Did I Mention I Love Johnny Cakes Cafe?

Jamie stopped over and we have a mom/daughter morning and we went to breakfast. I suggested Johnny Cakes. I haven’t been there for a while and last time it was so good. You probably read our previous blog about Johnny Cakes. Sorry, I feel like it needed a second review. Wait, are you the ONLY one who hasn’t read that post? No worries, you can read it HERE.

The place was jumping as usual. People just line up for this place. We grabbed a couple seats at the bar to avoid a long wait. As usual, the menu was vast and eclectic. Jamie was intrigued by the fruity pebbles french toast that was the daily special but boy, it just seemed too sweet. After pondering the menu, Jamie opted for the plain pancakes, as after all she rationed, they had better do those well!

I decided to get a breakfast that gave me the allusion that I was sticking to my diet, as it did have some healthy ingredients. I ordered the Florentine Eggs Benedict, perfectly poached eggs on a bed of spinach and tomato, covered with a perfect hollandaise sauce atop a fresh english muffin. Paired with a small bowl of fresh melon and grapes. It was delicious and different than any eggs benedict I have ever had. Very good and would definitely order again.

What I noticed this time, since I was sitting at the bar, was the fresh orange juice squeezing machine.  So cool, a see through machine with wheels and cogs that take whole oranges and continuously squeeze fresh juice for the happy diners. Although as i mentioned previously, the cost is a bit more than other restaurants, with an average of $10/meal and $3.5o for a small juice, it is for sure worth it.

Did I mention that you should try Johnny Cakes?


Mmm… Johnny Cakes

Omar and I decided to grab a quick breakfast before jumping into another home project.  It seems that’s all we have had a chance to do lately! We decided to try Johnny Cakes Cafe’, in Troy on John R just South of Long Lake.  I had read reviews quite some time ago about the great breakfast, but this was the first chance we had to check it out.

The menu has an eclectic offering of really different breakfasts.  And if your name is Johnny Cakes, you assume they have a large selection of pancakes, which they did not disappoint. Yes I know Johnny Cakes are cornbread, but “cakes” make you think pancakes, so…. ranging from Lucky Charms pancakes (the special of the day) to red velvet, oreo, futopia and more! An interesting collection of Eggs Benedict, “shillets” and crepes, this place was a foodies wonderland.

Our waitress, Vickie was friendly, attentive and offered great suggestions. I ordered the Huevos Rancheros, to which Vickie suggested I put the Ranchero sauce on the side because it was hot – and let me tell you, Vickie did not lie!! Wooo Baby that was spicy!  Crispy hash browns, topped with oozy cheddar cheese, topped with freshly grilled corn tortillas, more melted cheese, all topped with two perfectly cooked over easy eggs. You cut into the eggs and the warm yolks just pour onto the crispy tortilla, and with the hash browns, a touch (just a touch!) of the Ranchero Sauce, and a bit of the sour cream and guacamole, gives a bite brimming with savory deliciousness. It was truly  a symphony of flavors.

Omar ordered the “2 and 2”. 2 eggs any style and 2 pancakes, any flavor AND hashbrowns.  Omar decided to try the peanut butter and nutella (pictured below) and the Resee’s Peanut Butter Cup. What he didn’t know were the pancakes were the size of  your head, we expected two small side pancakes, we didn’t expect the works of art that was brought to the table.  Vickie apologized that the chef accidentally made the peanut butter and nutella as pecan and nutella, she profusely apologized as our actual order would take a bit longer and asked that we take the “mistake” so it didn’t go to waste, humm OK, twist our arms!!

I am not kidding when I said the pancakes were a work of art, and delicious too. They were a bit of a sweet overload for breakfast. Almost seemed like desert pancakes if there is such a thing!

We also had to order the “homemade corned beef hash” on the side. Don’t judge our piggishness. Omar and I are corned beef hash snobs, and after making our own for so long have a hard time finding anything more than canned dog food out, but I digress. This corned beef hash was most definitely homemade. Tasty, but in our opinion needed more corned beef, and maybe some onions. But definitely in the running for best corned beef from a restaurant.

Look at that pancake below! Swirls of peanut butter and nutella in an edible masterpiece!

Our suggestion – go to Johnny Cakes. TODAY. OMG you won’t be disappointed.  The meals are a bit expensive but well worth it.  Our bill for two was about $30 but we feasted. And had leftovers.



Murphy’s Family Restaurant Allendale

13100731_10208313247100407_5121992651404002262_nWent to Grand Valley to see Jamie’s graduation. Proud mom moment: Jamie received a graduate of distinction in Biomedical Sciences award (with about 1500 biomedical students only 36 chosen for award of distinction) followed by stole and medal for graduating from honors college with distinction.  She walked across the stage with 3300 other graduates. It’s one thing to get awards in high school but to be honored as a stand out student in a sea of thousands is impressive.

I drove in Friday, so I could participate in the honors awards. After a great day, and making it through my first college party (lucky for me rather tame) we woke Saturday very hungry.

We headed to a local Grand Valley favorite, Murphy’s Family Restaurant.  From what I hear the place is always packed and food good.

Arriving, the busy portion kept its word.  There was quite a line, but we only had to wait maybe 15-20 minutes for a table.

They offered a Saturday morning breakfast buffet.  As a total lover of food, I usually like buffets for the variety, but usually am always disappointed with the quality of the food.  I took a look at the buffet and it offered everything I was craving, from scrambled eggs with salsa and cheese on the side, bacon, sausage, french toast sticks, pastries, fruit, and even corned beef hash and biscuits and gravy! For $7.99, I couldn’t say no.

The french toast sticks were crispy and sweet.  I am not sure what it is about eggs cooked in bulk, but they are never like real eggs, and these were the same. Tasty though. I covered mine in salsa and cheese. Yum!  couple slices of crispy bacon, some sausage (actually kielbasa which was weird but good), a big scoop of corned beef hash (my fav) and some biscuits and gravy.

The hash was the biggest disappointment.  I think sitting in the warmer got the hash rather gummy and dry.  Quinton said it was even hard to swallow and I had to agree.  So sad.

The biscuits and gravy though, were really good.  The sausage gravy actually rivaled mine which is hard to do!! Flavorful, spicy, lots of pepper and the floury taste of the roux cooked out perfectly.

A couple cups of hot coffee and I was a happy camper.

Allison, in her quest to be different, ordered a breakfast sandwich and a cinnamon roll pancake.  This pancake was really big, light and airy, with a crisp outer coating of cinnamon and sugar.  All drizzled with a delicious glaze.  I think her eyes were a wee bit bigger than her belly though, as most of the pancake was brought home.

We all rolled out of there so full ready to take on the day!  Alas Jamie is done with Grand Valley but when I visit Allison next year I will most definitely return! Those whose kids go to Grand Valley, or those attending there make sure you go here. Plan on a wait and plan on getting stuffed!!



Scrambling to find a good breakfast??

When searching for a good breakfast restaurant I am pretty picky.  I look for the trifecta of breakfast deliciousness.  I need three things to satisfy my breakfast cravings. 1. Good food, of course.  2. International Delight Vanilla individual creamers 3. Orange Marmalade.

I have yet to find a restaurant that satisfies all three requirements.  Here are some of my go to restaurants in no particular order.

Rams Horn – Dequindre & 13.  Great staff, good food. NO vanilla creamer, orange marmalade is a hit or miss. Sometimes I get lucky.

Country Chef, Dequindre & 14 – My dads favorite restaurant. Owners very nice.  Good food, plenty of it. NO vanilla creamer, but they do have orange marmalade.

Jimmy’s Coney Island – Dequindre & 16 – Food is meh, the DO have both vanilla creamer and orange marmalade. I try to avoid Jimmys as meh food is more important than lack of orange marmalade.

Angelos Avenue Grille – Van Dyke & 15 – Food is OK. I like to eat the polish food for breakfast, like a plate of perogies.  They DO have vanilla creamer, but alas, no orange marmalade.

Fino’s in Waterford on Dixie Highway. Food is pretty good.  Stay away from the corned beef hash though, just mediocre.  They have these giant sausage links that Omar REALLY loves!!  They do not have creamer, but they do have a very extensive fancy gourmet coffee menu, and they make a toffee coffee frappe that Omar loves.  Alas, one of the things I miss about living in Clarkston.

I am sure there are more, but for now, hopefully, my breakfast reviews have been an “eye opener”.