Sunday, May 22, 2011


On Washington Square*
(This song has nothing whatsoever to do with Mama, or trains, or trucks, or prison, or getting drunk, darlin'… Tuesday just happens to be the 70th Birthday of some guy named Robert Allen Zimmerman, and this is one of my favourite songs of his ~ I just prefer this version over his actual singing.)

I had another prima colazione eccezionale at Mamas on Washington Square this morning (see 'blog-entry from August 1st, 2010 for my last visit). They have a great location right across the corner from Washington Square Park (hence their complete name), and it is located just down the street from iconic Coit Tower on Telegraph Hill and next door to Saints Peter and Paul Church. (This is the historic Catholic church where Dom DiMaggio's less-talented older brother, ?George?, ?Jimmy?, ?John?, got married to Marilyn Monroe; well, they actually were married near-by in a civil ceremony, but had their wedding photos taken on the steps of the church.) Which is why Mama
s is another popular word-of-mouth tourista destination much like Dottie's and Brenda's, so get there early to beat the long line/wait.

I had gotten there early enough this morning and lucked-out and parked right down the block on Washington Square for a change. I actually got there early enough before they opened up to be seated with the first wave of diners. (They open exactly at 8:00am, just like they state on their website. Now what are the odds of a professional restaurant-type establishment actually opening when they say they do?) Their ordering and seating procedures are a little different than most places. You have to wait in line once you are in and order at the counter; they then will not seat you until there is an empty table available.

While I was waiting in line before they opened, I spotted only about three of the Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill flying over Washington Square, by George! As the days get longer, the Parrots are probably getting up earlier and have already headed to other parts of the City for the day. They have to make their living pleasing all the touristas in various parts of the City, after all. After breakfast, I walked around Washington Square, but didn't see any more of them hanging out in the tall pine trees. I have witnessed them eating pinoli for their own prima colazione in the past.

It is always tough to choose between their excellent selection of French toasts (pane tostato alla franchese?) or their "Momelettes" and other egg dishes. I would go here more often if it were easier to find a parking spot and not always so crowded. As it is, I just make the pilgrimage once or twice a year (and usually on a quiet Sunday).

I selected the Momelette Northern Italian ~ Pancetta (Italian Cured Bacon [skipped it, Signore Valletta]), Mushrooms, Garlic Jack Cheese, Fresh Basil, & Tomatoes, with sourdough baguette toast and a decent cuppa coffee. I made sure to use some of their excellent, fresh raspberry jam on the toast. They serve Peerless Coffee & Tea® and do a very good job of brewing it (I think I had 2-½ cups in all).

I really liked this Momelette; it was kinda like a Pizza Margherita** omelette, but with mushrooms. It was made with lots of fresh basil and tomatoes in it. Fresh basil makes all the difference; a pinch of dried basil is okay in a pinch, but nothing beats fresh leaves of basil, Mr. Rathbone.

s condimentary supplements are just Tabasco® (both the standard red and green Jalapeño). So I used some of my Palo Alto Fire Fighters Pepper Sauce (Thanks, Amy!) on top of the omelette, which I also shared with (read: forced on) two other tables surrounding me, and even the restaurant manager (owner?) tried a spoonful of it; it really has a lot of flavour and just the right amount of heat.

I probably should have eaten at Mama
s two weeks ago on that other holiday that shares the same day as Single Loser's Day…

"Ah, but I was so much fuller then,
I'm hungrier than that now… "

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Northern Italian Momelette ~ 7.2; the songs of Robert Zimmerman ~ 7.9 (I am rating this on the content, not Bob's actual singing)

*(Here's a little known fact, Cliff:

Interestingly enough, this was actually named after the great Italian statesman, Giorgio Lavaggiotoni, not after the First President of the United States. How else can you explain why there is a statue of another 'merican President, Benjamin Franklin, in the park and not one of "the Father of Liberty"? I don't make up this stuff, folk. )

**(A classic Pizza Margherita happens to be one of my favourite takes on my favouritest of foods. )


  1. I would embed that video here, but the HTML is not allowed in the comments.

  2. BTW. I was trying to remember if Benjamin Franklin was president before or after John Adams. Like #2 or #4?

  3. Benjie was President #3, of course...

    Sheesh! Am I the only 'merican History gradjiate here?!