Dear Saturday brunch at The Southern,

Short rib hash from The Southern. Pick the best pieces from every meal and you have this glorious concoction. Photo/Dear Food

Short rib hash from The Southern. Pick the best pieces from every meal and you have this glorious concoction. Photo/Dear Food

Brunch is my favorite activity. I have a developed skill set for brunching on the weekends. I’ve seen it all, I expect it all. But nothing could have prepared me for this.

Many Chicagoans know about you, The Southern. Nestled in the hip and trendy Bucktown, you do all the food things that food people love to see: Fresh and local ingredients, high-quality craft brews and cocktails. You combine the best of southern living with a big city twist. So, I was ready for the wait. I was ready for the one-page brunch menu (because why not make a few things really well instead of 100 things mediocre?), but I was not ready to want every single item on that one-page menu.

Table with breakfast food

Dear Leisurely Thursday Breakfast,

Table with breakfast foodYou were the result of skipping the gym this morning, and I have to say, I’m glad I chose you. It was the perfect opportunity to have breakfast on my new china I found at the flea market, enjoy French press coffee and read the newspaper. Reading the newspaper is such a luxury these days, and I relish every opportunity I have to sit and appreciate it. The stars of the meal were local, soft-scrambled buttery eggs, Rehoboth Ranch uncured smoked bacon, and Empire Baking Company sourdough toast (picked up from Patina Green Home and Market). If I had it my way, I’d enjoy mornings like this every day.

Love,

N

My ultimate love letter to eggs Benedict

Extra, extra! Read all about eggs Benedict!

Extra, extra! Read all about eggs Benedict!

It’s been a quiet week for me here at DF, not because I haven’t been eating (preposterous thought) but because I’ve been working on a food story. Better yet, the food story is for the Lawrence Journal-World, where I work.

My editor noticed my (somewhat unhealthy) obsession for this breakfast food (here, here and here) and suggested I write something.

Go around town and try all the eggs Benedicts I can? Chat with people about its deliciousness and brunch history? It seemed insurmountable to express my love in such a manner but I did it. Take a look at the story here.

The two questions people have asked me are: Which is your favorite? Are you sick of them yet? The answers: I love them all equally like children. The only thing I’m sick of is typing the word ‘Benedict.’

Sneak peek: Mariscos blue crab Benedict

Sneak peek: Mariscos blue crab Benedict

Dear Sunday breakfast

This is Sunday breakfast.

This is Sunday breakfast.

When it’s Sunday and you have bacon leftover, what else can you make? Eggs with some spinach and tomatoes (plus Sriracha!) to go with fatty, uncured, delicious bacon. It’s easy, uncomplicated and flavorful. Less time cooking, more time eating.

Love,
A

Dear eggs benedict,

Yet again, another eggs benedict meal at Cork | Fire Kitchen

Yet again, another eggs benedict meal at Cork | Fire Kitchen

Surprise, surprise: Alma got eggs benedict again. I’m thinking I may need to do an eggs benedict special section at some point in the future. I just love them so much! Anyway, this meal came from the Cork | Fire Kitchen, part of my Temecula adventure over winter break.

It could help that it was a gorgeous day, not a cloud in the sky with uber comfy couches at the table and a beautiful golf course spread out to my right. Or maybe it was the amazing combination of melted cheese on fried potatoes. Either way, it was a heavenly breakfast on a heavenly day.

Love,
A

Dear Rye breakfast,

The Rye breakfast from Rye

The Rye breakfast from Rye

From the geniuses who brought you Bluestem, I present to you: Rye. It’s chic. It’s classy. The decor is divine. I may or may not have had dinner there the night before this breakfast. They serve a kicking Moscow mule in gorgeous copper mugs (that require a $30 collateral. Fair. It’s a beautiful mug). Also, breakfast!

This meal sounded simple but from a restaurant that has a lovely wooden table with beautiful flowers and morning pastries delicately arranged in the center of the room, I knew it would be fabulous. And it was. Spending any more time describing it might do it injustice.

Love,
A

PS: CORNBREAD.

Dear The Roost,

Where have you been all my life? As a brunching connoisseur, my main goal in life is to brunch the hell out of a town, but lately I’ve found it difficult – not to say that there isn’t some delicious brunch here. Oh no, there is but it’s not its own category. But this. The Roost is a brand new haven for brunch and the answer to all my breakfast prayers.

First, you have a bloody mary menu with six options. I chose the NoLaw (North Lawrence), which featured local pickles (pickled by the owner himself), the perfect blend of spices and garlic.

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Then came the tomato + avocado benny. I can’t come up with the words to describe it’s perfection and flavor. I remember having to consciously keep myself from inhaling it (ladies don’t scarf food, no matter how scarfable it may be).

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But the best part? That I get to come back and visit you again. And again. And again.

Love,
A