October 20th, 2010 Ben Waterhouse, Kelly Clarke | Special Section Stories
 

Good Mornings

Brunches worth waiting for.

Good Mornings - RG 2011IMAGE: Roger Bong
     
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Bakery Bar
Step away from the beguiling bakery case—filled with moist cakes, crumbly scones and Earl Grey shortbread cookies—and focus your attention on the stellar brunch menu at this sweet cafe. A plate-sized bacon and cheddar johnnycake gets topped with tender braised greens and fried eggs, and the biscuits and gravy—dear lord, the biscuits and gravy—it’ll take a week to recover from that craggy black-pepper mountain topped with both herby, creamy, sausagey love and fried eggs. 2935 NE Glisan St., 477-7779, bakerybar.com.

Bijou Cafe
The cheery heart of Old Town’s breakfast scene has been dishing wonderful, local grub for 31 years now, and the signature oyster hash—the plump bivalves dredged in cornmeal and sautéed with onions and potatoes—is as good as ever. Add a cup of coffee and a newspaper and you’ve got the perfect midmorning meal. On the off chance you tire of the hash, Bijou’s brioche french toast is the stuff of cotton-candy dreams, and the mushroom omelette is a rustic delight. 132 SW 3rd Ave., 222-3187.

Gladstone Coffee & Pizza
John Mitchell and Grace Emanuel’s charming shop is known for the only really great pizza to be found south of Powell Boulevard, but the weekend brunch should not be dismissed. Mitchell puts his oven to good use, baking fragrant dishes of roasted potatoes smothered in veggies and mozzarella, single-portion bacon and egg pizzas and an egg sandwich, served on a ciabatta roll with mozzarella, mascarpone and mustard, that ranks with the best of Bunk and Meat Cheese Bread in the morning-sandwich hall of fame. 3813 SE Gladstone St., 775-1537, gladstonecoffee.com.

Pine State Biscuits
Perching on a stool, listening to the line cooks merrily shout along to Run-DMC while you detach your jaw in order to shovel in another forkful of the Reggie Deluxe (Pine State’s bacon, fried chicken, gravy, biscuit, cheddar and—sweet Jesus—fried-egg stack): Does morning get any better than this? This former farmers market stand does over-the-top Southern favorites right, from its endless permutations of tender, flaky biscuit sandwiches to creamy-tangy sausage gravy and collard greens. 3640 SE Belmont St., 236-3346 and 2204 NE Alberta St., pinestatebiscuits.com.

Veritable Quandary
When antemeridian opulence is the order of the day, there’s nowhere better than this 39-year-old mainstay of downtown dining. Digging into enormous plates of poached eggs, tuna salad niçoise and white cheddar spoonbread while the sun pours in through the glass wall of the dining room is a luxury to be savored. There’s nowhere better for high-school graduations, grandparents’ birthdays or the first day of a honeymoon. 1220 SW 1st Ave., 227-7342, veritablequandary.com.

 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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