July 24, 2016 – My birthday. All I wanted was to go to a small restaurant we have passed many times. Each time we pass it we say we should try it. That’s what I wanted for my birthday. To try Early Toast Mimosa House in El Dorado Hills. I got my wish and more. To add to the occasion, I was surprised to find my wife’s mother and stepfather had driven several hours to join us for the celebration.
Early Toast Mimosa House is not like going to a restaurant. It’s more like a house party hosted by a very fun family. Or maybe a circus. Nicole, the young woman assigned to tend our table, brought a communicable energy to the chore. As we consulted with her on the menu, we watched the parade of activity going on behind her. One of her colleagues passed by balancing a stack of glasses that reached a good seven feet over his head. Another held a dozen white coffee mugs in a Rubik’s Cube type configuration.
Early Toast Mimosa House offers breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. But it’s the breakfast dishes and the mimosas that make the party. And the very fun family hosting the party is the Dedier family. Lou, Stephanie and son, Devin. With restaurants in El Dorado Hills and Roseville, and a third soon to open in Sacramento, the Dediers are creating their own chain where good food and good times make memorable occasions.
We started with mimosas. Hey, it’s the Mimosa House. There are 35 varieties of mimosas available . To make the most of the morning my wife and I each chose to try a flight of three. I selected the Beach Bum (mango & watermelon), the Peachy Keen (white grape & peach) and the Roseville (orange & strawberry). The Beach Bum was my favorite. My wife raved about the Red Head (ginger & lime). Later I ordered a separate glass of the Red Head. Good but the Beach Bum is still my favorite.
In a deliciously amusing play on a New Orleans beignet, Early Toast Mimosa House has the toastie. Thick sliced squares of bread deep fried. Sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar, the toasties stir memories of mornings at the Café du Monde. So pleasant in both taste and memory.
Breakfast is my favorite meal. But I confess it is the one meal in which I find myself consistently in a rut. I always seem to order the same things if they’re on the menu. Chicken-fried steak and eggs. Steak and eggs. Any variety of link sausage and eggs. And, whenever it’s available, loco moco, that wonderful heart-attack-in-a-bowl originating on the Big Island of Hawaii. The Early Toast Mimosa House menu has all of them.
Now my wife was challenged. She also tends to be in a breakfast rut. Her go-to breakfast is most anything followed by the word Benedict. Her logic told her that if I ordered crab cake Benedict she should look elsewhere on the menu. She found huevos rancheros. Her mother also ordered huevos rancheros. Her stepfather played it safe with a scrambled egg and sausage skillet.
Back to the crab cake Benedict. The crab cake was a delightful patty of snow crab resting on an English muffin. Pleasingly reminiscent of the sea. Poached eggs are traditional with a Benedict. Not my favorite method of preparing eggs. The eggs topping my crab cakes, however, were cooked perfectly.
But the real test of a Benedict is the hardest to prepare. Hollandaise. Named one of the five mother sauces by the great chef Georges Auguste Escoffier, it’s not an easy sauce to prepare. Short cuts don’t work well. The Hollandaise accompanying my crab cake Benedict was delectable. It brought the dish together in taste, texture and color.
My wife declared the huevos rancheros magnificent. She thought the tortillas, if not an in house production, were certainly made near by. They were covered by beans and a ranchero sauce in which the tomatoes were coarsely chopped and lightly charred. Two fried eggs, (perfectly cooked, she also said) lay over the beans and ranchero sauce, topped in turn with cheese, green onions, sour cream and slices of avocado.
We went to Early Toast The Mimosa House for a late breakfast to celebrate my birthday. It turned into a three and a half hour party.
With 29 mimosas yet to try.
Happy birthday to me!