Thursday, November 15, 2007

Good Gravy

This morning I had a date with my brother to discuss the onslaught...I mean the joyous celebration...of Thanksgiving. Don't get me wrong. I love holidays that revolve around food. (Come to think of it, which ones don't?) I actually look forward to making a pie, roasting a bird, wrapping presen...wait, that's a different day...drinking way more than usual and then playing board games till we lose the dice and everyone goes home. Good times!

We decided to meet at Genie's Cafe and divvie up the to-do list over breakfast. This place has that greasy-spoon-truckstop ambiance thing going on, but the menu has broader ambitions. They use only cage-free eggs, local farm-raised meats and local produce whenever they can for their breakfast and lunch items, which range from Benedicts and scrambles to meatloaf and salads.

I went with the classic biscuits with sausage gravy, choosing (of course) poached eggs, and found the biscuit light and crispy, not sodden as is so often the case. The gravy had nice chunks of sausage and was flavorful, not floury, and the eggs, bless them, were perfectly cooked. The roasted potatoes were a little dry and uninteresting, but were far from bad.

My brother chose the tasso ham Benedict, the ham sourced from one of the city's best charcuteries, Viande, where they hand-cure the Cajun-style pork. Lightly sauced with a slightly lemony Hollandaise, it was a very decent version.

With a couple of cups of good strong coffee and some horse-trading over who's doing what for the holiday, we considered the outing a success. And while this spot is not going to get on any national watch-list for fashionable cuisine, it seems like a genial spot when you get that road food craving.

Details: Genie's Cafe, 1101 SE Division. Phone 503-445-9777.

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