Friday, April 3, 2009

Talked Off The Ledge and the Best South City Breakfast Challenge!

Through the efforts of two very smart anonymous readers I've decided to forego any scheduled feature. I've decided to let this continue to become what it has organically become naturally. What that is, I don't specifically know, but I know it's doing something. And thanks for all the suggestion emails! Everyone had really good ideas. A few of those I maybe will have to do sometime in the future. In the meantime...
A mini-feature! What's the best breakfast in South City St Louis? There are no rules or limitations save that it must be breakfast and somewhere near my place in Soulard. (15 minute drive distance is cool) I'm going to try to keep these assertions loose and not too detailed. Let's see if I can keep these down to one paragraph...
First up? Benton Park Cafe and Coffee House.
Coffee House section
You can find these guys on the corner of Lemp and Arsenal in... guess where... Benton Park. I'd like to preface all this by noting that they have two sections of the building. Near the back of the building on the Lemp side is more of the sitdown restauranty part. I sat in the coffee house section so I can only assume everything is the same.
I'm a sucker for omelets that are super-food rich so if I'm trying a new place I tend to go for those first. I'm so predictable. One omelette with spinach and tomatoes, please... No potatoes. Fresh fruit instead. Oh yeah... And gallons of coffee. I'll just get right to it, the omelette was pretty good. Not great by any means, but I was certainly satisfied. I'm not sure what the issue was either. Maybe the veggies? Frozen perhaps? I don't want to go into conjecture here. What was great was the coffee! Huge mugs, first of all, which is much appreciated. And secondly a nice deep flavor. Not too strong at all. A nice medium roast is my guess. Good for any time. There are a few things on the menu that looked pretty good as well but that'll have to wait for another time. I found the atmosphere to be cool and what you would expect at a coffee house. Music selection was definitely a highlight and I recognized many of the Indie bands played. The highlight of the dining experience? A slice of cucumber on the rim of the water glass. What an awesome touch! It smelled great and somehow made the water seem crisper. Well done on the specifics, Benton Park Cafe and Coffee House. By the way, there is some awesome space in that building that looks like it's about done being renovated. My guess is either apartments or offices. Looks very cool. Anyway...
Note the Cucumber
You'll find that I'm not giving grades or thumbs up or down for that matter. And I don't know how long it will take but one day I will declare a winner and it will only be based on which I want to go back to first. Maybe I'll cap the restaurants at 10 or something. Let's play it by ear.
In the meantime, send me your recommendations on breakfast! Which is your fave and what should I order? Next time... Somewhere else.


Anonymous said...

fruit/veggies in water is the way to go. i usually slice up a lemon, cucumber, melon, or anything like that and then put them in a pitcher of water in the fridge. tastes soooo good.

Anonymous said...

If you want a good stick-to-your ribs breakfast, then head over to the Riverside Cafe (formerly Riverside Diner.) IIRC, it's on Virginia near Michigan or Ivory. The biscuits and gravy with eggs and bacon are heaven, but you need to be REALLY hungry.

Another favorite is the meatloaf omelet at City Diner on South Grand. The atmosphere there is worth the trip even if you aren't hungry.

Both of the above do allow smoking, so be forewarned. City Diner has a better ventilation system, so it's tolerable. As for Riverside Cafe, you'll probably have to deal with at least a little smoke no matter where you sit.

For veggie/vegan fare, the Shangri-La on Cherokee St. is good. They have a Sunday buffet and each week is a new surprise. I'm eagerly awaiting the day when they have the creme brulee stuffed French toast again.

My current favorite, albeit more for brunch than breakfast, is Mississippi Mud, also on Cherokee St.


Angie said...

A great all you can eat buffet is at the Feasting Fox and also Three Monkeys has one, although I haven't tried theirs yet.
I love me some Sunday brunch.
Previous poster is right, the City Diner is fab.

Liz said...

I third vote City Diner.

Also want to add Chris' Pancake and Dining - they have little bitty cookies and mini cups of coffee while you wait.

And, try Murdoch Perk at Murdoch and Macklind in the SouthHampton neighborhood.

Jenn said... that I can comment, you have to try Square One. Go for brunch, then stay for beer :)

Anonymous said...

Shaved Duck on Sundays - egg and brisket sandwich, its on the corner of Virginia and Pestalozzi.

Rooster on Locust - B.E.L.T sandwich

Van Gogh's - eggs benedict, make sure you get the tater tots.

All of the above are pretty solid with drinks too.