Monday, January 30, 2012

Two restaurants you need to give your money to - Part 1

This weekend was awesome, because a) Brahm was home and b) we got to eat at two of our favourite places to get food in all of Saskatoon.  This post, and the next one, will be me convincing you to start eating at these places too.

First, I'll start with the restaurant that I go to the most out of any restaurant in Saskatoon - Poached Breakfast Bistro on 2nd Avenue.  It's the same place as Flint Saloon in the evening, except in the morning instead of a trendy bar it's a trendy breakfast bistro.  But seriously, this place needs to start giving me free food because I have gotten them so much new business.  I will not rest until everyone I know becomes a regular customer.

Why do I love it so much?  First and foremost, the food is AMAZING.  It's breakfast food, classed up a lot of notches, but not so classy that it's pretentious.  You're not going to get a pile of bacon, greasy eggs, previously-frozen hashbrowns and shiny Wonderbread with plastic packets of hard jam and Kraft peanut butter, with a side of dried up orange slices and wilted lettuce.  Instead, you'll get maple-bacon-wrapped pecans with rye toast or a multigrain bagel, fresh jam and peanut butter, and panko-crusted mashed potato and goat cheese balls with a side salad of baby spinach, goat cheese, and roasted beets.  Or Eggs Benedict with dilly Hollandaise sauce and mushrooms and asparagus.  Or a turkey-brie-cranberry-basil-pecan sandwich on French toast.  Or a butternut squash-bacon-red onion-feta omelette.  Or poached eggs over crab cakes.  Need I go on?

The atmosphere of the restaurant is quite trendy, due partly to the fact that it transforms into a trendy bar in the evenings.  However, it's not so trendy that un-trendy people like me (I am actually the least trendy person there is) don't feel comfortable going there.  The plates are shaped like eggs (but in a classy way), the menu is well-laid out, you can order mimosas and espresso drinks (no stale drip coffee here), and the staff is always very friendly but not in an annoying way.  The only complaint I can even think of about this place is that one time out of like 20 times that I've been there my eggs were poached a little too hard.  That's all. 

ALSO - you might be saying, hey this sounds awesome but I'm a poor student and can only afford to eat at cheaper restaurants like Boston Pizza and Montana's!  Stop being such a food snob because you have a job and can afford to eat at real restaurants, Robyn!  PEOPLE.  Please stop flushing your money down the toilet at sick and disgusting restaurants like Boston Pizza where the food comes out of bags and is reheated by professional microwavers (i.e. Boston Pizza cooks).  It is such a misconception that chain restaurants are cheaper than real live honest-to-goodness restaurants, because THEY ARE NOT.  They try to trick you into thinking that by putting hubcaps and TVs on the walls to make you feel like "Oh, this place has cowboy hats on the walls, it means snobby rich people don't come here which means it must be cheaper than restaurants that serve fresh vegetables."  It is a good trick that I fell for for quite a long time. 

Our breakfast on Saturday morning was a cappuccino, a green tea latte, Eggs Benedict, and a butternut squash omelette came to just over 32 bucks - barely 16 bucks a person for a fancy, filling breakfast and fancy drink!  Unless you are going to eat at McDonalds, you'd be hard pressed to not at very least come close to spending that on a similar breakfast for two at any breakfast place in the city.  And even if your normal breakfast out costs 8 bucks and this costs 11 bucks - why not spend an extra $3 for food that is prepared with care, that you're going to fully enjoy?  My thinking is if I'm going to pay someone to cook for me, it better be higher quality than what I can make myself, and if you can't fry yourself an egg and make shiny Wonderbread at home please let me know because that makes me sad and I will come over and teach you.

In conclusion - I love Poached and I have turned basically all of my friends and family into repeat customers.  You should go there if you haven't already.

WARNING - if you click the Urban Spoon link in this post, you'll see a bunch of negative reviews by people whose favourite restaurant is probably Boston Pizza.  I don't know when the people complaining about the service went there but I have never even heard of anyone I know having remotely bad service at this restaurant, so don't let those reviews sway you.  There's also a bunch of talk about it being pretentious and yuppie - again, no offense to the reviewers but they probably rave about how Tim Horton's is the best coffee in the city and are so pumped about the new giant size cups.  Drinking 5 cups of stale coffee with a breakfast this good would be sacrilegious, and if thinking that makes me a pretentious yuppie so be it.

STAY TUNED - on Wednesday I talk about another super amazing (and affordable) Saskatoon eatery!

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