Crow’s Nest launches daily breakfast
Stand-up paddle boarders, scullers, kayakers and a back-pedaling otter floated down the channel followed by Team O'Neill with a boat load of school children. Two sets of twin toddlers pranced happily in the sand while a runner and dog-walker made their way down the levee toward the lighthouse. It is the familiar view from the comfortable Crow's Nest, and now it's available at breakfast.
With all those healthy people exercising outside, I assuaged my guilt with a reminder that breakfast is the most important meal, and, coincidentally, that's the way it was treated by the Crow's Nest kitchen.
You can start with a two-item omelette ($9.95) and build on with additional ingredients ($1 each), or choose from a list of house specials. Egg dishes are served with toast, whipped butter, and nicely seasoned smoky home-fried potatoes, soft and sautéed with bits of bell peppers.
In the Crab and Shrimp Omelette ($11.95) a perfect circle of egg, striated with bright julienne of spinach, was stuffed with plump crustaceans, tomato and sweet crab.
From the list of Breakfast Specialties, the Nest's rendition of Chilaquiles ($8.95) was surprisingly good. Triangles of soft corn tortillas were tossed with scrambled eggs, fresh salsa of tomatoes, red onions, and cheese, and topped with scoops of sour cream and spicy guacamole. The dish was served with a fresh fruit cup which included watermelon, pineapple and papaya.
Also delicious was the Smoked Salmon Hash ($11.95) with tender, addictively seasoned potatoes, onions, and smoky fish. It came with a ceramic boat of fresh fruit. You can add two poached eggs and a bit of tart hollandaise ($1.50).
Flapjacks and Such includes a variety of pancakes including whole wheat and chocolate chip. I splurged on Cinnamon Roll French Toast ($9.95). Two whole, well-risen snails were loaded with spicy cinnamon and served with warm maple syrup. Two patties of finely ground breakfast sausage ($3.25) were mildly seasoned.
The Brioche French Toast ($9.95) was also delightful. Three long oval slices of airy egg bread were dredged in spiced batter and cooked until nicely freckled. They were served with sliced strawberries and a just-cooked syrup of vanilla-infused sugar. The three slices of bacon ($3.25) were still chewy.
The Crow´s Nest Restaurant, 2218 East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, 476-4560. Full bar. Serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks from 7:30 a.m. daily.
Santa Cruz restaurant, seafood, steaks, comedy, music, cocktails, ocean views, outdoor seating, salad bar, breakfast, visit crowsnest-santacruz.com
Lightfoot Industries continues its gourmet Supper Club season on Friday nights through Dec. 16 with a different weekly menu. On a recent night, the Korean Soul Food meal included braised spareribs, house-made Kimchee and flourless chocolate torte. Last week's Halloween theme featured pumpkin bisque, chicken, leek, and tarragon pie, and ginger cakes with pumpkin ice cream.
Lightfoot is a unique local organization whose mission is to provide entrepreneurial training to teenagers through a restaurant (this Supper Club), a retail line (including chutneys, logo apparel, and gluten-free baked goods at New Leaf, Coffee Cat, and Lulu's), and a curriculum that encourages social, environmental, and fiscal responsibility.
Lightfoot Industries Supper Clubs, Fridays at 6:30 p.m., DIG Gardens Nursery, 420 Water Street, Santa Cruz. Tickets are $35 adults, $15 kids 10-12 and $8 kids 9 and under. Tickets available on the website lightfoodind.com.
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