Monday, November 14, 2011


Coffee starts with breakfast. No. Stop me, it's backwards. Breakfast starts with coffee, and without it I sometimes don't know my way around. Never mind that I'm writing this at 9 in the evening.
I wanted to wrack up a big appetite when I went to meet Willie at Sadies Diner (whose website exists in the Dark Ages of myspace) for brunch. It's a fair 6km from my house to the oldtimey vegan diner at Portland and Adelaide, and though I wasn't walking fast it did the trick to make my stomach growl, and for the last half of my trip I flat out craved that hot coffee!
And when it hit my tongue I was left with a strong and memorable impression of meh.
Sadly, it went for the whole meal. 

The brunch wound up with a funny vegan Tex Mex angle. Understand, Sadie's is in no way a Tex Mex place. It just so happened that on this occasion our appetites had migrated, as the geese do, to the south. Can't blame them. I had the vegan Huevos Rancheros (10$), one of my favourite brunch dishes usually. Willie got to tell me a bit about different soy based cheeses, since I am a blank slate. I know nothing. Do they pair well with wine? I am told, no, they don't. They don't melt, either...except for Daiya cheese, which is why it is a BIG DEAL for vegans. Sadie's uses Daiya. I did like it, too, though it is stiffer than milkcheese. It has a similar taste, but floury. That interesting newness aside, I don't think the tortillas were good. The tofu 'egg' was cold, and hadn't really been made 'eggy' in any way. It just tasted like tofu. Cold tofu, in big dry clumps. No turmeric to turn it yellow, even! I know that a lot can be done for vegan scrambled eggs, and this was a bottom line effort. You can't go too wrong with brown beans and a crunchy tortilla at least.
In instances like this, I praise my love of hot sauce, and soak that dish.

Keeping with a deep south theme, Willie went for a more lunch like nosh, and got the Quesadillas (9$). A mix of predictable veggies tasted good, but didn't open our eyes to anything new and delightful, and weren't handled in a way that made the stuffed tortillas seem rethought. It wasn't delicious, just plain. I complain a lot about the lack of inventiveness in the zucchini-eggplant-peppers trinity vegetarian dishes tend to favour, though it's most often a symptom of the token vegetarian menu item on an otherwise meat loving menu. Sadie's is mainly vegetarian and vegan! They should be doing something exciting- it's what I expect. So even though I like the Daiya cheese, and there was a fair amount, I think this dish could have been more inventively veganized. One could not even taste the sambal alleged to be in their vegan mayo! One thing I did like was that corny, soft tortilla- I wonder if it's actually made in house?

(You can read Willie's review here).
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1 comment:

  1. That is some tortured looking salad! Love the blog :-).