but I might be adjusting my tune. The past month familiar faces, new stories, and lots of chortling has made this particular meal a favorite. Looking forward to brunching more as a Manhattanite and making more memories with my Seattle peeps over Bloody Mary’s, sweatpants and giggles.
Until the next bite, cheers.