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Breakfast at Crest Cafe

Weekends when it is not a travel day, is typically a sleep in day.  However, I have been craving breakfast foods lately and I just could not walk away from it.  So I grabbed my best friend LA to head to Hillcrest this morning to Crest Cafe since I had bought a Groupon (my new love).

We made it to Hillcrest a little past 8:30am and the streets were pretty empty so finding a spot on the street was not an issue.  Great start!  As we approached the cafe, I looked into the front windows and saw at least several tables open so that means no wait!!

LA and I were seated almost immediately in the tiny cafe.  I can  see how easily this place would get packed during peak brunch hours.  Given that we both gave up Sunday morning sleep, we were rewarded with a nice table right by the pick up window.  Now it was time to chow down!

That is..after I get coffee into my system because I do not enjoy getting less than 7 hours of sleep, plus not starting my day with a workout.  Thank goodness our waiter, a really nice guy, asked us if we would like to start off with some coffee and it took everything to keep myself from jumping up and say, “HECK YES!”

Once I got coffee into my system, everything seemed to be brighter despite the clouds in the sky.  Best part: it is unlimited refills!

For our entrees, LA went with the cafe’s signature dish, the Creme Brulee French Toast.

Now I will let you absorb this picture of the pile of amazing-ness!  It is 2 thick slices of bread, cut diagonally, soaked in a sweet egg wash and grilled on the flat top.   Topped a huge pile of the whipped cream, fresh strawberries, and a light caramel sauce.  The Crest Cafe Creme Brulee French Toast lived up to it’s name since it did remind me of creme brulee.  Although I loved the taste of it, but it was really sweet so I don’t think I could ever have the whole plate by myself.

Instead, I opted for the savory side for my entree with the Oretga Scramble:

Yes…it was a big plate of food!  Crest Cafe offers to make all their egg selections as either an omelette or a scramble and I prefer scrambles.  The Ortega comes with 4 eggs, Ortega chile, salsa fresca, hot pepper jack cheese and spicy chicken sausage.  It comes with a choice of hashbrowns/homestyle fries and toast, tortillas and beans or cottage cheese and sliced roma tomatoes.

The scramble was great! Granted, it was way too much protein for me, but I still loved it.  The spicy chicken sausage was hot and I wish I had more.  My side choices was whole wheat toast and hashbrowns.  Some of the toast was burnt, but the slices that weren’t made for a great vehicle for my scramble!

Hashbrowns are one of my favorite breakfast sides, but the problem is that I will admit…I prefer restaurants using butter on the griddle rather than oil.  It adds flavor while crisping the outer layers, but with oil…it just adds no flavor and it ends up just oily.  Sadly…these hashbrowns was just oily and tasteless.

Overall though, I had a great experience.  I had browsed through the reviews on Yelp and have heard of the terrible service others have received.  However, I can see that when this place gets packed that the 2 waiter team would be terribly swamped.

Having worked the restaurant industry, I know what it is like and I try my best to give them the benefit of the doubt.  I cannot say how good their lunch and dinner is, but breakfast was darn good.

Crest Cafe
425 Robinson Avenue
San Diego, California 92103


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