Banana custard French toast. Crème brulee pancakes. Breakfast pizza with smoked ham and truffle potatoes. Pork belly benedict. $20 bottomless mimosas.
I’ve been dying to try brunch at Elate. Any time any of my relatives or friends have even mentioned breakfast or lunch or brunch or food in general I have brought it up. I was pretty much sold as soon as I read “bottomless mimosas” but the rest of the menu didn’t hurt either. It didn’t even deter me that Elate is part of the Hotel Felix, and we all know how I feel about places that cater to tourists (http://chigirleats.tumblr.com/post/19907514118/please-dont-feed-the-tourists). Finally, FINALLY, I tried it.
My coffee cup was empty for about 15 minutes. I live off coffee. It’s the only thing that keeps me relatively sane and somewhat functioning. It ensures that I am pleasant and social and not likely to cause bodily harm to anyone within a five foot radius. Needless to say, my well-being and the well-being of all those around me necessitates a steady stream of caffeine. So 15 minutes of being deprived of coffee and needing to flag down a bus boy to bring over a pot with which he filled my cup up only HALF WAY was not exactly what I was expecting while fantasizing about Elate.
So finally our waiter materializes and asks if we are ready to order. Now I’m not exactly all sunshine and lollipops and puppy dogs and whatnot in the morning but the waiter may have been the only person on the planet less awake and more anti-social than me. I ordered quickly and he disappeared, not to be seen again until delivering the food and then delivering the check when I flagged him down. Again, no coffee refills.
When the food got to the table it looked fantastic: picture perfect banana custard French toast with peanut streusel and crème anglaise and a breakfast pizza with smoked ham, truffle potatoes, gouda, caramelized onions, and a sunny side egg. Aesthetically everything looked absolutely amazing. Elate was about to redeem itself.
And then I took a bite of the French toast. It was soggy. I’m talking mushy nasty can’t cut it because it just shreds soggy. The dehydrated banana slices didn’t even help to add texture. The most redeeming quality was the peanut streusel which kind of tasted like over baked peanut butter cookies.
The breakfast pizza was a bit better. It was, however, made on cracker thin crust which made it incredibly hard to cut. But it’s pizza so picking it up to eat it is always an option, right? Not so much since once the egg yolk broke it was all over.
Lastly, everything was cold. Not warm or room temperature or slightly dried out from sitting under a heat lamp too long. Nope. It was cold.
The worst part of this whole Elate catastrophe was that I could have been having lunch at Tavernita a couple blocks away or have gone to Pannenkoeken Café (one of my favorite breakfast places on the planet). As disappointed as I am about this whole experience I’m kicking myself for being naive enough to think that a hotel restaurant would be as good as it sounds. Lesson learned. Time to move on.