Monday, August 15, 2011

Ghini's for breakfast

It's been a tough week with my father-in-law ailing and last weekend we hardly could take a breath for ourselves. But this Sunday, after we diligently cleaned up the house and tended to backyard watering, we went to one of our indulgent spots to eat a late breakfast: Ghini's French Cafe. (See The Cafe is located at 1803 E. Prince and, if it hadn't been 98 degrees outside, it's an easy walk from our house. The Cafe is connected to La Baquette Bakery; both are closed on Mondays and the Bakery is also closed on Sundays. But the breads are fresh on Sunday and just the smell of croissants as I walk inside, takes me back to my Paris visit in 2002.

It was busy at 12:30 and so we decided to sit on the patio and enjoy the misty air and shade. Had we decided to wait for an inside table, we could have treated ourselves to small slices of a variety of breads offered at the complimentary table on the patio, along with lemon-flavored ice water and coffee.

However, we were very comfortable at our table for two on the patio and the service at Ghini's is always attentive and fun. What I mean by "fun" is that the servers are college-age and even though they are all dressed in black shirts and pants, one female server puts a red flower in her hair; another male server wears purple socks underneath his white Converse shoes; a male busser has a green handkerchief in his back pocket. I am guessing that many of the staff have artistic aspirations in their other lives.

As I sit on the patio, I can gaze inside to the sunflower yellow walls and admire the Matisse-like paintings. All of that sets me in the right mood for a late breakfast. My husband ordered and inhaled a breakfast speciality: eggs provencale. He ordered the baquette which was toasted and added hash browns which came lightly browned and crunchy. The tomatoes had been sauteed in herbs de provence and then cooked "around the eggs", according to our waiter, who checked with the cook for the details. I had two scrambled eggs, flavored with fresh herbs of dill, basil and chives. I requested that the herbs be added and they gave a nice zest to the eggs. I ordered sour dough with my eggs and the slices were lightly toasted and thinly sliced. Just perfect with butter and jam. My order came with three slices of sausage which I shared with my husband (and he swapped me some of his hash browns).

As we were finishing up our meal and talking with our waiter, he gave us the menu for Ghini's new "Fabulous Fridays" dinners. We knew about their Tuesday Tapas but they have shifted to a dinner opening on Fridays and we'll have to check it out and write about it in the near future.

They also serve lunch which I have had upon occasion. Most lunch items can be ordered in half portions which I prefer because full portions are very generous. Since Ghini's is close and, as the weather cools, we walk to it, I will be doing more menu postings from Ghini's in the near future. If you want an affordable, relaxed and savory breakfast with French flair, I strongly recommend Ghini's.

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