Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Another Broken Egg Cafe

Another Broken Egg is a chain that originated in Louisina and now has several locations spread across the SouthWest region of the country. I usually try to visit and review locally owned spots, but I kept hearing how good this place was....so I thought I'd find out for myself. And with a tagline that reads "Inspiring eggs to excellence" - I was really curious!
3016 Guadalupe St, Austin
Photo: slowdownsavor.com
I wasn't sure what to expect when we arrived and were quickly seated. The place had a few patrons but wasn't packed at 12:30 p.m. The waitress greeted us and promptly took our drink orders. Iced tea for the lady, orange juice for me. The menu offers a pretty impressive selection of breakfast and brunch menus. Everything from omelettes to benedicts for the egg lovers, and burgers, salads and sandwiches for those in the mood for something else. We started off with some biscuit beignets - basically 8 small beignets tossed in powder sugar and served with a side of honey dipping sauce. They arrived and we started to kill 'em. They were pretty good...almost as good as the real deal from Louisiana. My only complaint is that they were a little on the hard side. But still worth the effort! We were now ready to order. Lisa decided to go with something called The Castine. It was scrambled eggs, ham, asparagus, mushrooms smothered in Hollandaise sauce on top of a croissant. Think eggs benedict, but with scrambled eggs instead. I decided on Eggs Sardou, which is an English muffin topped with sauteed spinach, artichokes and poached eggs. It is then topped with a mixture of Hollondaise and Florentine sauce. Pretty interesting.
Biscuit Beignets
After waiting a bit, our order was at our table. It was then that I realized I had forgotten to ask for my eggs to be cooked hard! I don't do runny. I hate to send food back...I always hate to be THAT guy. But our waitress was super nice and sweet and fixed the issue in no time. She even apologized for MY mistake. My plate arrived in a few minutes and to my liking. Time to grub! Boy am I glad we decided to visit Another Broken Egg. The food was great! Both our dishes were fresh and made to order. And you can tell they use nothing but fresh ingredients! We were both very happy and satisfied with our meals
Eggs Sardou

The Castine
Overall, I highly recommend Another Broken Egg Cafe. Great food and Great service! I will certainly be back for seconds!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

TenOak

Hey foodies, I've been crazy busy getting my video production company off the ground, so please excuse my absence. But I'm back with a hungry stomach and a new review: TenOak. I've been hearing nothing but great stuff about this spot so we decided to drop by this past Sunday. Let me tell ya....we weren't dissapointed!

TenOak, 409 Colorado, Austin
Photo: MediaMonkey
TenOak is located downtown, right off Colorado and 4th Street. I usually hate downtown places due to the parking situation, but luckily we found a spot right away. TenOak is a nice spot, you can sit outdoors in the open patio or you can walk in and find yourself a table or booth. We were dressed in our Sunday best having come straight from church, so decided to sit indoors to avoid a sweat fest. We sat in a booth and began to play with the computer screen on our table. You can see the menu, log online, play games....pretty cool! For Sunday brunch, TenOak offers $1 mimosas and a full bloody mary bar. Yesss! Lisa had a mimosa and
I went with a bloody mary. After browsing the menu, I decided to go with one of my all time brunch favorites...steak and eggs. I have my eggs scrambles with cheese and the dish is served with a side of potatoes. Lisa went with the build-your-own waffle. You can choose you own topping....she did strawberry. We waited for our meals and I hit up the fully stocked bloody mary bar. It was pretty awesome...olives, peppers, hot sauces! One of the best I've seen.


Soon our food arrived and we were ready to chow down. My plate looked delicious. The steak was cooked and seasoned perfect and my eggs were moist and cheesy...just how I like them. The potatoes were excellent as well. Lisa's waffle was really good as well. The batter had a great flavor and consistency and the strawberries added a nice touch.

Overall, our experience at TenOak was a good one. The only complaint I had was it was kinda hot, even indoors since the doors are open. But that's the Texas heat, not the restaurants fault.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Polvo's North

Polvo's is officially one of my favorite Mexican restaurants in Austin. I'm talking about the North location, I've never been to the one on 1st Street, but I hope they do things just as good. We had been to this spot twice for dinner but never tried their breakfast. So when Easter weekend rolled in and we wanted to avoid all the busy brunch spots. Polvo's was the place to go.
14735 Bratton Ln, Austin, TX.
One thing I really dig about Polvo's is the free chips and salsa bar. Now, I heard the 1st street location charges for their chips and salsa, but I'm not sure, so don't quote me. They have 3 fresh homemade salsas (regular, roasted, and verde) available at the bar. Try them all and find your favorite. We checked out the menu and were happy to see plenty of Mexican breakfast staples, and some new ones as well. Everything from migas to huevos rancheros. I decided to be a little adventurous and tried something that caught my eye. The trash can plate. Sounds a little funky, but everything in it sounded great to me. Two scrambled eggs mixed with bacon, ham, potatoes, cheese, pico de gallo, spinach, sausage, mushrooms, chipotle, machacado, and chorizo! Served with a side of refried beans and homemade potatoes. Now that's a breakfast fit for a king.....or should I say Rey! I had everything in that, sans the mushrooms. You all know I don't do fungi! Lisa decided on her all time favorite, the migas. For those who don't know, it's scrambled eggs with corn tortilla chips topped with cheese. Good stuff!
Trashcan Plate
Migas
Our waiter was attentive and kept our iced teas topped off. I also decided to order on of my favorite drinks, the michelada. After awhile our waiter arrived with our steaming hot plates and we commenced to chow down. My plate was a pretty interesting, a mix of different flavors and textures that collided with every bite. I'm not sure I would ever order this plate again, but I know they know what they are doing at Polvo's. Lisa's plate was top notch. Cooked properly with lots of gooey cheesy goodness and crispy chips all in the mix. And their homemade potatoes cooked in a flavorful tomato sauce is just like my abuelita made when I was growing up. Polvo's also makes their own tortillas, and they do an awesome job!

Michelada
Overall, Polvo's is a big WINNER! I would definitely recommend it for all your real Mexican food cravings! I am a fan and I will continue going back.






Monday, April 9, 2012

Eastside Cafe

Last week we visited East Side Cafe which is located on Manor Rd just east of I-35. This is one spot we had been dying to try out! We tried last week but left due to the one hour wait! The waitress suggested we make reservations ahead of time. And so we did.

2113 Manor Road, Austin, TX.
East Side Cafe is a beautiful little restaurant that is housed inside an old wooden framed home. I love these type of places which are common to Austin. I was born and raised in South Texas, and this is something I'd never seen until I moved here. I LOVE it! Anyhow, we arrived at 1pm just in time for our reservations. I noticed a few groups waiting to be seated. We went to the hostess and we were jumped right to our table. Sorry guys! We were seated and began browsing the brunch menu. The menu covers everything a proper brunch should offer. Egg dishes, salads, sandwiches, as well as a variety of entrees. Very diverse and something for everyone. I was in egg mode, so my eyes zeroed in on the Eggs Florentine. Which is two poached eggs and creamy spinach sauce on English muffins, topped with hollandaise sauce. It is served with a side of homefries and a blueberry bran muffin. Lisa decided on something on the sweet side, and went with the Blueberry Blintzes, which is crepes sweetened with ricotta and cream cheese, topped with blueberry sauce and sour cream. YUM! That is served with a side of bacon or cheese grits. She chose the bacon.

Eggs Benedict
Blueberry Blintzes
As we waited for our food, we admired our surroundings. Guys, you can definitely score high points by bringing a first date, (OR girlfriend or wife) to a spot like this. And ladies, this is definitely a cute place you and your girlfriends can meet for brunch or lunch, or for your next mother-daughter outing. Anyway, our food arrived and it looked amazing. It was plated well and had a great presentation. My Eggs benedict were some of the best I've had, and i'm a sucker for some good homefries and these were on point! However, I have to say the best part of our experience was Lisa's order of Blueberry Blitzes. They were obviously made in house and hand crafted very well! The cheeses and the blueberry sauce complimented each other just right. What an explosion of flavors!

Overall, East Side Cafe is a must! I was super impressed with their food and left with a big smile on my face. We will definitely be back for more.






Saturday, April 7, 2012

Bess Bistro

This week we decide to hit 6th St. Not for drinks and a hangover, but for a delicious brunch. We decided to visit Sandra Bullock's Bess Bistro, a cute little gem that features awesome south-meets-Europe dishes. It is housed in the basement of an old apartment building on the corner of San Antonio and 6th Street.

500 W. 6th St. Austin, TX
photo: intrigueimports.wordpress.com
Brunch at Bess is served Sundays from 10:30 am-2:30 pm. We got there around 1:00 pm and were surprised to see the place was half empty with no wait. Yes! We were quickly seated and began browsing through the brunch menu .  The options are simple, yet very impressive. Duck sausage and eggs, Croque monsieur, and shrimp and buscuits are some of the more fancy offerings. But hey, I'm the Brunching Bloke and I like to keep things nice and simple. Nothing fancy about my brunching game! So after browsing a bit, Lisa and I were ready to order. I decided on Bess Benedict, which is english muffins with pork, poached egg, and truffle hollandaise sauce. Lisa went with the good old fallback, the Texas waffle, which is served with pecan honey butter. No sides were included with our dishes. 

Bess Benedict
Texas Waffle
We waited a little longer than usual for our food to arrive, but I imagined the chef in the back personally preparing our dishes with love and care. Who knows. Either way, our food finally arrived and looked very pleasing to the eye. But would it be amazing to our taste buds? The answer is Yes! My Bess benedict was awesome with juicy pieces of pork belly and  perfectly cooked poached eggs. And I'm really not a fan of truffles, but the truffle hollandaise sauce was super delicious! Lisa's Texas waffle was really good as well. Good and simple. It's really hard to mess up a waffle, and the pecan butter complimented it well.

Overall, Bess Bistro is definitely worth a visit. The service was good, the food was top notch and high quality, and you can say you went Sandra Bullock's place. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Kerbey Lane Northwest

This past weekend we decided to stay in the North part of town. SXSW was finally over but I figured all the hipsters and their girlfriends would still be up early for some brunch in the downtown area....didn't want to get into all that mess of coolness! We settled on Kerbey Lane Northwest. Just off 183 and Anderson Mill.

Kerbey Lane, 13435 Hwy 183, Ste 415, Austin
photo: kerbeylane.com
We arrived and were surprised to see a long wait outside. An hour wait we were told! Go figure. We decided to stay since it would probably be the same anywhere we went. After 30 minutes we were seated and looking through the menu. I have to say I really dig Kerbey Lane. They are always consistent, and the food and service is always on point. And you can get breakfast 24/7 that is better than any pancake house chain you can think of. Anyhow, after deliberating I decided on The California Omelet. Filled with avocado, tomatoes, olives, and cheddar jack cheese, then it is topped with green chili and sour cream sauce. Lisa decided to go with The Eggs Francisco, and english muffin topped with scrambled eggs, tomato, avocado, and queso. Usually it has bacon but she substituted that with soysage. Both of these plates are served with your choice of whole wheat, sour dough, or texas toast, english muffin, homefries, black beans, or mexican rice. You can also sub a few other things for an additional charge. We were both craving something on the sweet side, so we decided to order a single pancake, and decided on the pancake of the day - the chocolate chip pecan! We sat and waited for our order while we daydreamed about what we were about to enjoy.

Eggs Francisco
After a short wait our food was on our table. Just like I mentioned above, the food was on point! Everything was prepared well and made just as we ordered. My omelet was plump and filled with plenty of veggies and the homefries were amazing! Lisa's Eggs Francisco were also great. We sat there and enjoyed out meals with smiles on our face.
The California Omelet
Overall, our bruch experience was great! Kerbey Lane is always good and consistent. visit one of their five locations. You won't be disappointed.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Opal Divines - Marina

Today we decided to stay in North Austin. Definitely had to do our Sunday brunch, just not in the mood to drive too far away from home. So after thinking about it for a bit we decided on Opal Divine's Marina location. We'd been there before, but that was before my brunching bloke days, so thought we'd re-visit. Why not.
12709 Mopac at Parmer Lane, North Austin
Photo: austin.culturemap.com

We arrived and the place was half empty. It was a nice day and plenty of folks were eating outdoors on the patio. Which reminds me, Opal Divine's is also dog friendly - so Fido can join you out on the patio! We'll have to bring our boy Rugby with us next time. We looked through the menu, and were reminded of how cheap their prices were. Now mind you, this isn't your fancy brunch type of place, more of a bar and grill atmosphere. Brunch is available Sat and Sun from 10 am-3 pm. Pretty straight forward, no fuss selections - omelets, benedict plates, and breakfast tacos. I was a bit disappointed that they didn't have any drink specials available for brunch, at least that's what the waiter said when we asked. That's a first! A brunch spots with out bloody Mary or mimosa specials? Hmm.

After a few minutes we were ready to place our order. I decided on an omelet. You can never really go wrong with a good ole' fashion omelet. I went with the build-your-own deal. It starts with a three egg omelet filled with cheddar, then you choose ONE of the following: sausage, canadian bacon, bacon, turkey, chili, queso, feta, or gongozola. Then, you can choose THREE of the following items: sweet peppers, bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, potatoes, sprouts, pico de gallo, jalapenos, black olives or spinach (phew!). I did bacon and onions, tomatoes, and spinach! All of that served with your choice of home fries or sweet potatoes, a side fresh fruit, and your choice of toast, biscuit, or muffin. I did the home fries and muffin. Lisa decided to go with the All American Breakfast. Basically, two eggs cooked to order, and your choice of the same sides I mentioned earlier. She did the bacon, home fries, and muffin as well. Great minds think alike!

Build-Your-Own Omelet
It wasn't long before our food was at our table. My omelet looked nice and fat, filled with everything I requested, and they weren't stingy with the fillings either ! I also forgot how awesome their home fries were. I was super happy with my plate. Lisa, on the other hand wasn't too impressed with hers. She said it was "o.k, but not the best". And I get it. Her plate was pretty basic, nothing fancy. Just some scrambled eggs with cheese and a side of bacon. Not bad tasting, but nothing to write home about either. But our bill was the cheapest we've ever had for brunch...so we still came out on top.

All American Breakfast

Overall, I would recommend Opal Divine's if you are looking for some low budget brunching. Decent food that doesn't kill your wallet/purse. Can't go wrong with that!





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