28 April 2009

Another great place we ate at on our trip to Chicago.

I found out about the Walker Brothers Pancake House online and read some great reviews about it. I looked at the menu on their website and they offer some really unique dishes. I really like eating at places that go beyond the usual fare and thought this would be a good place to try.

We had breakfast at the Arlington Road location on Monday, April 20th (my birthday :). They have six locations throughout the Chicago area. (Side note: I didn't take the above picture; it's from their website.)

The interior is nice, but nothing too special. They have some pretty chandeliers and other ornate touches. Definitely nicer than an IHOP, but not so nice that you would have to dress up for it.

Now we knew that one of this place's specialties is bacon pancakes. Yes, that's right folks: bacon pancakes. Pancakes with crumbled bacon in the batter. But they had so many other wonderful-sounding dishes that we decided that we would each order whatever we like and then together we would split a side order of the bacon pancakes. Because you can't not try them. Or at least we couldn't.

Here is what I ordered:

Poached Eggs with fresh sautéed spinach, mushrooms and bits of our crisp bacon on a toasted English muffin blanketed with our rich hollandaise sauce, a garnish of pico de gallo.

I love eggs benedict and always like to try different versions of it. I love spinach, mushrooms, and bacon, so I thought this sounded heavenly. I was going to order it without the pico de gallo, because it usually has bell peppers in it and I don't like those. But I forgot.

I was so right about this being heavenly. It was incredible! The egg was perfectly cooked with a nice soft yolk. The hollandaise sauce was really good. It had a lovely tang to it. It definitely tasted freshly made. And the combination of the crispy bacon and the soft mushrooms and spinach was great. All of the flavors really complemented each other perfectly. I didn't regret forgetting to omit the pico de gallo too much; it only had one piece of pepper that was easily picked off and I enjoyed the tomato and onion.

Jim ordered:
Our special thick-sliced French toast made with freshly baked egg bread, grilled until golden brown. Garnished with fresh strawberries and a light dusting of powdered sugar.

Again, this one is not my picture. My camera batteries died right after I took the pic of my dish and none of my others would work (I really need new rechargeables!). Luckily, they have a pic of this on their menu online. Jim said it was really good. Better than regular french toast because of the challah bread. He offered me a bite, but I was too engrossed in my heavenly benedict to take him up on it.

And we shared:
Crispy bits of our hickory-smoked bacon in the batter. Served with whipped butter & syrup.

Oh my goodness. These were so good! Well, duh, how could they be bad, right? Actually, it wasn't just because of the bacon that that were awesome. Jim and I both agreed that the pancakes themselves were really good. I don't usually finish a pancake, but I did this one! It was amazing. (Again, not my pic.)

And I have one more thing to rave about at Walker Brothers. This is going to sound weird, but it's the grapefruit juice! Yes, the juice! I love grapefruit juice, but a lot of restaurants serve that really crappy, overly sweetened, unnaturally red stuff they call ruby red grapefruit juice. So I always ask before ordering it. No need here! This is freshly squeezed, with little bits of pulp, naturally sweet. THE BEST GRAPEFRUIT JUICE I HAVE EVER TASTED! Jim hates grapefruit juice but I was so sure he had never had any like this that I made him taste it. He liked it! It is so incredibly sweet, but you can tell it's natural and not added sugar. It doesn't have even a hint of bitterness to it at all. It was incredible. Juice seems a silly thing to rave about, but yes, it was that good.

I am convinced that this was the best place in the country I could have picked to have breakfast on my birthday. It was amazing. We left there so stuffed we almost had to roll each other out to the car! :) I highly recommend it and will definitely be making a point to stop by each time I visit or go through or go anywhere near Chicago!



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