Welcome to the first edition of “Confessions of a Brunch-Obsessed Foodie” chock full of breakfast thoughts and ramblings from the mind of yours truly! The inspiration? I’ve come to realize that while many of you have been following Ate by Ate for some time now (regularly and every so often), there hasn’t been any way for you any of you to know what to expect aside from the monthly food calendars and the regular weekly farmers’ market and cupcake shop posts. I admit, I like to keep many blog-related things I’m working on under wraps. If I revealed everything, all the fun and anticipation (for those who read and even for myself) would be lost and besides, I’m a girl who likes to keep a few tricks hidden up her sleeve!
Brunch is my favourite meal though and I am constantly researching brunch places around the city, spots that offer weekend brunch, compiling lists of places that serve vegetarian and vegan dishes, French toast, pancakes, certain fruits and vegetables to add to future Flavour Favourites posts, and all-around unique menus worth checking out. So I thought, why not let everyone in on some of the places on my hit list, dishes I’d like try, breakfast thoughts and ponderings, and menus that I think are totally drool-worthy? It would be fun just to share these with you guys and to maybe even bounce some ideas off of each other. Here’s what’s been going on in the back end:
First: brunch in Markham. Someone please enlighten me. Maybe I just need to be a little more patient in my search. Maybe I just need to give it some time. But seriously folks, it’s slim pickins in my neck of the woods. I have my beloved T&T Bakery & Cafe and my wonderful Chinese and HK-style diners, yes, but I’d love to try other places (and by places I mean more independent spots as opposed to chains as I avoid posting about chains as best as I can on the blog) and it’d be great to have a little more variety. After all, if Markham is going to live up to its newly-minted city status, it has to step up in this department!
I started doing a little research and while I found a few options (hmm, Angus Glen Golf Club!), I have my work cut out for me. I am looking forward to posting many more HK-style diner posts in the coming months though, just because it’s like comfort food to me. What you see up top is a rare display of Chinese and HK-style breakfast on the blog (only one post to date, if I remember correctly – how shameful), one showing my favourite diner drink, Ovaltine (hot or cold, doesn’t matter) and the other showing one very tasty waffle with fruit, ice cream, and chocolate fudge drizzle! Note the honeydew melon on it though – I had to give those to my mum.
In addition to the “where in the world are the great brunch spots in Markham” ramblings running rampant in my head, there are always about 10 different brunch options in the city floating around in my mind come the weekend. Even though my own indecisiveness drives me crazy, it is SO much fun thinking about where to go for brunch and what place to hit up next. Here are 5 places I’m dying to try:
- Brockton General – Sunday brunch from 10am-3pm. If the online menu is current and accurate, I am all over their stuffed French toast with stewed rhubarb and creme fraiche, smoked cod cake and eggs, and their grilled cheese and pickles! (1321 Dundas Street West, west of Dovercourt Rd.)
- The Stockyards Smokehouse and Larder – Sunday brunch from 9am-3pm. My picks for a future visit: smoked trout and scrambled eggs on a Gryfe’s bagel, smoked meat hash, and the biscuits and sausage gravy. (699 St. Clair Ave. West, west of Pinewood Ave.)
- The Drake Hotel – Saturday and Sunday weekend brunch from 9am-4pm. After having one of the most fab weekend brunches ever at The Gladstone Hotel, it makes sense to head down the road to the Drake to try theirs, yes? On my radar: the warm scone share plate with cream and preserves, their scrambled burrito stuffed with scrambled eggs, jalapeno jack, avocado, home fries, and all the fixins, and the blueberry and ricotta pancakes. (1150 Queen Street West, west of Dovercourt Rd.)
- Gilead Café & Bistro – Sunday brunch from 10am-3pm. Jamie Kennedy’s work of culinary art in brunch form! What I’m eyeing on the menu: the smoked whitefish on red fife pancake, the howdy pard’ner ensemble, the bacon rosti with cheesy scrambled eggs, and the French toast. I’ve fallen in love with the sweet atmosphere just from looking at the website. (4 Gilead Place, just off of King Street East, east of Parliament St.)
- Cafe Uno – Saturday and Sunday weekend brunch. My coming to Cafe Uno for brunch has been a loooong time coming and it’s going to happen sooner or later! They have a big brunch menu with lots of options such as omelettes and frittatas, but what gets my motor running is their stuffed French toast dishes, especially their cranberry apple crumble French toast! (55 Mill St., building 32, suite 102. in the Distillery District).
I hope you guys liked this first edition of Brunch Thoughts because I certainly have a blast talking about it! Each and every single Brunch Thoughts post will feature 5 spots in the city on my hit list with a run-down of all the dishes I’d love to eventually try. And if you’re so inclined, head on over to any one of them and give them a try!