Optimistically Cautious

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Bustling but Bland: Upper Crust Cafe

I met May for brunch at Upper Crust Cafe (10909 86 Avenue) on Saturday morning. I had been there for dinner many years ago, but had been meaning to try their popular Saturday brunch for a while now.

No reservations were permitted, so we made sure to arrive before 11am to hopefully avoid the weekend breakfast crowd. There were quite a few seats when I stepped into the restaurant, and thus I was seated right away. While waiting for May, I surveyed the dining area. I loved the bustling room, with the irresistible chiming of dishes and conversational overtones catching in the rafters. The room, lined with windows allowing for the meek sunshine available that morning to pour through, helped brighten the space, and made for a lovely daytime setting.

After May arrived, we looked over the menu, focusing on the more filling options. What stuck out the most to me were the reasonable prices - none of the plates were over $10. May chose the Tex-Mex Eggs, 2 poached eggs on an English muffin,with spicy salsa, served with hashbrowns and fresh fruit garnish ($9.75), while I opted for one of the three omelette options (potato, green onion, cheese), which was served with multigrain toast and fresh fruit garnish ($9.75).

The service wasn't notable (it took a while for my coffee to be refilled), but it wasn't horrible either, especially given the size of the room our server had to cover. That said, the food wasn't particularly exciting either. May found the salsa rather bland, and the English muffin underneath her eggs too soggy to be enjoyable. My omelette was rather devoid of cheese, and although the potatoes provided the hearty kick that I was looking for, even a side of ketchup would have added some needed "flavour" to my dish.

While I can't say I won't be back (the setting and location of Upper Crust make it a convenient meeting place), there are a few other local brunch spots I'd defer to before returning.


Tex-Mex Eggs

3 Egg Omelette (with some potato peeking out)

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