Sunday, December 27, 2015


"The heart is a lonely hunter..." 
~ Carson McCullers

(... and the liver is just a lonely drinker.)

Place: heartbaker
Location: 1408 Clement Street (at 15th Avenue)
Hours: Tuesday through Friday open at 7:30am (just for standard bakery items and Coffee); Saturday and Sunday open at 9:00am for "Weekend Brunch"
Meal: Skillet Baked Beans ~ white beans baked in tomato sauce with pesto and two eggs your way, served with housemade (bakery-made, whatever) foccacia; a cranberry-eggnog scone (which is also housemade [bakery-made, whatever]); and a cuppa Sightglass Coffee Medium Roast

(Here is a little-known Cliff Clavinoid fact: After flunking out of the Medical School program [where he was actually studying to be a Heart Surgeon] at 
North Carolina State University, Ryan Adams became a full-time baker in Raleigh. While working at the bakery and during down-times early in the morning, he happened to discover that he had a talent for playing the guitar and writing Rock-and/or-Roll songs.

If you don't believe me, you can look it up yer damnself!)

Wanting to end the year with a decent matutinal meal and on a high (I think it was in the Falsetto range), I decided to head back to heartbaker (see last 'blog-entry from May 18th, 2014) for what I knew would be a tasty breakfastary repast.

Unfortunately, they no longer offer any version of French Toast on their "Weekend Brunch" menu, which is a real shame, as it was truly exceptional. Luckily, there are still a few other decent items for stupid vegetarians from which to choose: Huevos Rancheros (two eggs your choice, with black beans, blistered Monterey Jack cheese, tortilla strips, and crema); Biscuit Sandwich (fried egg & white Cheddar on our [well, "their"] buttermilk biscuit served with house [well, "bakery"] potatoes or kale salad; don't fret, those of you that partake of the dead, decaying crispy porcine-belly bits, this can also have bacon added to it); Mushroom Ragu (with creamy grits and two fried eggs); or Heartbaker Kale Salad (Brussel [ sic ] sprouts, slivered almonds, Parmesan, and special house viniagrette; I would probably order that one with a fried egg laid [well, placed] on top).

Sorry, there is no corresponding photo of the cranberry-eggnog scone. I scarfed it up/down too quickly. This was very tasty and not your rock-hard variety that you might get at many local coffeehouses. You could really taste the eggnog in this, too.

Don't let the "baked beans" moniker fool you, this ain't your Uncle Bob's typical East Ender brekkie. Their tasty red gravy (and pesto, which was under both the eggs) was a good medium in which to dip the housemade (bakery-made, whatever) foccacia (of which I would have liked a little more, to tell the truth). I went with poached eggs as "my way"; I think that this was the best "way" to go for this dish. The portions here aren't really that big, but with the scone starter, there was still plenty of food for my appetite; if I had still been hungry, I was going to go with another one of their housemade (bakery-made, whatever) goods.

I noticed that there were bottles of Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce for use as condimentary supplements on all the tables. Not really wanting to mess with the flavour of their red gravy and pesto, I used just a little of my own (also new from Christmas) Sunbelt Plantations Vidalia® Onion & Jalapeno Pepper Hot Sauce (Thanks, Cindy & Greg!) on top of just one of the poached eggs. This hot sauce (like their red salsa that I tried yesterday) really isn't that spicy, but it provides a lot of flavour from the Vidalia® onions.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Skillet Baked Beans ~ 6.6; cranberry-eggnog scone ~ 6.7; Sightglass Coffee Medium Roast ~ 7.0

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